Under UNIX, SICStus Prolog can be started from one of the shells. On other platforms, it is normally started by clicking on an icon. However, it is often convenient to run SICStus Prolog under GNU Emacs or the SPIDER IDE (see SPIDER), instead. A GNU Emacs interface for SICStus Prolog is described later (see Emacs Interface). From a UNIX or Windows shell, SICStus Prolog can be started by invoking the sicstus command-line tool, using the full path to sicstus unless its location has been added to the shell's path.
Under UNIX, a saved-state file can be executed directly by typing:
% file argument...
This is equivalent to:
% sicstus -r file [-- argument...]
Please note: Saved-states do not store the complete path of the binary
sp.exe. Instead, they call the main executable using the version specific name sicstus-4.2.3, which is assumed to be found in the shell's path. If there are several versions of SICStus installed, it is up to the user to make sure that the correct start-script is found.
Notice that the flags are not available when executing saved-states—all the command-line arguments are treated as Prolog arguments.
The development system checks that a valid SICStus license exists and, unless the --nologo option was used, responds with a message of identification and the prompt ‘| ?- ’ as soon as it is ready to accept input, thus:
SICStus 4.2.3 ... Licensed to SICS | ?-
At this point the top-level is expecting input of a query. You cannot type in clauses or directives immediately (see Inserting Clauses). While typing in a query, the prompt (on following lines) becomes ‘ ’. That is, the ‘| ?- ’ appears only for the first line of the query, and subsequent lines are indented.