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GROFF(1)							      GROFF(1)

       groff - front-end for the groff document	formatting system

       groff [-abcegilpstzCEGNRSUVXZ] [-d cs] [-f fam] [-F dir]	[-I dir]
	     [-L arg] [-m name]	[-M dir] [-n num] [-o list] [-P	arg] [-r cn]
	     [-T dev] [-w name]	[-W name] [file	...]
       groff -h	| --help
       groff -v	| --version [option ...]

       The  command line is parsed according to	the usual GNU convention.  The
       whitespace between a command line option	and its	argument is  optional.
       Options can be grouped behind a single -	(minus character).  A filename
       of - (minus character) denotes the standard input.

       This document describes the groff program, the main front-end  for  the
       groff document formatting system.  The groff program and	macro suite is
       the implementation of a roff(7) system within the free software collec-
       tion  GNU  <>.	  The groff system has all features of
       the classical roff, but adds many extensions.

       The groff program allows	to control the whole groff system  by  command
       line  options.	This  is  a  great simplification in comparison	to the
       classical case (which uses pipes	only).

       As groff	is a wrapper program for troff both programs share  a  set  of
       options.	 But the groff program has some	additional, native options and
       gives a new meaning to some troff options.  On the other	hand, not  all
       troff options can be fed	into groff.

   Native groff	Options
       The  following options either do	not exist for troff or are differently
       interpreted by groff.

       -e     Preprocess with eqn.

       -g     Preprocess with grn.

       -G     Preprocess with grap.

       -h --help
	      Print a help message.

       -I dir Add search directory for soelim(1).  This	option implies the  -s

       -l     Send  the	output to a spooler program for	printing.  The command
	      that should be used for this is specified	by the	print  command
	      in the device description	file, see groff_font(5).  If this com-
	      mand is not present, the output is piped into the	lpr(1) program
	      by default.  See options -L and -X.

       -L arg Pass  arg	 to  the spooler program.  Several arguments should be
	      passed with a separate -L	option each.  Note that	groff does not
	      prepend -	(a minus sign) to arg before passing it	to the spooler

       -N     Don't allow newlines within eqn delimiters.  This	is the same as
	      the -N option in eqn.

       -p     Preprocess with pic.

       -P -option
       -P -option -P arg
	      Pass  -option  or	 -option arg to	the postprocessor.  The	option
	      must be specified	with the necessary preceding minus sign(s) `-'
	      or `--' because groff does not prepend any dashes	before passing
	      it to the	postprocessor.	For example, to	pass a	title  to  the
	      gxditview	postprocessor, the shell command

	      sh# groff	-X -P -title -P	'groff it' foo

	      is equivalent to

	      sh# groff	-X -Z foo | gxditview -title 'groff it'	-

       -R     Preprocess with refer.  No mechanism is provided for passing ar-
	      guments to refer because most refer options have equivalent lan-
	      guage  elements  that can	be specified within the	document.  See
	      refer(1) for more	details.

       -s     Preprocess with soelim.

       -S     Safer mode.  Pass	the -S option to pic and disable the following
	      troff requests: .open, .opena, .pso, .sy,	and .pi.  For security
	      reasons, safer mode is enabled by	default.

       -t     Preprocess with tbl.

       -T dev Set output device	to dev.	 The  possible	values	in  groff  are
	      ascii,  cp1047,  dvi, html, latin1, lbp, lj4, ps,	utf8, X75, and
	      X100.  Additionally, X75-12 and X100-12 are available for	 docu-
	      ments which use 12pt as the base document	size.  The default de-
	      vice is ps.

       -U     Unsafe mode.  Reverts to the (old) unsafe	behaviour; see	option

       -v --version
	      Output version information of groff and of all programs that are
	      run by it; that is, the given command line is parsed in the usu-
	      al way, passing -v to all	subprograms.

       -V     Output  the  pipeline  that  would be run	by groff (as a wrapper
	      program),	but do not execute it.

       -X     Use gxditview  instead  of  using	 the  usual  postprocessor  to
	      (pre)view	a document.  The printing spooler behavior as outlined
	      with options -l and -L is	carried	over to	gxditview(1) by	deter-
	      mining an	argument for the -printCommand option of gxditview(1).
	      This sets	the default Print action and  the  corresponding  menu
	      entry  to	 that value.  -X only produces good results with -Tps,
	      -TX75, -TX75-12, -TX100, and -TX100-12.  The default  resolution
	      for  previewing  -Tps  output  is	 75dpi;	this can be changed by
	      passing the -resolution option to	gxditview, for example

	      sh# groff	-X -P-resolution -P100 -man foo.1

       -z     Suppress output generated	by troff.  Only	error messages will be

       -Z     Do  not  postprocess the output of troff that is normally	called
	      automatically by groff.  This will print the intermediate	output
	      to standard output; see groff_out(5).

