regex,string,bash,shell,grep , Matching string inside file and returning result


Matching string inside file and returning result

Question:

Tag: regex,string,bash,shell,grep

I've got a few peculiar issues with trying to search for a string inside of a .db file. The way I tried was by using grep, which does apparently find the string(s), although this is the output:

$ grep "ext" *.db
Binary file enormous.db matches

There are a couple problems with this:

  1. I need to return the actual matching string.
  2. I only want to return a particular string out of the matching ones
  3. The filename changes, so it's only the extensions match
  4. The are more than one valid extension (ext, bin, fck)

The thing that differentiates the string I'm looking for apart from the others is that it always contains some random character followed by a hexadecimal 02, then the filename.

/File One.ext÷ïAnother File.ext#TheFile.ext◊®®®®® Another.extÆππ∫ MoreFiles.ext|Random.extª@N&Q/Path/To Some/file.ext

In the above horrid mess of gunk is TheFile.ext, which I'm hoping to grab (hex is shown below). Maybe grep isn't the right tool for this particular task? I'm not sure, but open to ideas - thanks.

2F46696C65204F6E652E65787400D60F950017416E6F746865722046696C652E657874001003230254686546696C652E65787400D70FA80FA80FA80FA8000F0FA80020416E6F746865722E65787400AE0FB9000FB9000FBA00204D6F726546696C65732E6578747C00000000000000000E52616E646F6D2E65787400BB0C030701404E00000000000003260351012F506174682F546F20536F6D652F66696C652E657874

Answer:

Using sqlite3 from bash on OS X seems fairly straightforward (I'm no expert at this, by the way).

You will need to find out which table you need. You can do this with an interactive session. I'll show you with the database you suggested:

/Users/fredbloggs> sqlite3 ~/Library/Application\ Support/Dock/desktoppicture.db
SQLite version 3.8.5 2014-08-15 22:37:57
Enter ".help" for usage hints.
sqlite> .tables
data         displays     pictures     preferences  prefs        spaces     
sqlite> select * from data;
/Library/Desktop Pictures/Earth and Moon.jpg
sqlite> .exit

How did I know it was table data? I didn't, I tried each one until it looked right :-)

Now we need to run that from a bash script:

cmd='select * from data'
fname=$(sqlite3 $HOME/Library/Application\ Support/Dock/desktoppicture.db "$cmd")

echo "filenames are: $fname"

Gotchas: seemed to be an issue with ~. I kept forgetting to \ the space in "Application Support".

Give that a try, and see where we get. Let me know!


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