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-<HEAD>
-<TITLE>Announcing ncurses 5.0</TITLE>
-<link rev=made href="mailto:bug-ncurses@gnu.org">
-</HEAD>
-<BODY>
-
-<H1>Announcing ncurses 5.0</H1>
-
-The ncurses (new curses) library is a free software emulation of
-curses in System V Release 4.0, and more. It uses terminfo format,
-supports pads and color
-and multiple highlights and forms characters and function-key mapping,
-and has all the other SYSV-curses enhancements over BSD curses.<P>
-
-In mid-June 1995, the maintainer of 4.4BSD curses declared that he
-considered 4.4BSD curses obsolete, and is encouraging the keepers of
-Unix releases such as BSD/OS, freeBSD and netBSD to switch over to
-ncurses.<P>
-
-The ncurses code was developed under GNU/Linux. It should port easily to
-any ANSI/POSIX-conforming UNIX. It has even been ported to OS/2 Warp!<P>
-
-The distribution includes the library and support utilities, including a
-terminfo compiler tic(1), a decompiler infocmp(1), clear(1), tput(1), tset(1),
-and a termcap conversion tool captoinfo(1). Full manual pages are provided for
-the library and tools.<P>
-
-The ncurses distribution is available via anonymous FTP at
-the GNU distribution site
-<A HREF="ftp://ftp.gnu.org/pub/gnu/ncurses">ftp://ftp.gnu.org/pub/gnu/ncurses</A>.
-It is also available at
-<A HREF="ftp://ftp.clark.net/pub/dickey/ncurses">ftp://ftp.clark.net/pub/dickey/ncurses</A>.
-
-<H1>Release Notes</H1>
-
-We decided to release ncurses as a new whole number release (5.0) because it
-incorporates several interface changes, including some that would invalidate
-existing shared libraries. These are the highlights from the change-log
-since ncurses 4.2 release.
-<p>
-Interface changes:
-<ul>
- <li>The principal source of changes to the interface comes from the
- release of X/Open Curses in 1997. Earlier versions of ncurses (4.0
- and before) were based on a draft version of the specification. The
- release version adds parameters to some functions to support the
- evolving internationalization of curses. These summarize the impact:
-<ul>
- <li>modified several prototypes to correspond with 1997 version of
- X/Open Curses (affects ABI since developers have used attr_get).
-
- <li>corrected prototypes for slk_* functions, using chtype rather than
- attr_t.
-
- <li>the slk_attr_{set,off,on} functions need an additional void*
- parameter according to XSI.
-
- <li>correct macros for wattr_set, wattr_get, separate wattrset macro from
- these to preserve behavior that allows attributes to be combined with
- color pair numbers.
-
- <li>reviewed/updated curses.h, term.h against X/Open Curses Issue 4
- Version 2. This includes making some parameters NCURSES_CONST
- rather than const, e.g., in termcap.h.
-
- <li>reviewed/corrected macros in curses.h as per XSI document.
-
- <li>add set_a_attributes and set_pglen_inch to terminfo structure, as per
- XSI and Solaris 2.5.
-</ul>
- <li>The newest version of the X/Open Curses is implemented on Solaris
- and other vendor's systems. It adds new features to the terminfo
- descriptions:
-<ul>
- <li>implement tparm %l format.
-
- <li>implement tparm printf-style width and precision for %s, %d, %x, %o
- as per XSI.
-</ul>
- <li>We made additional changes to reduce impact by future interface
- changes:
-<ul>
- <li>rename key_names[] array to _nc_key_names since it is not part of
- the curses interface.
-
- <li>move macro winch to a function, to hide details of struct ldat
-</ul>
- <li>modify configure script to embed ABI in shared libraries for HP-UX
- 10.x (detailed request by Tim Mooney).
-
- <li>modify configuration of shared libraries on Digital Unix so that
- versioning is embedded in the library, rather than implied by
- links (patch by Tim Mooney).
-</ul>
-New features:
-<ul>
- <li>enable sigwinch handler by default.
-
- <li>turn on hashmap scrolling code by default
-
- <li>improved support for termcap applications
-<ul>
- <li>modify tput to accept termcap names as an alternative to terminfo
- names.
