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WC(1)                   FreeBSD General Commands Manual                  WC(1)

NAME
     wc - word, line, character, and byte count

SYNOPSIS
     wc [--libxo] [-Lclmw] [file ...]

DESCRIPTION
     The wc utility displays the number of lines, words, and bytes contained
     in each input file, or standard input (if no file is specified) to the
     standard output.  A line is defined as a string of characters delimited
     by a <newline> character.  Characters beyond the final <newline>
     character will not be included in the line count.

     A word is defined as a string of characters delimited by white space
     characters.  White space characters are the set of characters for which
     the iswspace(3) function returns true.  If more than one input file is
     specified, a line of cumulative counts for all the files is displayed on
     a separate line after the output for the last file.

     The following options are available:

     --libxo
             Generate output via libxo(3) in a selection of different human
             and machine readable formats.  See xo_parse_args(3) for details
             on command line arguments.

     -L      The number of characters in the longest input line is written to
             the standard output.  When more than one file argument is
             specified, the longest input line of all files is reported as the
             value of the final ``total''.

     -c      The number of bytes in each input file is written to the standard
             output.  This will cancel out any prior usage of the -m option.

     -l      The number of lines in each input file is written to the standard
             output.

     -m      The number of characters in each input file is written to the
             standard output.  If the current locale does not support
             multibyte characters, this is equivalent to the -c option.  This
             will cancel out any prior usage of the -c option.

     -w      The number of words in each input file is written to the standard
             output.

     When an option is specified, wc only reports the information requested by
     that option.  The order of output always takes the form of line, word,
     byte, and file name.  The default action is equivalent to specifying the
     -c, -l and -w options.

     If no files are specified, the standard input is used and no file name is
     displayed.  The prompt will accept input until receiving EOF, or [^D] in
     most environments.

ENVIRONMENT
     The LANG, LC_ALL and LC_CTYPE environment variables affect the execution
     of wc as described in environ(7).

EXIT STATUS
     The wc utility exits 0 on success, and >0 if an error occurs.

EXAMPLES
     Count the number of characters, words and lines in each of the files
     report1 and report2 as well as the totals for both:

           wc -mlw report1 report2

     Find the longest line in a list of files:

           wc -L file1 file2 file3 | fgrep total

COMPATIBILITY
     Historically, the wc utility was documented to define a word as a
     ``maximal string of characters delimited by <space>, <tab> or <newline>
     characters''.  The implementation, however, did not handle non-printing
     characters correctly so that ``  ^D^E  '' counted as 6 spaces, while
     ``foo^D^Ebar'' counted as 8 characters.  4BSD systems after 4.3BSD
     modified the implementation to be consistent with the documentation.
     This implementation defines a ``word'' in terms of the iswspace(3)
     function, as required by IEEE Std 1003.2 (``POSIX.2'').

     The -L option is a non-standard FreeBSD extension, compatible with the -L
     option of the GNU wc utility.

SEE ALSO
     iswspace(3), libxo(3), xo_parse_args(3)

STANDARDS
     The wc utility conforms to IEEE Std 1003.1-2001 (``POSIX.1'').

HISTORY
     A wc command appeared in Version 1 AT&T UNIX.

FreeBSD 11.0-PRERELEASE        December 1, 2015        FreeBSD 11.0-PRERELEASE

NAME | SYNOPSIS | DESCRIPTION | ENVIRONMENT | EXIT STATUS | EXAMPLES | COMPATIBILITY | SEE ALSO | STANDARDS | HISTORY

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