wish (Unix shell)

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Original author(s)Mary Gray
Developer(s)Tcl Core Team and Maintainers
Initial releaseMay 20, 1988; 33 years ago (1988-05-20)
Stable release
8.6.10 / November 21, 2019; 19 months ago (2019-11-21)
Operating systemCross-platform
TypeUnix shell
LicenseBSD License

wish (Windowing Shell) is a Tcl interpreter extended with the Tk commands[1] available for Unix-like operating systems with X Window System, MacOS, Microsoft Windows[2][3] and Android.[4] It provides developers with the facility to create GUI widgets using the Tk toolkit in the Tcl programming language.[5][6]

wish is open-source and is currently part of the Tcl/Tk programming suite.


wish can be run without parameters. Then the % prompt is displayed and the interpreter awaits for commands entered interactively by the user. An empty window is opened in which the widgets created by user commands are displayed. This mode is suitable for experimenting.

More often wish is run with a name of a file containing a Tcl/Tk script as a parameter. It is also possible to run directly Tcl/Tk scripts; in Unix using the shebang construction; in Windows by associating the .tcl extension with the wish program.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Welch, Brent B.; Jones, Ken; Hobbs, Jeffrey (2003). Practical Programming in Tcl and Tk (4th ed.). Upper Saddle River: Pearson Education, Inc. - Prentice Hall PTTR. p. 25. ISBN 0-13-038560-3.
  2. ^ "ActiveTcl". ActiveState.
  3. ^ "Cygwin". 2017-05-04.
  4. ^ "AndroWish". 2013-12-04.
  5. ^ Gray, Mary (May 20, 1988), Wish – A Window-Based Shell for X (PDF), Computer Science Department, University of California, Berkeley, retrieved November 8, 2016
  6. ^ Flynt, Clif (2012-01-17). Tcl/Tk: A Developer's Guide (3rd ed.). Elsevier: Morgan Kaufman. p. 17. ISBN 978-0-12-384717-1.

External links[edit]