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Updated: July 2017

zshcompwid (1)


zshcompwid - zsh completion widgets


Please see following description for synopsis


ZSHCOMPWID(1)               General Commands Manual              ZSHCOMPWID(1)

       zshcompwid - zsh completion widgets

       The shell's programmable completion mechanism can be manipulated in two
       ways; here the low-level features supporting the newer,  function-based
       mechanism  are  defined.   A  complete  set of shell functions based on
       these features is described in zshcompsys(1), and users with no  inter-
       est in adding to that system (or, potentially, writing their own -- see
       dictionary entry for `hubris') should skip the  current  section.   The
       older  system based on the compctl builtin command is described in zsh-

       Completion widgets are defined by the -C option to the zle builtin com-
       mand provided by the zsh/zle module (see zshzle(1)). For example,

              zle -C complete expand-or-complete completer

       defines  a widget named `complete'.  The second argument is the name of
       any of the builtin  widgets  that  handle  completions:  complete-word,
       expand-or-complete,      expand-or-complete-prefix,      menu-complete,
       menu-expand-or-complete,   reverse-menu-complete,   list-choices,    or
       delete-char-or-list.  Note that this will still work even if the widget
       in question has been re-bound.

       When this newly defined widget is bound to  a  key  using  the  bindkey
       builtin  command  defined in the zsh/zle module (see zshzle(1)), typing
       that key will call the shell function  `completer'.  This  function  is
       responsible  for  generating  the  possible  matches using the builtins
       described below.  As with other ZLE widgets,  the  function  is  called
       with its standard input closed.

       Once the function returns, the completion code takes over control again
       and treats the matches in the same manner as the specified builtin wid-
       get, in this case expand-or-complete.

       used by the completion mechanism, but are not special.  See  Parameters
       Used By The Shell in zshparam(1).

       Inside  completion  widgets,  and  any functions called from them, some
       parameters have special meaning; outside these functions they  are  not
       special  to  the  shell  in any way.  These parameters are used to pass
       information between the completion code and the completion widget. Some
       of  the builtin commands and the condition codes use or change the cur-
       rent values of these parameters.  Any existing values  will  be  hidden
       during  execution  of  completion  widgets;  except  for compstate, the
       parameters are reset on each function exit (including  nested  function
       calls  from  within  the completion widget) to the values they had when
       the function was entered.

              This is the number of the current word, i.e. the word the cursor
              is  currently  on  in  the words array.  Note that this value is
              only correct if the ksharrays option is not set.

              Initially this will be set to the empty string.  This  parameter
              functions  like  PREFIX; it contains a string which precedes the
              one in PREFIX and is not considered part of the list of matches.
              Typically,  a string is transferred from the beginning of PREFIX
              to the end of IPREFIX, for example:


              causes the part of the prefix up  to  and  including  the  first
              equal  sign not to be treated as part of a matched string.  This
              can be done automatically by the compset builtin, see below.

              As IPREFIX, but for a suffix that should not be considered  part
              of  the matches; note that the ISUFFIX string follows the SUFFIX

       PREFIX Initially this will be set to the part of the current word  from
              the  beginning  of the word up to the position of the cursor; it
              may be altered to give a common prefix for all matches.

              This parameter is read-only and contains the quoted string up to
              the  word  being  completed.  E.g.  when completing `"foo', this
              parameter contains the double quote. If the -q option of compset
              is used (see below), and the original string was `"foo bar' with
              the cursor on the `bar', this parameter contains `"foo '.

              Like QIPREFIX, but containing the suffix.

       SUFFIX Initially this will be set to the part of the current word  from
              the cursor position to the end; it may be altered to give a com-
              mon suffix for all matches.  It is most useful when  the  option
              COMPLETE_IN_WORD is set, as otherwise the whole word on the com-
              mand line is treated as a prefix.

              This is an associative array with various keys and  values  that
              the  completion  code uses to exchange information with the com-
              pletion widget.  The keys are:

                     The -q option of the compset builtin command (see  below)
                     allows  a quoted string to be broken into separate words;
                     if the cursor is on one of those words, that word will be
                     completed,  possibly  invoking  `compset -q' recursively.
                     With this key it is possible to test the types of  quoted
                     strings  which  are  currently  broken into parts in this
                     fashion.  Its value contains one character for each quot-
                     ing level.  The characters are a single quote or a double
                     quote for strings quoted with these characters, a dollars
                     sign  for  strings quoted with $'...' and a backslash for
                     strings not starting with a quote character.   The  first
                     character  in  the value always corresponds to the inner-
                     most quoting level.

                     This will be set by the completion code  to  the  overall
                     context in which completion is attempted. Possible values

                            when completing  inside  the  value  of  an  array
                            parameter assignment; in this case the words array
                            contains the words inside the parentheses.

                            when completing the  name  of  a  parameter  in  a
                            parameter  expansion beginning with ${.  This con-
                            text will also be set  when  completing  parameter
                            flags  following  ${(; the full command line argu-
                            ment is presented and the handler  must  test  the
                            value  to  be  completed to ascertain that this is
                            the case.

                            when completing the  name  of  a  parameter  in  a
                            parameter assignment.

