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APPLY(1) BSD General Commands Manual APPLY(1)
apply -- apply a command to a set of arguments
apply [-a c] [-d] [-#] command argument ...
The apply utility runs the named command on each argument argument in turn.
Character sequences of the form ``%d'' in command, where 'd' is a digit from 1 to 9, are
replaced by the d'th following unused argument. In this case, the largest digit number of
arguments are discarded for each execution of command.
The options are as follows:
-# Normally arguments are taken singly; the optional number -# specifies the number of
arguments to be passed to command. If the number is zero, command is run, without
arguments, once for each argument.
If any sequences of ``%d'' occur in command, the -# option is ignored.
-a c The use of the character '%' as a magic character may be changed with the -a option.
-d Display the commands that would have been executed, but do not actually execute
The following environment variable affects the execution of apply:
SHELL Pathname of shell to use. If this variable is not defined, the Bourne shell is used.
apply echo a*
is similar to ls(1);
apply -2 cmp a1 b1 a2 b2 a3 b3
compares the `a' files to the `b' files;
apply -0 who 1 2 3 4 5
runs who(1) 5 times; and
apply 'ln %1 /usr/joe' *
links all files in the current directory to the directory /usr/joe.
/bin/sh default shell
Shell metacharacters in command may have bizarre effects; it is best to enclose complicated
commands in single quotes ('').
The apply command appeared in 4.2BSD.
BSD April 4, 1994 BSD
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