MirBSD manpage: hd(1), hexdump(1)

HEXDUMP(1)                   BSD Reference Manual                   HEXDUMP(1)


     hexdump, hd - ascii, decimal, hexadecimal, octal dump


     hexdump [-bcCHdovx] [-e format_string] [-f format_file] [-n length]
             [-s skip] file ...


     The hexdump utility is a filter which displays the specified files, or
     the standard input, if no files are specified, in a user-specified for-

     The options are as follows:

     -b      One-byte octal display. Display the input offset in hexadecimal,
             followed by sixteen space-separated, three column, zero-filled,
             bytes of input data, in octal, per line.

     -c      One-byte character display. Display the input offset in hexade-
             cimal, followed by sixteen space-separated, three column, space-
             filled, characters of input data per line.

     -C      Canonical hex+ASCII display. Display the input offset in hexade-
             cimal, followed by sixteen space-separated, two column, hexade-
             cimal bytes, followed by the same sixteen bytes in %_p format en-
             closed in "|" characters.

     -d      Two-byte decimal display. Display the input offset in hexade-
             cimal, followed by eight space-separated, five column, zero-
             filled, two-byte units of input data, in unsigned decimal, per

     -e format_string
             Specify a format string to be used for displaying data.

     -f format_file
             Specify a file that contains one or more newline separated format
             strings. Empty lines and lines whose first non-blank character is
             a hash mark ('#') are ignored.

     -H      DOS compatible hex+ASCII display. Display the input offset in
             hexadecimal, followed by sixteen hexadecimal bytes, separated by
             spaces with a dash dividing them into half, followed by the same
             sixteen bytes in %_p format, enclosed in pipe ("|") characters.
             Hexadecimal digits are displayed upper-case by default.

             It is recommended to replace pipe characters by spaces instead of
             just deleting them, if that is desired for maximum DOS DEBUG com-
             patibility, since pipe characters can be found embedded in the
             ASCII stream.

     -n length
             Interpret only length bytes of input.

     -o      Two-byte octal display. Display the input offset in hexadecimal,
             followed by eight space-separated, six column, zero-filled, two
             byte quantities of input data, in octal, per line.

     -s offset
             Skip offset bytes from the beginning of the input. By default,
             offset is interpreted as a decimal number. With a leading 0x or
             0X, offset is interpreted as a hexadecimal number, otherwise,
             with a leading 0, offset is interpreted as an octal number. Ap-
             pending the character b, k, or m to offset causes it to be inter-
             preted as a multiple of 512, 1024, or 1048576, respectively.

     -v      The -v option causes hexdump to display all input data. Without
             the -v option, any number of groups of output lines, which would
             be identical to the immediately preceding group of output lines
             (except for the input offsets), are replaced with a line
             comprised of a single asterisk ('*').

     -x      Two-byte hexadecimal display. Display the input offset in hexade-
             cimal, followed by eight, space separated, four column, zero-
             filled, two-byte quantities of input data, in hexadecimal, per

     For each input file, hexdump sequentially copies the input to standard
     output, transforming the data according to the format strings specified
     by the -e and -f options, in the order that they were specified.


     A format string contains any number of format units, separated by whi-
     tespace. A format unit contains up to three items: an iteration count, a
     byte count, and a format.

     The iteration count is an optional positive integer, which defaults to
     one. Each format is applied iteration count times.

     The byte count is an optional positive integer. If specified it defines
     the number of bytes to be interpreted by each iteration of the format.

     If an iteration count and/or a byte count is specified, a single slash
     ('/') must be placed after the iteration count and/or before the byte
     count to disambiguate them. Any whitespace before or after the slash is

     The format is required and must be surrounded by double quote (" ")
     marks. It is interpreted as a fprintf-style format string (see
     fprintf(3)), with the following exceptions:

           •   An asterisk (*) may not be used as a field width or precision.

           •   A byte count or field precision is required for each 's'
               conversion character (unlike the fprintf(3) default which
               prints the entire string if the precision is unspecified).

