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Keyboard Input

Posted on 2004-08-31
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Last Modified: 2010-04-01
How do I get a console program to respond to, let's say CTRL-A, CTRL-H, etc etc?  I'm using "switch" to respond to keyboard commands (snippet is below) so if I can incorporate it into that it'd be great!  Also, how do I find out the various methods used to identify keyboard input?  I notice some people use 0x00, 0x46 as key values rather than "13", "65", etc.

switch (key)
{
case 13: <do this>;
break;
case 65: <do that>;
break;
}

Thanks,
Tony
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Comment
Question by:fattumsdad
3 Comments
 
LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:grg99
ID: 11951112
Depends on the OS. You'll have to turn off the usual line-buffering input mods, see your compiler manuals for something like "raw mode input".

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Accepted Solution

by:
bcladd earned 1200 total points
ID: 11952198
On MS Windows (VS 2003 .NET), you can use conio.h to have access to getch(). That will return a character code for each key pressed.

On XP Pro (and most DOS derived consoles) you should easily get the CTRL charactaters: Ctrl-A returns character 1 (0x01, 1, 001) and Ctrl-B returns character 2 (0x02, 2, 002) and so on.

As to how to specify the characters, using hex, decimal, or octal is basically the same thing. Since the result of getch() is based on the character typed, it should work with different keyboard arrangements (though you will have to examine what happens with character codes beyond the standard, US English, alphabet).

To see what keys generate what code you can try this code:

#include <conio.h>
using namespace std;

int main()
{
  char ch;
  while (ch = getch()) {

    cout << (int)ch << endl;
    if (ch == 'X') break;
  }
  return 0;
}

Hope this helps, -bcl
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:fattumsdad
ID: 11952603
bcl,

I appreciate the help, and the code works great.  Do you know of a website where I can get a list of hex, decimal, and octal characters and which keys they correspond to?

Regards,
Tony
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