tgetent, tgetflag, tgetnum, tgetstr, tgoto, tputs - direct curses interface to the ter-
minfo capability database
int tgetent(char *bp, const char *name);
int tgetflag(char *id);
int tgetnum(char *id);
char *tgetstr(char *id, char **area);
char *tgoto(const char *cap, int col, int row);
int tputs(const char *str, int affcnt, int (*putc)(int));
These routines are included as a conversion aid for programs that use the termcap library.
Their parameters are the same and the routines are emulated using the terminfo database.
Thus, they can only be used to query the capabilities of entries for which a terminfo
entry has been compiled.
The tgetent routine loads the entry for name. It returns 1 on success, 0 if there is no
such entry, and -1 if the terminfo database could not be found. The emulation ignores the
buffer pointer bp.
The tgetflag routine gets the boolean entry for id, or zero if it is not available.
The tgetnum routine gets the numeric entry for id, or -1 if it is not available.
The tgetstr routine returns the string entry for id, or zero if it is not available. Use
tputs to output the returned string. The return value will also be copied to the buffer
pointed to by area, and the area value will be updated to point past the null ending this
Only the first two characters of the id parameter of tgetflag, tgetnum and tgetstr are
compared in lookups.
The tgoto routine instantiates the parameters into the given capability. The output from
this routine is to be passed to tputs.
The tputs routine is described on the curs_terminfo(3X) manual page. It can retrieve
capabilities by either termcap or terminfo name.
Except where explicitly noted, routines that return an integer return ERR upon failure and
OK (SVr4 only specifies "an integer value other than ERR") upon successful completion.
Routines that return pointers return NULL on error.
If you call tgetstr to fetch ca or any other parameterized string, be aware that it will
be returned in terminfo notation, not the older and not-quite-compatible termcap notation.
This won't cause problems if all you do with it is call tgoto or tparm, which both expand
terminfo-style strings as terminfo. (The tgoto function, if configured to support term-
cap, will check if the string is indeed terminfo-style by looking for "%p" parameters or
"$<..>" delays, and invoke a termcap-style parser if the string does not appear to be ter-
Because terminfo conventions for representing padding in string capabilities differ from
termcap's, tputs("50"); will put out a literal "50" rather than busy-waiting for 50 mil-
liseconds. Cope with it.
The XSI Curses standard, Issue 4 describes these functions. However, they are marked TO
BE WITHDRAWN and may be removed in future versions.
Neither the XSI Curses standard nor the SVr4 man pages documented the return values of
tgetent correctly, though all three were in fact returned ever since SVr1. In particular,
an omission in the XSI Curses documentation has been misinterpreted to mean that tgetent
returns OK or ERR. Because the purpose of these functions is to provide compatibility
with the termcap library, that is a defect in XCurses, Issue 4, Version 2 rather than in
curses(3X), terminfo(5), putc(3S).