GNU Parallel is a free and open source GNU software project, a command-line shell script especially designed to be used when executing jobs in parallel, on one or more remote computers that run a GNU/Linux operating system.
Helps you to run small scripts or single commands
The tool can be used to run single commands or small scripts, as well as a command that reads from a pipe. The typical input is a list of hosts, a list of files, a list of users, a list of tables, or a list of URLs.
In addition, users can use GNU Parallel to split the input and pipe into commands, in parallel. The program has been designed from the offset as an alternative for the ‘cat | bash’ or ‘xargs’ commands.
Getting started with GNU Parallel
Installing GNU Parallel on your GNU/Linux computer is an easy task. You can always grab the latest version of the project from Softpedia or via its official website (see link at the end of the article). Save the archive somewhere on your computer and extract its contents using an archive manager software.
Open a Terminal app, use the ‘cd’ command to navigate to the location of the extracted archive files (e.g. cd /home/softpedia/parallel-20141122), then execute the ‘configure && make’ command to configure and compile the program for your operating system/hardware architecture.
Install it system wide by running the ‘sudo make install’ command as a privileged user or the ‘make install’ command if your logged in as root. Several command-line program will be generated (parralle, niceload, sem and sql), but the main one is ‘parallel’.
Various command-line options are available for each of the aforementioned programs. To view the usage message of each one, add the ‘--help’ option to the main command (e.g. parallel --help).