curs_terminfo 3x

curs_terminfo(3x)                                     curs_terminfo(3x)


       del_curterm, mvcur, putp, restartterm, set_curterm,
       setterm, setupterm, tigetflag, tigetnum, tigetstr, tiparm,
       tparm, tputs, vid_attr, vid_puts, vidattr, vidputs -
       curses interfaces to terminfo database


       #include <curses.h>
       #include <term.h>

       int setupterm(char *term, int fildes, int *errret);
       int setterm(char *term);
       TERMINAL *set_curterm(TERMINAL *nterm);
       int del_curterm(TERMINAL *oterm);
       int restartterm(char *term, int fildes, int *errret);
       char *tparm(char *str, ...);
       int tputs(const char *str, int affcnt, int (*putc)(int));
       int putp(const char *str);
       int vidputs(chtype attrs, int (*putc)(int));
       int vidattr(chtype attrs);
       int vid_puts(attr_t attrs, short pair, void *opts, int (*putc)(int));
       int vid_attr(attr_t attrs, short pair, void *opts);
       int mvcur(int oldrow, int oldcol, int newrow, int newcol);
       int tigetflag(char *capname);
       int tigetnum(char *capname);
       char *tigetstr(char *capname);
       char *tiparm(const char *str, ...);


       These low-level routines must be called by  programs  that
       have to deal directly with the terminfo database to handle
       certain terminal capabilities, such as  programming  func-
       tion  keys.   For all other functionality, curses routines
       are more suitable and their use is recommended.


       Initially, setupterm should  be  called.   Note  that  se-
       tupterm  is  automatically  called by initscr and newterm.
       This  defines  the  set  of  terminal-dependent  variables
       [listed in terminfo(5)].

       Each initialization routine provides applications with the
       terminal capabilities either directly (via header  defini-
       tions),  or  by special functions.  The header files curs-
       es.h and term.h should be included (in this order) to  get
       the definitions for these strings, numbers, and flags.

       The  terminfo  variables lines and columns are initialized
       by setupterm as follows:

       o   If use_env(FALSE) has been called,  values  for  lines
           and columns specified in terminfo are used.

       o   Otherwise, if the environment variables LINES and COL-
           UMNS exist, their values are used.  If these  environ-
           ment variables do not exist and the program is running
           in a window, the current window size is used.   Other-
           wise,  if  the environment variables do not exist, the
           values for lines and columns specified in the terminfo
           database are used.

       Parameterized  strings  should  be passed through tparm to
       instantiate them.  All  terminfo  strings  [including  the
       output  of  tparm]  should  be printed with tputs or putp.
       Call reset_shell_mode to restore the tty modes before  ex-
       iting [see curs_kernel(3x)].

       Programs which use cursor addressing should

       o   output enter_ca_mode upon startup and

       o   output exit_ca_mode before exiting.

       Programs which execute shell subprocesses should

       o   call  reset_shell_mode  and output exit_ca_mode before
           the shell is called and

       o   output enter_ca_mode and  call  reset_prog_mode  after
           returning from the shell.

       The setupterm routine reads in the terminfo database, ini-
       tializing the terminfo structures, but does not set up the
       output virtualization structures used by curses.  The ter-
       minal type is the character string term; if term is  null,
       the  environment  variable TERM is used.  All output is to
       file descriptor fildes which is  initialized  for  output.
       If  errret  is  not null, then setupterm returns OK or ERR
       and stores a status value in the integer pointed to by er-
       rret.   A  return value of OK combined with status of 1 in
       errret is normal.  If ERR is returned, examine errret:

       1    means that the terminal is hardcopy, cannot  be  used
            for curses applications.

            setupterm  determines if the entry is a hardcopy type
            by checking the hc (hardcopy) capability.

       0    means that the terminal could not be found,  or  that
            it  is  a generic type, having too little information
            for curses applications to run.

            setupterm determines if the entry is a  generic  type
            by checking the gn (generic) capability.

       -1   means that the terminfo database could not be found.

