It seems that the standard unix system sort is pretty flexible for files
with variable length records (i.e. newline terminated records) and for
records which use some character to delimit the extent of the field.
But what about fixed-length fields? It seems that the only way to
handle them is to try to find some character which is never going to be
in any record and use that as the field delimiter and then take offsets
into the first field as your sort keys. That's pretty awful. Is there
a better way to do it?
What about files containing fixed length records which are not
I know I could write such sorts in perl or C or whatever, but I want to
use the standard sort because I need to sort huge files (1+ gigabytes)
and I don't want to rewrite the chunking/merging capabilities built into
the standard sort.
Is the only alternative to buy some commercial product like SyncSort?
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