This module was about managing disk space. You learned how to use the
command to display disk usage for files and directories. This module also covered three related commands:
for managing file compression. In the last half of the module, you learned how to use the
when working with archives. You created an archive, listed the archive files, and extracted them.
The zcat command in Unix is used to view the contents of a compressed file, such as a file that has been compressed using gzip or similar compression tools. The zcat command is essentially equivalent to using cat on an uncompressed file.
Here is the basic syntax for the zcat command:
zcat [OPTIONS] [COMPRESSED_FILE]
Here are some common options for the zcat command:
- -h or --help: display help information
- -f or --force: force the decompression of a file, even if it does not have the correct file extension
- -q or --quiet: suppress informational messages
Here are some examples of how to use the zcat command:
- To view the contents of a compressed file:
- To view the contents of a compressed file in a pager such as less:
zcat file.gz | less
- To force the decompression of a file with an unknown file extension:
zcat -f unknownfile.xyz
- To view the contents of a compressed file without informational messages:
zcat -q file.gz
The zcat command can be used in combination with other Unix commands to analyze, process or manipulate compressed files. For example, piping the output of zcat to the grep command can be used to search for specific patterns within compressed files.