pmmessage(1) — Linux manual page


PMQUERY(1)                 General Commands Manual                PMQUERY(1)

NAME         top

       pmconfirm, pmmessage, pmquery - general purpose dialog box

SYNOPSIS         top

       pmconfirm [-c] [-b button-name] [-B default-button-name] [-t string]
       [-file filename] [-icon icontype] [-font font] [-header titlebar-
       string] [-useslider] [-noslider] [-noframe] [-exclusive]

       pmmessage [-buttons label1[:value1][,label2[:value2][,...]]]
       [-center] [-nearmouse] [-default button] [-file filename] [-print]
       [-timeout sec] message...

       pmquery [-input] [all above options...]  [message...]

DESCRIPTION         top

       pmquery provides a command-line-option compatible implementation of
       the xconfirm and xmessage tools, using a look-and-feel that is
       consistent with pmchart.  Several extensions to the functionality of
       the original tools have been made, in order to improve their specific
       utility for pmchart, but wherever possible the original semantics

       pmconfirm displays a line of text for each -t option specified (or a
       file when the -file option is used), and a button for each -b option
       specified.  When one of the buttons is pressed, the label of that
       button is written to pmquery's standard output.  This provides a
       means of communication/feedback from within shell scripts and a means
       to display useful information to a user from an application.

       pmmessage displays a window containing a message from the command
       line, a file, or standard input.  It additionally allows buttons to
       be associated with an exit status, and only optionally will write the
       label of the button to standard output.

       pmquery extends the above tools to additionally support limited user
       input, as free form text.  In this -input mode, any text entered will
       be output when the default button is pressed.  A default text can be
       entered using the same mechanisms as the other tools.

       Command line options are available to specify font style, frame
       style, modality and one of several different icons to be presented
       for tailored visual feedback to the user.

OPTIONS         top

       The available command line options are:

       -c, -center
            Center the window on the display.

            Pop up the window near the mouse cursor.

       -b button-name
            Displays a button with the label button-name.  If button-name is
            the empty string, the button in that position is not displayed.
            If no -b options are present, the default is a button with the
            label Continue.  The exit status associated with button-name is

       -B button-name
            Displays a button with the label button-name and specifies it as
            the button to be activated when enter is pressed.  The exit
            status associated with button-name is zero.

       -buttons button,button,...
            This option will create one button for each comma-separated
            button option.  Each button consists of a label optionally
            followed by a colon and an exit value.  The exit value will be
            returned if that button is selected.  The default exit value is
            100 plus the button number.  Buttons are numbered from the left
            starting with one.

       -default label
            Defines the button with a matching label to be the default.  If
            not specified there is no default.  The corresponding resource
            is defaultButton.  Pressing Return anywhere in the xmessage
            window will activate the default button.  The default button has
            a wider border than the others.

       -t message
            Displays message.  Any number of strings can be listed on the
            command line (each must be preceded with the -t option).

       -file filename
            Displays the file filename.  All -t options will be ignored.  A
            filename of `-' reads from standard input.

       -icon icontype
            Displays the icon icontype where icontype is one of: info,
            error, question, warning, critical.  action is also accepted as
            a synonym for error for backward compatibility.  pmquery
            introduces the additional archive and host icon types as well as
            the original xconfirm types listed earlier.

       -font fontname
            Use fontname as the font.  This option is only available when
            using the X Window System.

       -header string
            Use string as the window title.

            This causes the program to write the label of the button pressed
            to standard output.  It is the default behaviour for pmconfirm
            and pmquery.

            This causes the program to not write the label of the button
            pressed to standard output.  It is the default behaviour for

       -geometry geometry-string
            This provides the tool with an X-compatible geometry string
            specification.  This option is only available when using the X
            Window System.

            When displaying a file, always use a slider instead of
            determining automatically whether a slider is necessary.

            Do not create a slider, and clip text to the window size,
            instead of determining automatically whether a slider is

            Do not display a frame around the contents.

            Grab the keyboard/pointer and do not allow further input until a
            button is pressed.

       -timeout secs
            Exit with status 0 after secs seconds if the user has not
            clicked on a button yet.  The corresponding resource is timeout.

       -?, -h, -help
            Display usage message and exit.

EXAMPLES         top

       The following shell script will display a window with an information
       icon, asking the user a yes or no question with "Yes" as the default.

        #! /bin/sh
        case `pmquery -t "Really power down?" -b No -B Yes -icon question
          Yes) shutdown;;
          No) ;;

       A second example, which prompts for a hostname then starts a terminal
       with an ssh session connected to the requested host.

        #! /bin/sh
        host=`pmquery -input -icon host -b Cancel -B OK \
                      -header "Remote Terminal - Secure Shell"
        [ "$host" = "Cancel" -o -z "$host" ] && exit
        gnome-terminal -e "ssh $host"

ENVIRONMENT         top

       pmquery is an excellent choice of utility for the PCP_XCONFIRM_PROG
       Performance Co-Pilot configuration parameter (refer to pcp.conf(5)
       for details).

       Note that PCP_XCONFIRM_PROG will be automatically set to pmquery
       inside tools like pmchart, unless PCP_XCONFIRM_PROG is already set in
       the environment.

EXIT STATUS         top

       If it detects an error, pmquery always returns 1, so this value
       should not be associated with a button.  Unless -button option has
       not been used, the return code will be zero on success.

SEE ALSO         top

       pmchart(1) and pcp.conf(5).

COLOPHON         top

       This page is part of the PCP (Performance Co-Pilot) project.
       Information about the project can be found at ⟨⟩.
       If you have a bug report for this manual page, send it to  This page was obtained from the project's upstream
       Git repository ⟨⟩ on
       2020-08-13.  (At that time, the date of the most recent commit that
       was found in the repository was 2020-08-11.)  If you discover any
       rendering problems in this HTML version of the page, or you believe
       there is a better or more up-to-date source for the page, or you have
       corrections or improvements to the information in this COLOPHON
       (which is not part of the original manual page), send a mail to

Performance Co-Pilot                                              PMQUERY(1)