*nix Documentation Project
·  Home
 +   man pages
·  Linux HOWTOs
·  FreeBSD Tips
·  *niX Forums

  man pages->Linux man pages -> dialog (1)              



NAME    [Toc]    [Back]

       dialog - display dialog boxes from shell scripts

SYNOPSIS    [Toc]    [Back]

       dialog --clear
       dialog --create-rc file
       dialog --print-maxsize
       dialog common-options box-options

DESCRIPTION    [Toc]    [Back]

       Dialog is a program that will let you to present a variety of questions
       or display messages using dialog boxes  from  a	shell  script.	 These
       types  of  dialog boxes are implemented (though not all are necessarily
       compiled into dialog):

	      calendar, checklist, fselect, gauge,  infobox,  inputbox,  menu,
	      msgbox   (message),  password,  radiolist,  tailbox,  tailboxbg,
	      textbox, timebox, and yesno (yes/no).

       You can put more than one dialog box into a script:

       -    Use the --and-widget token to force Dialog to proceed to the  next
	    dialog unless you have pressed ESC to cancel, or

       -    Simply  add  the  tokens  for the next dialog box, making a chain.
	    Dialog stops chaining when	the  return  code  from  a  dialog  is
	    nonzero, e.g., Cancel or No.

OPTIONS    [Toc]    [Back]

       Common Options

       --aspect ratio
	      This  gives  you some control over the box dimensions when using
	      auto sizing (specifying 0 for height and width).	It  represents
	      width / height.  The default is 9, which means 9 characters wide
	      to every 1 line high.

       --backtitle backtitle
	      Specifies a backtitle string to be displayed on the backdrop, at
	      the top of the screen.

       --beep Sound the audible alarm each time the screen is refreshed.

	      Beep if input is interrupted, e.g., by a control/C.

       --begin y x
	      Specify the position of the upper left corner of a dialog box on
	      the screen.

       --cancel-label string
	      Override the label used for "Cancel" buttons.

	      The screen will be cleared to  the  screen  attribute  on  exit.
	      This may be used alone, without other options.

	      Interpret  embedded  newlines in the dialog text as a newline on
	      the screen.  Otherwise, dialog will only wrap lines where needed
	      to  fit  inside  the text box.  Even though you can control line
	      breaks with this, dialog will still wrap any lines that are  too
	      long  for  the width of the box.	Without cr-wrap, the layout of
	      your text may be formatted to look nice in the  source  code  of
	      your  script  without affecting the way it will look in the dialog.

       --create-rc file
	      When dialog supports run-time configuration, this can be used to
	      dump  a sample configuration file to the file specified by file.

	      Make the default value of the yes/no box a No.

       --default-item string
	      Set the default item in a menu box.  Normally the first item  in
	      the box is the default.

       --help Prints  the help message to standard error.  The help message is
	      printed if no options are given.

	      Show a help-button after ok/cancel buttons.

       --help-label string
	      Override the label used for "Help" buttons.

	      Ignore options that dialog does not recognize.  Some  well-known
	      ones  such  as "--icon" are ignored anyway, but this is a better
	      choice for compatibility with other implementations.

	      Interpret the tags data for checklist, radiolist	and  menuboxes
	      adding  a  column  which	is displayed in the bottom line of the
	      screen, for the currently selected item.

       --max-input size
	      Limit input strings to the given size.  If  not  specified,  the
	      limit is 2000.

	      Tells  dialog to put the tailboxbg box in the background, printing
 its process id to standard error.  SIGHUP  is  disabled  for
	      the background process.


	      Suppress	the "Cancel" button in checklist, inputbox and menubox
	      modes.  A script can still test if the user pressed the ESC  key
	      to cancel to quit.

	      Suppress	shadows that would be drawn to the right and bottom of
	      each dialog box.

       --ok-label string
	      Override the label used for "OK" buttons.

	      Print the maximum size of dialog boxes, i.e., the  screen  size,
	      to  the  standard  error.  This may be used alone, without other

	      Prints the size of each dialog box to standard error.

