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Manual page for GETTY(8)

getty - set terminal mode


/usr/etc/getty [ type [ tty ] ]


/usr/etc/getty [ -n ] [ type [ tty ] ]


getty, which is invoked by init.8 opens and initializes a tty line, reads a login name, and invokes login.1

The tty argument is the name of the character-special file in /dev that corresponds to the terminal. If there is no tty argument, or the argument is `-', the tty line is assumed to be opened as file descriptor 0.

The type argument, if supplied, is used as an index into the gettytab.5 database--to determine the characteristics of the line. If this argument is absent, or if there is no such entry, the default entry is used. If there is no /etc/gettytab file, a set of system-supplied defaults is used.

When the indicated entry is located, getty clears the terminal screen, prints a banner heading, and prompts for a login name. Usually, either the banner or the login prompt includes the system's hostname.

Next, getty prompts for a login and reads the login name, one character at a time. When it receives a null character (which is assumed to be the result pressing the BREAK , or ``interrupt'' key), getty switches to the entry gettytab entry named in the nx field. It reinitializes the line to the new characteristics, and then prompts for a login once again. This mechanism typically is used to cycle through a set of line speeds (baud rates) for each terminal line. For instance, a rotary dialup might have entries for the speeds: 300, 1200, 150, and 110 baud, with each nx field pointing to the next one in succession.

The user terminates login input line with a NEWLINE or RETURN character. The latter is preferable; it sets up the proper treatment of RETURN characters (see tty.4 getty checks to see if the terminal has only upper-case alphabetical characters. If all alphabetical characters in the login name are in upper case, the system maps them along with all subsequent upper-case input characters to lower-case internally; they are displayed in upper case for the benefit of the terminal. To force recognition of an upper-case character, the shell allows them to be quoted (typically by preceding each with a backslash, `\').

Finally, getty calls login.1 with the login name as an argument.

getty can be set to time out after a certain interval; this hangs up dial-up lines if the login name is not entered in time.


For Sun386i system, the value of type is the constant Sun, for the console frame buffer.


invoke the full screen login program logintool.8 and optionally the ``New User Accounts'' feature. May only be used on a frame buffer. Unless removed from the console entry in /etc/ttytab, this option is in effect by default.




login.1 ioctl.2 tty.4 fbtab.5 gettytab.5 svdtab.5 ttytab.5 init.8 logintool.8


ttyxx: No such device or address.
ttyxx: No such file or directory.
A terminal which is turned on in the ttys file cannot be opened, likely because the requisite lines are either not configured into the system, the associated device was not attached during boot-time system configuration, or the special file in /dev does not exist.

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Created by unroff & hp-tools. © by Hans-Peter Bischof. All Rights Reserved (1997).

Last modified 21/April/97