                            when  completing  for  a normal command (either in
                            command position or for an argument  of  the  com-

                            when  completing  inside  a  `[[...]]' conditional
                            expression; in this case the words array  contains
                            only the words inside the conditional expression.

                     math   when completing in a mathematical environment such
                            as a `((...))' construct.

                            when completing the  name  of  a  parameter  in  a
                            parameter expansion beginning with $ but not ${.

                            when completing after a redirection operator.

                            when completing inside a parameter subscript.

                     value  when  completing  the value of a parameter assign-

              exact  Controls the behaviour when the REC_EXACT option is  set.
                     It  will  be  set  to  accept  if an exact match would be
                     accepted, and will be unset otherwise.

                     If it was set when at least one match equal to the string
                     on the line was generated, the match is accepted.

                     The  string of an exact match if one was found, otherwise

                     The number  of  words  that  were  ignored  because  they
                     matched  one  of the patterns given with the -F option to
                     the compadd builtin command.

              insert This controls the manner in which  a  match  is  inserted
                     into  the command line.  On entry to the widget function,
                     if it is unset the command line is not to be changed;  if
                     set  to  unambiguous, any prefix common to all matches is
                     to be inserted; if set to automenu-unambiguous, the  com-
                     mon  prefix  is to be inserted and the next invocation of
                     the completion code may start menu completion (due to the
                     AUTO_MENU  option  being set); if set to menu or automenu
                     menu completion will be started for the matches currently
                     generated  (in  the  latter case this will happen because
                     the AUTO_MENU is set). The value  may  also  contain  the
                     string  `tab' when the completion code would normally not
                     really do completion, but only insert the TAB character.

                     On exit it may be set to any of the values  above  (where
                     setting  it  to the empty string is the same as unsetting
                     it), or to a number, in which case the match whose number
                     is  given  will be inserted into the command line.  Nega-
                     tive numbers count backward from  the  last  match  (with
                     `-1'  selecting  the  last match) and out-of-range values
                     are wrapped around, so that a value of zero  selects  the
                     last  match and a value one more than the maximum selects
                     the first. Unless the value of this key ends in a  space,
                     the match is inserted as in a menu completion, i.e. with-
                     out automatically appending a space.

                     Both menu and automenu may also specify the number of the
                     match  to  insert,  given  after  a  colon.  For example,
                     `menu:2' says to start menu  completion,  beginning  with
                     the second match.

                     Note  that  a  value containing the substring `tab' makes
                     the matches generated be ignored  and  only  the  TAB  be

                     Finally,  it  may  also  be  set  to all, which makes all
                     matches generated be inserted into the line.

                     When the completion system inserts an unambiguous  string
                     into the line, there may be multiple places where charac-
                     ters are missing or where the character inserted  differs
                     from  at least one match.  The value of this key contains
                     a colon separated list of all these positions, as indexes
                     into the command line.

                     If  this  is  set  to  a non-empty string for every match
                     added, the completion code will move the cursor  back  to
                     the  previous  prompt  after  the list of completions has
                     been displayed.  Initially this is set or unset according
                     to the ALWAYS_LAST_PROMPT option.

              list   This  controls whether or how the list of matches will be
                     displayed.  If it is unset or empty they  will  never  be
                     listed;  if  its value begins with list, they will always
                     be listed; if it begins with autolist or ambiguous,  they
                     will  be  listed  when  the  AUTO_LIST  or LIST_AMBIGUOUS
                     options respectively would normally cause them to be.

                     If the substring force appears in the value,  this  makes
                     the  list  be shown even if there is only one match. Nor-
                     mally, the list would be shown only if there are at least
                     two matches.

                     The   value   contains   the   substring  packed  if  the
                     LIST_PACKED option is set. If this substring is given for
                     all  matches  added  to a group, this group will show the
                     LIST_PACKED  behavior.  The  same   is   done   for   the
                     LIST_ROWS_FIRST option with the substring rows.

                     Finally,  if  the value contains the string explanations,
                     only the explanation strings, if any, will be listed  and
                     if  it  contains  messages, only the messages (added with
                     the -x option of compadd) will be listed.  If it contains
                     both  explanations and messages both kinds of explanation
                     strings will be listed.  It will be set appropriately  on
                     entry to a completion widget and may be changed there.

                     This gives the number of lines that are needed to display
                     the full list of completions.  Note that to calculate the
                     total number of lines to display you need to add the num-
                     ber of lines needed for the command line to  this  value,
                     this is available as the value of the BUFFERLINES special

                     Initially this is set to the value of the LISTMAX parame-
                     ter.   It  may be set to any other value; when the widget
                     exits this value will be used in  the  same  way  as  the
                     value of LISTMAX.

                     The  number of matches generated and accepted by the com-
                     pletion code so far.

                     On entry to the widget this will be set to the number  of
                     the match of an old list of completions that is currently
                     inserted into the command line.  If  no  match  has  been
                     inserted, this is unset.

                     As with old_list, the value of this key will only be used
                     if it is the string keep. If it was set to this value  by
                     the  widget  and there was an old match inserted into the
                     command line, this match will be kept and if the value of
                     the  insert  key  specifies  that another match should be
                     inserted, this will be inserted after the old one.

