only - linux find all files with extension

grep, but only certain file extensions (8)

ag (the silver searcher) has pretty simple syntax for this

       -G --file-search-regex PATTERN
          Only search files whose names match PATTERN.


ag -G *.h -G *.cpp CP_Image <path>

I am working on writing some scripts to grep certain directories, but these directories contain all sorts of file types.

I want to grep just .h and .cpp for now, but maybe a few others in the future.

So far I have:

{ grep -r -i CP_Image ~/path1/;

grep -r -i CP_Image ~/path2/;

grep -r -i CP_Image ~/path3/;

grep -r -i CP_Image ~/path4/;

grep -r -i CP_Image ~/path5/;} 

| mailx -s GREP [email protected]

Can anyone show me how I would now add just the specific file extensions?

Below answer is good.

grep -r -i --include \*.h --include \*.cpp CP_Image ~/path[12345] | mailx -s GREP [email protected]

But can be updated to:

grep -r -i --include \*.{h,cpp} CP_Image ~/path[12345] | mailx -s GREP [email protected]

Which can be more simple.

I am aware this question is a bit dated, but I would like to share the method I normally use to find .c and .h files:

tree -if | grep \\.[ch]\\b | xargs -n 1 grep -H "#include"

or if you need the line number as well:

tree -if | grep \\.[ch]\\b | xargs -n 1 grep -nH "#include"

Just use the --include parameter, like this:

grep -r -i --include \*.h --include \*.cpp CP_Image ~/path[12345] | mailx -s GREP [email protected]

that should do what you want.

Syntax notes:

  • -r - search recursively
  • -i - case-insensitive search
  • --include=\*.${file_extension} - search files that match the extension(s) or file pattern only

Since this is a matter of finding files, let's use find!

Using GNU find you can use the -regex option to find those files in the tree of directories whose extension is either .h or .cpp:

find -type f -regex ".*\.\(h\|cpp\)"
#            ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Then, it is just a matter of executing grep on each of its results:

find -type f -regex ".*\.\(h\|cpp\)" -exec grep "your pattern" {} +

If you don't have this distribution of find you have to use an approach like Amir Afghani's, using -o to concatenate options (the name is either ending with .h or with .cpp):

find -type f \( -name '*.h' -o -name '*.cpp' \) -exec grep "your pattern" {} +
#            ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

And if you really want to use grep, follow the syntax indicated to --include:

grep "your pattern" -r --include=*.{cpp,h}
#                      ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Some of these answers seemed too syntax-heavy, or they produced issues on my Debian Server. This worked perfectly for me:

PHP Revolution: How to Grep files in Linux, but only certain file extensions?


grep -r --include=\*.txt 'searchterm' ./

...or case-insensitive version...

grep -r -i --include=\*.txt 'searchterm' ./
  • grep: command

  • -r: recursively

  • -i: ignore-case

  • --include: all *.txt: text files (escape with \ just in case you have a directory with asterisks in the filenames)

  • 'searchterm': What to search

  • ./: Start at current directory.

There is no -r option on HP and Sun servers, this way worked for me on my HP server

find . -name "*.c" | xargs grep -i "my great text"

-i is for case insensitive search of string

grep -rnw "some thing to grep" --include=*.{module,inc,php,js,css,html,htm} ./