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Wildcard string compare (globbing)

, 15 Feb 2005 813.2K 94
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Matches a string against a wildcard string such as "*.*" or "bl?h.*" etc. This is good for file globbing or to match hostmasks.

Usage:

This is a fast, lightweight, and simple pattern matching function.

if (wildcmp("bl?h.*", "blah.jpg")) {
  //we have a match!
} else {
  //no match =(
}

Function:

int wildcmp(const char *wild, const char *string) {
  // Written by Jack Handy - <A href="mailto:jakkhandy@hotmail.com">jakkhandy@hotmail.com</A>
  const char *cp = NULL, *mp = NULL;

  while ((*string) && (*wild != '*')) {
    if ((*wild != *string) && (*wild != '?')) {
      return 0;
    }
    wild++;
    string++;
  }

  while (*string) {
    if (*wild == '*') {
      if (!*++wild) {
        return 1;
      }
      mp = wild;
      cp = string+1;
    } else if ((*wild == *string) || (*wild == '?')) {
      wild++;
      string++;
    } else {
      wild = mp;
      string = cp++;
    }
  }

  while (*wild == '*') {
    wild++;
  }
  return !*wild;
}

License

This article has no explicit license attached to it but may contain usage terms in the article text or the download files themselves. If in doubt please contact the author via the discussion board below.

A list of licenses authors might use can be found here

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About the Author

Jack Handy
Web Developer
United States United States
No Biography provided

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Comments and Discussions

 
Generalreturn value type Pin
wdx048-Jan-06 15:49
memberwdx048-Jan-06 15:49 
General*? case match Pin
talimu3-Nov-05 23:42
membertalimu3-Nov-05 23:42 
GeneralRe: *? case match Pin
kuhnm15-Sep-06 2:18
memberkuhnm15-Sep-06 2:18 
GeneralRe: *? case match Pin
kuhnm18-Sep-06 4:48
memberkuhnm18-Sep-06 4:48 
GeneralGets my 5 Pin
Franc Morales18-Oct-05 17:05
memberFranc Morales18-Oct-05 17:05 
Generalmp and cp Pin
twopieman15-Mar-05 11:59
membertwopieman15-Mar-05 11:59 
GeneralRe: mp and cp Pin
radboudp16-Feb-07 1:14
memberradboudp16-Feb-07 1:14 
In case you are matching something like the following:

"*.abc" to "ab.de.abc"

In the second loop it looks for the first character after the asterisk that is the same in the string. At first it matches "*" against "ab". mp = ".abc" during this. Now wild = ".abc" and string = ".de.abc". Obvious no match. On the next loop the first characters do match (both '.') and wild becomes "abc" and string "de.abc". The next loop there is no match and it falls to the else. Here it resets wild to the last mp (mask pattern??) and string to the last cp (character pattern) WITHOUT THE FIRST CHARACTER. (It actually advances cp one position.)

Why does it do this. After matching the * against part of the string and encountering a possible poisiton where to match the remainder of the pattern, it continued comparing characters from both to each other. This fialed. Since right before the position of mp there was a *, it is still allowed to add characters to the part that is matched against that. Basically, it goes back to that position but decides that the character that occurs in both strings is not the next character in the pattern but part of the '*' wildcard.

