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TLDR, How to enable#

Enable the feature with appRunner.UsePrompter() and / or appRunner.UseArgumentPrompter().


Check out the Spectre extensions for a richer prompting experience.

Use the AnsiTestConsole from the CommandDotNet.Spectre.Testingpackage to test the IAnsiConsole features work as expected. Example included in the link above.


Prompting is supported for two scenarios:

  1. Prompting for values from within the command method.
  2. Prompting for arguments where values were not provided.

Examples can be found in the prompts commands in the example app.

Prompting from within the command method#

When using appRunner.UsePrompter(), a parameter resolver will be registered for IPrompter. The IPrompter can prompt for a single value or a list.

[Command(Description = "knock-knock joke, demonstrating use of IPrompter")]
public void Knock(IConsole console, IPrompter prompter)
    if (prompter.TryPromptForValue("who's there?", out var answer1, out _))
        var answer2 = prompter.PromptForValue(
                $"{answer1} who?", out isCancellationRequested);

When prompting for a list, each entry is on a new line. Entering two empty lines will stop prompting for that value.

Use Ctrl+C to exit prompting, setting the out parameter isCancellationRequested to true.

Set the isPassword parameter to true to hide the input value.

Override the default IPrompter with the prompterFactory paramter...

prompterFactory: context => new MyPrompter(context)

Handling Ctrl+C#

Users may decide to cancel the operation mid-prompt. It's easy to forget this use-case when prompting for information. We've accounted for it by including the out bool isCancellationRequested parameter which will be true if a user entered Ctrl+C.

If you'd prefer to ignore it, just discard it like this: prompter.PromptForValue("knock knock", out _);

Prompting for missing arguments#

appRunner.UseArgumentPrompter() enables prompting for arguments where the ArgumentArity requires at least 1 value but none were provided.

Prompt text can be overridden using the argumentPrompterFactory parameter to construct a new ArgumentPrompter and providing a getPromptTextCallback.

This example shows how you could create a custom attribute to provide prompt text.

argumentPrompterFactory: (context, prompter) => new ArgumentPrompter(prompter, (ctx, argument) =>  

By default, the arguments that will be prompted are those where argument.Arity.RequiresAtLeastOne() and no value was provided. Arguments defined with nullable types or optional parameters will not be prompted. This behavior can be changed using the argumentFilter parameter.

argumentFilter: argument => 
    argument.CustomAttributes.Get<MyPromptAttribute>() != null 
    && argument.Arity.RequiresAtLeastOne() 
    && !argument.HasValueFromInputOrDefault()


Use the Password type to hide all characters for an argument.

public void Login(string username, Password password){...}
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