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ripgrep is search tool that can recursively search directories for regex search patterns. ripgrep can replicate much of the functionality of the grep command, but has a generally wider scope.


USE flags

USE flags for sys-apps/ripgrep Search tool that combines the usability of ag with the raw speed of grep

debug Enable extra debug codepaths, like asserts and extra output. If you want to get meaningful backtraces see
pcre Add support for Perl Compatible Regular Expressions


Install sys-apps/ripgrep:

root #emerge --ask sys-apps/ripgrep



To view ripgrep usage and options:

user $rg --help

Search for a string in current directory

To recursively search files in the current directory for a string:

user $rg <string>

Find a string in a file

Use ripgrep to find a string in a file:

user $rg <string> <file>

Prettified Output for JSON Results

Use this option to provide a more readable format for JSON search results:

user $rg --pretty

Suppress Error Messages

Suppress all error messages:

user $rg --quiet

Set Maximum Filesize for Search

Limit the search to files of a specific size:

user $rg --max-filesize N

Example: Limit search to files smaller than 1MB

user $rg --max-filesize 1M "pattern"

Replace Each Match

Replace each matched instance with a specified string:

user $rg --replace REPLACEMENT "pattern"

Example: Replace "foo" with "bar" in the search results

user $rg --replace bar foo

Disable Searching Inside Compressed Files

Avoid searching within compressed files:

user $rg --no-search-zip

Enable Searching Inside Compressed Files

Search within compressed files such as .zip and .gzip:

user $rg --search-zip

Display Statistics After Search

Show detailed statistics after completing the search:

user $rg --stats

Search Both Binary and Text Files

Include both binary and text files in the search:

user $rg --binary "pattern"

List Available File Types

Display a list of all file types recognized by ripgrep:

user $rg --type-list

Output Results in Vim-Compatible Format

Format the search results in a manner compatible with Vim:

user $rg --vimgrep "pattern"

Read Ignore Patterns from a File

Exclude patterns specified in a particular file:

user $rg --ignore-file FILE_PATH

Example: Ignore patterns listed in ".rgignore"

user $rg --ignore-file .rgignore "pattern"

Disable Memory-Mapped I/O

Turn off memory-mapped I/O during file search:

user $rg --no-mmap "pattern"

File Listing

While ripgrep is primarily a text-searching tool, it also offers the capability to list files, similar to the find command, though with its unique set of advantages.

Although ripgrep provides file listing functionalities, this tool shouldn't be viewed as a direct substitute for the find command.

Listing Files

Print the files that ripgrep would search, but don't actually search them.

user $rg --files /path/to/directory

Searching for Specific Filenames

Combining the file listing feature with another ripgrep command allows for matching specific filenames. For instance, to find all filenames with a certain match:

user $rg --files /path/to/directory | rg -i <filename_pattern>

This command first lists all files ripgrep would search in the specified path and then filters them based on the provided filename match.

Sorting Results

ripgrep offers the flexibility to sort search results based on different criteria. The sorting modes available are:

Note that sorting results currently always forces ripgrep to abandon parallelism and run in a single thread.

Sorting in Ascending Order

  • Do not sort results. This is the default behavior, offering the fastest performance and the potential for multi-threading.
user $rg --sort none
  • Sort results by file path.
user $rg --sort path
  • Sort results based on the last modified time of files.
user $rg --sort modified
  • Sort results based on the last accessed time of files.
user $rg --sort accessed
  • Sort results based on the file creation time.
user $rg --sort created

Sorting in Descending Order

  • Do not sort results (same as the default behavior). Offers the fastest performance with potential multi-threading.
user $rg --sortr none
  • Sort results in reverse order by file path.
user $rg --sortr path
  • Sort results in reverse order based on the last modified time of files.
user $rg --sortr modified
  • Sort results in reverse order based on the last accessed time of files.
user $rg --sortr accessed
  • Sort results in reverse order based on the file creation time. This mode is single-threaded.
user $rg --sortr created


ripgrep offers customization capabilities through a configuration file named .ripgreprc. This file, when placed in a user's home directory, enables the setting of default flags that the software reads every time it's invoked.

FILE ~/.ripgreprc
# Search hidden files and directories.

# Follow symbolic links.

# Don't respect ignore files (.gitignore, .ignore, etc.).

# Exclude directories.

# Configure color settings and styles.
Flags provided at the command line will override those set in the .ripgreprc file.

Integration with Other Tools

ripgrep integrates seamlessly with various tools to enhance workflow:

  • Vim: Integration of ripgrep with Vim allows for searching patterns across projects. Plugins such as vim-ripgrep and fzf.vim provide this capability.
  • Less: Combining ripgrep's output with sys-apps/less offers paginated viewing.
user $rg 'pattern' | less



Remove sys-apps/ripgrep:

root #emerge --ask --depclean --verbose sys-apps/ripgrep


Shows ripgrep's debug output. This is useful for understanding why a particular file might be ignored from search, or what kinds of configuration ripgrep is loading from the environment.

user $rg --debug "pattern"

See also

  • grep — a tool for searching text files with regular expressions