sort file removing duplicates possible?

  • @patrickdrd

    Okay, so a quick look told me what is happening. It’s interesting. :-)

    If you run only the sort on this data, you’ll get this at the end of the file:


    You’d think that the removal of duplicate lines after this would result in only a single occurrence of DBServerIP= However, if we look closer at what is really left after the duplicate removal (turning on visibility of line-endings!), we see:


    We see that the two lines with that IP address truly are different–one has a line-ending and one doesn’t–and because these two lines are not the same, the regular-expression replacement is working correctly by leaving both of these lines after it does its work.

    All of the original lines that ended in .185 had line-endings (in other words, were exactly the same), so I’d say this is an artifact resulting from the sort operation (in my mind this is a sort BUG!).

    But we can work around it. There could be a regular expression solution, but maybe the regex that removes duplicates is complicated enough. What I’d suggest here is to modify the original macro, after the sort but before the find+replace, to:

    • move caret position to the end of file (the sort operation leaves it at the beginning of file)
    • insert a (Windows style) line-ending
    • move caret position back to beginning of file (in preparation for the find+replace)


    <Macro name="test sort and del dupe lines 2" Ctrl="no" Alt="no" Shift="no" Key="0">
        <Action type="2" message="0" wParam="42059" lParam="0" sParam="" />
        <Action type="0" message="2318" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
        <Action type="1" message="2170" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="&#x000D;" />
        <Action type="1" message="2170" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="&#x000A;" />
        <Action type="0" message="2316" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
        <Action type="3" message="1700" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
        <Action type="3" message="1601" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="(?-s)^(.*)(?:\R)(?s)(?=.*^\1\R)" />
        <Action type="3" message="1625" wParam="0" lParam="2" sParam="" />
        <Action type="3" message="1602" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
        <Action type="3" message="1702" wParam="0" lParam="512" sParam="" />
        <Action type="3" message="1701" wParam="0" lParam="1609" sParam="" />

    Compare that with the earlier version much earlier in this thread.

    Running this new macro on your data results in:


    which is the desired result.

  • @patrickdrd

    For the DBServerIP= case you mentioned, if you don’t do the sort first, then a .215 line is the last line of the data you turn over to the regular expression replace operation. Thus it lacks the trailing line-ending that the earlier occurrence of a similar line has. Same issue as the .185 case…

  • thanks a ton!

    I’d a like a more “generic” approach, so I called trim 42056 to clear empty lines first,
    because sorting puts an empty line at the top if is finds one,
    then going on as you suggested

  • @patrickdrd

    I’m glad you have a solution. Yeah, the empty line thing with sorting is rather bad, but the end-user can’t control this behavior of the sorting. I think I’ve changed my mind and it is probably best to alter the regular expression a bit in order to handle the situation where there is a duplicate-but-without-line-ending at the end of the file. So I’d suggest changing it to:


    I’ve done two things to this regex:

    • I removed the (?: and ) around the first \R (a simplification discussed earlier so no need to say any more here)
    • The final \R was changed to (?:\R|\z) (see discussion below)

    The \R|\z part is what allows an almost-duplicate at the end-of-file-without-line-ending to be detected. The new part to this is the \z which roughly means “match only at the very end of the data”.

    The (?: and ) was added so that the | only affects the \R that precedes it and the \z that follows it

  • Hello @patrickdrd, @scott-sumner and All,

    Generally speaking, when you want to remove duplicate lines, from a PREVIOUSLY SORTED list, just use this simple regex S/R, below :

    SEARCH (?-s)(.*\R)\1+

    REPLACE \1

    This regex is quite fast, because, in case of numerous duplicates, the part \1+ grabs all the duplicates ( with their EOL characters ), at once and just rewrites the first item of each block :-))

    IMPORTANT : the last item of your sorted list must be followed by EOL character(s) !



  • after trying both the macro and the textfx solution for a long time,
    I’ve seen that still ultraedit’s sorting works much better than both of them,
    I first rejected the macro for textfx’s favor but I found out lately that neither the latter does a good job, at least I prefer the sorting done by ultraedit ,sorry,
    I don’t have an example at the moment, I’ll post again when I do

  • @patrickdrd

    sorry, did not read the whole thread but what about a python one liner?



  • @patrickdrd

    forgot sorting



  • thanks, I’m keeping that too and I’ll let you know

  • ok, I tested, this doesn’t work either somehow, at least doesn’t work like ue’s one, i.e.

    I tested with easylist from: (69883 lines),
    ue’s function cuts it to: 69238

    npp results:
    python scipt: 69818
    macro (scott) is a bit slow and results in 19610 lines (!) and
    textfx results in 69818 as well

    guy038 regular expression results in 28109 lines,
    according to my experience, I bet that ue’s result is the correct one,
    at least to my taste

  • @patrickdrd

    could you, by any chance, upload the ue cutted list?
    To see the differences.


  • yes, of course, please tell me where, pastebin doesn’t work, it’s blocked here (at work),
    any other suggestions?

  • actually pastebin is my first choice as well and haven’t used others for quite some time now.

    Heard about

    should be good and anonymous but haven’t tried it so far.


  • Yea, I used to be a fan of regular expression replacement when doing this, but with “larger” datasets there always seems like there is so much tweaking and experimentation needed to get it right (for a particular dataset) that it is hardly worth it, unless you like playing with regular expressions all day instead of solving a particular problem and moving on quickly.

    A Pythonscript solution such as @Claudia-Frank 's seems fine…

  • ok, but why results are inconsistent (with large datasets)?

    @Claudia-Frank, unfortunately I’m not able to access zippyshare either,
    so I’ll upload to pastebin from home if we don’t find another solution

  • @patrickdrd

    I installed the ue trial version but can’t find the menu item to delete the duplicates.
    Is there anything I need to install in addition or am I blind and don’t see the obvious?


  • ok - found it - obviously blind :-D


  • @patrickdrd said:

    ok, but why results are inconsistent (with large datasets)?

    Various reasons, sometimes a regular expression approach to this needs to be refined to match the data better before it works well. If you search up some other threads on this topic you can trace through the evolution of a regex approach on certain datasets. However, I suspect you just want to get a workable solution and move on…and I fully endorse that. I’m tired of trying to use regex for this kind of thing. :)

    BTW, @Claudia-Frank going the extra mile…installing UE trial version just to track this down…nice!

  • @Scott-Sumner

    … boots are made for walking … :-)

    I’m confused about how UE does sort and delete duplicates.
    Used default settings.

    Only sorting

    Sorting and deleting duplicates

    There is obviously something wrong about UEs algorithm, isn’t it?
    And the version I used cut the list to 63732 lines.


  • so… another number? amazing!

    I’ve got version 16 which is lite somehow

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