Like many enterprise developers I use both Windows and Linux. Sometimes I really want to be able to use POSIX text processing tools on Windows, for example when troubleshooting pipe delimted data files used in batch system interfaces. I often have to research issues with pipe delimited transaction logs, and awk can be used to filter out the records of interest, eg.

awk -F| '($3==276||$3==259) && $5=="Payment " { OFS="|"; print $0 }' < transaction_log

Using a command line text tool like this can be much more efficient than importing text files into Excel for filtering. Other text tools I use heavily include find, grep, sed, tr and wc.

POSIX tools for Windows include SUA (aka. Interix, aka. SFU)  and MKS toolkit but I prefer Cygwin or Cygwin/X

Under Cygwin I used to use rxvt, but now I’ve switched to mintty which is similar to PuTTY. X can be started from a mintty session as follows:

xwin -multiwindow -clipboard

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