	      Prints dialog's version to standard error.   This  may  be  used
	      alone, without other options.

	      For checklist widgets, output result one line at a time, with no
	      quoting.	This facilitates parsing by another program.

       --separate-widget string
	      Specify a string that will separate the output on standard error
	      from  each  widget.  This is used to simplify parsing the result
	      of a dialog with several widgets.  If this option is not	given,
	      the default separator string is a tab character.

	      Draw a shadow to the right and bottom of each dialog box.

	      Check  the  resulting  size of a dialog box before trying to use
	      it, printing the resulting size if it is larger than the screen.
	      (This  option  is  obsolete,  since  all	new-window  calls  are

       --sleep secs
	      Sleep (delay) for the given number of seconds after processing a
	      dialog box.

	      Direct output to the standard error.  This is the default, since
	      curses normally writes screen updates to the standard output.

	      Direct output to the standard output.

	      Convert each tab character to one or  more  spaces.   Otherwise,
	      tabs  are rendered according to the curses library's interpretation.

       --tab-len n
	      Specify the number of spaces that a tab  character  occupies  if
	      the "--tab-correct" option is given.  The default is 8.

       --timeout secs
	      Timeout  (exit  with  error code) if no user response within the
	      given number of seconds.

       --title title
	      Specifies a title string to be displayed at the top of the  dialog

       --trim eliminate  leading  blanks,  trim  literal newlines and repeated
	      blanks from message text.

	      Same as "--print-version".

       Box Options    [Toc]    [Back]
	      All dialog boxes have at least three parameters:

	      text the caption or contents of the box.

		   the height of the dialog box.

		   the width of the dialog box.

	      Other parameters depend on the box type.

       --calendar text height width day month year
	      A calendar box  displays	month,	day  and  year	in  separately
	      adjustable  windows.   If  the values for day, month or year are
	      missing or negative, the current date's corresponding values are
	      used.   You  can	increment  or decrement any of those using the
	      left-, up-, right- and down-arrows.  Use tab or backtab to  move
	      between windows.	If the year is given as zero, the current date
	      is used as an initial value.  On exit, the date  is  printed  in
	      the form day/month/year.

       --checklist text height width list-height [ tag item status ] ...
	      A  checklist  box  is  similar to a menu box; there are multiple
	      entries presented in the form of a menu.	 Instead  of  choosing
	      one  entry among the entries, each entry can be turned on or off
	      by the user.  The initial on/off state of each entry  is	specified
  by	status.   On  exit, a list of the tag strings of those
	      entries that are turned on will be printed on stderr.

       --fselect  filepath height width
	      The file-selection dialog displays a text-entry window in  which
	      you  can type a filename (or directory), and above that two windows
 with directory names and filenames.

	      Here filepath can be a filepath  in  which  case	the  file  and
	      directory  windows will display the contents of the path and the
	      text-entry window will contain the preselected filename.

	      Use tab or arrow keys to move between the windows.   Within  the
	      directory  or  filename  windows,  use the up/down arrow keys to
	      scroll the current selection.  Use the  space-bar  to  copy  the
	      current selection into the text-entry window.

	      Typing any printable characters switches focus to the text-entry
	      window, entering that character as well as scrolling the	directory
 and filename windows to the closest match.

	      Use  a  carriage return or the "OK" button to accept the current
	      value in the text-entry window, or the "Cancel" button  to  cancel.

       --gauge text height width [percent]
	      A  gauge	box displays a meter along the bottom of the box.  The
	      meter indicates the percentage.  New percentages are  read  from
	      standard	input,	one integer per line.  The meter is updated to
	      reflect each new percentage.  If stdin is XXX,  then  subsequent
	      lines  up  to  another XXX are used for a new prompt.  The gauge
	      exits when EOF is reached on stdin.

	      The percent value denotes the initial percentage	shown  in  the
	      meter.  If not specified, it is zero.

