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JOIN(1P)                   POSIX Programmer's Manual                  JOIN(1P)

       This manual page is part of the POSIX Programmer's Manual.  The Linux implementation of this interface may dif-
       fer (consult the corresponding Linux manual page for details of Linux behavior), or the interface  may  not  be
       implemented on Linux.

       join - relational database operator

       join [-a file_number | -v file_number][-e string][-o list][-t char]
               [-1 field][-2 field] file1 file2

       The join utility shall perform an equality join on the files file1 and file2. The joined files shall be written
       to the standard output.

       The join field is a field in each file on which the files are compared.  The join utility shall write one  line
       in  the  output  for  each pair of lines in file1 and file2 that have identical join fields. The output line by
       default shall consist of the join field, then the remaining fields from file1, then the remaining  fields  from
       file2.  This  format  can  be  changed  by  using  the  -o option (see below). The -a option can be used to add
       unmatched lines to the output.  The -v option can be used to output only unmatched lines.

       The files file1 and file2 shall be ordered in the collating sequence of sort -b on the  fields  on  which  they
       shall be joined, by default the first in each line.  All selected output shall be written in the same collating

       The default input field separators shall be <blank>s. In this case, multiple  separators  shall  count  as  one
       field  separator,  and  leading  separators  shall  be  ignored.  The default output field separator shall be a

       The field separator and collating sequence can be changed by using the -t option (see below).

       If the same key appears more than once in either file, all combinations of the set of remaining fields in file1
       and the set of remaining fields in file2 are output in the order of the lines encountered.

       If the input files are not in the appropriate collating sequence, the results are unspecified.

       The  join  utility  shall conform to the Base Definitions volume of IEEE Std 1003.1-2001, Section 12.2, Utility
       Syntax Guidelines.

       The following options shall be supported:

       -a  file_number

              Produce a line for each unpairable line in file file_number, where file_number is 1 or 2, in addition to
              the default output. If both -a1 and -a2 are specified, all unpairable lines shall be output.

       -e  string
              Replace empty output fields in the list selected by -o with the string string.

       -o  list
              Construct the output line to comprise the fields specified in list, each element of which shall have one
              of the following two forms:

               1. file_number.field, where file_number is a file number and field is a decimal integer field number

               2. 0 (zero), representing the join field

       The elements of list shall be either comma-separated or <blank>-separated, as specified in Guideline 8  of  the
       Base  Definitions volume of IEEE Std 1003.1-2001, Section 12.2, Utility Syntax Guidelines. The fields specified
       by list shall be written for all selected output lines. Fields selected by list that do not appear in the input
       shall  be  treated  as  empty  output fields.  (See the -e option.) Only specifically requested fields shall be
       written. The application shall ensure that list is a single command line argument.

       -t  char
              Use character char as a separator, for both input and output.  Every appearance of char in a line  shall
              be  significant. When this option is specified, the collating sequence shall be the same as sort without
              the -b option.

       -v  file_number

              Instead of the default output, produce a line only  for  each  unpairable  line  in  file_number,  where
              file_number is 1 or 2. If both -v1 and -v2 are specified, all unpairable lines shall be output.

       -1  field
              Join on the fieldth field of file 1. Fields are decimal integers starting with 1.

       -2  field
              Join on the fieldth field of file 2. Fields are decimal integers starting with 1.

       The following operands shall be supported:

       file1, file2
              A  pathname  of a file to be joined. If either of the file1 or file2 operands is '-', the standard input
              shall be used in its place.

       The standard input shall be used only if the file1 or file2 operand is '-' . See the INPUT FILES section.

       The input files shall be text files.

       The following environment variables shall affect the execution of join:

       LANG   Provide a default value for the internationalization variables that are unset or  null.  (See  the  Base
              Definitions  volume  of IEEE Std 1003.1-2001, Section 8.2, Internationalization Variables for the prece-
              dence of internationalization variables used to determine the values of locale categories.)

       LC_ALL If set to a non-empty string value, override the values of all the other internationalization variables.


              Determine  the locale of the collating sequence join expects to have been used when the input files were

              Determine the locale for the interpretation of sequences of bytes of text data as characters (for  exam-
              ple, single-byte as opposed to multi-byte characters in arguments and input files).

              Determine  the locale that should be used to affect the format and contents of diagnostic messages writ-
              ten to standard error.