       If  errret is null, setupterm prints an error message upon
       finding an error and exits.  Thus, the simplest call is:

             setupterm((char *)0, 1, (int *)0);,

       which uses all the defaults and sends the output  to  std-

       The setterm routine was replaced by setupterm.  The call:

             setupterm(term, 1, (int *)0)

       provides  the  same  functionality  as setterm(term).  The
       setterm routine is provided for BSD compatibility, and  is
       not recommended for new programs.

The Terminal State

       The  setupterm  routine  stores  its information about the
       terminal in a TERMINAL structure pointed to by the  global
       variable  cur_term.   If  it  detects an error, or decides
       that the terminal is unsuitable (hardcopy or generic),  it
       discards  this information, making it not available to ap-

       If setupterm is called repeatedly for  the  same  terminal
       type,  it  will  reuse the information.  It maintains only
       one copy of a given terminal's capabilities in memory.  If
       it is called for different terminal types, setupterm allo-
       cates new storage for each set of terminal capabilities.

       The set_curterm routine sets cur_term to nterm, and  makes
       all of the terminfo boolean, numeric, and string variables
       use the values from nterm.  It returns the  old  value  of

       The  del_curterm  routine  frees  the  space pointed to by
       oterm and makes it available for further use.  If oterm is
       the  same  as  cur_term, references to any of the terminfo
       boolean, numeric, and string variables thereafter may  re-
       fer  to  invalid  memory locations until another setupterm
       has been called.

       The  restartterm  routine  is  similar  to  setupterm  and
       initscr,  except  that it is called after restoring memory
       to a previous state (for example, when  reloading  a  game
       saved as a core image dump).  restartterm assumes that the
       windows and the input and output options are the  same  as
       when memory was saved, but the terminal type and baud rate
       may be different.  Accordingly, restartterm saves  various
       tty  state  bits,  calls  setupterm, and then restores the

Formatting Output

       The tparm routine instantiates the string str with parame-
       ters  pi.  A pointer is returned to the result of str with
       the parameters applied.

       tiparm is a newer form  of  tparm  which  uses  <stdarg.h>
       rather  than  a fixed-parameter list.  Its numeric parame-
       ters are integers (int) rather than longs.

Output Functions

       The tputs  routine  applies  padding  information  to  the
       string  str  and  outputs  it.  The str must be a terminfo
       string variable or the return value from  tparm,  tgetstr,
       or tgoto.  affcnt is the number of lines affected, or 1 if
       not applicable.  putc is a putchar-like routine  to  which
       the characters are passed, one at a time.

       The  putp routine calls tputs(str, 1, putchar).  Note that
       the output of putp always  goes  to  stdout,  not  to  the
       fildes specified in setupterm.

       The vidputs routine displays the string on the terminal in
       the video attribute mode attrs, which is  any  combination
       of  the  attributes  listed in curses(3x).  The characters
       are passed to the putchar-like routine putc.

       The vidattr routine is like the  vidputs  routine,  except
       that it outputs through putchar.

       The  vid_attr  and vid_puts routines correspond to vidattr
       and vidputs, respectively.  They use a  set  of  arguments
       for  representing  the  video attributes plus color, i.e.,
       one of type attr_t for the attributes and one of short for
       the color_pair number.  The vid_attr and vid_puts routines
       are designed to use the attribute constants with  the  WA_
       prefix.   The  opts  argument  is reserved for future use.
       Currently, applications must provide a  null  pointer  for
       that argument.

       The  mvcur  routine  provides low-level cursor motion.  It
       takes effect immediately (rather  than  at  the  next  re-

Terminal Capability Functions

       The  tigetflag,  tigetnum and tigetstr routines return the
       value of the capability corresponding to the terminfo cap-
       name  passed  to them, such as xenl.  The capname for each
       capability is given in the table column  entitled  capname
       code in the capabilities section of terminfo(5).

       These routines return special values to denote errors.