-
- <li>provide support for termcap PC variable by copying it from terminfo
- data and using it as the padding character in tputs.
-
- <li>provide support for termcap ospeed variable by copying it from the
- internal cur_term member, and using ospeed as the baudrate
- reference for the delay_output and tputs functions.
-
- <li>change name-comparisons in lib_termcap to compare no more than 2
- characters.
-
- <li>add configure option --enable-tcap-names, which essentially
- allows users to define new capabilities as in termcap.
-</ul>
- <li>add mouse support to ncurses menus.
-
- <li>add mouse and dll support for OS/2 EMX
-
- <li>modify terminfo parsing to accept octal and hexadecimal constants
-
- <li>add configure option --enable-no-padding, to allow environment
- variable $NCURSES_NO_PADDING to eliminate non-mandatory padding,
- thereby making terminal emulators (e.g., for vt100) a little more
- efficient.
-
- <li>modify lib_color.c to eliminate dependency on orig_colors and
- orig_pair, since SVr4 curses does not require these either, but
- uses them when they are available.
-
- <li>add -f option to infocmp and tic, which formats the terminfo
- if/then/else/endif so that they are readable (with newlines and
- tabs).
-
- <li>modify tic to compile into %'char' form in preference to %{number},
- since that is a little more efficient.
-</ul>
-Major bug fixes:
-<ul>
- <li>modify lib_tstp.c to block SIGTTOU when handling SIGTSTP, fixes a
- problem where ncurses applications which were run via a shell script
- would hang when given a ^Z. Also, check if the terminal's process
- group is consistent, i.e., a shell has not taken ownership of it,
- before deciding to save the current terminal settings in the SIGTSTP
- handler.
-
- <li>suppress sc/rc capabilities from terminal description if they appear
- in smcup/rmcup. This affects only scrolling optimization, to fix a
- problem reported by several people with xterm's alternate screen,
- though the problem is more general.
-
- <li>modify relative_move and tputs to avoid an interaction with the
- BSD-style padding. The relative_move function could produce a string
- to replace on the screen which began with a numeric character, which
- was then interpreted by tputs as padding.
-
- <li>modify setupterm so that cancelled strings are treated the same as
- absent strings, cancelled and absent booleans false (does not affect
- tic, infocmp).
-
- <li>modify lib_vidattr.c to allow for terminal types (e.g., xterm-color)
- which may reset all attributes in the 'op' capability, so that colors
- are set before turning on bold and other attributes, but still after
- turning attributes off.
-
- <li>use 'access()' to check if ncurses library should be permitted to
- open or modify files with fopen/open/link/unlink/remove calls, in
- case the calling application is running in setuid mode.
-
- <li>correction to doupdate, for case where terminal does not support
- insert/delete character. The logic did not check that there was a
- difference in alignment of changes to old/new screens before
- repainting the whole non-blank portion of the line. Modified to fall
- through into logic that reduces by the portion which does not differ.
-</ul>
-
-<H1>Features of Ncurses</H1>
-
-The ncurses package is fully compatible with SVr4 (System V Release 4) curses:
-
-<UL>
-<LI>All 257 of the SVr4 calls have been implemented (and are documented).
-<LI>Full support for SVr4 curses features including keyboard mapping, color,
-forms-drawing with ACS characters, and automatic recognition of keypad
-and function keys.
-<LI>An emulation of the SVr4 panels library, supporting
-a stack of windows with backing store, is included.
-<LI>An emulation of the SVr4 menus library, supporting
-a uniform but flexible interface for menu programming, is included.
-<LI>An emulation of the SVr4 form library, supporting
-data collection through on-screen forms, is included.
-<LI>Binary terminfo entries generated by the ncurses tic(1) implementation
-are bit-for-bit-compatible with the entry format SVr4 curses uses.
-<LI>The utilities have options to allow you to filter terminfo
-entries for use with less capable <STRONG>curses</STRONG>/<STRONG>terminfo</STRONG>
-versions such as the HP/UX and AIX ports.</UL>
-
-The ncurses package also has many useful extensions over SVr4:
-
-<UL>
-<LI>The API is 8-bit clean and base-level conformant with the X/OPEN curses
-specification, XSI curses (that is, it implements all BASE level features,
-but not all EXTENDED features). Most EXTENDED-level features not directly
-concerned with wide-character support are implemented, including many
-function calls not supported under SVr4 curses (but portability of all
-calls is documented so you can use the SVr4 subset only).
