Programming Tutorials

Excellent Free Tutorials to Learn Awk

Awk is a versatile programming language designed for pattern scanning and processing language and often used as a data extraction and reporting tool. It’s an excellent filter and report writer. It’s a standard feature of most Unix-like operating systems.

Awk is small, fast, simple, and has a clean comprehensible C-like input language. It has robust programming constructs including if/else, while, do/while and for C-style and array iteration.

The name awk comes from the initials of its designers: Alfred V. Aho, Peter J. Weinberger, and Brian W. Kernighan. The original version of awk was written in 1977 at AT&T Bell Laboratories.

The language is suited for:

  • Tallying information from text files and creating reports from the results.
  • Adding additional functions to text editors like “vi”.
  • Translating files from one format to another.
  • Creating small databases.
  • Performing mathematical operations on files of numeric data.

Here’s our recommended tutorials to learn Awk. If you’re looking for free Awk programming books, check here.


1. Awk – A Tutorial and Introduction by Bruce Barnett

Awk is an extremely versatile programming language for working on files. We’ll teach you just enough to understand the examples in this page, plus a smidgen.

Read the tutorial


2. Getting Started With AWK Command by Sylvain Leroux

Here are 25 AWK command examples that will help you master the basics of AWK.

Read the tutorial


3. Why you should learn just a little Awk: An Awk tutorial by Example

This article aims to teach you the most useful stuff – not the “fundamentals”, but the 5 minutes worth of practical stuff that will get you most of this language.

Read the tutorial


4. Steve’s Awk Academy by Steve Litt

Steve’s Awk Academy offers a good introduction to the power of Awk.

Read the article


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