Interactive prompts from command line?

Posted on 2002-04-24
Last Modified: 2007-12-19
Hi there,

I have written a program that runs on a Unix commandline. Sadly I have to parse it over 15 arguments when I run it. Is there anyway that I can in my main method get the program to run and then print line a prompt statement telling a user which parameter to enter so that I can then pump this into a variable for use? ie on the command line I want to see the following:

>java comparator --run the program
>Please enter Value 1: 3 --user enters this value
>Please enter output dir: c:\oput\ --user enters this
>Please.... etc etc

I assume I will need some kind of While statement?

Does anyone have a clue what i'm on about? Can anyone help?

Many Thanks...............
Question by:luinzi
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LVL 16

Expert Comment

ID: 6965355
you can use

System.out.print("Please enter Value 1:");;

Author Comment

ID: 6965371
Thats great but I want to enter strings.

This is what I have done so far:

          InputStream f;

          String a;

          while ((a = != null)
               System.out.println("Enter Value: ");

          System.out.println("Value entered was: "+ a);

It thinks I'm trying to enter an integer?

C:\jdk1.3\bin\ incompatible types
found   : int
required: java.lang.String
          while ((a = != null)
1 error

I don't even know if this is the right way of going about it? How would I use the
LVL 16

Expert Comment

ID: 6965398
for reading you can use

BufferedReader reader = new BufferedReader(new InputStreamReader(;
String st = reader.readLine();
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LVL 16

Accepted Solution

heyhey_ earned 70 total points
ID: 6965401
of course you must add some exception handling code

      BufferedReader reader = new BufferedReader(new InputStreamReader(;
      String name = reader.readLine();
    catch (IOException x)

Author Comment

ID: 6965413
Got it working! Thanks..................
LVL 16

Expert Comment

ID: 6965415
so why did you give me grade B ?

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