New York University Faculty of Arts and Science College of Arts and Science Graduate School of Arts and Science

Computing Resources

expect (version 5.43)

Expect is a program that "talks" to other interactive programs according to a script. Following the script, Expect knows what can be expected from a program and what the correct response should be. An interpreted language provides branching and high-level control structures to direct the dialogue. In addition, the user can take control and interact directly when desired, afterward returning control to the script.

Expectk is a mixture of Expect and Tk. It behaves just like Expect and Tk's wish. Expect can also be used directly in C or C++ (that is, without Tcl). See libexpect(3).

The name "Expect" comes from the idea of send/expect sequences popularized by uucp, kermit and other modem control programs. However unlike uucp, Expect is generalized so that it can be run as a user-level command with any program and task in mind. Expect can actually talk to several programs at the same time.