REXX Tips & Tricks, Version 2.80


Inf-HTML [About][Toc][Index] 0.9b (c) 1995 Peter Childs


Using meta chars


To use one of the OS/2 meta chars (e.g. |, <, >, ...) as normal, literal 
chars in OS/2 commands you can precede the meta char with a caret ^. This 
char, known as an "escape character", will keep the meta char from being 
interpreted by the shell. 
Thus, whereas the meta char ">" normally will redirect output from a 
program or other source, the two characters "^>" will be seen by the 
system as ">" with no special meaning. This is one way in which you could 
execute the following command without producing an error: 

 
  echo The objectID of the Connection folder is ^<WP_CONNECTIONSFOLDER^>.

To use a literal caret character you must use ^^. 
The other method to use these chars as literal chars is to surround the 
whole string with double quotes ". 
To prevent the CMD.EXE from interpreting the percent char % you can also 
use two of them: %%. That's also necessary if you want to use the percent 
char in a string enclosed in double quotes. 
To use filenames beginning with a dash (-) wihtout having the system 
interpret the filenames as command parameters, use either the absolute 
path or a relative path in your command. 
Example: 

 
  attrib -r .\-test.log

  attrib -r c:\temp\-test.log

  
Note:*  Users of alternate command shells such as 4OS2 should check to see 
        what char their command interpreter is using as the escape char 
        (CMD.EXE uses "^") before using the caret symbol.  Some command 
        interpreters allow the user to change the character used.  This is 
        usually controlled by a setting in an INI file or environment 
        variable. 
   

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