printf (1)

Quick Reference

Format and print text.

  • Print a text message:

printf {{"%s\n"}} {{"Hello world"}}

  • Print an integer in bold blue:

printf {{"\e[1;34m%.3d\e[0m\n"}} {{42}}

  • Print a float number with the unicode Euro sign:

printf {{"\u20AC %.2f\n"}} {{123.4}}

  • Print a text message composed with environment variables:

printf {{"var1: %s\tvar2: %s\n"}} {{"$VAR1"}} {{"$VAR2"}}

  • Store a formatted message in a variable (does not work on zsh):

printf -v {{myvar}} {{"This is %s = %d\n" "a year" 2016}}

NAME

printf - format and print data

SYNOPSIS

printf FORMAT [ARGUMENT]...
 
printf OPTION

DESCRIPTION

Print ARGUMENT(s) according to FORMAT, or execute according to OPTION:
--help
display this help and exit
--version
output version information and exit
FORMAT controls the output as in C printf. Interpreted sequences are:
\"
double quote
\\
backslash
\a
alert (BEL)
\b
backspace
\c
produce no further output
\e
escape
\f
form feed
\n
new line
\r
carriage return
\t
horizontal tab
\v
vertical tab
\NNN
byte with octal value NNN (1 to 3 digits)
\xHH
byte with hexadecimal value HH (1 to 2 digits)
\uHHHH
Unicode (ISO/IEC 10646) character with hex value HHHH (4 digits)
\UHHHHHHHH
Unicode character with hex value HHHHHHHH (8 digits)
%%
a single %
%b
ARGUMENT as a string with '\' escapes interpreted, except that octal escapes are of the form \0 or \0NNN
%q
ARGUMENT is printed in a format that can be reused as shell input, escaping non-printable characters with the proposed POSIX $'' syntax.
and all C format specifications ending with one of diouxXfeEgGcs, with ARGUMENTs converted to proper type first. Variable widths are handled.
NOTE: your shell may have its own version of printf, which usually supersedes the version described here. Please refer to your shell's documentation for details about the options it supports.

AUTHOR

Written by David MacKenzie.

REPORTING BUGS

GNU coreutils online help: <https://www.gnu.org/software/coreutils/>
 
Report printf translation bugs to <https://translationproject.org/team/>

SEE ALSO

printf(3)
Full documentation at: <https://www.gnu.org/software/coreutils/printf>
 
or available locally via: info '(coreutils) printf invocation'

Information

Source
Coreutils
OS/version
GNU coreutils 8.29.13-0a854
Source updated
December 2, 2018
Page created
February 9, 2018
Page generated
December 2, 2018