-<LI>Unlike SVr3 curses, ncurses can write to the rightmost-bottommost corner
-of the screen if your terminal has an insert-character capability.
-<LI>Ada95 and C++ bindings.
-<LI>Support for mouse event reporting with X Window xterm and OS/2 console windows.
-<LI>Extended mouse support via Alessandro Rubini's gpm package.
-<LI>The function <CODE>wresize()</CODE> allows you to resize windows, preserving
-their data.
-<LI>The function <CODE>use_default_colors()</CODE> allows you to
-use the terminal's default colors for the default color pair,
-achieving the effect of transparent colors.
-<LI>The functions <CODE>keyok()</CODE>
-and <CODE>define_key()</CODE> allow
-you to better control the use of function keys,
-e.g., disabling the ncurses KEY_MOUSE,
-or by defining more than one control sequence to map to a given key code.
-<LI>Support for 16-color terminals, such as aixterm and XFree86 xterm.
-<LI>Better cursor-movement optimization. The package now features a
-cursor-local-movement computation more efficient than either BSD's
-or System V's.
-<LI>Super hardware scrolling support. The screen-update code incorporates
-a novel, simple, and cheap algorithm that enables it to make optimal
-use of hardware scrolling, line-insertion, and line-deletion
-for screen-line movements. This algorithm is more powerful than
-the 4.4BSD curses quickch() routine.
-<LI>Real support for terminals with the magic-cookie glitch. The
-screen-update code will refrain from drawing a highlight if the magic-
-cookie unattributed spaces required just before the beginning and
-after the end would step on a non-space character. It will
-automatically shift highlight boundaries when doing so would make it
-possible to draw the highlight without changing the visual appearance
-of the screen.
-<LI>It is possible to generate the library with a list of pre-loaded
-fallback entries linked to it so that it can serve those terminal types even
-when no terminfo tree or termcap file is accessible (this may be useful
-for support of screen-oriented programs that must run in single-user mode).
-<LI>The tic(1)/captoinfo utility provided with ncurses has the
-ability to translate many termcaps from the XENIX, IBM and
-AT&amp;T extension sets.
-<LI>A BSD-like tset(1) utility is provided.
-<LI>The ncurses library and utilities will automatically read terminfo
-entries from $HOME/.terminfo if it exists, and compile to that directory
-if it exists and the user has no write access to the system directory.
-This feature makes it easier for users to have personal terminfo entries
-without giving up access to the system terminfo directory.
-<LI>You may specify a path of directories to search for compiled
-descriptions with the environment variable TERMINFO_DIRS (this
-generalizes the feature provided by TERMINFO under stock System V.)
-<LI>In terminfo source files, use capabilities may refer not just to
-other entries in the same source file (as in System V) but also to
-compiled entries in either the system terminfo directory or the user's
-$HOME/.terminfo directory.
-<LI>A script (<STRONG>capconvert</STRONG>) is provided to help BSD users
-transition from termcap to terminfo. It gathers the information in a
-TERMCAP environment variable and/or a ~/.termcap local entries file
-and converts it to an equivalent local terminfo tree under $HOME/.terminfo.
-<LI>Automatic fallback to the /etc/termcap file can be compiled in
-when it is not possible to build a terminfo tree. This feature is neither
-fast nor cheap, you don't want to use it unless you have to,
-but it's there.
-<LI>The table-of-entries utility <STRONG>toe</STRONG> makes it easy for users to
-see exactly what terminal types are available on the system.
-<LI>The library meets the XSI requirement that every macro entry
-point have a corresponding function which may be linked (and will be
-prototype-checked) if the macro definition is disabled with
-<CODE>#undef</CODE>.
-<LI>An HTML "Introduction to Programming with NCURSES" document provides
-a narrative introduction to the curses programming interface.
