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troubleshooting Question

bash's sort is not complying

Avatar of Ralph
RalphFlag for United States of America asked on
Mac OS XShell Scripting
4 Comments1 Solution345 ViewsLast Modified:
I have a file listing all the files on a drive.
The format of the file is:

I got NumberOfSlashes c/o awk.
I want numeric sort on the first column, and general sort on the 4th.

cat thefile.txt | sort -t : -k 1,1n -k 4,4

What I get is:
1:  Job Search:135316:/Deskop, Iomega's, Jan 2014
1: Essentials, 2nd Release:59216:/Deskop, Iomega's, Jan 2014
1: PRINTME alias:1941900:/Deskop, Iomega's, Jan 2014
1: Specials alias:519032:/Deskop, Iomega's, Jan 2014
1:.0 Specials alias:519032:/Deskop, Iomega's, Jan 2014
1:.0.localized:0:/Deskop, Iomega's, Jan 2014

As you can see, it's sorting on col 2 for the 2nd criteria, not the 4th.
For -t I've used all of these, no diff.  -t ":"     -t :     -t \:

I did this testing before I looked on the web, and this SHOULD work.
But it doesn't.

I also tried:
cat thefile.txt | sort -t : -k 1,1n -k 4,4d

But even after I changed LC_ALL='C', like it asked, it seems to be eliminating "/" and "-" and who knows what else.  The error message on this is:

sort: string comparison failed: Illegal byte sequence
sort: Set LC_ALL='C' to work around the problem.
sort: The strings compared were `LibraryMailV2AosIMAPrsmithbothellmailmboxDraftsmbox' and `LibraryMailV2AosIMAPrsmithbothellmailmboxExchange \306mbox'.

Never the less, I'm not getting the sort I want.

Any ideas?