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curs_print.3x - Man Page

write binary data to printer using terminfo capabilities


#include <curses.h>

int mcprint(char *data, int len);


This function uses the mc5p or mc4 and mc5 capabilities, if they are present, to ship given data to a printer attached to the terminal.

Note that the mcprint code has no way to do flow control with the printer or to know how much buffering it has. Your application is responsible for keeping the rate of writes to the printer below its continuous throughput rate (typically about half of its nominal cps rating). Dot-matrix printers and 6-page-per-minute lasers can typically handle 80cps, so a good conservative rule of thumb is to sleep for a second after shipping each 80-character line.

Return Value

The mcprint function returns ERR if the write operation aborted for some reason. In this case, errno will contain either an error associated with write(2) or one of the following:


Capabilities for printer redirection do not exist.


Couldn't allocate sufficient memory to buffer the printer write.

When mcprint succeeds, it returns the number of characters actually sent to the printer.


mcprint was designed for ncurses(3X), and was not found in SVr4 curses, 4.4BSD curses, or any other previous curses implementation.


Applications employing this ncurses extension should condition its use on the visibility of the NCURSES_VERSION preprocessor macro.


Padding in the mc5p, mc4, and mc5 capabilities is not interpreted.

See Also


Referenced By

The man page mcprint.3x(3) is an alias of curs_print.3x(3).

2023-12-23 ncurses 6.4 Library calls