Updated: 09/03/2019 by Computer Hope

Goto may refer to any of the following:

1. Goto is a programming statement that forwards a user to a different section of the program. Below is a basic example of how a goto may be used in Perl.

Goto example

use strict;
print "Please type your password: ";
my $password = <STDIN>;
if ($password =~ /secret/i) { 
 print "Success";
else { 
 goto start;

In the above example, the program prompts the user for a password until he or she enters "secret" as the password. To repeat the prompt a "start:" label is placed at the start of the script. If "secret" is not entered, the script uses the goto statement to go to the start label and repeat the prompt.


Although a goto statement is an easy method of moving around a program, it's considered bad practice to use excessively because it creates spaghetti code. However, in some cases, a goto may be the only option or the best solution. We feel that it's best left to the programmer to decide when to use the goto statement and stay away from the endless debate.

2. Goto is also an MS-DOS and Windows command line command. See our goto command page for further information.

3. Go to is a feature commonly found in text editors and IDEs that allows the user to go to a specific line of text. For example, in a supported program, you could press the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+G to open the Go To Line box and type "100" to go to the 100th line.

Control flow, Go, JSR, Loop, Programming terms