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Manual Reference Pages  -  LISP (1)


lisp - CMU Common Lisp programming environment


Core File Searching
See Also


lisp [input-files] [switch-list]


lisp Starts up CMU Common Lisp. If switch-list is empty, then Lisp will enter a read-eval-print loop using stdin, stdout and stderr. The optional input-files provide operands for some switches. These switches are defined:

-core filename
  Specifies the suspended Lisp image (or ‘core file’) to start up.
-lib libpath
  A colon-separated list of directories to be used for the library: search-list.
-batch Causes Lisp to run in batch mode, where all input is directed from standard-input. A unix return code of 0 is returned upon encountering an EOF, while any unhandled error condition will cause an immediate exit with a return code of 1, instead of entering the debugger.
-quiet Causes Lisp to start up silently, disabling printing of the herald, and causing most unnecessary noise, like GC messages, load messages, etc. to be suppressed.
  Requires an argument that should be the number of megabytes (1048576 bytes) that should be allocated to the heap. If not specified, a platform-specific default is used. The actual maximum allowed heap size is platform-specific. Currently, this option is only available for the x86 and sparc platforms.
-edit Causes Lisp to enter the Hemlock editor. A file to edit may be specified by placing the name of the file between the program name (usually ‘lisp’) and the first switch.
-eval expression
  Evaluates the specified Lisp expression during the start up sequence. The value of the form will not be printed unless it is wrapped in a form that does output.
-init filename
  Specifies the name of a file containing user customizations that is to be loaded each time Lisp starts up (default ~/init or ~/.cmucl-init.) The loader loads any existing compiled binary, or the ".lisp" source if none.
-hinit filename
  Similar to -init, but specifies the name of the Hemlock init file (default ‘~/hemlock-init’ or ~/.hemlock-init), which is loaded only when Hemlock is started.
-noinit Suppresses loading of the init file, and also prevents -edit from loading the Hemlock init file.
-nositeinit Suppresses loading of the site-init site specific initialization file.
-load filename
  Loads the specified file into Lisp before entering Lisp’s read-eval-print loop.
-slave editor-name
  Specifies that Lisp should start up as a slave Lisp and try to connect to an editor Lisp. The name of the editor to connect to must be specified. To find the editor’s name, use the Hemlock ‘Accept Slave Connections’ command. editor-name is of the form ‘machine-name:socket’, where machine-name is the internet host name for the machine and socket is the decimal number of the socket to connect to.
  Enables printing of messages indicating how CMUCL is searching for its core file. This is useful if CMUCL is not finding its core file for some reason.
-fpu fpu-mode
  This option is only available on x86 systems. This option takes the values x87, sse2, or auto, with auto being the default. With the default value, CMUCL will check to see if the machine running CMUCL supports SSE2 or not. If so, the SSE2 core file is automatically selected and used. If not, the x87 core file is used. With this option, the user can override the detection and select a core. (Note that you cannot run the SSE2 core on a chip that doesn’t not have SSE2. But the x87 core can run on any machine.)
-- If this option is given, CMUCL’s argument processing is stopped, and anything after "--" is placed in EXT:*COMMAND-LINE-APPLICATION-ARGUMENTS*. This allows the application to its own processing of any special options.


CMUCLLIB This variable points to the ‘lib/’ directory holding ‘lisp.core’ and other files used by Lisp at run-time. This can be overridden by using the -lib commandline option.
CMUCLCORE This variable holds the path to the ‘lisp.core’ that that should be used. This can be overridden by using the -core commandline option.
  [SunOS only] If ‘df /tmp’ shows ‘swap’ as the filesystem for the ‘/tmp’ directory, then you have a "tmpfs" filesystem. In this case, you must setenv CMUCL_EMPTYFILE to point into a pathname on a non-TMPFS filesystem that can be used instead of ‘/tmp/empty’.
XKEYSYMDB In order to use Motif (and the graphical debugger) with X servers from non-OSF vendors (like Sun) you may need to set the environment variable XKEYSYMDB to point to the file ‘lib/XKeysymDB’. Otherwise, you will get many error messages every time a new connection is opened to the CMU CL motifd. This file is read by the X11R5 Xt in order to augment the keysym database with certain OSF vendor keysyms that Motif wants to use.


When no core file is specified (either by the CMUCLCORE environment variable or by the -core option), CMUCL will search in various places to find a possible core file.

When the environment variable CMUCLLIB is set or the -lib option is given, the lisp core file is searched in the places specified therein. This is a colon-separated list of directories, just like PATH. This list of directories is searched in order for a file named ‘lisp.core’. The first one found will be the core to be used.

When the CMUCLLIB is not set and -lib is not given, a set of default paths is used to initialize the library: search-list, and this list is also used to search for the core file. Let the lisp C executable be located at ‘<bin>/lisp’. Then the following directories are searched for the core file:



The following pathnames are specified relative to the directory where CMU CL is installed, e.g. /usr/local.

  Various postscript and text documentation files.
bin/lisp The lisp startup program. This directory should be in PATH.
  The suspended Lisp image.
  Site specific initialization (see README file.)
  Hemlock files.
  X11 fonts for Hemlock.
  Database of X Keysym names for Motif.
  Script used by LOAD-FOREIGN to run "ld" on some platforms.
  User customization files loaded at lisp startup; either name is acceptable. Init files can be compiled.
  Hemlock initialization file, loaded when Hemlock starts.


cmucl(1), README
The ‘‘CMU Common Lisp User’s Manual’’,
the ‘‘Hemlock User’s Manual’’, and
the ‘‘Hemlock Command Implementor’s Manual’’


Consult for support information, including mechanisms for bug reporting. Please consult your local CMU CL maintainer or Common Lisp expert if any to verify that a problem really is a bug before reporting it.

Known problems with this version:
-- Detection of stack overflow is not very graceful. You get many "map failure" errors on stderr.
-- If file descriptors are used up, then Lisp will die.
-- Several proposed ANSI Common Lisp (CLtL II) features are not implemented: Any CLOS features not implemented by PCL, and features added since the first ANSI draft.
-- The interpreter’s pre-processing freezes in the macro definitions in effect at the time an interpreted function is defined.

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