how to match whole word

Gary Herron gherron at
Wed Jul 16 07:29:20 CEST 2008

Peng Yu wrote:
> Hi,
> The following code snippet is from /usr/bin/rpl. I would like the it
> to match a word, for example, "abc" in ":abc:". But the current one
> would not match "abc" in ":abc:". I tried to modify it myself. Would
> you please let me know what is the corrected way to do it?
> Thanks,
> Peng
> 	if opts.whole_words:
> 		regex = re.compile(r"(?:(?<=\s)|^)" + re.escape(old_str) + r"(?=\s|
> $)",
> 						   opts.ignore_case and re.I or 0)
> --

The regular expression "\w+" will match (what might be your definition 
of) a word, and in particular will match abc in :abc:.   Regular 
expressions have lots of other special \-sequences that might be worth 
your while to read about:

Gary Herron

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