Terminal command helper
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Terminal Helper

Version: 0.2.3

Author: Elijah Cowley

Website: http://epcit.biz

This module is designed to allow both keypress and string event firing and includes some helper methods for terminal commands. I have also included basic processing of arrow keys and backspace.

Tested on Debian Linux, please contact me via email [ ecowley@epcit.biz ] or using GitHub [ https://github.com/greywolf001au/termhelper ] to report any bugs or get help using this modules.

** Install

Install this module using NPM or copy the package to your applications '/node_modules' directory.

npm install termhelper

** Useage

In the application files you would like to use this module add the following line:

var term = require('termhelper')

** Settings

The settings can be changed in termhelper.lib.js The main settings are described here for reference, other settings may be added in future versions.

Available Settings:

|  Section    |  Setting      |    Default Value    |               Description                   |
  settings       echoKeys          true                 Outputs key on key stroke
  settings       prompt            '> '                 Sets the prompt string
  settings       termHistory       true                 Keep command history
  settings       allowKill         true                 Allow CTRL + C to kill app
  settings       lineEndOut        '\n'                 Line end charater to output
  settings       lineEndIn         '\n'                 Line end charater to capture from input
  settings       appendEndChar     true                 Append lineEnd character to event data
  settings       debug             false                Outputs keystroke data
  settings       allowRun          true                 Allow running of shell commands
  settings       date_format       0                    Sets the format to use for dates
  settings       date_splitter     '-'                  Sets the default date splitter (for prompt)
  settings       locale            'default'            Sets the language locale (See locale folder for supported locale files, currently supports 'default' only)
  settings       locale_path       './locale'           Sets the path to the locale file (without trailing slash)
  settings       processing        true                 Turns on or off key and line processing (false will stop all commands from being processed)
  settings       proc_blank_line   true                 Turn on or off the default processing of a blank line
  log            path              ''                   Set the path for storing logs
  log            dir_mode          '0775'               Use mode when creating paths
  log            level             3                    Logging level (input, output, both)
  log            extension         'log'                Create log files with this extension
  log            format            0                    Date format for log filenames
  log            hourly            false                Create a new log file each hour
  log            timestamp         true                 Place timestamp before each log entry
  log            date_splitter     '-'                  Use this date splitter for log files
  alias          run               'run'                Change the terminal run command
  alias          echo              'echo'               Change the terminal echo command
  alias          exit              'exit'               Change the terminal exit command
  alias          prompt            'prompt'             Change the terminal prompt command
  alias          version           'version'            Change the terminal version command
  alias          show              'show'               Change the terminal show command

Settings can be modified in the following manner: term.set(section, key, value)

Where 'section' refers to the section key, current sections are: settings, log, alias & locale If a section is null the default section of 'settings' will be used. Key refers to the settings key to change, key may be an object of key/value pairs. Value is the new value for the setting.


term.set('settings', 'prompt', 'node.js> ');


term.set(null, {
  prompt: 'node.js> ',
  debug: true

Note: To have no prompt displayed set the prompt to a blank string.

** Processed Keys

|   Key   |           Default Function             |
  Up            Arrow Scroll back through history
  Down          Arrow Scroll forward through history
  Left          Arrow Move cursor back
  Right         Arrow Move cursor forward
  Backspace     Delete character behind cursor
  Delete        Delete character infront of cursor
  Enter         Process line
  CTRL+C        Exit application
  Home          Move cursor to start of line
  End           Move cursor to end of line

** Events

Events can be set for a single keypress and on line data using the following:

term.on('before_proc', function(ch, key) {
  Add your code here....

term.on('keypress', function(ch, key) {
  Add your code here....

term.on('line', function(data) {
  Add your code here....

Default key press processing can be bypassed by returning false from your event handler. Example:

term.on('before_proc', function(ch, key) {
  if (key && key.name === 'home') {
    Add code here....
    return false;
  return { home: false }

Note: bypassing command processing will cause all key press events to be bypassed including enter and CTRL+C, to skip individual keypress events return an object containing keyname: false

Line processing will give an invalid command when false is returned from the event handler method. Optionally an object can be returned containing a key named 'valid' and a boolean value. The prompt can be disabled for a command by returning an object with a 'prompt' key and the boolean value of false (see example.js)

** Available Methods

Several methods have been added to make working in the terminal easier

Method        |      Useage         |   Description                                                                    |
Set              term.set(s, k, v)       Change section of termhelper.lib.js
On               term.on(evt, method)    Overwrite default event handler with custom method
Clear            term.Clear()            Clear terminal window
ClearLine        term.ClearLine()        Clear output from current line (clear prompt, does not clear input string)
getPrompt        term.getPrompt()        Returns the evaluated prompt string
Prompt           term.Prompt()           Output prompt string
Write            term.Write(text)        Send text to terminal
Writeln          term.Writeln(text)      Send text to terminal with line end out appended
CursorPos        term.CursorPos()        Returns an integer denoting cursor position
CursorTo         term.CursorTo(pos)      Move the cursor to a specified position on the line
Run              term.Run(command)       Run shell commands from your node apps
Eval             term.Eval(command)      Evaluate string as JavaScript
Echo             term.Echo(obj)          Parse an object and output to cli 
log.set          term.log.set()          Set log options
log.Write        term.log.Write(data)    Write data to log file
log.Writeln      term.log.Writeln(data)  Write data to log and move to next line
Version          term.Version()          Return termhelper version number
Show             term.Show(key)          Return termhelper information (key denotes which peice of information to show e.g name, version etc)
formatDate       term.formatDate(f, s)   Return the date with the format 'f' using the splitter 's'

** Processed Input

Line inputs processed from terminal

Run         Use the run alias to execute an application
Echo        Evaluate some JavaScript and echo the result
Prompt      Change the terminal prompt
Exit        Exits the application
Clear       Clears terminal (fix required for windows terminal)

** Prompt String

The prompt string sets the prompt that is dispayed for command entry. The string can be a literal string or a JavaScript string to be evaluated. The prompt string can be changed by editing the settings.prompt variable in termhelper.lib.js, using the set method to change the settings.prompt variable or by calling the prompt alias at the command line.

You may also use the following notation to insert information to the prompt string:

%d      The date with the format as defined in termhelper.lib.js
%p      The current command line path
%t      The time, this uses the systems locale time string
%v      Termhelper version number
%!      The command history position number (changes when cycling through history)
%#      The history length (command number)


In termhelper.lib.js:

settings: {
  prompt: "%p [%!]> ";

In your application:

term.set("settings", "prompt", "[%d]%p> ");

On the command line:

prompt __dirname + '> ';

Note: The values set in these examples could be set using any of the prompt methods.

** App object

A blank object called app has been added to store custom variables for displaying in a prompt or other evaluated commands.

prompt this.app.name + "> "

** Module object

Contains details about the termhelper module for use with evaluated methods and commands

prompt this.module.name + " " this.module.version + "> "

** Complimentary Modules

Colors: this module will allow terminal colors and styles however this library extends the String prototype. While it works quite nicely it is not the prefered method.