Provided by: ncurses-bin_6.2-0ubuntu2.1_amd64 bug


       tic - the terminfo entry-description compiler


       tic [-01CDGIKLNTUVWacfgqrstx] [-e names] [-o dir] [-Q[n]] [-R subset] [-v[n]] [-w[n]] file


       The  tic  command translates a terminfo file from source format into compiled format.  The
       compiled format is necessary for use with the library routines in ncurses(3NCURSES).

       As described in term(5), the database may  be  either  a  directory  tree  (one  file  per
       terminal  entry) or a hashed database (one record per entry).  The tic command writes only
       one type of entry, depending on how it was built:

       •   For directory trees, the top-level directory, e.g., /usr/share/terminfo, specifies the
           location of the database.

       •   For  hashed  databases,  a filename is needed.  If the given file is not found by that
           name, but can be found by adding the suffix ".db", then that is used.

           The default name for the hashed database is the same as  the  default  directory  name
           (only adding a ".db" suffix).

       In  either  case  (directory or hashed database), tic will create the container if it does
       not exist.  For a directory, this would be the “terminfo”  leaf,  versus  a  "terminfo.db"

       The  results  are  normally  placed  in  the  system terminfo database /etc/terminfo.  The
       compiled terminal description can be placed in a different terminfo database.   There  are
       two ways to achieve this:

       •   First,  you  may  override  the  system  default  either by using the -o option, or by
           setting the variable TERMINFO in your shell environment to a valid database location.

       •   Secondly, if tic cannot write in /etc/terminfo or the location  specified  using  your
           TERMINFO  variable,  it  looks  for  the directory $HOME/.terminfo (or hashed database
           $HOME/.terminfo.db); if that location exists, the entry is placed there.

       Libraries that read terminfo entries are expected to check in succession

       •   a location specified with the TERMINFO environment variable,

       •   $HOME/.terminfo,

       •   directories listed in the TERMINFO_DIRS environment variable,

       •   a compiled-in list of directories (no default value), and

       •   the system terminfo database (/etc/terminfo).

       This is the same program as infotocap and captoinfo;  usually  those  are  linked  to,  or
       copied from this program:

       •   When invoked as infotocap, tic sets the -I option.

       •   When invoked as captoinfo, tic sets the -C option.

       -0     restricts the output to a single line

       -1     restricts the output to a single column

       -a     tells  tic  to  retain  commented-out  capabilities  rather  than  discarding them.
              Capabilities are commented by prefixing them with  a  period.   This  sets  the  -x
              option,  because it treats the commented-out entries as user-defined names.  If the
              source is termcap, accept the 2-character names required by version  6.   Otherwise
              these are ignored.

       -C     Force  source translation to termcap format.  Note: this differs from the -C option
              of infocmp(1) in that it does not  merely  translate  capability  names,  but  also
              translates   terminfo  strings  to  termcap  format.   Capabilities  that  are  not
              translatable are left in the entry under their terminfo  names  but  commented  out
              with two preceding dots.  The actual format used incorporates some improvements for
              escaped  characters  from  terminfo  format.    For   a   stricter   BSD-compatible
              translation, add the -K option.

              If  this is combined with -c, tic makes additional checks to report cases where the
              terminfo values do not have an exact equivalent in termcap form.  For example:

              •   sgr usually will not convert, because termcap lacks the ability  to  work  with
                  more   than   two   parameters,   and   because   termcap  lacks  many  of  the
                  arithmetic/logical operators used in terminfo.

              •   capabilities with more than one delay or with delays  before  the  end  of  the
                  string will not convert completely.

       -c     tells  tic  to  only  check file for errors, including syntax problems and bad use-
              links.  If you specify -C (-I) with this option, the code will print warnings about
              entries  which, after use resolution, are more than 1023 (4096) bytes long.  Due to
              a fixed buffer length in older termcap libraries, as well as buggy checking for the
              buffer  length  (and  a documented limit in terminfo), these entries may cause core
              dumps with other implementations.

              tic checks string capabilities to ensure that those with parameters will  be  valid
              expressions.  It does this check only for the predefined string capabilities; those
              which are defined with the -x option are ignored.

       -D     tells tic to print the database locations that it knows about, and exit.  The first
              location  shown  is the one to which it would write compiled terminal descriptions.
              If tic is not able to find a writable database  location  according  to  the  rules
              summarized  above,  it  will  print a diagnostic and exit with an error rather than
              printing a list of database locations.

       -e names
              Limit writes and translations to the following comma-separated list  of  terminals.
              If  any name or alias of a terminal matches one of the names in the list, the entry
              will be written or translated as normal.  Otherwise no output will be generated for
              it.  The option value is interpreted as a file containing the list if it contains a
              '/'.  (Note: depending on how tic was compiled, this option may require -I or -C.)

       -f     Display complex  terminfo  strings  which  contain  if/then/else/endif  expressions
              indented for readability.

       -G     Display constant literals in decimal form rather than their character equivalents.

       -g     Display  constant  character  literals  in  quoted  form  rather than their decimal

       -I     Force source translation to terminfo format.

