<ctrl+r>

reverse-i-search: Search through your command line history

"What it actually shows is going to be dependent on the commands you've previously entered. When you do this, bash looks for the last command that you entered that contains the substring "ls", in my case that was "lsof ...". If the command that bash finds is what you're looking for, just hit Enter to execute it. You can also edit the command to suit your current needs before executing it (use the left and right arrow keys to move through it). If you're looking for a different command, hit Ctrl+R again to find a matching command further back in the command history. You can also continue to type a longer substring to refine the search, since searching is incremental. Note that the substring you enter is searched for throughout the command, not just at the beginning of the command." - http://www.linuxjournal.com/content/using-bash-history-more-efficiently
Sample Output
(reverse-i-search)`ls': lsof -nP -p 3930

2
By: moollaza
2012-04-15 16:42:32

These Might Interest You

  • Very handy and time-saving. Do a 'ctrl+ r' on command prompt. You will see a "(reverse-i-search)`':" mark. Just type any sub-string of the command you want to search(provided you have used it sometime in the same session). Keep on searching by repeatedly pressing ctrl+r. Press enter once you get the desired command string. Show Sample Output


    9
    ctrl + r
    Bluehive · 2009-06-25 06:51:38 4
  • Once issuing the command, hit "esc" and then "k" (not together) to enter the search mode at the shell prompt (each time), and invoke the search with "/" as if you would in vi. Type a command and see the most recently used instance of that command. Use "n" and "N" to go forward and backwards through other instances of that command.


    -3
    set -o vi
    andykazmaier · 2009-12-22 20:40:10 3
  • This will enable the possibility to navigate in the history of the command you type with the arrow keys, example "na" and the arrow will give all command starting by na in the history.You can add these lines to your .bashrc (without &&) to use that in your default terminal.


    0
    bind '"\e[A": history-search-backward' && bind '"\e[B": history-search-forward' && bind '"\eOA": history-search-backward' && bind '"\eOB": history-search-forward'
    archesys · 2017-09-29 10:31:56 0
  • [Click the "show sample output" link to see how to use this keystroke.]   Meta-p is one of my all time most used and most loved features of working at the command line. It's also one that surprisingly few people know about. To use it with bash (actually in any readline application), you'll need to add a couple lines to your .inputrc then have bash reread the .inputrc using the bind command:   echo '"\en": history-search-forward' >> ~/.inputrcecho '"\ep": history-search-backward' >> ~/.inputrcbind -f ~/.inputrc     I first learned about this feature in tcsh. When I switched over to bash about fifteen years ago, I had assumed I'd prefer ^R to search in reverse. Intuitively ^R seemed better since you could search for an argument instead of a command. I think that, like using a microkernel for the Hurd, it sounded so obviously right fifteen years ago, but that was only because the older way had benefits we hadn't known about.     I think many of you who use the command line as much as I do know that we can just be thinking about what results we want and our fingers will start typing the commands needed. I assume it's some sort of parallel processing going on with the linguistic part of the brain. Unfortunately, that parallelism doesn't seem to work (at least for me) with searching the history. I realize I can save myself typing using the history shortly after my fingers have already started "speaking". But, when I hit ^R in Bash, everything I've already typed gets ignored and I have to stop and think again about what I was doing. It's a small bump in the road but it can be annoying, especially for long-time command line users. Usually M-p is exactly what I need to save myself time and trouble.     If you use the command line a lot, please give Meta-p a try. You may be surprised how it frees your brain to process more smoothly in parallel. (Or maybe it won't. Post here and let me know either way. ☺) Show Sample Output


    9
    <Meta-p> (aka <ALT+P>)
    hackerb9 · 2013-09-10 17:13:02 3
  • This allows you to search through your history using the up and down arrows ? i.e. type "cd /" and press the up arrow and you'll search through everything in your history that starts with "cd /". Show Sample Output


    -9
    vim ~/.inputrc
    ekinertac · 2013-04-23 02:50:11 0
  • Searches backwards through your command-history for the typed text. Repeatedly hitting Ctrl-R will search progressively further. Return invokes the command. Show Sample Output


    14
    Ctrl-R <search-text>
    tarkasteve · 2009-09-20 05:07:31 1

What do you think?

Any thoughts on this command? Does it work on your machine? Can you do the same thing with only 14 characters?

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