                     This is set to yes if there is still a valid list of com-
                     pletions  from a previous completion at the time the wid-
                     get is invoked.  This will usually be  the  case  if  and
                     only  if  the previous editing operation was a completion
                     widget or one of the builtin  completion  functions.   If
                     there  is  a valid list and it is also currently shown on
                     the screen, the value of this key is shown.

                     After the widget has exited the value of this key is only
                     used  if it was set to keep.  In this case the completion
                     code will continue to use this old list.  If  the  widget
                     generated new matches, they will not be used.

                     The  name of the parameter when completing in a subscript
                     or in the value of a parameter assignment.

                     Normally this is set to menu, which specifies  that  menu
                     completion  will  be  used  whenever a set of matches was
                     generated using pattern matching.  If it is  set  to  any
                     other non-empty string by the user and menu completion is
                     not selected by other  option  settings,  the  code  will
                     instead  insert  any  common  prefix  for  the  generated
                     matches as with normal completion.

                     Locally controls the behaviour given by the GLOB_COMPLETE
                     option.   Initially  it  is set to `*' if and only if the
                     option is set.  The completion widget may set it to  this
                     value,  to  an empty string (which has the same effect as
                     unsetting it), or to any other non-empty string.   If  it
                     is non-empty, unquoted metacharacters on the command line
                     will be treated as patterns; if it is `*', then addition-
                     ally a wildcard `*' is assumed at the cursor position; if
                     it is empty or unset, metacharacters will be treated lit-

                     Note that the matcher specifications given to the compadd
                     builtin command  are  not  used  if  this  is  set  to  a
                     non-empty string.

              quote  When  completing  inside quotes, this contains the quota-
                     tion character (i.e. either  a  single  quote,  a  double
                     quote, or a backtick).  Otherwise it is unset.

                     When  completing inside single quotes, this is set to the
                     string single; inside double quotes, the  string  double;
                     inside  backticks,  the string backtick.  Otherwise it is

                     The redirection operator when completing in a redirection
                     position, i.e. one of <, >, etc.

                     This  is  set to auto before a function is entered, which
                     forces the special  parameters  mentioned  above  (words,
                     CURRENT,  PREFIX,  IPREFIX,  SUFFIX,  and  ISUFFIX) to be
                     restored to  their  previous  values  when  the  function
                     exits.    If a function unsets it or sets it to any other
                     string, they will not be restored.

              to_end Specifies the occasions on which the cursor is  moved  to
                     the  end  of a string when a match is inserted.  On entry
                     to a widget function, it may be single if this will  hap-
                     pen when a single unambiguous match was inserted or match
                     if it will happen any time a match is inserted (for exam-
                     ple,  by menu completion; this is likely to be the effect
                     of the ALWAYS_TO_END option).

                     On exit, it may be set to single as above.  It  may  also
                     be  set  to  always,  or to the empty string or unset; in
                     those cases the cursor will be moved to the  end  of  the
                     string always or never respectively.  Any other string is
                     treated as match.

                     This key is read-only and will always be set to the  com-
                     mon  (unambiguous)  prefix the completion code has gener-
                     ated for all matches added so far.

                     This gives the position the cursor would be placed at  if
                     the  common  prefix in the unambiguous key were inserted,
                     relative to the value of that key. The  cursor  would  be
                     placed  before the character whose index is given by this

                     This contains all positions where characters in the unam-
                     biguous   string  are  missing  or  where  the  character
                     inserted differs from at least one of the  matches.   The
                     positions  are  given as indexes into the string given by
                     the value of the unambiguous key.

              vared  If completion is called while editing a  line  using  the
                     vared  builtin,  the value of this key is set to the name
                     of the parameter given as an argument to vared.  This key
                     is only set while a vared command is active.

       words  This  array  contains the words present on the command line cur-
              rently being edited.

       compadd [ -akqQfenUlo12C ] [ -F array ]
               [-P prefix ] [ -S suffix ]
               [-p hidden-prefix ] [ -s hidden-suffix ]
               [-i ignored-prefix ] [ -I ignored-suffix ]
               [-W file-prefix ] [ -d array ]
               [-J name ] [ -V name ] [ -X explanation ] [ -x message ]
               [-r remove-chars ] [ -R remove-func ]
               [-D array ] [ -O array ] [ -A array ]
               [-E number ]
               [-M match-spec ] [ -- ] [ words ... ]

              This builtin command can be used to  add  matches  directly  and
              control all the information the completion code stores with each
              possible match. The return status is zero if at least one  match
              was added and non-zero if no matches were added.