       -K     Suppress some longstanding ncurses extensions to termcap  format,  e.g.,  "\s"  for

       -L     Force  source translation to terminfo format using the long C variable names listed
              in <term.h>

       -N     Disable smart defaults.  Normally, when translating from termcap to  terminfo,  the
              compiler  makes  a  number of assumptions about the defaults of string capabilities
              reset1_string,  carriage_return,  cursor_left,  cursor_down,  scroll_forward,  tab,
              newline,  key_backspace,  key_left,  and  key_down,  then  attempts to use obsolete
              termcap capabilities to deduce correct values.  It also normally suppresses  output
              of  obsolete  termcap  capabilities  such as bs.  This option forces a more literal
              translation that also preserves the obsolete capabilities.

       -odir  Write  compiled  entries  to  given  database  location.   Overrides  the  TERMINFO
              environment variable.

       -Qn    Rather  than  show  source  in  terminfo (text) format, print the compiled (binary)
              format in hexadecimal or base64 form, depending on the option's value:

               1  hexadecimal

               2  base64

               3  hexadecimal and base64

       -q     Suppress comments and blank lines when showing translated source.

              Restrict output to a given subset.  This option is for use with archaic versions of
              terminfo  like  those on SVr1, Ultrix, or HP/UX that do not support the full set of
              SVR4/XSI Curses terminfo; and outright broken ports like AIX 3.x  that  have  their
              own extensions incompatible with SVr4/XSI.  Available subsets are “SVr1”, “Ultrix”,
              “HP”, “BSD” and “AIX”; see terminfo(5) for details.

       -r     Force entry resolution (so there are no remaining tc capabilities) even when  doing
              translation  to  termcap format.  This may be needed if you are preparing a termcap
              file for a termcap library (such as GNU termcap through version 1.3 or BSD  termcap
              through 4.3BSD) that does not handle multiple tc capabilities per entry.

       -s     Summarize  the  compile  by  showing  the  database location into which entries are
              written, and the number of entries which are compiled.

       -T     eliminates size-restrictions on the generated text.   This  is  mainly  useful  for
              testing  and  analysis, since the compiled descriptions are limited (e.g., 1023 for
              termcap, 4096 for terminfo).

       -t     tells tic to discard commented-out capabilities.  Normally  when  translating  from
              terminfo to termcap, untranslatable capabilities are commented-out.

       -U   tells  tic  to not post-process the data after parsing the source file.  Normally, it
            infers data which is commonly missing in older terminfo data, or in termcaps.

       -V   reports the version of ncurses which was used in this program, and exits.

       -vn  specifies that (verbose) output  be  written  to  standard  error  trace  information
            showing tic's progress.

            The  optional parameter n is a number from 1 to 10, inclusive, indicating the desired
            level of detail of information.  If ncurses is built  without  tracing  support,  the
            optional  parameter  is  ignored.   If n is omitted, the default level is 1.  If n is
            specified and greater than 1, the level of detail is increased.

            The debug flag levels are as follows:

            1      Names of files created and linked

            2      Information related to the “use” facility

            3      Statistics from the hashing algorithm

            5      String-table memory allocations

            7      Entries into the string-table

            8      List of tokens encountered by scanner

            9      All values computed in construction of the hash table

            If the debug level n is not given, it is taken to be one.

       -W   By itself, the -w option will not force long strings  to  be  wrapped.   Use  the  -W
            option to do this.

            If  you  specify  both  -f  and -W options, the latter is ignored when -f has already
            split the line.

       -wn  specifies the width of the output.  The parameter is optional.  If it is omitted,  it
            defaults to 60.

       -x   Treat  unknown  capabilities  as  user-defined  (see  user_caps(5)).  That is, if you
            supply a capability name which tic  does  not  recognize,  it  will  infer  its  type
            (boolean,  number  or  string)  from  the syntax and make an extended table entry for
            that.  User-defined capability strings whose name begins  with  “k”  are  treated  as
            function keys.

       file   contains  one  or  more  terminfo  terminal  descriptions  in  source  format  [see
              terminfo(5)].  Each description  in  the  file  describes  the  capabilities  of  a
              particular terminal.

              If  file is “-”, then the data is read from the standard input.  The file parameter
              may also be the path of a character-device.

       All but one of the capabilities recognized by tic  are  documented  in  terminfo(5).   The
       exception is the use capability.

       When  a  use=entry-name  field is discovered in a terminal entry currently being compiled,
       tic reads in the binary from /etc/terminfo to complete the entry.  (Entries  created  from
       file  will  be  used first.  tic duplicates the capabilities in entry-name for the current
       entry, with the exception of those capabilities that explicitly are defined in the current

       When  an  entry,  e.g.,  entry_name_1,  contains  a  use=entry_name_2  field, any canceled
       capabilities in entry_name_2 must also  appear  in  entry_name_1  before  use=  for  these
       capabilities to be canceled in entry_name_1.

       Total  compiled entries cannot exceed 4096 bytes.  The name field cannot exceed 512 bytes.
       Terminal names exceeding the maximum alias length (32  characters  on  systems  with  long
       filenames,  14  characters  otherwise) will be truncated to the maximum alias length and a
       warning message will be printed.


