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Re: wc feature request

From: A B
Subject: Re: wc feature request
Date: Tue, 6 Oct 2020 23:49:19 -0400

I mean if you want to get picky about it and have this work exactly like grep 
-q, then you need to make the flag accept a threshold value, which it should 
match or exceed. 
So maybe:      wc -l -q3

That doesn’t have the same intuitive feel to me, but it wouldn’t violate the 
notion of how exit codes should be used either.

-Alex Boese

Sent from my Triceratops.

> On Oct 6, 2020, at 2:19 PM, Kaz Kylheku (Coreutils) 
> <> wrote:
> On 2020-10-05 08:40, A B wrote:
>> Many thanks for all the much needed contributions to society as a whole.
>> I did have one feature to request for wc, which I think would be
>> highly complementary to grep’s -q flag. It would be really cool if wc
>> could have a -q flag as well, which could return matches within a
>> predefined threshold as the exit code itself. So for example, if I
>> wrote ‘wc -l -q’ at the end of a pipe, then no output would be
>> returned, but the exit  code would return a 3 if three lines were
>> found.
> I don't see this exact feature in the documentation of GNU grep.
> grep terminates with a 0 status (success) when matches are found,
> and this is true with -q.
> The idea has limited applicability; there are only as few as 8 bits
> (or fewer?) available in the process status word for encoding the
> exit code.
> It could be useful for counting the number of lines or characters
> in files that are somehow guaranteed to be small.
> The inversion of the exit success polarity is also troubling.
> If nothing is counted, that's 0 (success), whereas if anything
> is counted, that is a termination failure.

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