Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I am parsing a list of code numbers, they have a pattern of 12345.1211. They are space delimited. They sometimes will have a space followed by one - three addition number patterns like: 1221.121 11 or 111.111111 874.95 1211

I have a regex [0-9]+\.[0-9]+

It finds a decimated number like 12345.1211 as . I encapsulate the regex with ( & ) and use \1\n to break each code with a newline.

I am using Notepad++ with find an replace. But the regex falls short with the space-included numbers. The extra numbers endup on the same line as the next pattern.

Example of 1221.121 11 or 111.111111 874.95 1211 456.155


11 111.111111


1211 456.155

Is there anything I can do to optionally include the extra numbers separated by a space?


share|improve this question
The list is space delimited, yet you have codes that include spaces? – Excellll Feb 1 '12 at 14:28
If it is space delimited but the pattern needs to sometimes (but only sometimes) include spaces, then you will need to rigorously define when a space needs to be included and when it does not. If the definition is precise and accurate enough, then you could probably write a regex, but without that definition it isn't really possible to write one that would be 100% correct. – EBGreen Feb 1 '12 at 14:54
Also posting the exact regex that you are currently using will help us understand better what you are trying to do and where a fix might need to go. – EBGreen Feb 1 '12 at 14:57
The regex that I am using is listed, and highlighted. The list is space delimited, because it was copied from a webpage. In my example data sets, a valid CODE number shouldn't have a space in it. However my employer has made exceptions to that rule. Anytime there is a CODE number with a space, it typically has one space followed by two numbers. But there have been examples where it trailed with one or three digits. But those are even rarer. – TheSavo Feb 1 '12 at 16:39
I think I may have found the answer my self. If it run the regex: ([0-9]+) , which leads with a space, and trails with a space will only find a number pattern that has a space in front and behind it. Since valid Code Numbers will have a decimal, this will only find, what would be the extra digits. I wrapped it in parens, and use a back reference, lead it with an underscore, and trail it with a space. '\1 ' So it will attach the extra digits to the parent, and delimit the whole string with a space. I then add and undersore to my regex pattern like so. "([0-9]+\.[0-9]+) " – TheSavo Feb 1 '12 at 17:44

On your test data this regex matches all the numbers perfectly for me;


share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.