Remove spaces from between words that are in a field


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# 1  
Remove spaces from between words that are in a field

Hi all,

Is there a sed/awk cmd that will remove blank space from between words in a particular field, replacing with a single space?

Field containing 'E's in the example below:

Example input file:
Code:
AAAAA AA|BBBB|CCCCCCC|DDDDDD      |EEEE        EEEEEE|   FFF   FFFFF|

Required output:
Code:
AAAAA AA|BBBB|CCCCCCC|DDDDDD      |EEEE EEEEEE|   FFF   FFFFF|

Any help much appreciated
# 2  
considering its 5th field..

Code:
 
awk -F"|" '{sub(/[ ]+/," ",$5);OFS=FS}1' filename

# 3  
Excellent! Thankyou.

Is there a solution for a columnar structure rather than a delimitted structure?

input:
Code:
AAAAA AA   BBBB    CCCCCCC    DDDDDD        EEEE        EEEEEE    FFF   FFFFF

output:
Code:
AAAAA AA   BBBB    CCCCCCC    DDDDDD        EEEE EEEEEE    FFF   FFFFF

# 4  
Unless you have a fixed length for each field, you cannot differentiate between fields.

For instance,
Code:
DDDD                 EEEEEEE

Suppose the above represent two adjacent fields, do you count the spaces after DDDD along with field 1 or as leading space for field 2. Where does field 1 end and where does field 2 start?
# 5  
Thanks for you reply,

What if I was able to supply the start position and length of the field?

Code:
StartPos=45
Length=22
 
AAAAA AA   BBBB    CCCCCCC    DDDDDD        EEEE        EEEEEE    FFF   FFFFF

or is beyond the capability of awk / sed?
# 6  
u can.. but bit messy though

Code:
 
awk '{v=substr($0,45,22);sub(/[ ]+/," ",v);print substr($0,0,44) v substr($0,68)}' filename

This User Gave Thanks to vidyadhar85 For This Post:
# 7  
Thankyou all for your help!
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