       --infobox text height width
	      An  info box is basically a message box.	However, in this case,
	      dialog will exit immediately after displaying the message to the
	      user.   The screen is not cleared when dialog exits, so that the
	      message will remain on the screen until the calling shell script
	      clears  it  later.   This  is useful when you want to inform the
	      user that some operations are carrying on that may require  some
	      time to finish.

       --inputbox text height width [init]
	      An  input  box  is  useful  when	you want to ask questions that
	      require the user to input a string as the answer.   If  init  is
	      supplied it is used to initialize the input string.  When entering
 the string, the BACKSPACE key can be used to correct	typing
	      errors.	If the input string is longer than can fit in the dialog
 box, the input field will be scrolled.  On exit,  the  input
	      string will be printed on stderr.

       --menu text height width menu-height [ tag item ] ...
	      As  its  name  suggests,	a menu box is a dialog box that can be
	      used to present a list of choices in the form of a menu for  the
	      user to choose.  Choices are displayed in the order given.  Each
	      menu entry consists of a tag string and an item string.  The tag
	      gives  the entry a name to distinguish it from the other entries
	      in the menu.  The item is a short description of the option that
	      the  entry  represents.	The  user  can	move  between the menu
	      entries by pressing the UP/DOWN keys, the first  letter  of  the
	      tag  as a hot-key, or the number keys 1-9. There are menu-height
	      entries displayed in the menu at one time, but the menu will  be
	      scrolled	if  there  are	more  entries  than that.  When dialog
	      exits, the tag of the chosen  menu  entry  will  be  printed  on
	      stderr.  If the --help-button option is given, the corresponding
	      help text will be printed if the user selects the help button.

       --msgbox text height width
	      A message box is very similar to a yes/no box.  The only difference
  between  a	message box and a yes/no box is that a message
	      box has only a single OK button.	You can use this dialog box to
	      display  any  message  you like.	After reading the message, the
	      user can press the ENTER key so that dialog will	exit  and  the
	      calling shell script can continue its operation.

       --passwordbox text height width [init]
	      A  password box is similar to an input box, except that the text
	      the user enters is not displayed.  This is useful when prompting
	      for  passwords or other sensitive information.  Be aware that if
	      anything is passed in "init", it will be visible in the system's
	      process table to casual snoopers.  Also, it is very confusing to
	      the user to provide them with a  default	password  they	cannot
	      see.  For these reasons, using "init" is highly discouraged.

       --radiolist text height width list-height  [ tag item status ] ...
	      A  radiolist  box is similar to a menu box.  The only difference
	      is that you can indicate which entry is currently  selected,  by
	      setting its status to on.

       --tailbox file height width
	      Display text from a file in a dialog box, as in a "tail -f" command.

       --tailboxbg file height width
	      Display text from a file in a dialog box as a  background  task,
	      as in a "tail -f &" command.

	      Dialog  treats  the background task specially if there are other
	      widgets (--and-widget) on the screen concurrently.  Until  those
	      widgets  are  closed (e.g., an "OK"), dialog will perform all of
	      the tailboxbg widgets in the same process, polling for  updates.
	      You may use a tab to traverse between the widgets on the screen,
	      and close them individually, e.g., by pressing ENTER.  Once  the
	      non-tailboxbg  widgets are closed, dialog forks a copy of itself
	      into the background, and prints its process id if the  --no-kill
	      option is given.

	      NOTE:  Older versions of dialog forked immediately and attempted
	      to update the screen individually.  Besides being bad  for  performance,
  it  was  unworkable.  Some older scripts may not work
	      properly with the polled scheme.

       --textbox file height width
	      A text box lets you display the contents of a  text  file  in  a
	      dialog box.  It is like a simple text file viewer.  The user can
	      move through the	file  by  using  the  UP/DOWN,	PGUP/PGDN  and
	      HOME/END keys available on most keyboards.  If the lines are too
	      long to be displayed in the box, the LEFT/RIGHT keys can be used
	      to  scroll  the text region horizontally.  For more convenience,
	      forward and backward searching functions are also provided.