-</UL>
-
-<H1>State of the Package</H1>
-
-Numerous bugs present in earlier versions have been fixed; the
-library is far more reliable than it used to be. Bounds checking in many
-`dangerous' entry points has been improved. The code is now type-safe
-according to gcc -Wall. The library has been checked for malloc leaks and
-arena corruption by the Purify memory-allocation tester.<P>
-
-The ncurses code has been tested with a wide variety of applications
-including (versions starting with those noted):
-<DL>
-<DT> cdk
-<DD> Curses Development Kit
-<A HREF="http://www.vexus.ca/CDK.html">Curses Development Kit</a>
-<A HREF="ftp://ftp.clark.net/pub/dickey/cdk">ftp://ftp.clark.net/pub/dickey/cdk</A>.
-<DT> ded
-<DD> directory-editor
-<A HREF="ftp://ftp.clark.net/pub/dickey/ded">ftp://ftp.clark.net/pub/dickey/ded</A>.
-<DT> dialog
-<DD> the underlying application used in Slackware's setup, and the basis
-for similar applications on GNU/Linux.
-<DT> lynx
-<DD> the character-screen WWW browser
-<DT> Midnight Commander 4.1
-<DD> file manager
-<DT> mutt
-<DD> mail utility
-<DT> ncftp
-<DD> file-transfer utility
-<DT> nvi
-<DD> New vi versions 1.50 are able to use ncurses versions 1.9.7 and later.
-<DT> tin
-<DD> newsreader, supporting color, MIME
-<A HREF="ftp://ftp.akk.uni-karlsruhe.de/pub/news/clients/tin-unoff">ftp://ftp.akk.uni-karlsruhe.de/pub/news/clients/tin-unoff</A>.
-<DT> taper
-<DD> tape archive utility
-<DT> vh-1.6
-<DD> Volks-Hypertext browser for the Jargon File
-</DL>
-as well as some that use ncurses for the terminfo support alone:
-<DL>
-<DT> minicom
-<DD> terminal emulator
-<DT> vile
-<DD> vi-like-emacs
-<A HREF="ftp://ftp.clark.net/pub/dickey/vile">ftp://ftp.clark.net/pub/dickey/vile</A>.
-</DL>
-<P>
-
-The ncurses distribution includes a selection of test programs (including
-a few games).
-
-<H2>Who's Who and What's What</H2>
-
-The original developers of ncurses are <A
-HREF="mailto:zmbenhal@netcom.com">Zeyd Ben-Halim</A> and
-<A HREF="http://www.ccil.org/~esr/home.html">Eric S. Raymond</A>.
-Ongoing work is being done by
-<A HREF="mailto:dickey@clark.net">Thomas Dickey</A>
-and
-<A HREF="mailto:juergen.pfeifer@gmx.net">J&uuml;rgen Pfeifer</A>.
-<A HREF="mailto:dickey@clark.net">Thomas Dickey</A>
-acts as the maintainer for the Free Software Foundation, which holds the
-copyright on ncurses.
-Contact the current maintainers at
-<A HREF="mailto:bug-ncurses@gnu.org">bug-ncurses@gnu.org</A>.
-<P>
-
-To join the ncurses mailing list, please write email to
-<CODE>bug-ncurses-request@gnu.org</CODE> containing the line:
-<PRE>
- subscribe &lt;name&gt;@&lt;host.domain&gt;
-</PRE>
-
-This list is open to anyone interested in helping with the development and
-testing of this package.<P>
-
-Beta versions of ncurses and patches to the current release are made available at
-<A HREF="ftp://ftp.clark.net/pub/dickey/ncurses">ftp://ftp.clark.net/pub/dickey/ncurses</A>.
-
-<H2>Future Plans</H2>
-<UL>
-<LI>Extended-level XPG4 conformance, with internationalization support.
-<LI>Ports to more systems, including DOS and Windows.
-</UL>
-We need people to help with these projects. If you are interested in working
-on them, please join the ncurses list.
-
-<H2>Other Related Resources</H2>
-
-The distribution includes and uses a version of the terminfo-format
-terminal description file maintained by Eric Raymond.
-<A HREF="http://earthspace.net/~esr/terminfo">http://earthspace.net/~esr/terminfo</A>.<P>
-
-You can find lots of information on terminal-related topics
-not covered in the terminfo file at
-<A HREF="http://www.cs.utk.edu/~shuford/terminal_index.html">Richard Shuford's
-archive</A>.
-</BODY>
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