Replace in file console utility written in golang (for eg. usage in docker images)
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Cli utility for replacing text in files, written in golang and compiled for usage in Docker images

Inspired by


  • Simple search&replace for terms specified as normal shell argument (for escaping only normal shell quotes needed)
  • Can use regular expressions for search&replace with and without backrefs (--regex and --regex-backrefs)
  • Supports multiple changesets (search&replace terms)
  • Replace the whole line with replacement when line is matching (--mode=line)
  • ... and add the line at the bottom if there is no match (--mode=lineinfile)
  • Use golang template with [Sprig template functions]]( (--mode=template)
  • Can store file as other filename (eg. go-replace ./configuration.tmpl:./configuration.conf)
  • Can replace files in directory (--path) and offers file pattern matching functions (--path-pattern and --path-regex)
  • Can read also stdin for search&replace or template handling
  • Supports Linux, MacOS, Windows and ARM/ARM64 (Rasbperry Pi and others)



Application Options:
      --threads=                                Set thread concurrency for replacing in multiple files at same time (default: 20)
  -m, --mode=[replace|line|lineinfile|template] replacement mode - replace: replace match with term; line: replace line with term; lineinfile: replace line with term or
                                                if not found append to term to file; template: parse content as golang template, search value have to start uppercase
                                                (default: replace)
  -s, --search=                                 search term
  -r, --replace=                                replacement term
      --lineinfile-before=                      add line before this regex
      --lineinfile-after=                       add line after this regex
  -i, --case-insensitive                        ignore case of pattern to match upper and lowercase characters
      --stdin                                   process stdin as input
  -o, --output=                                 write changes to this file (in one file mode)
      --output-strip-ext=                       strip file extension from written files (also available in multi file mode)
      --once=[keep|unique]                      replace search term only one in a file, keep duplicaes (keep, default) or remove them (unique)
      --regex                                   treat pattern as regex
      --regex-backrefs                          enable backreferences in replace term
      --regex-posix                             parse regex term as POSIX regex
      --path=                                   use files in this path
      --path-pattern=                           file pattern (* for wildcard, only basename of file)
      --path-regex=                             file pattern (regex, full path)
      --ignore-empty                            ignore empty file list, otherwise this will result in an error
  -v, --verbose                                 verbose mode
      --dry-run                                 dry run mode
  -V, --version                                 show version and exit
      --dumpversion                             show only version number and exit
  -h, --help                                    show this help message

Files must be specified as arguments and will be overwritten after parsing. If you want an alternative location for saving the file the argument can be specified as source:destination, eg. go-replace -s foobar -r barfoo daemon.conf.tmpl:daemon.conf.

If --path (with or without --path-pattern or --path-regex) the files inside path are used as source and will be overwritten. If daemon.conf.tmpl should be written as daemon.conf the option --output-strip-ext=.tmpl will do this based on the source file name.

Regular expression's back references can be activated with --regex-backrefs and must be specified as $1, $2 ... $9.

Mode Description
replace Replace search term inside one line with replacement.
line Replace line (if matched term is inside) with replacement.
lineinfile Replace line (if matched term is inside) with replacement. If no match is found in the whole file the line will be appended to the bottom of the file.
template Parse content as golang template, arguments are available via {{.Arg.Name}} or environment vars via {{.Env.Name}}


Command Description
go-replace -s foobar -r barfoo file1 file2 Replaces foobar to barfoo in file1 and file2
go-replace --regex -s 'foo.*' -r barfoo file1 file2 Replaces the regex foo.* to barfoo in file1 and file2
go-replace --regex --ignore-case -s 'foo.*' -r barfoo file1 file2 Replaces the regex foo.* (and ignore case) to barfoo in file1 and file2
go-replace --mode=line -s 'foobar' -r barfoo file1 file2 Replaces all lines with content foobar to barfoo (whole line) in file1 and file2
go-replace -s 'foobar' -r barfoo --path=./ --path-pattern='*.txt' Replaces all lines with content foobar to barfoo (whole line) in *.txt files in current path

Example with golang templates

Withing the template there are Template functions available from Sprig.

Configuration file daemon.conf.tmpl:

<VirtualHost ...>
    ServerName {{env "SERVERNAME"}}
    DocumentRoot {{env "DOCUMENTROOT"}}

Process file with:

export SERVERNAME=www.foobar.example
export DOCUMENTROOT=/var/www/foobar.example/
go-replace --mode=template daemon.conf.tmpl:daemon.conf

Reuslt file daemon.conf:

<VirtualHost ...>
    ServerName www.foobar.example
    DocumentRoot /var/www/foobar.example/


&& wget -O /usr/local/bin/go-replace$GOREPLACE_VERSION/gr-64-linux \
&& chmod +x /usr/local/bin/go-replace

Docker images

Image Description
webdevops/go-replace:latest Latest release, binary only
webdevops/go-replace:master Current development version in branch master
webdevops/go-replace:develop Current development version in branch develop