November 27, 2022

*NIX Command Line Foo

Category: Uncategorized,UNIX Scripting — Raffael Marty @ 11:28 am

Well, not one of my normal blog posts, but I hope some of you geeks out there will find this useful anyways. I will definitely use this post as a reference frequently.

I have been using various flavors of UNIX and their command lines from ksh to bash and zsh for over 25 years and there is always something new to learn to make me faster at the jobs I am doing. One tool that I keep using (despite my growing command of Excel), is VIM coupled with UNIX command line tools. It saves me hours and hours of work all the time.

Well, here are some new things I learned and want to remember from the Well, here are some new things I learned and want to remember from the art of command line github repo:

  • CTRL-W on the command line deletes the last word
  • pgrep to search for processes rather than doing the longer version with awk
  • lsof -iTCP -sTCP:LISTEN -P -n processes listening on TCP ports
  • Diff two json files: diff <(jq --sort-keys . < file1.json) <(jq --sort-keys . < file2.json) | colordiff | less -R
  • I totally forgot about csvkitbrew install csvkit
    • in2csv file1.xls > file1.csv
    • csvstat data.csv
    • csvsql --query "select name from data where age > 30" data.csv > old.csv

I just found some additional command son OSX that I wish I had known earlier:

  • ditto copies one or more source files or directories to a destination directory. If the destination directory does not exist it will be created before the first source is copied. If the destination directory already exists then the source directories are merged with the previous contents of the destination.
  • pbcopy past data from command line into the clipboard
  • qlmanage quick view from the command line

This is a great repo as well for great OSX commands.

October 15, 2007

Database Query Analysis

Category: Log Analysis,UNIX Scripting,Visualization — Raffael Marty @ 6:54 pm

icon.jpgI was playing with database audit logs for a bit to try and visualize some aspects of them. While doing so, I came across a pretty interesting problem. The audit logs contain entries that indicate what exact SQL query was executed. Now, I am not interested in the entire query, but I need to know which tables were touched. I was trying to build some regular expressions to extract that information from the query, but I gave up pretty quickly. It’s just too complicated for a regex. I was wondering whether there is a way to take a SQL query, for example:

select * from a.table1 a, b.tabl2 b join c.table3 on b.id1=c.id2 where'bar'

and extract all the table names: a.table1, b.table2, c.table3. Are there tools to do that? Remember, I don’t have the database with these tables. I only have a log from some database. The script should support all the SQL perks like joins, nested selects, etc. Anyone have a good way to do this?

July 25, 2007

Parsing XML on the Command Line

Category: UNIX Scripting — Raffael Marty @ 11:24 am

I haven’t written about UNIX scripting in a while. It was yesterday in the afternoon that our QA guy came over and asked me some questions about VI. Among his problems was the “parsing of an XML” file. He wanted to extract elements from specific branches of an XML structure. I told him that VI was not XML aware. It treats XMLs just like any other text file; line by line. He was not happy with my answer and kept bugging me. Then he said: “You should write a tool called XMLgrep”. And that was it. I was pretty sure that someone had written a tool that would do exactly that.

After 30 seconds on google, I found it: XMLStarlet. It took me about 30 minutes to get the hang of the tool, but it is really cool. It takes XPATH queries as an input. My knowledge of XPATH goes back to my thesis and is a bit rusty, but I finally got it right. Here is an example of how to apply an XPATH query to an XML file:

xmlstarlet sel -t -c "/archive/ActiveList[@name='Public Webmail']/description" JSOX_ActiveLists.xml

another one:

xmlstarlet sel -t -m "/archive/ActiveList" -v "concat (@name,'
')" JSOX_ActiveLists.xm

Yes, there is a newline in this command. However, it didn’t really work for me. What I wanted to do is separating the different outputs with a newline, but for some reason this didn’t work. I tried all kinds of things, but no luck. Oh well.

Here is another link that might be useful. It’s a nice tutorial on XMLStarlet.

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March 20, 2007

Not so Random Numbers

Category: UNIX Scripting — Raffael Marty @ 9:05 pm

In cryptography or science in general, you often need perfect random numbers. Well, up to today, that was my need as well. However, today I was trying to generate numbers that are not too random, but have a certain bias. I think it’s kind of ironic. Googling for a solution is almost impossible. Every link shows a perfect random number generator 😉

I don’t care what the bias is in the numbers that are generated. Actually, the bias can be pretty high. Anyone have a method to do this in Perl?

Can you do something like int(rand($upperLimit*1000)) % 1000 ??? Basically changing the interval from where the random number is taken and then shrinking it again?

February 24, 2007

Geo Lookup on the Command Line

Category: Programming,UNIX Scripting — Raffael Marty @ 8:56 pm

By now you should know that I really like command line tools which operate well when applied to data through a pipe. I have posted quite a few tips already to do data manipulation on the command line. Today I wanted a quick way to lookup IP address locations and add them to a log file. After investigating a few free databases, I came accross Geo::IPFree, a Perl library which does the trick. So here is how you add the country code. First, this is the format of my log entries:

10/13/2005 20:25:54.032145,,,2071,135

I want to get the country of the source address (first IP in the log). Here we go:

cat pflog.csv | perl -M'Geo::IPfree' -na -F/,/ -e '($country,$country_name)=Geo::IPfree::LookUp($F[1]);chomp; print "$_,$country_name\n"'

And here the output:

10/13/2005 20:24:33.494358,,,,echo request,Europe

Very simple!

April 26, 2006

Command Line DNS Lookup

Category: UNIX Scripting — Raffael Marty @ 11:09 pm

Something I ran into a couple of times this week is how to do an easy dns lookup on the command line:

cat data | perl -M'Socket' -na -F/,/ -e '$dns=gethostbyaddr(inet_aton($F[0]),AF_INET)||$F[0]; print "$dns,$F[1],$F[2]\n"'

The code assumes that you have an IP address in the first column. It uses -F/,/ to split the input into arrays, does a DNS lookup on the first column and returns either the dns name or if that was not found, it returns the original IP address.

January 16, 2006

Wireless Access – Linux

Category: UNIX Scripting — Raffael Marty @ 6:40 pm

Sitting down at a cafe around the corner from where I live, I realize that some of the scripts I wrote a while back might actually benefit others too. This one is to connect to the first available access point:


iwlist ath0 s > /tmp/$$

ap=`cat /tmp/$$ | grep "Encryption key:off" -B 5 | head -1 | sed -e 's/Cell.*Address: \(.*\)/\1/g'`
essid=`cat /tmp/$$ | grep "Encryption key:off" -B 4 | head -1 | sed -e 's/ESSID:"\(.*\)"/\1/g'`
essid=`echo $essid | sed -e 's/ //g'`

echo Tryping AP:$ap / SSID:$essid

iwconfig ath0 ap $ap
iwconfig ath0 essid $essid
iwconfig ath0 nick test
killall -9 dhclient
dhclient ath0

Not sure whether there would be a simpler solution natively supported by linux…