cut - remove selected fields from each line of a file
cut -clist [ filename ... ]
cut -flist [ -dc ] [ -s ] [ filename ... ]
This command is available with the System V software installation
option. Refer to for information on how to install optional software.
Use cut to cut out columns from a table or fields from each line of a
file; in data base parlance, it implements the projection of a rela-
tion. The fields as specified by list can be of fixed length, (such as
on a punched card), or of variable length between lines. They can be
marked with a field delimiter character, such as TAB (as specified with
the -d option). cut can be used as a filter; if no files are given,
the standard input is used. In addition, a file name of `-' explicitly
refers to the standard input.
-clist By character position. list is a comma-separated list of inte-
ger field numbers (in increasing order), with an optional `-' to
1,4,7 characters 1, 4 and 7
1-3,8 characters 1 through 3, and 8
-5,10 characters (1) through 5, and 10
3- characters 3 through (last)
-flist By field position. Instead of character positions, list speci-
fies fields that are separated a delimiter (normally a TAB):
1,4,7 fields 1, 4 and 7
Lines with no field delimiters are normally passed through
intact (to allow for subheadings).
-dc Set the field delimiter to c. The default is a TAB. Characters
with special meaning to the shell such as a TAB or SPACE charac-
ters, must be quoted.
-s Suppress lines with no delimiter characters.
cut -d: -f1,5 /etc/passwd
Mapping of user IDs to names.
name=who am i | cut -f1 -d" "
Set name to the current login name.
ERROR: line too long
A line can have no more than 1023 characters or fields.
ERROR: bad list for c/f option
Missing -c or -f option or incorrectly specified list. No
error occurs if a line has fewer fields than the list calls
ERROR: no fields
The list is empty.
ERROR: no delimiter
Missing char on -d option.
ERROR: cannot handle multiple adjacent backspaces
Adjacent backspaces cannot be processed correctly.
WARNING: cannot open filename: reason
Either filename cannot be read or does not exist. If mul-
tiple filenames are present, processing continues.
WARNING: I/O error reading filename: reason
An I/O error occurred when reading filename. If multiple
filenames are present, processing continues.
16 September 1989 CUT(1V)