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GNU Parallel 20110522 ('Pakistan') released

Item posted by Ole Tange <tange> on Sat 21 May 2011 11:18:06 PM UTC.

GNU Parallel 20115022 ('Pakistan') has been released. It is available for download at:

This is a major release. So far GNU Parallel has been focused on replacing a single for-loop. The Pakistan release introduces ways to replace nested loops.

If you are using the {1} {2} syntax for multiple input sources, then you need to read about --xapply as the function has changed.

New in this release:

  • Multiple ::: can be put on the command line and will be treated similar to contents from multiple -a's.
  • ::: and :::: can now be mixed on the command line. Use {1} .. {n} to refer to inputs from the different input sources.
  • --xapply is now needed to get xapply's behaviour of reading one line from each of the input sources.
  • Multiple input sources will cause all combinations of arguments from the sources to be generated. E.g. 'parallel echo {1}+{2} ::: 1 2 ::: a b c' will print 1+a 1+b 1+c 2+a 2+b 2+c. This can often replace nested loops.
  • Implemented {//} for the input line with the basename removed (dirname).
  • Bug fixes and man page updates.

About GNU Parallel

GNU Parallel is a shell tool for executing jobs in parallel using one or more computers. A job is can be a single command or a small script that has to be run for each of the lines in the input. The typical input is a list of files, a list of hosts, a list of users, a list of URLs, or a list of tables. A job can also be a command that reads from a pipe. GNU Parallel can then split the input and pipe it into commands in parallel.

If you use xargs and tee today you will find GNU Parallel very easy to use as GNU Parallel is written to have the same options as xargs. If you write loops in shell, you will find GNU Parallel may be able to replace most of the loops and make them run faster by running several jobs in parallel. GNU Parallel can even replace nested loops.

GNU Parallel makes sure output from the commands is the same output as you would get had you run the commands sequentially. This makes it possible to use output from GNU Parallel as input for other programs.

You can find more about GNU Parallel at:

Watch the intro video on or at and

When using GNU Parallel for a publication please cite:

O. Tange (2011): GNU Parallel - The Command-Line Power Tool, ;login: The USENIX Magazine, February 2011:42-47.


GNU sql aims to give a simple, unified interface for accessing databases through all the different databases' command line clients. So far the focus has been on giving a common way to specify login information (protocol, username, password, hostname, and port number), size (database and table size), and running queries.

The database is addressed using a DBURL. If commands are left out you will get that database's interactive shell.

When using GNU SQL for a publication please cite:

O. Tange (2011): GNU SQL - A Command Line Tool for Accessing Different Databases Using DBURLs, ;login: The USENIX Magazine, April 2011:29-32.

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