I am looking for a way to passing arguments into a WL script when WL run in batch modes. The test script is:

#!/usr/bin/env wolframscript

(*generate "num" samples of a mixed distribution*)
num = ToExpression[$ScriptCommandLine];
Print["num ", num];
Print /@ RandomVariate[
  MixtureDistribution[{1, 2}, {NormalDistribution[1, 0.2], 
    NormalDistribution[3, 0.1]}], num, WorkingPrecision -> 50]

The output file:

Mathematica 11.3.0 Kernel for Linux x86 (64-bit)
Copyright 1988-2018 Wolfram Research, Inc.
In[2]:= num {}

Out[3]= True

Out[4]= 1.2216923087229409686348818698669268506575506911553

And the sh script :

#$ -cwd
/gpfs0/system/Mathematica/11.3/Executables/math < test.wls 3 > test_out.txt

It is looks that I do not succeed to pass the arguments to the script. Any suggestion on how to do it correctly?

  • $\begingroup$ Hmm, I think there are some fundamental misunderstandings going on here which make it difficult for me to understand what you even want to do. Can you give information on JUST 1) the code you want to run in the script, 2) what general arguments will look like/what form they're actually in? Then I'd be able to attempt a ground up solution. $\endgroup$
    – ktm
    Jul 31, 2019 at 18:27
  • $\begingroup$ (although showing what you've tried so far is always welcome and I don't want to discourage that) $\endgroup$
    – ktm
    Jul 31, 2019 at 18:27
  • $\begingroup$ thank you @user6014 I can't post my code, but I will try to explain my problem. I try to run simulations, and each instance of the simulation will process different instance of the dataset, each dataset has a different id (integer). I want an implement 'for' in "sh" script and run all instances of the dataset, using one "sh" script. So it is the reason why I have to pass an integer from into WL script. $\endgroup$ Jul 31, 2019 at 19:07
  • $\begingroup$ What does the data that is actually being passed look like? Is it a line in a file? Is each piece of data its own file? $\endgroup$
    – ktm
    Jul 31, 2019 at 19:09
  • $\begingroup$ @user6014 The data that will be passed is an integer. Yes, it is a line in code as such this "simulation=y" (I want to pass y into the file), each piece of data its unique file. I am using the parameter "y" as a unique identifier, and each simulation has a unique code, dataset. $\endgroup$ Jul 31, 2019 at 19:42

1 Answer 1


Okay, so this is what your script might want to look like:

#!/usr/bin/env wolframscript

num = ToExpression[$ScriptCommandLine[[2]]];

    "~/Desktop/wstest/test"<>DateString[{"Hour", "Minute", "Second", "MillisecondShort"}]<>".txt"
        MixtureDistribution[{1, 2},
            {NormalDistribution[1, Rationalize[.2]], NormalDistribution[3, Rationalize[.1]]}
        WorkingPrecision -> 50

And you can call it with

test.wls 3

from your shell (a chmod +x test.wls might be necessary). The result is a .txt file in the specified folder (with a timestamp added to make it unique) of the form


Your major mistakes:

1) ToExpression[$ScriptCommandLine] needs a position specifier to actually grab the specific argument

2) you were trying to run this script in the math executable. That's not needed, it can just run as its own executable against wolframscript

3) I think you were overcomplicating things with the < and > redirection. With the information you've provided so far, that shouldn't be necessary.

Let me know if you have got further questions.

  • $\begingroup$ Thank you for the answer, and sorry for the delay in response. Please take a look at the output file to line 2,num =ToExpression[$ScriptCommandLine]; Print["num ", num]; The ToExpression[$ScriptCommandLine] is empty, and I don't have any idea why I can't pass any argument to the script $\endgroup$ Aug 6, 2019 at 4:11
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I succeed to pass the arguments by using '$CommandLine' $\endgroup$ Aug 6, 2019 at 4:44
  • $\begingroup$ @KirilDanilchenko So it all worked? $\endgroup$
    – ktm
    Aug 6, 2019 at 18:29
  • $\begingroup$ yes its work, thank you a lot $\endgroup$ Aug 7, 2019 at 3:02
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @KirilDanilchenko You can accept a correct answer ! $\endgroup$
    – ktm
    Aug 7, 2019 at 16:53

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