   Transparent Options
       The  following  options	are transparently handed over to the formatter
       program troff that is called by groff subsequently.  These options  are
       described in more detail	in troff(1).

       -a     ascii approximation of output.

       -b     backtrace	on error or warning.

       -c     disable color output.

       -C     enable compatibility mode.

       -d cs
       -d name=s
	      define string.

       -E     disable troff error messages.

       -f fam set default font family.

       -F dir set path for font	DESC files.

       -i     process standard input after the specified input files.

       -m name
	      include	macro	file   name.tmac   (or;  see  also

       -M dir path for macro files.

       -n num number the first page num.

       -o list
	      output only pages	in list.

       -r cn
       -r name=n
	      set number register.

       -w name
	      enable warning name.

       -W name
	      disable warning name.

       The groff system	implements the infrastructure of classical  roff;  see
       roff(7) for a survey on how a roff system works in general.  Due	to the
       front-end programs available within the groff system,  using  groff  is
       much easier than	classical roff.	 This section gives an overview	of the
       parts that constitute the groff system.	It  complements	 roff(7)  with
       groff-specific  features.   This	 section can be	regarded as a guide to
       the documentation around	the groff system.

       The groff program is a wrapper around the troff(1) program.  It	allows
       to  specify the preprocessors by	command	line options and automatically
       runs the	postprocessor that is appropriate  for	the  selected  device.
       Doing  so,  the sometimes tedious piping	mechanism of classical roff(7)
       can be avoided.

       The grog(1) program can be used for guessing the	correct	groff  command
       line to format a	file.

       The  groffer(1)	program	 is an allround-viewer for groff files and man

       The groff preprocessors are reimplementations  of  the  classical  pre-
       processors  with	 moderate  extensions.	 The preprocessors distributed
       with the	groff package are

       eqn(1) for mathematical formulae,

       grn(1) for including gremlin(1) pictures,

       pic(1) for drawing diagrams,

	      for bibliographic	references,

	      for including macro files	from standard locations,


       tbl(1) for tables.

       Besides these, there are	some internal preprocessors that are automati-
       cally run with some devices.  These aren't visible to the user.

   Macro Packages
       Macro  packages	can be included	by option -m.  The groff system	imple-
       ments and extends all classical macro packages in a compatible way  and
       adds  some packages of its own.	Actually, the following	macro packages
       come with groff:

       man    The traditional man page format; see groff_man(7).   It  can  be
	      specified	on the command line as -man or -m man.

       mandoc The  general  package for	man pages; it automatically recognizes
	      whether the documents uses  the  man  or	the  mdoc  format  and
	      branches	to  the	corresponding macro package.  It can be	speci-
	      fied on the command line as -mandoc or -m	mandoc.

       mdoc   The BSD-style man	page format; see  groff_mdoc(7).   It  can  be
	      specified	on the command line as -mdoc or	-m mdoc.

       me     The  classical  me  document format; see groff_me(7).  It	can be
	      specified	on the command line as -me or -m me.

       mm     The classical mm document	format;	see groff_mm(7).   It  can  be
	      specified	on the command line as -mm or -m mm.

       ms     The  classical  ms  document format; see groff_ms(7).  It	can be
	      specified	on the command line as -ms or -m ms.

       www    HTML-like	macros for inclusion in	arbitrary groff	documents; see

       Details	on  the	naming of macro	files and their	placement can be found
       in groff_tmac(5).

   Programming Language
       General concepts	common to all roff programming languages are described
       in roff(7).

       The  groff extensions to	the classical troff language are documented in

       The groff language as a whole is	described in  the  (still  incomplete)
       groff  info  file;  a  short  (but  complete) reference can be found in

       The central roff	formatter within the groff  system  is	troff(1).   It
       provides	the features of	both the classical troff and nroff, as well as
       the groff extensions.  The command line option -C switches  troff  into
       compatibility  mode  which  tries  to emulate classical roff as much as

       There is	a shell	script nroff(1)	that emulates the behavior of  classi-
       cal  nroff.   It	tries to automatically select the proper output	encod-
       ing, according to the current locale.

       The formatter program generates intermediate output; see	 groff_out(7).