              The  completion  code  breaks  the string to complete into seven
              fields in the order:


              The first field is an ignored  prefix  taken  from  the  command
              line,  the  contents  of  the  IPREFIX parameter plus the string
              given with the -i option. With the -U option,  only  the  string
              from the -i option is used. The field <apre> is an optional pre-
              fix string given with the -P option.   The  <hpre>  field  is  a
              string  that is considered part of the match but that should not
              be shown when listing completions, given with the -p option; for
              example,  functions  that do filename generation might specify a
              common path prefix this way.  <word> is the part  of  the  match
              that  should  appear in the list of completions, i.e. one of the
              words given at the end of the compadd command line. The suffixes
              <hsuf>,  <asuf>  and  <isuf>  correspond to the prefixes <hpre>,
              <apre> and <ipre> and are given by the options -s,  -S  and  -I,

              The supported flags are:

              -P prefix
                     This  gives  a  string  to  be  inserted before the given
                     words.  The string given is not considered as part of the
                     match  and  any  shell  metacharacters  in it will not be
                     quoted when the string is inserted.

              -S suffix
                     Like -P, but gives a string  to  be  inserted  after  the

              -p hidden-prefix
                     This gives a string that should be inserted into the com-
                     mand line before the match but that should not appear  in
                     the  list of matches. Unless the -U option is given, this
                     string must be matched as part of the string on the  com-
                     mand line.

              -s hidden-suffix
                     Like `-p', but gives a string to insert after the match.

              -i ignored-prefix
                     This  gives a string to insert into the command line just
                     before any string given with the  `-P'  option.   Without
                     `-P'  the string is inserted before the string given with
                     `-p' or directly before the match.

              -I ignored-suffix
                     Like -i, but gives an ignored suffix.

              -a     With this flag the words are taken as names of arrays and
                     the possible matches are their values.  If only some ele-
                     ments of the arrays are needed, the words may  also  con-
                     tain subscripts, as in `foo[2,-1]'.

              -k     With  this  flag the words are taken as names of associa-
                     tive arrays and the possible matches are their keys.   As
                     for  -a,  the  words  may  also contain subscripts, as in

              -d array
                     This adds per-match display  strings.  The  array  should
                     contain  one  element per word given. The completion code
                     will then display the first element instead of the  first
                     word, and so on. The array may be given as the name of an
                     array parameter or directly as a space-separated list  of
                     words in parentheses.

                     If  there are fewer display strings than words, the left-
                     over words will be displayed unchanged and if  there  are
                     more  display  strings  than  words, the leftover display
                     strings will be silently ignored.

              -l     This option only has an effect if used together with  the
                     -d option. If it is given, the display strings are listed
                     one per line, not arrayed in columns.

              -o     This option only has an effect if used together with  the
                     -d  option.   If  it is given, the order of the output is
                     determined by the match strings;  otherwise it is  deter-
                     mined  by  the display strings (i.e. the strings given by
                     the -d option).

              -J name
                     Gives the name of the group of matches the  words  should
                     be stored in.

              -V name
                     Like -J but naming an unsorted group. These are in a dif-
                     ferent name space than groups created with the -J flag.

              -1     If given together with the -V option, makes only consecu-
                     tive duplicates in the group be removed. If combined with
                     the -J option, this has  no  visible  effect.  Note  that
                     groups  with  and without this flag are in different name

              -2     If given together with the -J or  -V  option,  makes  all
                     duplicates  be  kept. Again, groups with and without this
                     flag are in different name spaces.

              -X explanation
                     The explanation string will be printed with the  list  of
                     matches, above the group currently selected.

              -x message
                     Like  -X,  but  the message will be printed even if there
                     are no matches in the group.

              -q     The suffix given with -S will be automatically removed if
                     the  next  character  typed is a blank or does not insert
                     anything, or if the suffix consists of only one character
                     and the next character typed is the same character.

              -r remove-chars
                     This is a more versatile form of the -q option.  The suf-
                     fix given with -S or the slash automatically added  after
                     completing  directories  will be automatically removed if
                     the next character typed inserts one  of  the  characters
                     given  in  the  remove-chars.  This string is parsed as a
                     characters class and understands the backslash  sequences
                     used  by  the  print  command.  For example, `-r "a-z\t"'
                     removes the suffix if the next character typed inserts  a
                     lower  case  character  or a TAB, and `-r "^0-9"' removes
                     the suffix if the next character typed  inserts  anything
                     but  a  digit. One extra backslash sequence is understood
                     in this string:  `\-'  stands  for  all  characters  that
                     insert  nothing.  Thus `-S "=" -q' is the same as `-S "="
                     -r "= \t\n\-"'.

                     This option may also be used without the -S option;  then
                     any automatically added space will be removed when one of
                     the characters in the list is typed.

              -R remove-func
                     This is another form of the -r option. When a suffix  has
                     been  inserted  and the completion accepted, the function
                     remove-func will  be  called  after  the  next  character
                     typed.  It is passed the length of the suffix as an argu-
                     ment and can use  the  special  parameters  available  in
                     ordinary  (non-completion) zle widgets (see zshzle(1)) to
                     analyse and modify the command line.

              -f     If this flag is given, all  of  the  matches  built  from
                     words  are  marked as being the names of files.  They are
                     not required to be actual filenames, but if they are, and
                     the  option  LIST_TYPES is set, the characters describing
                     the types of the files in the completion  lists  will  be
                     shown. This also forces a slash to be added when the name
                     of a directory is completed.

