grep is always recursive

Chris G cl at
Sat Jan 24 16:36:49 UTC 2009

On Sat, Jan 24, 2009 at 10:48:07AM -0500, Hal Burgiss wrote:
> Does anyone know of a setting anywhere in Ubuntu (8.04), that would
> cause grep to *always* behave as if it were run as 'grep -r'? My home
> system always greps recursively, which is highly annoying.

Is it aliased by any chance?  The default installation certainly
aliases 'ls' and a couple of other things which, personally, I find a
real nuisance and I remove the aliases as soon as I can.

>                                                            I cannot
> find an environment setting or system file to explain this, yet
> grepping something simple in my home dir, as an example, returns a
> huge list of files, including files in various subdirectories. It
> makes no difference whatsoever whether grep is invoked as 'grep' or
> 'grep -r', the behavior is identical. I have other 8.04 systems that
> don't do this, so its quite curious to me. What I want is equivalent
> to:
>   find -maxdepth 1 -exec grep -H $sometoken {} \;
> which is what I have to run now, if I am impatient (typically, yes),
> so as to avoid grepping through gigs of image and music files that
> live within $HOME subdirs.

Chris Green

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