wc [man page] - print newline, word, and byte counts for each file


wc [OPTION]... [FILE]...
wc [OPTION]... --files0-from=F

Frequently used options

-c, --bytes      print the byte counts
-m, --chars print the character counts
-l, --lines print the newline counts
-w, --words print the word counts


By default if you pass file as a argument to wc command it prints number of lines, words and characters:

wc /etc/passwd 

wc default output
To instruct wc command to print only number of words contained within file we can use -w option:

wc -w /etc/passwd 

wc words output
Similarly if we need only number of lines we would use -l option:

wc -l /etc/passwd 

wc lines output
For number of characters we need to use -c option:

wc -m /etc/passwd 

wc characters output
wc can also print out a number of bytes within file:

wc -c /etc/passwd 

wc bytes output