Skip site navigation (1)Skip section navigation (2)

FreeBSD Man Pages

Man Page or Keyword Search:
Man Architecture
Apropos Keyword Search (all sections) Output format
home | help
STRINGS(1)		FreeBSD	General	Commands Manual		    STRINGS(1)

     strings --	print the strings of printable characters in files

     strings [-a | --all] [-e encoding | --encoding=encoding]
	     [-f | --print-file-name] [-h | --help]
	     [-n number	| --bytes=number | -number] [-o]
	     [-t radix | --radix=radix]	[-v | --version] [file ...]

     For each file specified, the strings utility prints contiguous sequences
     of	printable characters that are at least n characters long and are fol-
     lowed by an unprintable character.	 The default value of n	is 4.  By
     default, the strings utility only scans the initialized and loaded	sec-
     tions of ELF objects; for other file types, the entire file is scanned.
     The strings utility is mainly used	for determining	the contents of	non-
     text files.

     If	no file	name is	specified as an	argument, standard input is read.

     The following options are available:

     -a	| --all
	     For ELF objects, scan the entire file for printable strings.

     -e	encoding | --encoding=encoding
	     Select the	character encoding to be used while searching for
	     strings.  Valid values for	argument encoding are:
	     s	     for single	7-bit-byte characters (ASCII, ISO 8859).
	     S	     for single	8-bit-byte characters.
	     l	     for 16-bit	little-endian.
	     b	     for 16-bit	big-endian.
	     L	     for 32-bit	little-endian.
	     B	     for 32-bit	big-endian.
	     The default is to assume that characters are encoded using	a sin-
	     gle 7-bit byte.

     -f	| --print-file-name
	     Print the name of the file	before each string.

     -h	| --help
	     Print a usage summary and exit.

     -n	number | --bytes=number	| -number
	     Print the contiguous character sequence of	at least number	char-
	     acters long, instead of the default of 4 characters.  Argument
	     number should specify a positive decimal integer.

     -o	     Equivalent	to specifying -t o.

     -t	radix |	--radix=radix
	     Print the offset from the start of	the file before	each string
	     using the specified radix.	 Valid values for argument radix are:
	     d	     for decimal
	     o	     for octal
	     x	     for hexadecimal

     -v	| --version
	     Display a version identifier and exit.

     The strings utility exits 0 on success, and >0 if an error	occurs.

     To	display	strings	in /bin/ls use:
	   $ strings /bin/ls

     To	display	strings	in all sections	of /bin/ln use:
	   $ strings -a	/bin/ln

     To	display	strings	in all sections	of /bin/cat prefixed with the filename
     and the offset within the file use:
	   $ strings -a	-f -t x	/bin/cat

     ar(1), nm(1), objdump(1), ranlib, readelf(1), size(1)

     The first FreeBSD strings utility appeared	in FreeBSD v3. It was later
     discontinued in FreeBSD v5, when i386-only	a.out format was dropped in
     favor of ELF.

     The strings utility was re-written	by S.Sam Arun Raj
     <>.  This manual page was written by S.Sam Arun Raj

FreeBSD	11.0		       January 24, 2016			  FreeBSD 11.0


Want to link to this manual page? Use this URL:

home | help