READ(1)READ(1)NAMEread - read a line from standard input
/usr/bin/read [-r] var...
set variable= $<
read [-prsu [n]] [name ? prompt] [name]...
read [-Aprs] [-d delim] [-n nsize] [-N nsize] [-t timeout][-u unit] [vname?prompt] [vname... ]
The read utility reads a single line from standard input.
By default, unless the -r option is specified, backslash (\) acts as an
escape character. If standard input is a terminal device and the invok‐
ing shell is interactive, read prompts for a continuation line when:
o The shell reads an input line ending with a backslash,
unless the -r option is specified.
o A here-document is not terminated after a NEWLINE character
The line is split into fields as in the shell. The first field is
assigned to the first variable var, the second field to the second
variable var, and so forth. If there are fewer var operands specified
than there are fields, the leftover fields and their intervening sepa‐
rators is assigned to the last var. If there are fewer fields than
vars, the remaining vars is set to empty strings.
The setting of variables specified by the var operands affects the cur‐
rent shell execution environment. If it is called in a sub-shell or
separate utility execution environment, such as one of the following:
nohup read ...
find . -execread ... \;
it does not affect the shell variables in the caller's environment.
The standard input must be a text file.
One line is read from the standard input and, using the internal field
separator, IFS (normally space or tab), to delimit word boundaries, the
first word is assigned to the first name, the second word to the second
name, and so on, with leftover words assigned to the last name. Lines
can be continued using \newline. Characters other than NEWLINE can be
quoted by preceding them with a backslash. These backslashes are
removed before words are assigned to names, and no interpretation is
done on the character that follows the backslash. The return code is 0,
unless an end-of-file is encountered.
set variable = $<
loads one line of standard input as the value for variable. (See
The shell input mechanism. One line is read and is broken up into
fields using the characters in IFS as separators. The escape character,
(\), is used to remove any special meaning for the next character and
for line continuation. In raw mode, the -r, the , and the \ character
are not treated specially. The first field is assigned to the first
name, the second field to the second name, and so on, with leftover
fields assigned to the last name. The -p option causes the input line
to be taken from the input pipe of a process spawned by the shell using
|&. If the -s flag is present, the input is saved as a command in the
history file. The flag -u can be used to specify a one digit file
descriptor unit n to read from. The file descriptor can be opened with
the exec special command. The default value of n is 0. If name is omit‐
ted, REPLY is used as the default name. The exit status is 0 unless the
input file is not open for reading or an end-of-file is encountered. An
end-of-file with the -p option causes cleanup for this process so that
another can be spawned. If the first argument contains a ?, the remain‐
der of this word is used as a prompt on standard error when the shell
is interactive. The exit status is 0 unless an end-of-file is encoun‐
read reads a line from standard input and breaks it into fields using
the characters in the value of the IFS variable as separators. The
escape character, \, is used to remove any special meaning for the next
character and for line continuation unless the -r option is specified.
If there are more variables than fields, the remaining variables are
set to empty strings. If there are fewer variables than fields, the
leftover fields and their intervening separators are assigned to the
last variable. If no var is specified, the variable REPLY is used.
When var has the binary attribute and -n or -N is specified, the bytes
that are read are stored directly into var.
If you specify ?prompt after the first var, read displays a prompt on
standard error when standard input is a terminal or pipe.
The following option is supported by /usr/bin/read and ksh:
Do not treat a backslash character in any special way. Considers
each backslash to be part of the input line.
The following options are supported by ksh93:
Unset var, and create an indexed array containing each
field in the line starting at index 0.
Read until delimiter delim instead of to the end of line.
Read at most nsize bytes. Binary field size is in bytes.
Read exactly nsize bytes. Binary field size is in bytes.
Read from the current co-process instead of standard
input. An end of file causes read to disconnect the co-
process so that another can be created.
Do not treat \ specially when processing the input line.
Save a copy of the input as an entry in the shell history
Specify a timeout in seconds when reading from a terminal
Read from file descriptor number fd instead of standard
input. The default value is 0.
When reading from a terminal, display the value of the
first variable and use it as a default value.
The following operand is supported:
The name of an existing or non-existing shell variable.
Example 1 Using the read Command
The following example for /usr/bin/read prints a file with the first
field of each line moved to the end of the line:
example% while read-r xx yy
printf "%s %s\n" "$yy" "$xx"
done < input_file
See environ(5) for descriptions of the following environment variables
that affect the execution of read: LANG, LC_ALL, LC_CTYPE, LC_MESSAGES,
Determines the internal field separators used to delimit fields.
Provides the prompt string that an interactive shell writes to
standard error when a line ending with a backslash is read and
the -r option was not specified, or if a here-document is not
terminated after a NEWLINE character is entered.
The following exit values are returned:
End-of-file was detected or an error occurred.
See attributes(5) for descriptions of the following attributes:
/usr/bin/read, csh, ksh, sh
│ ATTRIBUTE TYPE │ ATTRIBUTE VALUE │
│Interface Stability │ Committed │
│Standard │ See standards(5). │
│ ATTRIBUTE TYPE │ ATTRIBUTE VALUE │
│Interface Stability │ Uncommitted │
SEE ALSOcsh(1), ksh(1), ksh93(1), line(1), set(1), sh(1), attributes(5), envi‐
Dec 18, 2007 READ(1)