What's this?

commandlinefu.com is the place to record those command-line gems that you return to again and again.

Delete that bloated snippets file you've been using and share your personal repository with the world. That way others can gain from your CLI wisdom and you from theirs too. All commands can be commented on, discussed and voted up or down.

If you have a new feature suggestion or find a bug, please get in touch via http://commandlinefu.uservoice.com/

Get involved!

You can sign-in using OpenID credentials, or register a traditional username and password.

First-time OpenID users will be automatically assigned a username which can be changed after signing in.

Universal configuration monitoring and system of record for IT.

Stay in the loop…

Follow the Tweets.

Every new command is wrapped in a tweet and posted to Twitter. Following the stream is a great way of staying abreast of the latest commands. For the more discerning, there are Twitter accounts for commands that get a minimum of 3 and 10 votes - that way only the great commands get tweeted.

» http://twitter.com/commandlinefu
» http://twitter.com/commandlinefu3
» http://twitter.com/commandlinefu10

Subscribe to the feeds.

Use your favourite RSS aggregator to stay in touch with the latest commands. There are feeds mirroring the 3 Twitter streams as well as for virtually every other subset (users, tags, functions,…):

Subscribe to the feed for:



May 19, 2015 - A Look At The New Commandlinefu
I've put together a short writeup on what kind of newness you can expect from the next iteration of clfu. Check it out here.
March 2, 2015 - New Management
I'm Jon, I'll be maintaining and improving clfu. Thanks to David for building such a great resource!

Top Tags



Find the process you are looking for minus the grepped one

Terminal - Find the process you are looking for minus the grepped one
ps aux | grep [p]rocess-name
2009-08-13 05:44:45
User: olorin
Functions: grep ps
Find the process you are looking for minus the grepped one

As an alternative to using an additional grep -v grep you can use a simple regular expression in the search pattern (first letter is something out of the single letter list ;-)) to drop the grep command itself.


There are 8 alternatives - vote for the best!

Terminal - Alternatives
ps axu | grep [a]pache2
2012-12-15 19:37:19
User: EBAH
Functions: grep ps

Trick to avoid the form:

grep process | grep - v grep

pgrep command_name
ps -C command
2009-08-14 15:30:42
User: recursiverse
Functions: ps

preferred way to query ps for a specific process name (not supported with all flavors of ps, but will work on just about any linux afaik)

ps -ef | grep c\\ommand
2011-01-04 11:43:14
User: ioggstream
Functions: grep ps
Tags: grep ps

faster ;) but your idea is really cool

ps -ef | awk '/process-name/ && !/awk/ {print}'
2009-08-19 11:22:09
User: dopeman
Functions: awk ps

This does the same thing as many of the 'grep' based alternatives but allows a more finite control over the output. For example if you only wanted the process ID you could change the command:

ps -ef | awk '/mingetty/ && !/awk/ {print $2}'

If you wanted to kill the returned PID's:

ps -ef | awk '/mingetty/ && !/awk/ {print $2}' | xargs -i kill {}

Know a better way?

If you can do better, submit your command here.

What others think

Why does it work?

Comment by Weboide 362 weeks and 4 days ago

I think I understand now, it's cause it appears exactly as "[p]rocess-name" in the process list.

Comment by Weboide 362 weeks and 4 days ago

correctly :D

Comment by olorin 362 weeks and 4 days ago

it works because "[p]rocess name" is really a regular expression which matches "process name" but not "grep [p]rocess name" because only grep interprets the [ and ] characters specially. The brackets form a character class: http://www.regular-expressions.info/charclass.html

Comment by bwoodacre 362 weeks and 4 days ago

wicked, thanks for sharing this

Comment by masterofdisaster 362 weeks and 3 days ago

That was brilliant. Very cool.

Comment by Patola 362 weeks and 3 days ago

This is so helpful.

I have been working on a script to capture memeory usage of a few processes that launch child processes at intervals. This helps clean up the logs I am capturing.

Thanks!!! :-D

Comment by DaveQB 362 weeks and 3 days ago

PS how did you guys get a custom avatar?

Comment by DaveQB 362 weeks and 3 days ago

@DaveQB it's gravatar (gravatar.com). I had to go to my profile and re-save for it to work.

Comment by claytron 362 weeks and 3 days ago

why this not work on zsh?

ps axu | grep [a]pache2

zsh: no matches found: [a]pache2

zsh --version

zsh 4.3.17 (x86_64-unknown-linux-gnu)

Comment by hvnsweeting 185 weeks and 4 days ago

Your point of view

You must be signed in to comment.