              -e     This flag can be used to tell the  completion  code  that
                     the  matches  added  are  parameter names for a parameter
                     expansion.  This  will  make  the  AUTO_PARAM_SLASH   and
                     AUTO_PARAM_KEYS options be used for the matches.

              -W file-prefix
                     This  string is a pathname that will be prepended to each
                     of the matches formed by the given  words  together  with
                     any  prefix specified by the -p option to form a complete
                     filename for testing.  Hence it is only  useful  if  com-
                     bined  with  the -f flag, as the tests will not otherwise
                     be performed.

              -F array
                     Specifies an array containing  patterns.  Words  matching
                     one of these patterns are ignored, i.e. not considered to
                     be possible matches.

                     The array may be the name of an array parameter or a list
                     of  literal  patterns enclosed in parentheses and quoted,
                     as in `-F "(*?.o *?.h)"'. If the  name  of  an  array  is
                     given,  the  elements  of the array are taken as the pat-

              -Q     This flag instructs the completion code not to quote  any
                     metacharacters  in the words when inserting them into the
                     command line.

              -M match-spec
                     This gives local match specifications as described  below
                     in the section `Completion Matching Control'. This option
                     may  be  given  more  than  once.   In  this   case   all
                     match-specs  given  are  concatenated with spaces between
                     them to form the specification string to use.  Note  that
                     they will only be used if the -U option is not given.

              -n     Specifies that the words added are to be used as possible
                     matches, but are not to appear in the completion listing.

              -U     If this flag is given, all words given will  be  accepted
                     and no matching will be done by the completion code. Nor-
                     mally this is used in  functions  that  do  the  matching

              -O array
                     If  this  option is given, the words are not added to the
                     set of possible completions.  Instead, matching  is  done
                     as  usual  and  all  of the words given as arguments that
                     match the string on the command line will  be  stored  in
                     the array parameter whose name is given as array.

              -A array
                     As  the  -O  option,  except that instead of those of the
                     words which match being stored in array, the strings gen-
                     erated  internally by the completion code are stored. For
                     example, with a matching specification of `-M  "L:|no="',
                     the string `nof' on the command line and the string `foo'
                     as one of  the  words,  this  option  stores  the  string
                     `nofoo'  in  the  array, whereas the -O option stores the
                     `foo' originally given.

              -D array
                     As with -O, the words are not added to the set of  possi-
                     ble  completions.   Instead,  the  completion  code tests
                     whether each word in turn matches what is  on  the  line.
                     If  the  nth  word does not match, the nth element of the
                     array is removed.  Elements for which  the  corresponding
                     word is matched are retained.

              -C     This  option  adds  a  special match which expands to all
                     other matches when inserted into  the  line,  even  those
                     that  are added after this option is used.  Together with
                     the -d option it is possible to  specify  a  string  that
                     should  be  displayed in the list for this special match.
                     If no string is given, it will be shown as a string  con-
                     taining  the strings that would be inserted for the other
                     matches, truncated to the width of the screen.

              -E number
                     This option adds number empty  matches  after  the  words
                     have  been  added.  An empty match takes up space in com-
                     pletion listings but will never be inserted in  the  line
                     and can't be selected with menu completion or menu selec-
                     tion.  This makes empty matches  only  useful  to  format
                     completion  lists and to make explanatory string be shown
                     in completion lists (since empty  matches  can  be  given
                     display strings with the -d option).  And because all but
                     one empty string would otherwise be removed, this  option
                     implies  the  -V  and  -2 options (even if an explicit -J
                     option is given).  This can be important to  note  as  it
                     affects the name space into which matches are added.

              --     This  flag  ends the list of flags and options. All argu-
                     ments after it will be taken  as  the  words  to  use  as
                     matches even if they begin with hyphens.

              Except for the -M flag, if any of these flags is given more than
              once, the first one (and its argument) will be used.

       compset -p number
       compset -P [ number ] pattern
       compset -s number
       compset -S [ number ] pattern
       compset -n begin [ end ]
       compset -N beg-pat [ end-pat ]
       compset -q
              This command simplifies modification of the special  parameters,
              while its return status allows tests on them to be carried out.

              The options are:

              -p number
                     If  the  contents  of the PREFIX parameter is longer than
                     number  characters,  the  first  number  characters   are
                     removed  from  it  and  appended  to  the contents of the
                     IPREFIX parameter.

              -P [ number ] pattern
                     If the value of the PREFIX parameter begins with anything
                     that  matches the pattern, the matched portion is removed
                     from PREFIX and appended to IPREFIX.

                     Without the optional number, the longest match is  taken,
                     but if number is given, anything up to the numberth match
                     is moved.  If the number is negative, the numberth  long-
                     est  match  is moved. For example, if PREFIX contains the
                     string `a=b=c', then  compset  -P  '*\='  will  move  the
                     string  `a=b=' into the IPREFIX parameter, but compset -P
                     1 '*\=' will move only the string `a='.

              -s number
                     As -p, but transfer the last number characters  from  the
                     value of SUFFIX to the front of the value of ISUFFIX.

              -S [ number ] pattern
                     As  -P, but match the last portion of SUFFIX and transfer
                     the matched portion to the front of the value of ISUFFIX.

