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

[IEEE Std1003.2-1992 (``POSIX.2'')]

XARGS(1)                   OpenBSD Reference Manual                   XARGS(1)

     xargs - construct argument list(s) and execute utility

     xargs [-0] [-t] [[-x]-n number] [-s size] [utility [arguments ...]]

     The xargs utility reads space, tab, newline, and end-of-file delimited
     arguments from the standard input and executes the specified utility with
     them as arguments.

     The utility and any arguments specified on the command line are given to
     the utility upon each invocation, followed by some number of the argu-
     ments read from standard input.  The utility is repeatedly executed until
     standard input is exhausted.

     Spaces, tabs and newlines may be embedded in arguments using single (`'')
     or double (`"') quotes or backslashes (`\'). Single quotes escape all
     non-single quote characters, excluding newlines, up to the matching sin-
     gle quote.  Double quotes escape all non-double quote characters, exclud-
     ing newlines, up to the matching double quote.  Any single character, in-
     cluding newlines, may be escaped by a backslash.

     The options are as follows:

     -0      Changes xargs to expect NUL (`\0') characters as separators, in-
             stead of spaces and newlines.  This is expected to be used in
             concert with the -print0 function in find(1).

     -n number
             Set the maximum number of arguments taken from standard input for
             each invocation of the utility.  An invocation of utility will
             use less than number standard input arguments if the number of
             bytes accumulated (see the -s option) exceeds the specified size
             or there are fewer than number arguments remaining for the last
             invocation of utility. The current default value for number is

     -s size
             Set the maximum number of bytes for the command-line length pro-
             vided to utility. The sum of the length of the utility name and
             the arguments passed to utility (including null terminators) will
             be less than or equal to this number.  The current default value
             for size is ARG_MAX - 2048.

     -t      Echo the command to be executed to standard error immediately be-
             fore it is executed.

     -x      Force xargs to terminate immediately if a command line containing
             number arguments will not fit in the specified (or default) com-
             mand-line length.

     If no utility is specified, echo(1) is used.

     Undefined behavior may occur if utility reads from the standard input.

     The xargs utility exits immediately (without processing any further in-
     put) if a command line cannot be assembled, utility cannot be invoked, an
     invocation of the utility is terminated by a signal, or an invocation of
     the utility exits with a value of 255.

     xargs exits with one of the following values:

     0       All invocations of utility returned a zero exit status.
     123     One or more invocations of utility returned a nonzero exit sta-
     124     The utility exited with a 255 exit status.
     125     The utility was killed or stopped by a signal.
     126     The utility was found but could not be invoked.
     127     The utility could not be found.
     1       Some other error occurred.

     echo(1),  find(1)

     The xargs utility is expected to be IEEE Std1003.2 (``POSIX.2'') compli-

     The meaning of 123, 124, and 125 exit values were taken from GNU xargs.

OpenBSD 2.6                      June 6, 1993                                2

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 xargs(1)
OpenBSD sources for xargs(1)

[Overview Topics]

Up to: Command Shells and Scripting Languages

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

[IEEE Std1003.2-1992 (``POSIX.2'')]

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