           •   The conversion characters 'h', 'l', 'n', 'p', and 'q' are not

           •   The single character escape sequences described in the C stan-
               dard are supported:

                     NUL                  \0
                     <alert character>    \a
                     <backspace>          \b
                     <form-feed>          \f
                     <newline>            \n
                     <carriage return>    \r
                     <tab>                \t
                     <vertical tab>       \v

     hexdump also supports the following additional conversion strings:

     _a[doxX]    Display the input offset, cumulative across input files, of
                 the next byte to be displayed. The appended characters d, o
                 and x specify the display base as decimal, octal or hexade-
                 cimal respectively. Appending the character X specifies
                 upper-case instead of lower-case hexadecimal digits and was
                 introduced in MirBSD #2.

     _A[doxX]    Identical to the _a conversion string except that it is only
                 performed once, when all of the input data has been pro-

     _c          Output characters in the default character set. Nonprinting
                 characters are displayed in three character, zero-padded oc-
                 tal, except for those representable by standard escape nota-
                 tion (see above), which are displayed as two character

     _p          Output characters in the default character set. Nonprinting
                 characters are displayed as a single dot '.'.

     _u          Output US ASCII characters, with the exception that control
                 characters are displayed using the following, lower-case,
                 names. Characters greater than 0xff, hexadecimal, are
                 displayed as hexadecimal strings.

                 000 nul  001 soh  002 stx  003 etx  004 eot  005 enq
                 006 ack  007 bel  008 bs   009 ht   00A lf   00B vt
                 00C ff   00D cr   00E so   00F si   010 dle  011 dc1
                 012 dc2  013 dc3  014 dc4  015 nak  016 syn  017 etb
                 018 can  019 em   01A sub  01B esc  01C fs   01D gs
                 01E rs   01F us   0FF del

     The default and supported byte counts for the conversion characters are
     as follows:

           %_c, %_p, %_u, %c       One byte counts only.

           %d, %i, %o, %u, %X, %x  Four byte default, one, two, four and eight
                                   byte counts supported.

           %E, %e, %f, %G, %g      Eight byte default, four byte counts sup-

     The amount of data interpreted by each format string is the sum of the
     data required by each format unit, which is the iteration count times the
     byte count, or the iteration count times the number of bytes required by
     the format if the byte count is not specified.

     The input is manipulated in "blocks", where a block is defined as the
     largest amount of data specified by any format string. Format strings in-
     terpreting less than an input block's worth of data, whose last format
     unit both interprets some number of bytes and does not have a specified
     iteration count, have the iteration count incremented until the entire
     input block has been processed or there is not enough data remaining in
     the block to satisfy the format string.

     If, either as a result of user specification or hexdump modifying the
     iteration count as described above, an iteration count is greater than
     one, no trailing whitespace characters are output during the last itera-

     It is an error to specify a byte count as well as multiple conversion
     characters or strings unless all but one of the conversion characters or
     strings is _a or _A.

     If, as a result of the specification of the -n option or end-of-file be-
     ing reached, input data only partially satisfies a format string, the in-
     put block is zero-padded sufficiently to display all available data
     (i.e., any format units overlapping the end of data will display some
     number of the zero bytes).

     Further output by such format strings is replaced by an equivalent number
     of spaces. An equivalent number of spaces is defined as the number of
     spaces output by an s conversion character with the same field width and
     precision as the original conversion character or conversion string but
     with any '+', ' ', '#' conversion flag characters removed, and referenc-
     ing a NULL string.

     If no format strings are specified, the default display is equivalent to
     specifying the -x option if the executable was called by hexdump, and to
     -H, if the executable was called hd.

     hexdump exits 0 on success and >0 if an error occurred.


     Display the input in perusal format:

           "%06.6_ao "  12/1 "%3_u "
           "\t\t" "%_p "

     Implement the -x option:

           "%07.7_ax  " 8/2 "%04x " "\n"

     Implement the -H option, introduced in MirBSD #6:

           "%08.8_aX  " 8/1 "%02X " " - " 8/1 "%02X "
           "  |" "%_p"



MirBSD #10-current              April 18, 1994                               3

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