pv – The wonderful progress bar for linux and Mac OSX

Sometimes I just would like a progress bar.  Its usefulness is only to keep me sane in the face of near certainty.  pv is a useful utility created for that purpose.

pv-screenshot

There are a lot of ways to use it, but with dd seems the most popular.
Here’s an example of how I use it.

# file="<filename>"; dd if=${file} | pv -s $(stat -c%s ${file}) | dd of=/dev/null