              Determine the location of message catalogs for the processing of LC_MESSAGES .


       The join utility output shall be a concatenation of selected character fields. When the -o option is not speci-
       fied, the output shall be:

              "%s%s%s\n", <join field>, <other file1 fields>,
                  <other file2 fields>

       If the join field is not the first field in a file, the <other file fields> for that file shall be:

              <fields preceding join field>, <fields following join field>

       When the -o option is specified, the output format shall be:

              "%s\n", <concatenation of fields>

       where the concatenation of fields is described by the -o option, above.

       For  either format, each field (except the last) shall be written with its trailing separator character. If the
       separator is the default ( <blank>s), a single <space> shall be written after each field (except the last).

       The standard error shall be used only for diagnostic messages.



       The following exit values shall be returned:

        0     All input files were output successfully.

       >0     An error occurred.


       The following sections are informative.

       Pathnames consisting of numeric digits or of the form string.string should not be specified directly  following
       the -o list.

       The -o 0 field essentially selects the union of the join fields.  For example, given file phone:

              !Name           Phone Number
              Don             +1 123-456-7890
              Hal             +1 234-567-8901
              Yasushi         +2 345-678-9012

       and file fax:

              !Name           Fax Number
              Don             +1 123-456-7899
              Keith           +1 456-789-0122
              Yasushi         +2 345-678-9011

       (where the large expanses of white space are meant to each represent a single <tab>), the command:

              join -t "<tab>" -a 1 -a 2 -e '(unknown)' -o 0,1.2,2.2 phone fax

       would produce:

              !Name           Phone Number            Fax Number
              Don             +1 123-456-7890         +1 123-456-7899
              Hal             +1 234-567-8901         (unknown)
              Keith           (unknown)               +1 456-789-0122
              Yasushi         +2 345-678-9012         +2 345-678-9011

       Multiple instances of the same key will produce combinatorial results.  The following:

                  a x
                  a y
                  a z
                  a p

       will produce:

              a x p
              a y p
              a z p

       And the following:

                  a b c
                  a d e
                  a w x
                  a y z
                  a o p

       will produce:

              a b c w x
              a b c y z
              a b c o p
              a d e w x
              a d e y z
              a d e o p

       The -e option is only effective when used with -o because, unless specific fields are identified using -o, join
       is not aware of what fields might be empty. The exception to this is the join field, but identifying  an  empty
       join field with the -e string is not historical practice and some scripts might break if this were changed.

       The  0  field in the -o list was adopted from the Tenth Edition version of join to satisfy international objec-
       tions that the join in the base documents does not support the "full join" or "outer join" described  in  rela-
       tional database literature. Although it has been possible to include a join field in the output (by default, or
       by field number using -o), the join field could not be included for an unpaired line selected by -a. The  -o  0
       field essentially selects the union of the join fields.

       This  sort of outer join was not possible with the join commands in the base documents. The -o 0 field was cho-
       sen because it is an upwards-compatible change for applications. An alternative was considered: have  the  join
       field  represent  the  union of the fields in the files (where they are identical for matched lines, and one or
       both are null for unmatched lines). This was not adopted because it would break some historical applications.

       The ability to specify file2 as - is not historical practice; it was added for completeness.

       The -v option is not historical practice, but was considered necessary because it permitted the writing of only
       those  lines  that do not match on the join field, as opposed to the -a option, which prints both lines that do
       and do not match. This additional facility is parallel with the -v option of grep.

       Some historical implementations have been encountered where a blank line in one of the input files was  consid-
       ered to be the end of the file; the description in this volume of IEEE Std 1003.1-2001 does not cite this as an
       allowable case.


       awk, comm, sort, uniq

       Portions of this text are reprinted and reproduced in electronic form from IEEE Std 1003.1, 2003 Edition, Stan-
       dard  for Information Technology -- Portable Operating System Interface (POSIX), The Open Group Base Specifica-
       tions Issue 6, Copyright (C) 2001-2003 by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers,  Inc  and  The
       Open Group. In the event of any discrepancy between this version and the original IEEE and The Open Group Stan-
       dard, the original IEEE and The Open Group Standard is the referee  document.  The  original  Standard  can  be
       obtained online at .

IEEE/The Open Group                  2003                             JOIN(1P)