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pretty is the SmartEiffel pretty-printer (code beautifier) for Eiffel source files. In a normal installation, it is invoked by the command se pretty.


  • se pretty [options] <source_file>

The source_file argument must be some existing Eiffel source file path as for example "integer.e" or "lib/kernel/integer.e".

One can specify more than one file name at a time in order to apply the pretty command to all the specified files. All the corresponding files are rewritten in a pretty way.

There are four modes of pretty reformatting: -zen, -default, -end and -parano mode. Only one mode can be selected and -default is the default mode.

Options for pretty reformatting

-help Display a short summary of the command line syntax, as well as a complete list of pretty's options.
-verbose Display (an enormous amount of) information during the process: a complete list of files loaded, and so on.
-version Display the SmartEiffel version number.
-zen Produce as little as possible (i.e. very compact output). No end mark comment for routines, no end comments for statements (if, inspect, debug, ...).
-default The default mode. This is close to what we are using for our library.
-end The same format as -default but add end mark comments for all routines.
-parano Same format as -end but add end mark comments for all statements (if, inspect, debug, ...).
-no_warning Suppress output for all warning messages (error messages are still printed).

Security and Backup File

For the security of your sources files, a backup file is created before writing the new file. The backup file name is "foo.bak" when source file name is "foo.e". The backup file is written in the same directory as the source file.

If an old backup file already exists before pretty printing, the pretty command exits with an error message.

To be sure that the pretty-printing is correct, the output file is parsed again. Even if the second parsing gives no errors, backup file is not removed. Thus you can recompile and test your Eiffel program to check that the beautified files did not break anything, before removing the backup files yourself.