C: getopt_long example: Accessing command line arguments

A command can have both long and short options. getopt is useful only for short options, that are nothing but options of one char (character) long. To support both short and long options like

  1. rectangle -a -l 12 -b 34: will calculate the area of the rectangle
  2. square -p -l 12 -b 34: will calculate the perimeter of the rectangle
  3. rectangle -a -p -l 12 -b 34: will calculate the area and perimeter of the rectangle
  4. rectangle –area –length 12 –breadth 34: will calculate the area of the rectangle
  5. square –perimeter –length 12 –breadth 34: will calculate the perimeter of the rectangle
  6. rectangle –area –perimeter –length 12 –breadth 34: will calculate the area and perimeter of the rectangle

In the following program, the use of getopt_long is shown

#include <unistd.h>
#include <stdio.h>
#include <stdlib.h>
#include <getopt.h>

/** Program to calculate the area and perimeter of 
 * a rectangle using command line arguments
 */
void print_usage() {
    printf("Usage: rectangle [ap] -l num -b num\n");
}

int main(int argc, char *argv[]) {
    int opt= 0;
    int area = -1, perimeter = -1, breadth = -1, length =-1;

    //Specifying the expected options
    //The two options l and b expect numbers as argument
    static struct option long_options[] = {
        {"area",      no_argument,       0,  'a' },
        {"perimeter", no_argument,       0,  'p' },
        {"length",    required_argument, 0,  'l' },
        {"breadth",   required_argument, 0,  'b' },
        {0,           0,                 0,  0   }
    };

    int long_index =0;
    while ((opt = getopt_long(argc, argv,"apl:b:", 
                   long_options, &long_index )) != -1) {
        switch (opt) {
             case 'a' : area = 0;
                 break;
             case 'p' : perimeter = 0;
                 break;
             case 'l' : length = atoi(optarg); 
                 break;
             case 'b' : breadth = atoi(optarg);
                 break;
             default: print_usage(); 
                 exit(EXIT_FAILURE);
        }
    }
    if (length == -1 || breadth ==-1) {
        print_usage();
        exit(EXIT_FAILURE);
    }

    // Calculate the area
    if (area == 0) {
        area = length * breadth;
        printf("Area: %d\n",area);
    }

    // Calculate the perimeter
    if (perimeter == 0) {
        perimeter = 2 * (length + breadth);
        printf("Perimeter: %d\n",perimeter);
    }
    return 0;
}
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