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Wildcard string compare (globbing)

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4.90 (79 votes)
15 Feb 2005
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

Comments and Discussions

 
GeneralGets my 5 Pin
Franc Morales18-Oct-05 17:05
memberFranc Morales18-Oct-05 17:05 
Generalmp and cp Pin
Member 102826915-Mar-05 11:59
memberMember 102826915-Mar-05 11:59 
GeneralRe: mp and cp Pin
radboudp16-Feb-07 1:14
memberradboudp16-Feb-07 1:14 
GeneralOK, but ... Pin
Sam Levy16-Feb-05 4:48
memberSam Levy16-Feb-05 4:48 
QuestionWhy make 3 loop ? Pin
DarkYoda M2-Feb-05 22:22
memberDarkYoda M2-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
memberPsyk6621-Dec-04 3:39 
private bool wildcmp(string wild, string str)
{
    int cp=0, mp=0;

    int i=0;
    int j=0;
    while ((i<str.Length) && (wild[j] != '*'))
    {
        if ((wild[j] != str[i]) && (wild[j] != '?'))
        {
            return false;
        }
        i++;
        j++;
    }

    while (i<str.Length)
    {
        if (j<wild.Length && wild[j] == '*')
        {
            if ((j++)>=wild.Length)
            {
                return true;
            }
            mp = j;
            cp = i+1;
        }
        else if (j<wild.Length && (wild[j] == str[i] || wild[j] == '?'))
        {
            j++;
            i++;
        }
        else
        {
            j = mp;
            i = cp++;
        }
    }

    while (j<wild.Length && wild[j] == '*')
    {
        j++;
    }
    return j>=wild.Length;
}


This C# version works. I'm sure there are loads of improvements to be made though. Don't flame me for such bad code, I only started C# yesterday;)
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
Voja Intermajstor25-Aug-04 2:30
memberVoja Intermajstor25-Aug-04 2:30 
GeneralSlight efficiency improvement Pin
GKarRacer9-Jul-04 6:53
memberGKarRacer9-Jul-04 6:53 
GeneralRe: Slight efficiency improvement Pin
GKarRacer9-Jul-04 7:19
memberGKarRacer9-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
memberbikram singh13-May-04 1:56 
GeneralRe: Doesnt seem to work well.. Pin
Jack Handy21-Jun-04 9:13
memberJack Handy21-Jun-04 9:13 

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Article
Posted 1 May 2001

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