listing for W
wc - Counts the lines, words, characters, and bytes in a file
wc [-c | -m] [-lw] [file...]
The wc command counts the lines, words, and characters or bytes in a file,
or in the standard input if you do not specify any files, and writes the
results to standard output. It also keeps a total count for all named
Interfaces documented on this reference page conform to industry standards
Refer to the standards(5) reference page for more information about
industry standards and associated tags.
-c Counts bytes in the input.
-l Counts lines in the input.
-m Counts characters in the input.
-w Counts words in the input.
Specifies the pathname of the input file. If this operand is omitted,
standard input is used.
A word is defined as a string of characters delimited by white space as
defined in the X/Open Base Definitions for XCU4.
The wc command counts lines, words, and bytes by default. Use the
appropriate options to limit wc output. Specifying wc without options is
the equivalent of specifying wc -lwc. If any options are specified, only
the requested information is output.
The order in which counts appear in the output line is lines, words, bytes.
If an option is omitted, then the corresponding field in the output is
omitted. If the -m option is used, then character counts replace byte
When you specify one or more files, wc displays the names of the files
along with the counts. If standard input is used, then no file name is
The following exit values are returned:
0 Successful completion.
>0 An error occurred.
1. To display the number of lines, words, and bytes in the file text,
This results in the following output:
27 185 722 text
The numbers 27, 185, and 722 are the number of lines, words, and
bytes, respectively, in the file text.
2. To display only one or two of the three counts include the appropriate
options. For example, the following command displays only line and
wc -cl text
27 722 text
3. To count lines, words, and bytes in more than one file, use wc with
more than one input file or with a file name pattern. For example,
the following command can be issued in a directory containing the
files text, text1, and text2:
wc -l text*
The numbers 27, 112, and 5 are the numbers of lines in the files text,
text1, and text2, respectively, and 144 is the total number of lines
in the three files.
4. The file name is always appended to the output. To obtain a pure
number for things like reporting purposes, pipe all input to the wc
command using cat. For example, the following command will report the
total count of characters in all .c files in a directory.
echo There are `cat *.c | wc -c` characters in \*.c files
There are 1869 characters in *.c files
The following environment variables affect the execution of wc:
Provides a default value for the internationalization variables that
are unset or null. If LANG is unset or null, the corresponding value
from the default locale is used. If any of the internationalization
variables contain an invalid setting, the utility behaves as if none of
the variables had been defined.
If set to a non-empty string value, overrides the values of all the
other internationalization variables.
Determines the locale for the interpretation of sequences of bytes of
text data as characters (for example, single-byte as opposed to
multibyte characters in arguments and input files) and which characters
are defined as white space characters.
Determines the locale for the format and contents of diagnostic
messages written to standard error and informative messages written to
Determines the location of message catalogues for the processing of
Commands: cksum(1), ls(1)
listing for W