Alternatives to popular CLI tools: grep

Last Updated on June 4, 2023

This article spotlights alternative tools to grep.

grep is a useful command to search for matching patterns in a file. If you are a system admin who needs to scrape through log files or a developer trying to find matches in a code file, grep is a powerful command to use.

Excerpt from man page for grep

The software featured here is free and published under an open source license. All tools provide a command-line interface (CLI) unless otherwise stated.

Alternatives to grep
ugrepUltra fast grep with interactive - Top 100 TUI apps
ripgrepRecursively search directories for a regex pattern - Top 100 CLI apps
siftFast and powerful alternative to grep
The Silver SearcherCode-searching tool similar to ack, but faster
ackgrep-like source code search tool
CGrepContext-aware grep for source codes
ngrepgrep applied to the network layer
vgrepPager for grep, git-grep, ripgrep and similar grep implementations
xlsxgrepTool to search text in XLSX, XLS, CSV, TSV and ODS files
bingrepgrep-like tool for binaries
ucggrep-like tool specialized for searching large bodies of source code
pruPipeable Ruby
phpgrepSyntax-aware grep for PHP code
rzgrepgrep for stuff in archives that are embedded within archives
skimGeneral-purpose fuzzy finder
ruplacerFind and replace text in source files
Have we missed any open source alternatives to grep? Please let us know!
Other alternative tools to grepx

All the CLI tools in this series.

Alternatives to CLI tools
age // awk // bc // cal // cat // cd // cksum // cloc // cmp // compress // cp // cron // curl // cut // date // dd // df // diff // dig // du // find // ftp // grep // gzip // hexdump // history // jq // kill // less // locate // ls // lsof // make // man // more // mv / ping // ps // psql // rename // rm // sed // split // ssh // strings // sudo // sysctl // talk // tar // telnet // time // top // touch // traceroute // tree // uname // uniq // vi // watch // Wget // who // whois // xargs

Best Free and Open Source SoftwareRead our complete collection of recommended free and open source software. Our curated compilation covers all categories of software.

The software collection forms part of our series of informative articles for Linux enthusiasts. There are hundreds of in-depth reviews, open source alternatives to proprietary software from large corporations like Google, Microsoft, Apple, Adobe, IBM, Cisco, Oracle, and Autodesk.

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Daniel James
Daniel James
6 months ago

Instead of using grep, I use skim. It’s a neat fuzzy finder.