       The tigetflag routine returns

       -1     if capname is not a boolean capability, or

       0      if  it  is canceled or absent from the terminal de-

       The tigetnum routine returns

       -2     if capname is not a numeric capability, or

       -1     if it is canceled or absent from the  terminal  de-

       The tigetstr routine returns

       (char *)-1
              if capname is not a string capability, or

       0      if  it  is canceled or absent from the terminal de-

Terminal Capability Names

       These null-terminated arrays contain  the  short  terminfo
       names  ("codes"), the termcap names, and the long terminfo
       names ("fnames") for each of the predefined terminfo vari-
              char *boolnames[], *boolcodes[], *boolfnames[]

              char *numnames[], *numcodes[], *numfnames[]

              char *strnames[], *strcodes[], *strfnames[]


       Routines  that  return  an integer return ERR upon failure
       and OK (SVr4 only specifies "an integer value  other  than
       ERR")  upon  successful completion, unless otherwise noted
       in the preceding routine descriptions.

       Routines that return pointers always return NULL on error.

       X/Open defines no error conditions.  In  this  implementa-

                 returns  an  error  if its terminal parameter is

            putp calls tputs, returning the same error-codes.

                 returns an error if the associated call  to  se-
                 tupterm returns an error.

                 returns  an  error  if it cannot allocate enough
                 memory, or create the initial  windows  (stdscr,
                 curscr,  newscr).   Other  error  conditions are
                 documented above.

                 returns an error  if  the  string  parameter  is
                 null.   It  does  not  detect I/O errors: X/Open
                 states that tputs ignores the  return  value  of
                 the output function putc.


       X/Open notes that vidattr and vidputs may be macros.

       The  function  setterm is not described by X/Open and must
       be considered non-portable.  All other  functions  are  as
       described by X/Open.

       setupterm  copies  the terminal name to the array ttytype.
       This is not part of X/Open Curses, but is assumed by  some

       If  configured  to  use the terminal-driver, e.g., for the
       MinGW port,

       o   setupterm interprets a missing/empty TERM variable  as
           the special value "unknown".

       o   setupterm  allows explicit use of the the windows con-
           sole driver by checking if $TERM is set to "#win32con"
           or an abbreviation of that string.

       Older versions of ncurses assumed that the file descriptor
       passed to setupterm from initscr or newterm uses  buffered
       I/O,  and would write to the corresponding stream.  In ad-
       dition to the limitation that the  terminal  was  left  in
       block-buffered  mode on exit (like SystemV curses), it was
       problematic because ncurses did not allow a  reliable  way
       to cleanup on receiving SIGTSTP.  The current version uses
       output buffers managed directly by ncurses.  Some  of  the
       low-level functions described in this manual page write to
       the standard output.  They are not signal-safe.  The high-
       level functions in ncurses use alternate versions of these
       functions using the more reliable buffering scheme.

       In System V Release 4, set_curterm has an int return  type
       and  returns  OK  or ERR.  We have chosen to implement the
       X/Open Curses semantics.

       In System V Release 4, the third argument of tputs has the
       type int (*putc)(char).

       At least one implementation of X/Open Curses (Solaris) re-
       turns a value other than OK/ERR from tputs.  That  returns
       the length of the string, and does no error-checking.

       X/Open  Curses prototypes tparm with a fixed number of pa-
       rameters, rather than a variable argument list.  This  im-
       plementation  uses  a  variable  argument list, but can be
       configured to use the fixed-parameter list.  Portable  ap-
       plications  should  provide 9 parameters after the format;
       zeroes are fine for this purpose.

       In response to comments by Thomas E. Dickey, X/Open Curses
       Issue 7 proposed the tiparm function in mid-2009.

       X/Open  notes  that  after calling mvcur, the curses state
       may not match the actual terminal state, and that  an  ap-
       plication  should  touch and refresh the window before re-
       suming normal curses calls.  Both ncurses and System V Re-
       lease 4 curses implement mvcur using the SCREEN data allo-
       cated in either initscr or newterm.  So though it is docu-
       mented  as  a  terminfo function, mvcur is really a curses
       function which is not well specified.

       X/Open states that the old  location  must  be  given  for
       mvcur.   This implementation allows the caller to use -1's
       for the old ordinates.  In that case, the old location  is

       Other  implementions  may  not declare the capability name
       arrays.  Some provide them without declaring them.  X/Open
       does not specify them.

       Extended  terminal  capability  names, e.g., as defined by
       tic -x, are not stored in the arrays described here.


       curses(3x), curs_initscr(3x), curs_kernel(3x),  curs_term-
       cap(3x),  curs_variables(3x), term_variables(3x), putc(3),