              -n begin [ end ]
                     If the current word position as specified by the  parame-
                     ter  CURRENT  is greater than or equal to begin, anything
                     up to the beginth word is removed from  the  words  array
                     and  the value of the parameter CURRENT is decremented by

                     If the optional end is given, the  modification  is  done
                     only  if  the  current word position is also less than or
                     equal to end. In this case, the words from  position  end
                     onwards are also removed from the words array.

                     Both  begin  and  end  may be negative to count backwards
                     from the last element of the words array.

              -N beg-pat [ end-pat ]
                     If one of the elements of the words array before the  one
                     at  the index given by the value of the parameter CURRENT
                     matches the pattern  beg-pat,  all  elements  up  to  and
                     including  the  matching  one  are removed from the words
                     array and the value of CURRENT is changed to point to the
                     same word in the changed array.

                     If  the optional pattern end-pat is also given, and there
                     is an element in the words array matching  this  pattern,
                     the  parameters  are  modified  only if the index of this
                     word is higher than the one given by the CURRENT  parame-
                     ter  (so  that the matching word has to be after the cur-
                     sor). In this case,  the  words  starting  with  the  one
                     matching  end-pat  are also removed from the words array.
                     If words contains no word matching end-pat,  the  testing
                     and modification is performed as if it were not given.

              -q     The  word  currently  being  completed is split on spaces
                     into separate words, respecting the usual  shell  quoting
                     conventions.  The resulting words are stored in the words
                     array, and CURRENT, PREFIX, SUFFIX, QIPREFIX, and  QISUF-
                     FIX  are  modified  to reflect the word part that is com-

              In all the above cases the return status is  zero  if  the  test
              succeeded  and  the parameters were modified and non-zero other-
              wise. This allows one to use this builtin in tests such as:

                     if compset -P '*\='; then ...

              This forces anything up to and including the last equal sign  to
              be ignored by the completion code.

       compcall [ -TD ]
              This  allows  the  use  of  completions defined with the compctl
              builtin from within completion widgets.   The  list  of  matches
              will  be  generated as if one of the non-widget completion func-
              tions (complete-word, etc.)  had been called, except  that  only
              compctls given for specific commands are used. To force the code
              to try completions defined with the -T option of compctl  and/or
              the  default  completion  (whether  defined by compctl -D or the
              builtin default) in the appropriate places,  the  -T  and/or  -D
              flags can be passed to compcall.

              The return status can be used to test if a matching compctl def-
              inition was found. It is non-zero if a  compctl  was  found  and
              zero otherwise.

              Note that this builtin is defined by the zsh/compctl module.

       The  following  additional condition codes for use within the [[ ... ]]
       construct are available in completion widgets.  These work on the  spe-
       cial  parameters.   All  of  these  tests  can also be performed by the
       compset builtin, but in the case of the condition codes the contents of
       the special parameters are not modified.

       -prefix [ number ] pattern
              true if the test for the -P option of compset would succeed.

       -suffix [ number ] pattern
              true if the test for the -S option of compset would succeed.

       -after beg-pat
              true  if  the  test of the -N option with only the beg-pat given
              would succeed.

       -between beg-pat end-pat
              true if the test for the -N option with both patterns would suc-

       It  is  possible by use of the -M option of the compadd builtin command
       to specify how the characters in the string to be  completed  (referred
       to  here  as  the  command line) map onto the characters in the list of
       matches produced by the completion code (referred to here as the  trial
       completions). Note that this is not used if the command line contains a
       glob pattern and the GLOB_COMPLETE option is set or  the  pattern_match
       of the compstate special association is set to a non-empty string.

       The  match-spec given as the argument to the -M option (see `Completion
       Builtin Commands' above) consists of one or more matching  descriptions
       separated  by  whitespace.   Each description consists of a letter fol-
       lowed by a colon and  then  the  patterns  describing  which  character
       sequences on the line match which character sequences in the trial com-
       pletion.  Any sequence of characters not handled in this  fashion  must
       match exactly, as usual.

       The  forms  of  match-spec understood are as follows. In each case, the
       form with an upper case initial character retains  the  string  already
       typed on the command line as the final result of completion, while with
       a lower case initial character  the  string  on  the  command  line  is
       changed into the corresponding part of the trial completion.

              Here, lpat is a pattern that matches on the command line, corre-
              sponding to tpat which matches in the trial completion.

              These letters are for patterns that are anchored by another pat-
              tern  on  the  left side. Matching for lpat and tpat is as for m
              and M, but the pattern lpat matched on the command line must  be
              preceded  by  the  pattern lanchor.  The lanchor can be blank to
              anchor the match to the start of the command line string; other-
              wise  the  anchor can occur anywhere, but must match in both the
              command line and trial completion strings.

              If no lpat is given but a  ranchor  is,  this  matches  the  gap
              between  substrings  matched by lanchor and ranchor. Unlike lan-
              chor, the ranchor only  needs  to  match  the  trial  completion

              The  b  and B forms are similar to l and L with an empty anchor,
              but need to match only the beginning of the word on the  command
              line or trial completion, respectively.