In the end it has matched '*' with 'ab.de'.
GeneralOK, but ... Pin
Sam Levy16-Feb-05 4:48
memberSam Levy16-Feb-05 4:48 
QuestionWhy make 3 loop ? Pin
DarkYoda Mickael2-Feb-05 22:22
memberDarkYoda Mickael2-Feb-05 22:22 
AnswerRe: Why make 3 loop ? Pin
Jack Handy13-Feb-05 10:02
memberJack Handy13-Feb-05 10:02 
GeneralC# version Pin
Sancy26-Oct-04 6:23
memberSancy26-Oct-04 6:23 
GeneralRe: C# version Pin
Psyk6621-Dec-04 3:39
sussPsyk6621-Dec-04 3:39 
GeneralRe: C# version Pin
Ionut FIlip22-Feb-05 6:15
memberIonut FIlip22-Feb-05 6:15 
GeneralRe: C# version Pin
robagar3-Apr-06 16:58
memberrobagar3-Apr-06 16:58 
GeneralRe: C# version Pin
Sancy5-Jun-06 16:01
memberSancy5-Jun-06 16:01 
GeneralConvert to java base on C# version [modified, better look :~ ] Pin
quangtin321-Mar-08 21:13
memberquangtin321-Mar-08 21:13 
GeneralRe: C# version - an error! Pin
Mark T.4-Jul-08 14:37
memberMark T.4-Jul-08 14:37 
GeneralRe: C# version Pin
williamhix17-Oct-08 22:28
memberwilliamhix17-Oct-08 22:28 
GeneralMany thanks, with 1 small gripe .. Pin
David Patrick29-Sep-04 8:41
memberDavid Patrick29-Sep-04 8:41 
GeneralRe: Many thanks, with 1 small gripe .. Pin
Jack Handy6-Oct-04 8:13
memberJack Handy6-Oct-04 8:13 
GeneralRe: Many thanks, with 1 small gripe .. Pin
Vic Mackey16-Oct-04 19:33
memberVic Mackey16-Oct-04 19:33 
GeneralRe: Many thanks, with 1 small gripe .. Pin
Voja Intermajstor24-Nov-04 23:26
memberVoja Intermajstor24-Nov-04 23:26 
GeneralNice code... Pin
voja2125-Aug-04 2:30
membervoja2125-Aug-04 2:30 
GeneralSlight efficiency improvement Pin
Bill Buklis9-Jul-04 6:53
memberBill Buklis9-Jul-04 6:53 
GeneralRe: Slight efficiency improvement Pin
Bill Buklis9-Jul-04 7:19
memberBill Buklis9-Jul-04 7:19 
QuestionPathMatchSpec (shlwapi.h)? Pin
peterchen28-Jun-04 6:56
memberpeterchen28-Jun-04 6:56 
AnswerRe: PathMatchSpec (shlwapi.h)? Pin
Jack Handy13-Feb-05 9:56
memberJack Handy13-Feb-05 9:56 
GeneralDoesnt seem to work well.. Pin
Bikram Singh13-May-04 1:56
sussBikram Singh13-May-04 1:56 
GeneralRe: Doesnt seem to work well.. Pin
Jack Handy21-Jun-04 9:13
memberJack Handy21-Jun-04 9:13 
GeneralCase Insensitive wildcmp Pin
Techiex16-Mar-04 9:36
memberTechiex16-Mar-04 9:36 
GeneralRe: Case Insensitive wildcmp Pin
Neville Franks16-Mar-04 9:52
memberNeville Franks16-Mar-04 9:52 
GeneralRe: Case Insensitive wildcmp Pin
Techiex23-Mar-04 9:33
memberTechiex23-Mar-04 9:33 
GeneralRe: Case Insensitive wildcmp Pin
DavidCrow23-Feb-05 2:24
memberDavidCrow23-Feb-05 2:24 
GeneralRe: Case Insensitive wildcmp Pin
Vic Mackey23-Feb-05 8:00
memberVic Mackey23-Feb-05 8:00 
GeneralRe: Case Insensitive wildcmp Pin
DavidCrow23-Feb-05 8:22
memberDavidCrow23-Feb-05 8:22 
GeneralRe: Case Insensitive wildcmp Pin
f_randy12-Jun-06 18:13
memberf_randy12-Jun-06 18:13 
GeneralExcellent code! Pin
Hans Dietrich16-Jul-03 19:40
memberHans Dietrich16-Jul-03 19:40 
Generalchecking for null Pin
Jack Handy13-Mar-03 20:38
memberJack Handy13-Mar-03 20:38 
GeneralRe: checking for null Pin
Anonymous15-Mar-03 20:10
sussAnonymous15-Mar-03 20:10 
GeneralRe: checking for null Pin
Jack Handy18-Mar-03 13:25
memberJack Handy18-Mar-03 13:25 
Generalgreat code, but ... Pin
Anonymous12-Mar-03 3:17
sussAnonymous12-Mar-03 3:17 
GeneralRe: great code, but ... Pin
Jack Handy13-Mar-03 20:34
memberJack Handy13-Mar-03 20:34 
GeneralRe: great code, but ... Pin
Anonymous15-Mar-03 20:08
sussAnonymous15-Mar-03 20:08 
GeneralRe: great code, but ... Pin
Jack Handy18-Mar-03 13:25
memberJack Handy18-Mar-03 13:25 
GeneralRe: great code, but ... Pin
Anonymous19-Mar-03 23:13
sussAnonymous19-Mar-03 23:13 
GeneralNice Pin
Chris Richardson16-Jan-03 10:58
memberChris Richardson16-Jan-03 10:58 
GeneralRe: Nice Pin
Jack Handy20-Jan-03 11:56
memberJack Handy20-Jan-03 11:56 
GeneralCool Code Pin
Anonymous6-Dec-02 11:09
sussAnonymous6-Dec-02 11:09 
GeneralRe: Cool Code Pin
hector santos1-Mar-03 1:53
memberhector santos1-Mar-03 1:53 
GeneralRe: Cool Code Pin
Kent C. Dorner2-Mar-03 5:32
sussKent C. Dorner2-Mar-03 5:32 

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