How do I count the number of capturing groups?

Capturing groups are numbered by counting the opening parentheses from left to right. To find out how many groups are present in the expression, call the groupCount() method on a matcher object. The groupCount() method returns an int showing the number of capturing groups present in the matcher’s pattern.

package org.kodejava.example.util.regex;

import java.util.regex.Matcher;
import java.util.regex.Pattern;

public class CountingGroupDemo {
    public static void main(String[] args) {
        // Define regex to find the word 'quick' or 'lazy' or 'dog'
        String regex = "(quick)|(lazy)|(dog)";
        String text = "the quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog";

        // Obtain the required matcher
        Pattern pattern = Pattern.compile(regex);
        Matcher matcher = pattern.matcher(text);

        int groupCount = matcher.groupCount();
        System.out.println("Number of group = " + groupCount);

        // Find every match and print it
        while (matcher.find()) {
            for (int i = 0; i <= groupCount; i++) {
                // Group i substring
                System.out.println("Group " + i + ": " + matcher.group(i));
            }
        }
    }
}

The result of the program:

Number of group = 3
Group 0: quick
Group 1: quick
Group 2: null
Group 3: null
Group 0: lazy
Group 1: null
Group 2: lazy
Group 3: null
Group 0: dog
Group 1: null
Group 2: null
Group 3: dog

How do I compile character classes with quantifier?

This example show you how to attach quantifier to character classes or capturing group in regular expressions.

package org.kodejava.example.util.regex;

import java.util.regex.Pattern;
import java.util.regex.Matcher;

public class CombineWithQuantifier {
    public static void main(String[] args) {
        //
        // [abc]{3} --> apply quantifier in character class.
        // Find 'a' or 'b' or 'c', three times in a row.
        //
        // (abc){3} --> apply quantifier in capturing group.
        // Find 'abc', three times in a row.
        //
        // abc{3} --> apply quantifier in character class.
        // Find character 'c', three times in a row.
        //
        String[] regexs = {"[abc]{3}", "(abc){3}", "abc{3}"};
        String text = "abcabcabcabcaba";

        for (String regex : regexs) {
            Pattern pattern = Pattern.compile(regex);
            Matcher matcher = pattern.matcher(text);

            //
            // Find every match and print it
            //
            System.out.println("------------------------------");
            System.out.format("Regex:  %s %n", regex);
            while (matcher.find()) {
                System.out.format("Text "%s" found at %d to %d.%n",
                        matcher.group(), matcher.start(),
                        matcher.end());
            }
        }
    }
}

This program will print the following output:

Regex:  [abc]{3} 
Text "abc" found at 0 to 3.
Text "abc" found at 3 to 6.
Text "abc" found at 6 to 9.
Text "abc" found at 9 to 12.
Text "aba" found at 12 to 15.
------------------------------
Regex:  (abc){3} 
Text "abcabcabc" found at 0 to 9.
------------------------------
Regex:  abc{3}