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menu(3) Library Functions Manual menu(3)

menu - curses extension for programming menus

#include <menu.h>

The menu library provides terminal-independent facilities for composing menu systems on character-cell terminals. The library includes: item routines, which create and modify menu items; and menu routines, which group items into menus, display menus on the screen, and handle interaction with the user.

The menu library uses the curses libraries, and a curses initialization routine such as initscr must be called before using any of these functions. To use the menu library, link with the options -lmenu -lcurses.

The menu library maintains a default value for item attributes. You can get or set this default by calling the appropriate get_ or set_ routine with a NULL item pointer. Changing this default with a set_ function affects future item creations, but does not change the rendering of items already created.

The following table lists each menu routine and the name of the manual page on which it is described.

curses Routine Name Manual Page Name
current_item mitem_current(3)
free_item mitem_new(3)
free_menu menu_new(3)
item_count menu_items(3)
item_description mitem_name(3)
item_index mitem_current(3)
item_init menu_hook(3)
item_name mitem_name(3)
item_opts mitem_opts(3)
item_opts_off mitem_opts(3)
item_opts_on mitem_opts(3)
item_term menu_hook(3)
item_userptr mitem_userptr(3)
item_value mitem_value(3)
item_visible mitem_visible(3)
menu_back menu_attributes(3)
menu_driver menu_driver(3)
menu_fore menu_attributes(3)
menu_format menu_format(3)
menu_grey menu_attributes(3)
menu_init menu_hook(3)
menu_items menu_items(3)
menu_mark menu_mark(3)
menu_opts menu_opts(3)
menu_opts_off menu_opts(3)
menu_opts_on menu_opts(3)
menu_pad menu_attributes(3)
menu_pattern menu_pattern(3)
menu_request_by_name menu_requestname(3)
menu_request_name menu_requestname(3)
menu_spacing menu_spacing(3)
menu_sub menu_win(3)
menu_term menu_hook(3)
menu_userptr menu_userptr(3)
menu_win menu_win(3)
new_item mitem_new(3)
new_menu menu_new(3)
pos_menu_cursor menu_cursor(3)
post_menu menu_post(3)
scale_menu menu_win(3)
set_current_item mitem_current(3)
set_item_init menu_hook(3)
set_item_opts mitem_opts(3)
set_item_term menu_hook(3)
set_item_userptr mitem_userptr(3)
set_item_value mitem_value(3)
set_menu_back menu_attributes(3)
set_menu_fore menu_attributes(3)
set_menu_format menu_format(3)
set_menu_grey menu_attributes(3)
set_menu_init menu_hook(3)
set_menu_items menu_items(3)
set_menu_mark menu_mark(3)
set_menu_opts mitem_opts(3)
set_menu_pad menu_attributes(3)
set_menu_pattern menu_pattern(3)
set_menu_spacing menu_spacing(3)
set_menu_sub menu_win(3)
set_menu_term menu_hook(3)
set_menu_userptr menu_userptr(3)
set_menu_win menu_win(3)
set_top_row mitem_current(3)
top_row mitem_current(3)
unpost_menu menu_post(3)

Routines that return pointers return NULL on error. Routines that return an integer return one of the following error codes:

The routine succeeded.
Routine detected an incorrect or out-of-range argument.
Routine was called from an initialization or termination function.
Character failed to match.
Menu is too large for its window.
No items are connected to the menu.
The menu has not been posted.
The designated item cannot be selected.
The menu is already posted.
The menu driver could not process the request.
System error occurred (see errno).
The menu driver code saw an unknown request code.


curses(3) and related pages whose names begin "menu_" for detailed descriptions of the entry points.

The header file <menu.h> automatically includes the header files <curses.h> and <eti.h>.

In your library list, libmenu.a should be before libncurses.a; that is, you want to say `-lmenu -lncurses', not the other way around (which would usually give a link-error).

These routines emulate the System V menu library. They were not supported on Version 7 or BSD versions.

Juergen Pfeifer. Manual pages and adaptation for ncurses by Eric S. Raymond.


This describes ncurses version 5.7.