get_wch, wget_wch, mvget_wch, mvwget_wch, unget_wch - get (or push
back) a wide character from curses terminal keyboard
int get_wch(wint_t *wch);
int wget_wch(WINDOW *win, wint_t *wch);
int mvget_wch(int y, int x, wint_t *wch);
int mvwget_wch(WINDOW *win, int y, int x, wint_t *wch);
int unget_wch(const wchar_t wch);
The get_wch, wget_wch, mvget_wch, and mvwget_wch functions read a char‐
acter from the terminal associated with the current or specified win‐
dow. In no-delay mode, if no input is waiting, the value ERR is
returned. In delay mode, the program waits until the system passes
text through to the program. Depending on the setting of cbreak, this
is after one character (cbreak mode), or after the first newline
(nocbreak mode). In half-delay mode, the program waits until the user
types a character or the specified timeout interval has elapsed.
Unless noecho has been set, these routines echo the character into the
If the window is not a pad and has been moved or modified since the
last call to wrefresh, wrefresh will be called before another character
If keypad is enabled, these functions respond to the pressing of a
function key by setting the object pointed to by wch to the correspond‐
ing KEY_ value defined in <curses.h> and returning KEY_CODE_YES. If a
character (such as escape) that could be the beginning of a function
key is received, curses sets a timer. If the remainder of the sequence
does arrive within the designated time, curses passes through the char‐
acter; otherwise, curses returns the function key value. For this rea‐
son, many terminals experience a delay between the time a user presses
the escape key and the time the escape is returned to the program.
The unget_wch function pushes the wide character wch back onto the head
of the input queue, so the wide character is returned by the next call
to get_wch. The pushback of one character is guaranteed. If the pro‐
gram calls unget_wch too many times without an intervening call to
get_wch, the operation may fail.
The header file <curses.h> automatically includes the header file
Applications should not define the escape key by itself as a single-
When using get_wch, wget_wch, mvget_wch, or mvwget_wch, applications
should not use nocbreak mode and echo mode at the same time. Depending
on the state of the tty driver when each character is typed, the pro‐
gram may produce undesirable results.
All functions except wget_wch and unget_wch may be macros.
When get_wch, wget_wch, mvget_wch, and mvwget_wch functions success‐
fully report the pressing of a function key, they return KEY_CODE_YES.
When they successfully report a wide character, they return OK. Other‐
wise, they return ERR.
Upon successful completion, unget_wch returns OK. Otherwise, the func‐
tion returns ERR.
SEE ALSOcurses(3X), curs_getch(3X), curs_ins_wch(3X), curs_inopts(3X),