Octave normally keeps track of the commands you type so that you can
recall previous commands to edit or execute them again. When you exit
Octave, the most recent commands you have typed, up to the number
specified by the variable
history_size, are saved in a file.
When Octave starts, it loads an initial list of commands from the file
named by the variable
Here are the commands for simple browsing and searching the history list.
On most terminals, you can also use the arrow keys in place of C-p and C-n to move through the history list.
In addition to the keyboard commands for moving through the history list, Octave provides three functions for viewing, editing, and re-running chunks of commands from the history list.
If invoked with no arguments,
historydisplays a list of commands that you have executed. Valid options are:
- Write the current history to the file file. If the name is omitted, use the default history file (normally ~/.octave_hist).
- Read the file file, replacing the current history list with its contents. If the name is omitted, use the default history file (normally ~/.octave_hist).
- Only display the most recent n lines of history.
- Don't number the displayed lines of history. This is useful for cutting and pasting commands if you are using the X Window System.
For example, to display the five most recent commands that you have typed without displaying line numbers, use the command history -q 5.
If invoked with no arguments,
edit_historyallows you to edit the history list using the editor named by the variable
EDITOR. The commands to be edited are first copied to a temporary file. When you exit the editor, Octave executes the commands that remain in the file. It is often more convenient to use
edit_historyto define functions rather than attempting to enter them directly on the command line. By default, the block of commands is executed as soon as you exit the editor. To avoid executing any commands, simply delete all the lines from the buffer before exiting the editor.
edit_historycommand takes two optional arguments specifying the history numbers of first and last commands to edit. For example, the commandedit_history 13
extracts all the commands from the 13th through the last in the history list. The commandedit_history 13 169
only extracts commands 13 through 169. Specifying a larger number for the first command than the last command reverses the list of commands before placing them in the buffer to be edited. If both arguments are omitted, the previous command in the history list is used.
edit_history, except that the editor is not invoked, and the commands are simply executed as they appear in the history list.
A string naming the editor to use with the
edit_historycommand. If the environment variable
EDITORis set when Octave starts, its value is used as the default. Otherwise,
EDITORis set to
This variable specifies the name of the file used to store command history. The default value is
"~/.octave_hist", but may be overridden by the environment variable
This variable specifies how many entries to store in the history file. The default value is
1024, but may be overridden by the environment variable