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dialog - display dialog boxes from shell scripts


See Also


dialog --clear
"dialog --create-rc "file
dialog [ "--title "title ] [ --clear ] [ "--hline "line ] [ "--hfile "file ] box-options


Dialog is a program which allows you to present a variety of questions or display messages in dialog box form from a shell script. The following types of dialog objects are currently supported:

yes/no" box,"" menu"" box,"" input"" box," message" box,"" text"" box,"" info"" box," checklist" box,"" program"" box," ftree" and "tree" boxes."


--clear The screen will be cleared to the "screen attribute"" on exit."
--create-rc" file"
"Since "dialog" supports run-time configuration," this can be used to dump a sample configuration file to the file specified by file"."
--title" title"
Specifies a title string to be displayed at the top of the dialog box.
--hline" line"
Specifies a line string to be displayed at the bottom of the dialog box.
--hfile" file"
Specifies a file to be displayed by pressing ? or F1.
Box Options
--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 the appropriate points. The text string may 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."
--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.
--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"
"An "input" box is useful when you want to ask questions that" require the user to input a string as the answer. When inputing the string, the BACKSPACE key can be used to correct typing errors. If the input string is longer than can be fitted in the dialog box, the input field will be scrolled. On exit, the input string will be printed on stderr"."
--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.
"--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. 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"."
--prgbox" command height width"
A" program"" box lets you display output of command in" dialog box.
"--checklist text height width list-height [ tag item status ] ..." "A "checklist" box is similar to a "menu" box in that 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"."
"--ftree file FS text height width menu-height" ftree box is a dialog box showing the tree described by the data from the file file"." The data in the file should look like find(1) output. For the find output, the field separator FS will be '/'". If" height" and" width" are" positive numbers, they set the absolute size of the whole ftree" box. If" height" and" width" are negative numbers, the size of the" ftree box will be selected automatically. menu-height sets the height of the tree subwindow inside the ftree box and must be set. text is shown inside the ftree box above the tree subwindow and can contain newline characters ’\n' to split lines. One can navigate in the tree by pressing UP/DOWN" or "'+'/'-'", "PG_UP/PG_DOWN" or "'b'/SPACE "and "HOME/END" or "'g'/'G'"." A leaf of the tree is selected by pressing TAB" or "LEFT/RIGHT the OK button and pressing ENTER"." The selected leaf (to be more exact, the full path to it from the root of the tree) is printed to stderr"." If Cancel and then ENTER is pressed, nothing is printed to stderr"." file may contain data like find(1) output, as well as like the output of find(1) with -d option. Some of the transient paths to the leaves of the tree may be absent. Such data is corrected when fed from file.
"--tree FS text height width menu-height [ item ] ..." tree box is like ftree box with some exceptions. First, the data is not entered from a file, but from the command line as item item ... Second, the data thus entered is not corrected in any way. Thus, the data like the output of find(1) with -d option will look incorrectly.


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) can’t be found, use the file $HOME/.dialogrc as the configuration file.
c) if the file in (b) can’t be 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.


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


$HOME/.dialogrc default configuration file


Exit status is 0 if dialog" is exited by pressing the "Yes" or "OK button, and 1 if the No" or "Cancel button is pressed. Otherwise, if errors occur inside dialog or dialog is exited by pressing the ESC key, the exit status is -1.





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