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overlay [-# spawn_id] [-# spawn_id] [...] program [args]

Arguments Description
-# spawn_id Spawn_ids are mapped to file identifiers for the new program to inherit.  For example, the following line runs chess and allows it to be controlled by the current process - say, a chess master. 
overlay -0 $spawn_id -1 $spawn_id -2 $spawn_id chess
args optional arguments to the program to overlay.

A bare hyphen argument forces a hyphen in front of the command name as if it was a login shell.  All spawn_ids are closed except for those named as arguments.  These are mapped onto the named file identifiers. 

This is more efficient than “interact -u”, however, it sacrifices the ability to do programmed interaction since the Expect process is no longer in control. 

Note that no controlling terminal is provided.  Thus, if you disconnect or remap standard input, programs that do job control (shells, login, etc) will not function properly. 


This material is excerpted from the O'Reilly book "Exploring Expect" by Don Libes, and can also be found in the manpage on many UNIX platforms. 


 

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