       --timebox text height [width hour minute second]
	      A dialog is displayed which allows you to  select  hour,	minute
	      and  second.  If the values for hour, minute or second are missing
 or negative, the current  date's  corresponding  values  are
	      used.   You  can	increment  or decrement any of those using the
	      left-, up-, right- and down-arrows.  Use tab or backtab to  move
	      between  windows.   On  exit,  the result is printed in the form

       --yesno text height width
	      A yes/no dialog box of size height rows by width columns will be
	      displayed.  The string specified by text is displayed inside the
	      dialog box.  If this string is too long to fit in one  line,  it
	      will be automatically divided into multiple lines at appropriate
	      places.  The text string can also contain the sub-string "\n" or
	      newline  characters  `\n'  to  control line breaking explicitly.
	      This dialog box is useful for asking questions that require  the
	      user  to answer either yes or no.  The dialog box has a Yes button
 and a No button, in which the user  can  switch  between  by
	      pressing the TAB key.


       1.  Create a sample configuration file by typing:

		 "dialog --create-rc <file>"

       2.  At start, dialog determines the settings to use as follows:

	   a)  if  environment	variable DIALOGRC is set, its value determines
	       the name of the configuration file.

	   b)  if the file in (a) is not found, use the  file  $HOME/.dialogrc
	       as the configuration file.

	   c)  if  the	file  in (b) is not found, try using the GLOBALRC file
	       determined at compile-time, i.e., /etc/dialogrc.

	   d)  if the file in (c) is not found, use compiled in defaults.

       3.  Edit the sample configuration file and copy it to some  place  that
	   dialog can find, as stated in step 2 above.

ENVIRONMENT    [Toc]    [Back]

       DIALOGRC       Define  this variable if you want to specify the name of
		      the configuration file to use.

       DIALOG_CANCEL    [Toc]    [Back]

       DIALOG_ERROR    [Toc]    [Back]

       DIALOG_ESC    [Toc]    [Back]

       DIALOG_OK      Define any of these variables to change the exit code on
		      Cancel  (1),  error (-1), ESC (255) or Ok (0).  Normally
		      shell scripts cannot distinguish between -1 and 255.

FILES    [Toc]    [Back]

       $HOME/.dialogrc	   default configuration file

DIAGNOSTICS    [Toc]    [Back]

       Exit status is subject to being overridden  by  environment  variables.
       Normally they are:

       0    if dialog is exited by pressing the Yes or OK button.

       1    if the No or Cancel button is pressed.

       -1   if	errors occur inside dialog or dialog is exited by pressing the
	    ESC key.

BUGS    [Toc]    [Back]


AUTHOR    [Toc]    [Back]

       Savio Lam (lam836@cs.cuhk.hk) - version 0.3, "dialog"

       Stuart Herbert (S.Herbert@sheffield.ac.uk) - patch for version 0.4

       Pako (demarco_p@abramo.it) - version 0.9a, "cdialog",

       Thomas Dickey (updates for 0.9b)

$Date: 2002/03/09 19:14:03 $					     DIALOG(1)
[ Back ]
 Similar pages
Name OS Title
DtEditorInvokeFindChangeDialog HP-UX display the DtEditor widget dialog for searching and replacing text
DtEditorInvokeFormatDialog HP-UX display the DtEditor widget dialog for choosing formatting options
rc.subr FreeBSD functions used by system shell scripts
DtEditorInvokeSpellDialog HP-UX display the DtEditor widget dialog for checking text for spelling errors
turnacct Tru64 Provide accounting commands for shell scripts
nulladm Tru64 Provide accounting commands for shell scripts
acct Tru64 Provide accounting commands for shell scripts
monacct Tru64 Provide accounting commands for shell scripts
lastlogin Tru64 Provide accounting commands for shell scripts
shutacct Tru64 Provide accounting commands for shell scripts
Copyright © 2004-2005 DeniX Solutions SRL
newsletter delivery service