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Re: [Groff] The future redux

From: Deri James
Subject: Re: [Groff] The future redux
Date: Wed, 26 Feb 2014 16:08:45 +0000
User-agent: KMail/4.10.5 (Linux/3.10.28-desktop-1.mga3; KDE/4.10.5; x86_64; ; )

On Wed 26 Feb 2014 10:19:07 Mike Bianchi wrote:
> I cannot find  man.config  or any reference to it in Debian 7.4 (wheezy).
>         2.6.2   2012-06-18   MAN(1)
> Only  manpath.config .
> What am I missing?
> -- 
>  Mike Bianchi
>  Foveal Systems
>  973 822-2085

It looks like on debian the answer is to create a shell script called 
"mandb_tfmt" to do exactly what you want when man -t is used. Unfortunately my 
only version of debian is on a sheevaplug which is not up to running an X 
server, but the man page says:-

       A formatting pipeline is formed from the filters and the primary 
formatter (nroff or  [tg]roff  with  -t)  and  executed.
       Alternatively,  if  an  executable program mandb_nfmt (or mandb_tfmt 
with -t) exists in the man tree root, it is executed
       instead.  It gets passed the manual source file, the preprocessor 
string, and optionally the device specified with -T  or
       -E as arguments.

So it should be possible to achieve the same sort of thing. I believe the 
difference is that my Mageia uses man version 1.6g and debian (6.0.3) uses 
man-db 2.5.7. 

I also found this:-

5.5. Format scripts
It is very likely that alternate systems manual pages may require non-standard 
macro packages or possibly
even special pre-processors. To tackle such problems, special format scripts 
may be created on a per man-
ual hierarchy basis.

If the file
exists and is executable, it is expected to be able to correctly format a 
manual page originating from <man-
ual_hierarchy> to its standard output. It will be supplied with either two or 
three arguments:

• manual page filename
• pre-processor string
• ouput device (optional)

Similarly, if the option −T<device> or −t was supplied to man and the file
exists and is executable, it will be used in the same way.

An example of such a script, supplied by Markus Armbruster <address@hidden>, 
who provided sup-
port for external formatter scripts, can be found as tools/mandb_[nt]fmt
The script can be used as both a NROFF and TROFF/GROFF format script and can be 
installed as
mandb_nfmt and hard linked to mandb_tfmt after modification appropriate for 
your particular site.

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