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how is grep so fast?

From: Edward Peschko
Subject: how is grep so fast?
Date: Sun, 7 Jun 2009 11:15:49 -0700


I was writing my own, 'grep-like' program, and while doing so, I noticed that
grep is exceedingly fast.

This simple loop on linux takes about 3 seconds, vs a whole grep run
which took 1.

while (fgets(buf, 32768, fp) { }

Adding pcre made my equivalent 'grep' command come out to about 8 seconds.

So how does grep manage to be so fast? I'm really curious about this; I'd like
to emulate this behavior if possible, or maybe use grep as an API if possible.

Thanks much,


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