head Man page

HEAD User Commands HEAD


head – output the first part of files


head [OPTION]… [FILE]…


Print the first 10 lines of each FILE to standard output. With more
than one FILE, precede each with a header giving the file name.

With no FILE, or when FILE is -, read standard input.

Mandatory arguments to long options are mandatory for short options

-c, –bytes=[-]NUM
print the first NUM bytes of each file; with the leading ‘-‘,
print all but the last NUM bytes of each file

-n, –lines=[-]NUM
print the first NUM lines instead of the first 10; with the
leading ‘-‘, print all but the last NUM lines of each file

-q, –quiet, –silent
never print headers giving file names

-v, –verbose
always print headers giving file names

-z, –zero-terminated
line delimiter is NUL, not newline

–help display this help and exit

output version information and exit

NUM may have a multiplier suffix: b 512, kB 1000, K 1024, MB 1000*1000,
M 1024*1024, GB 1000*1000*1000, G 1024*1024*1024, and so on for T, P,
E, Z, Y.


Written by David MacKenzie and Jim Meyering.


GNU coreutils online help:
Report head translation bugs to


Copyright © 2016 Free Software Foundation, Inc. License GPLv3+: GNU
GPL version 3 or later .
This is free software: you are free to change and redistribute it.
There is NO WARRANTY, to the extent permitted by law.



Full documentation at:
or available locally via: info ‘(coreutils) head invocation’

GNU coreutils 8.25 February 2016 HEAD

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