You might be already aware of popular coreutils commands like head, tail, tr, sort, etc. This book will teach you more than twenty of such specialized text processing tools provided by the GNU coreutils package.

My Command Line Text Processing repo includes chapters on some of these coreutils commands. Those chapters have been significantly edited for this book and new chapters have been added to cover more commands.


Prior experience working with command line and bash shell, should know concepts like file redirection, command pipeline and so on.

If you are new to the world of command line, check out my curated resources on Linux CLI and Shell scripting before starting this book.


  • The examples presented here have been tested on GNU bash shell and version 8.30 of the GNU coreutils package.
  • Code snippets shown are copy pasted from bash shell and modified for presentation purposes. Some commands are preceded by comments to provide context and explanations. Blank lines have been added to improve readability, only real time is shown for speed comparisons and so on.
  • Unless otherwise noted, all examples and explanations are meant for ASCII characters.
  • External links are provided throughout the book for you to explore certain topics in more depth.
  • The cli_text_processing_coreutils repo has all the code snippets, example files and other details related to the book. If you are not familiar with git command, click the Code button on the webpage to get the files.


Feedback and Errata

I would highly appreciate if you'd let me know how you felt about this book, it would help to improve this book as well as my future attempts. Also, please do let me know if you spot any error or typo.

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Author info

Sundeep Agarwal is a freelance trainer, author and mentor. His previous experience includes working as a Design Engineer at Analog Devices for more than 5 years. You can find his other works, primarily focused on Linux command line, text processing, scripting languages and curated lists, at He has also been a technical reviewer for Command Line Fundamentals book and video course published by Packt.

List of books:


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License

Code snippets are available under MIT License

Resources mentioned in Acknowledgements section above are available under original licenses.

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