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I would like to add a feature to the cut command, I think

From: Jeff Silverman
Subject: I would like to add a feature to the cut command, I think
Date: Thu, 01 Apr 2004 17:26:24 -0800
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; Linux i686; en-US; rv:1.4a) Gecko/20030401

I am trying to parse whitespace delimited files, and it seems intuitively obvious to me that I ought to be able to do it with the cut command. Cut works fine with /etc/mtab, where the fields really and truly are delimited by a single space character. But for files such as /etc/fstab, where the fields are delimited by any amount of white space, cut doesn't work so well.

Of course, I can do this with a one liner in perl, but that's not the point.

I'd like to modify the cut command to accept the -W switch, which says that the fields are white space delimited. That should be a simple change, technically. But it isn't clear to me how I go about getting the source code, testing my change under all operating systems and getting it accepted into the distributions. Can you advise me?

Many thanks,


Jeff Silverman,
Senior Computing Specialist 3, Fire and Environmental Research Applications
(FERA) team.  College of Forest Resources
jeffsilv at NOSPAM,PLEASE-u-washington-edu   (206) 732-7815

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