              As  l, L, b and B, with the difference that the command line and
              trial completion patterns are anchored on the right side.   Here
              an  empty  ranchor  and the e and E forms force the match to the
              end of the command line or trial completion string.

       x:     This form is used to mark the end  of  matching  specifications:
              subsequent  specifications  are  ignored. In a single standalone
              list of specifications this has no use but where matching speci-
              fications  are  accumulated, such as from nested function calls,
              it can allow one function to override another.

       Each lpat, tpat or anchor is either an empty string or  consists  of  a
       sequence  of literal characters (which may be quoted with a backslash),
       question marks, character classes, and correspondence classes; ordinary
       shell patterns are not used.  Literal characters match only themselves,
       question marks match any character, and character classes are formed as
       for globbing and match any character in the given set.

       Correspondence classes are defined like character classes, but with two
       differences: they are delimited  by  a  pair  of  braces,  and  negated
       classes  are  not  allowed,  so  the characters ! and ^ have no special
       meaning directly after the opening brace.  They indicate that  a  range
       of characters on the line match a range of characters in the trial com-
       pletion, but (unlike ordinary character classes)  paired  according  to
       the  corresponding  position in the sequence.  For example, to make any
       ASCII lower case letter on the line match the corresponding upper  case
       letter  in  the trial completion, you can use `m:{a-z}={A-Z}' (however,
       see below for the recommended form for this).  More than  one  pair  of
       classes  can  occur,  in which case the first class before the = corre-
       sponds to the first after it, and so on.  If one  side  has  more  such
       classes than the other side, the superfluous classes behave like normal
       character classes.  In  anchor  patterns  correspondence  classes  also
       behave like normal character classes.

       The  standard  `[:name:]'  forms  described for standard shell patterns
       (see the section FILENAME GENERATION in zshexpn(1)) may appear in  cor-
       respondence classes as well as normal character classes.  The only spe-
       cial behaviour in correspondence classes is if the form on the left and
       the  form  on the right are each one of [:upper:], [:lower:].  In these
       cases the character in the word and the character on the line  must  be
       the  same  up  to  a  difference in case.  Hence to make any lower case
       character on the line match the corresponding upper case  character  in
       the trial completion you can use `m:{[:lower:]}={[:upper:]}'.  Although
       the matching system does not yet handle multibyte characters,  this  is
       likely to be a future extension, at which point this syntax will handle
       arbitrary alphabets; hence this form, rather than the use  of  explicit
       ranges,  is  the recommended form.  In other cases `[:name:]' forms are
       allowed.  If the two forms on the left and  right  are  the  same,  the
       characters  must  match exactly.  In remaining cases, the corresponding
       tests are applied to both characters, but they are not  otherwise  con-
       strained;  any  matching  character  in  one set goes with any matching
       character in the other set:  this is equivalent  to  the  behaviour  of
       ordinary character classes.

       The  pattern tpat may also be one or two stars, `*' or `**'. This means
       that the pattern on the command line can match any number of characters
       in  the trial completion. In this case the pattern must be anchored (on
       either side); in the case of a single star, the anchor then  determines
       how  much of the trial completion is to be included -- only the charac-
       ters up to the next appearance of the anchor will be matched. With  two
       stars, substrings matched by the anchor can be matched, too.


       The keys of the options association defined by the parameter module are
       the option names in all-lower-case form, without underscores, and with-
       out  the  optional  no at the beginning even though the builtins setopt
       and unsetopt understand option names with upper  case  letters,  under-
       scores,  and  the optional no.  The following alters the matching rules
       so that the prefix no and any underscore are  ignored  when  trying  to
       match  the  trial  completions  generated and upper case letters on the
       line match the corresponding lower case letters in the words:

              compadd -M 'L:|[nN][oO]= M:_= M:{[:upper:]}={[:lower:]}' - \

       The first part says that the pattern `[nN][oO]' at the  beginning  (the
       empty  anchor before the pipe symbol) of the string on the line matches
       the empty string in the list of words generated by  completion,  so  it
       will be ignored if present. The second part does the same for an under-
       score anywhere in the command line string, and the third part uses cor-
       respondence  classes  so that any upper case letter on the line matches
       the corresponding lower case letter in the word. The use of  the  upper
       case  forms  of  the specification characters (L and M) guarantees that
       what has already been typed on the command line (in particular the pre-
       fix no) will not be deleted.

       Note  that  the  use  of L in the first part means that it matches only
       when at the beginning of both the command line  string  and  the  trial
       completion.  I.e.,  the  string  `_NO_f'  would  not  be  completed  to
       `_NO_foo', nor would `NONO_f' be completed to `NONO_foo' because of the
       leading  underscore or the second `NO' on the line which makes the pat-
       tern fail even though they are otherwise  ignored.  To  fix  this,  one
       would  use `B:[nN][oO]=' instead of the first part. As described above,
       this matches at the beginning of the trial completion,  independent  of
       other  characters  or  substrings  at the beginning of the command line
       word which are ignored by the same or other match-specs.

       The second example makes completion case insensitive.  This is just the
       same  as in the option example, except here we wish to retain the char-
       acters in the list of completions:

              compadd -M 'm:{[:lower:]}={[:upper:]}' ...

