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RocketLink!--> Man page versions: OpenBSD FreeBSD NetBSD RedHat Others

COL(1)                     OpenBSD Reference Manual                     COL(1)

     col - filter reverse line feeds from input

     col [-bfx] [-l num]

     col filters out reverse (and half-reverse) line feeds so that the output
     is in the correct order with only forward and half-forward line feeds,
     and replaces whitespace characters with tabs where possible.  This can be
     useful in processing the output of nroff(1) and tbl(1).

     col reads from the standard input and writes to the standard output.

     The options are as follows:

     -b      Do not output any backspaces, printing only the last character
             written to each column position.

     -f      Forward half-line feeds are permitted (``fine'' mode).  Normally
             characters printed on a half-line boundary are printed on the
             following line.

     -x      Output multiple spaces instead of tabs.

     -l num  Buffer at least num lines in memory.  By default, 128 lines are

     The control sequences for carriage motion that col understands and their
     decimal values are listed in the following table:

     ESC-7            Reverse line feed (escape then 7).
     ESC-8            Half reverse line feed (escape then 8).
     ESC-9            Half forward line feed (escape then 9).
     backspace        Moves back one column (8); ignored in the first column.
     carriage return  (13)
     newline          Forward line feed (10); also does carriage return.
     shift in         Shift to normal character set (15).
     shift out        Shift to alternate character set (14).
     space            Moves forward one column (32).
     tab              Moves forward to next tab stop (9).
     vertical tab     Reverse line feed (11).

     All unrecognized control characters and escape sequences are discarded.

     col keeps track of the character set as characters are read and makes
     sure the character set is correct when they are output.

     If the input attempts to back up to the last flushed line, col will dis-
     play a warning message.

     expand(1),  nroff(1),  tbl(1)

     A col command appeared in Version 6 AT&T UNIX.

OpenBSD 2.6                      June 29, 1993                               1

Source: OpenBSD 2.6 man pages. Copyright: Portions are copyrighted by BERKELEY
SOFTWARE DESIGN, INC., The Regents of the University of California, Massachusetts
Institute of Technology, Free Software Foundation, FreeBSD Inc., and others.

(Corrections, notes, and links courtesy of RocketAware.com)

[Detailed Topics]
FreeBSD Sources for col(1)
OpenBSD sources for col(1)

[Overview Topics]

Up to: File filtering and processing - Methods of filtering and processing files. (character translation, comparison, search, sort, word counts, etc.)

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