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RocketLink!--> Man page versions: OpenBSD FreeBSD NetBSD RedHat Solaris Others

GETOPT(1)                  OpenBSD Reference Manual                  GETOPT(1)

     getopt - parse command options

     set -- `getopt optstring $*`

     getopt is used to break up options in command lines for easy parsing by
     shell procedures, and to check for legal options.  [optstring] is a
     string of recognized option letters (see getopt(3) ); if a letter is fol-
     lowed by a colon, the option is expected to have an argument which may or
     may not be separated from it by white space.  The special option ``--''
     is used to delimit the end of the options.  getopt will place ``--'' in
     the arguments at the end of the options, or recognize it if used explic-
     itly.  The shell arguments ($1 $2 ...) are reset so that each option is
     preceded by a ``-'' and in its own shell argument; each option argument
     is also in its own shell argument.

     The following code fragment shows how one might process the arguments for
     a command that can take the options [a] and [b], and the option [o],
     which requires an argument.

           set -- `getopt abo: $*`
           if test $? != 0
                   echo 'Usage: ...'
                   exit 2
           for i
                   case "$i"
                                   flag=$i; shift;;
                                   oarg=$2; shift; shift;;
                                   shift; break;;

     This code will accept any of the following as equivalent:

           cmd -aoarg file file
           cmd -a -o arg file file
           cmd -oarg -a file file
           cmd -a -oarg -- file file

     sh(1),  getopt(3)

     getopt prints an error message on the standard error output when it en-
     counters an option letter not included in [optstring].

     Written by Henry Spencer, working from a Bell Labs manual page.  Behavior
     believed identical to the Bell version.

     Whatever getopt(3) has.

     Arguments containing white space or embedded shell metacharacters gener-
     ally will not survive intact;  this looks easy to fix but isn't.

     The error message for an invalid option is identified as coming from
     getopt rather than from the shell procedure containing the invocation of
     getopt; this again is hard to fix.

     The precise best way to use the set command to set the arguments without
     disrupting the value(s) of shell options varies from one shell version to

OpenBSD 2.6                      June 21, 1993                               2

Source: OpenBSD 2.6 man pages. Copyright: Portions are copyrighted by BERKELEY
SOFTWARE DESIGN, INC., The Regents of the University of California, Massachusetts
Institute of Technology, Free Software Foundation, FreeBSD Inc., and others.

(Corrections, notes, and links courtesy of RocketAware.com)

[Detailed Topics]
FreeBSD Sources for getopt(1)
OpenBSD sources for getopt(1)

[Overview Topics]

Up to: Command Shells and Scripting Languages

RocketLink!--> Man page versions: OpenBSD FreeBSD NetBSD RedHat Solaris Others

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