       This makes lower case letters match their upper case counterparts.   To
       make upper case letters match the lower case forms as well:

              compadd -M 'm:{[:lower:][:upper:]}={[:upper:][:lower:]}' ...

       A  nice  example  for the use of * patterns is partial word completion.
       Sometimes you would like to  make  strings  like  `c.s.u'  complete  to
       strings like `comp.source.unix', i.e. the word on the command line con-
       sists of multiple parts, separated by a dot in this example, where each
       part  should  be  completed  separately -- note, however, that the case
       where each part of the word, i.e. `comp', `source' and `unix'  in  this
       example,  is to be completed from separate sets of matches is a differ-
       ent problem to be solved by the implementation of the  completion  wid-
       get.  The example can be handled by:

              compadd -M 'r:|.=* r:|=*' \
                - comp.sources.unix comp.sources.misc ...

       The  first  specification  says  that  lpat  is the empty string, while
       anchor is a dot; tpat is *, so this can match anything except  for  the
       `.'  from  the anchor in the trial completion word.  So in `c.s.u', the
       matcher sees `c', followed by the empty string, followed by the  anchor
       `.',  and  likewise  for the second dot, and replaces the empty strings
       before the anchors, giving `c[omp].s[ources].u[nix]',  where  the  last
       part of the completion is just as normal.

       With  the  pattern shown above, the string `c.u' could not be completed
       to `comp.sources.unix' because  the  single  star  means  that  no  dot
       (matched  by  the  anchor)  can  be  skipped.  By using two stars as in
       `r:|.=**', however, `c.u' could be  completed  to  `comp.sources.unix'.
       This  also shows that in some cases, especially if the anchor is a real
       pattern, like a character class, the form with two stars may result  in
       more matches than one would like.

       The second specification is needed to make this work when the cursor is
       in the middle of the string on the command line  and  the  option  COM-
       PLETE_IN_WORD  is  set. In this case the completion code would normally
       try to match trial completions that end with the  string  as  typed  so
       far,  i.e.  it  will  only insert new characters at the cursor position
       rather than at the end.  However in our example we would like the  code
       to recognise matches which contain extra characters after the string on
       the line (the `nix' in the example).   Hence  we  say  that  the  empty
       string  at  the end of the string on the line matches any characters at
       the end of the trial completion.

       More generally, the specification

              compadd -M 'r:|[.,_-]=* r:|=*' ...

       allows one to complete words with abbreviations before any of the char-
       acters  in the square brackets.  For example, to complete veryverylong-
       file.c rather than veryverylongheader.h with the above in  effect,  you
       can just type very.c before attempting completion.

       The  specifications  with  both a left and a right anchor are useful to
       complete partial words whose parts are not separated  by  some  special
       character.  For  example,  in  some places strings have to be completed
       that are formed `LikeThis' (i.e. the separate parts are determined by a
       leading  upper  case  letter) or maybe one has to complete strings with
       trailing numbers. Here one could use the  simple  form  with  only  one
       anchor as in:

              compadd -M 'r:|[[:upper:]0-9]=* r:|=*' LikeTHIS FooHoo 5foo123 5bar234

       But with this, the string `H' would neither complete to `FooHoo' nor to
       `LikeTHIS' because in each case there is an upper  case  letter  before
       the `H' and that is matched by the anchor. Likewise, a `2' would not be
       completed.  In  both   cases   this   could   be   changed   by   using
       `r:|[[:upper:]0-9]=**',  but  then `H' completes to both `LikeTHIS' and
       `FooHoo' and a `2' matches the other strings because characters can  be
       inserted  before  every  upper case letter and digit. To avoid this one
       would use:

              compadd -M 'r:[^[:upper:]0-9]||[[:upper:]0-9]=** r:|=*' \
                  LikeTHIS FooHoo foo123 bar234

       By using these two anchors, a `H' matches only upper case `H's that are
       immediately   preceded   by   something   matching   the   left  anchor
       `[^[:upper:]0-9]'. The effect is, of course, that `H' matches only  the
       string `FooHoo', a `2' matches only `bar234' and so on.

       When  using the completion system (see zshcompsys(1)), users can define
       match specifications that are to be used for specific contexts by using
       the  matcher and matcher-list styles. The values for the latter will be
       used everywhere.

       The first step is to define the widget:

              zle -C complete complete-word complete-files

       Then the widget can be bound to a key using the  bindkey  builtin  com-

              bindkey '^X\t' complete

       After that the shell function complete-files will be invoked after typ-
       ing control-X and TAB. The function should then generate  the  matches,

              complete-files () { compadd - * }

       This function will complete files in the current directory matching the
       current word.

       See attributes(5) for descriptions of the following attributes:

       |Availability   | shell/zsh        |
       |Stability      | Volatile         |
       This    software    was    built    from    source     available     at
       https://java.net/projects/solaris-userland.    The  original  community
       source     was      downloaded      from       http://downloads.source-

       Further information about this software can be found on the open source
       community website at http://www.zsh.org/.

zsh 5.3.1                      December 21, 2016                 ZSHCOMPWID(1)