       System V Release 2 provided a tic utility.  It accepted a single  option:  -v  (optionally
       followed  by a number).  According to Ross Ridge's comment in mytinfo, this version of tic
       was unable to represent cancelled capabilities.

       System V Release 3 provided a different tic utility, written by Pavel Curtis,  (originally
       named  “compile”  in pcurses).  This added an option -c to check the file for errors, with
       the caveat that errors in “use=”  links  would  not  be  reported.   System  V  Release  3
       documented  a  few  warning  messages  which did not appear in pcurses.  While the program
       itself was changed little as development continued with System V Release 4, the  table  of
       capabilities grew from 180 (pcurses) to 464 (Solaris).

       In  early  development  of  ncurses  (1993), Zeyd Ben-Halim used the table from mytinfo to
       extend the pcurses table to 469 capabilities (456 matched SVr4, 8 were only  in  SVr4,  13
       were  not in SVr4).  Of those 13, 11 were ultimately discarded (perhaps to match the draft
       of  X/Open  Curses).   The  exceptions  were  memory_lock_above  and  memory_unlock   (see

       Eric  Raymond  incorporated  parts  of  mytinfo  into ncurses to implement the termcap-to-
       terminfo source conversion, and extended that to begin development  of  the  corresponding
       terminfo-to-termcap  source  conversion, Thomas Dickey completed that development over the
       course of several years.

       In 1999, Thomas Dickey added the -x option to support user-defined capabilities.

       In 2010, Roy Marples provided a  tic  program  and  terminfo  library  for  NetBSD.   That
       implementation adapts several features from ncurses, including tic's -x option.

       The  -c  option  tells  tic  to check for problems in the terminfo source file.  Continued
       development provides additional checks:

       •   pcurses had 8 warnings

       •   ncurses in 1996 had 16 warnings

       •   Solaris (SVr4) curses has 28 warnings

       •   NetBSD tic in 2019 has 19 warnings.

       •   ncurses in 2019 has 96 warnings

       The checking done in ncurses' tic helps  with  the  conversion  to  termcap,  as  well  as
       pointing  out  errors and inconsistencies.  It is also used to ensure consistency with the
       user-defined capabilities.  There are  527  distinct  capabilities  in  ncurses'  terminal
       database; 128 of those are user-defined.


       X/Open  Curses,  Issue 7 (2009) provides a brief description of tic.  It lists one option:
       -c.  The omission of -v is unexpected.  The change history states that the description  is
       derived  from  True64 UNIX.  According to its manual pages, that system also supported the
       -v option.

       Shortly after Issue 7 was released, Tru64 was discontinued.  As  of  2019,  the  surviving
       implementations  of tic are SVr4 (AIX, HP-UX and Solaris), ncurses and NetBSD curses.  The
       SVr4 tic programs all support the -v option.  The  NetBSD  tic  program  follows  X/Open's
       documentation, omitting the -v option.

       The  X/Open  rationale  states that some implementations of tic read terminal descriptions
       from the standard input if the file parameter is omitted.  None of  these  implementations
       do that.  Further, it comments that some may choose to read from ”./terminfo.src” but that
       is obsolescent behavior from SVr2, and is not (for example) a documented feature of SVr3.

       There is some evidence that historic tic implementations treated description  fields  with
       no  whitespace  in  them as additional aliases or short names.  This tic does not do that,
       but it does warn when description fields may be  treated  that  way  and  check  them  for
       dangerous characters.

       Unlike the SVr4 tic command, this implementation can actually compile termcap sources.  In
       fact, entries in terminfo and termcap syntax can be mixed in a single  source  file.   See
       terminfo(5) for the list of termcap names taken to be equivalent to terminfo names.

       The  SVr4  manual  pages are not clear on the resolution rules for use capabilities.  This
       implementation of tic will find use targets anywhere in the source file,  or  anywhere  in
       the   file   tree  rooted  at  TERMINFO  (if  TERMINFO  is  defined),  or  in  the  user's
       $HOME/.terminfo database (if it exists), or (finally) anywhere in the system's  file  tree
       of compiled entries.

       The  error messages from this tic have the same format as GNU C error messages, and can be
       parsed by GNU Emacs's compile facility.

       Aside from -c and -v, options are not portable:

       •   Most of tic's options are not supported by SVr4 tic:

           -0 -1 -C -G -I -N -R -T -V -a -e -f -g -o -r -s -t -x

       •   The NetBSD tic  supports a few of the ncurses options

           -a -o -x

           and adds -S (a feature which does the same thing as infocmp's -e and -E options).

       The SVr4 -c mode does not report bad “use=” links.

       System V does not compile entries to or read entries from  your  $HOME/.terminfo  database
       unless TERMINFO is explicitly set to it.


            Compiled terminal description database.


       infocmp(1),  captoinfo(1), infotocap(1), toe(1), ncurses(3NCURSES), term(5).  terminfo(5).

       This describes ncurses version 6.2 (patch 20200212).


       Eric S. Raymond <> and
       Thomas E. Dickey <>