> Linux Man Page: "comm"


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The Linux Documentation Project maintains an archive of snaphots of the (English language) core Linux manual pages that are maintained by Michael Kerrisk. Corrections and additions are welcome, but review the "Help Wanted" list, first.

Man pages belonging to programs are usually distributed together with those programs. Therefore, the core Linux man-pages mainly contains the pages for system calls and library routines, special devices, and file formats. However, it also contains documentation for a few programs, in cases where the authors or maintainers of the program do not distribute man pages themselves.

This page is part of release 3.11 of the Linux man-pages project. A description of the project, and information about reporting bugs, can be found at


man page(1) manual page Table of Contents


comm - compare two sorted files line by line


comm [OPTION]... FILE1 FILE2


Compare sorted files FILE1 and FILE2 line by line.

With no options, produce three-column output. Column one contains lines unique to FILE1, column two contains lines unique to FILE2, and column three contains lines common to both files.

suppress lines unique to FILE1

suppress lines unique to FILE2

suppress lines that appear in both files

--help display this help and exit

output version information and exit


Written by Richard Stallman and David MacKenzie.

Reporting Bugs

Report bugs to <>.


Copyright © 2007 Free Software Foundation, Inc. This is free software. You may redistribute copies of it under the terms of the GNU General Public License <>. There is NO WARRANTY, to the extent permitted by law.

See Also

The full documentation for comm is maintained as a Texinfo manual. If the info and comm programs are properly installed at your site, the command

info comm

should give you access to the complete manual.

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