Like all of you, I use
grep a lot to search through files. Actually, most of the time I use ack instead. It provides some really friendly defaults for searching for occurrences recursively, and I think its interface is for the most part more natural to work with.
When I do use
grep, I want it to behave a lot like
ack (without the default filters). By that, I mean that I want it to highlight the occurrences, I want line numbers, and I don’t care case-sensitivity. So I use something like:
$ grep -Rin --color=auto "search_thing" dir1 dir2 .. dirN
That’s a lot of typing. Luckily,
grep supports an environment variable called
GREP_OPTIONS. Stick something like this in your
export GREP_OPTIONS='--color=auto -R -i -n'
And then you can use grep like:
$ grep "search_thing" dir1 dir2 .. dirN
for your default behavior. Because I don’t like the default red color of the highlight, I also throw in:
to change it to yellow. Enjoy!