       In  roff,  the  output  targets	are called devices.  A device can be a
       piece of	hardware, e.g. a printer, or a software	file format.  A	device
       is specified by the option -T.  The groff devices are as	follows.

       ascii  Text output using	the ascii(7) character set.

       cp1047 Text  output  using the EBCDIC code page IBM cp1047 (e.g.	OS/390

       nippon Text output using	the Japanese-EUC character set.

       dvi    TeX DVI format.

       html   HTML output.

       ascii8 For typewriter-like devices.  Unlike ascii, this device is 8 bit
	      clean.   This  device  is	intended to be used for	codesets other
	      than ASCII and ISO-8859-1.

       latin1 Text output using	the ISO	Latin-1	(ISO  8859-1)  character  set;
	      see iso_8859_1(7).

       lbp    Output  for  Canon  CAPSL	printers (LBP-4	and LBP-8 series laser

       lj4    HP LaserJet4-compatible (or other	PCL5-compatible) printers.

       ps     PostScript output; suitable for  printers	 and  previewers  like

       utf8   Text  output  using  the	Unicode	(ISO 10646) character set with
	      UTF-8 encoding; see unicode(7).

       X75    75dpi  X	Window	System	output	suitable  for  the  previewers
	      xditview(1x)  and	 gxditview(1).	 A variant for a 12pt document
	      base font	is X75-12.

       X100   100dpi X	Window	System	output	suitable  for  the  previewers
	      xditview(1x)  and	 gxditview(1).	 A variant for a 12pt document
	      base font	is X100-12.

       The postprocessor to be used for	a device is specified by  the  postpro
       command in the device description file; see groff_font(5).  This	can be
       overridden with the -X option.

       The default device is ps.

       groff provides 3	hardware postprocessors:

	      for some Canon printers,

	      for printers compatible to the HP	LaserJet 4 and PCL5,

	      for text output using various encodings, e.g.  on	 text-oriented
	      terminals	or line-printers.

       Today,  most  printing  or drawing hardware is handled by the operating
       system, by device drivers, or by	software interfaces, usually accepting
       PostScript.  Consequently, there	isn't an urgent	need for more hardware
       device postprocessors.

       The groff software devices for conversion into other document file for-
       mats are

	      for the DVI format,

	      for HTML format,

	      for PostScript.

       Combined	 with  the  many existing free conversion tools	this should be
       sufficient to convert a troff document into virtually any existing data

       The following utility programs around groff are available.

	      Add  information	to  troff  font	description files for use with

	      Create font description files for	PostScript device.

	      General viewer program for groff files and man pages.

	      The groff	X viewer, the GNU version of xditview.

	      Create font description files for	lj4 device.

	      Make inverted index for bibliographic databases.

	      Search bibliographic databases.

	      Interactively search bibliographic databases.

	      Translate	a PostScript font in .pfb format to ASCII.

	      Create font description files for	TeX DVI	device.

	      roff viewer distributed with X window.

       Normally, the path separator in the following environment variables  is
       the  colon; this	may vary depending on the operating system.  For exam-
       ple, DOS	and Windows use	a semicolon instead.

	      This search path,	followed by $PATH, will	be used	 for  commands
	      that are executed	by groff.  If it is not	set then the directory
	      where the	groff binaries were installed is prepended to PATH.

	      When there is a need to run different  roff  implementations  at
	      the same time groff provides the facility	to prepend a prefix to
	      most of its programs that	could provoke name  clashings  at  run
	      time  (default  is to have none).	 Historically, this prefix was
	      the character g, but it can be anything.	 For  example,	gtroff
	      stood  for groff's troff,	gtbl for the groff version of tbl.  By
	      setting GROFF_COMMAND_PREFIX to different	values,	the  different
	      roff installations can be	addressed.  More exactly, if it	is set
	      to prefix	xxx then groff as a wrapper  program  will  internally
	      call  xxxtroff  instead of troff.	 This also applies to the pre-
	      processors eqn, grn, pic,	refer, tbl, soelim, and	to the	utili-
	      ties  indxbib  and  lookbib.  This feature does not apply	to any
	      programs different from the ones above (most notably  groff  it-
	      self) since they are unique to the groff package.

	      A	 list of directories in	which to search	for the	devname	direc-
	      tory  in	addition  to  the  default  ones.   See	 troff(1)  and
	      groff_font(5) for	more details.

	      A	 list of directories in	which to search	for macro files	in ad-
	      dition  to  the	default	  directories.	  See	troff(1)   and
	      groff_tmac(5) for	more details.

	      The directory in which temporary files will be created.  If this
	      is not set but the environment variable TMPDIR  instead,	tempo-
	      rary  files will be created in the directory $TMPDIR.  Otherwise
	      temporary	 files	will  be  created  in  /tmp.   The   refer(1),
	      groffer(1),  grohtml(1),	and  grops(1)  commands	 use temporary

	      Preset the default device.  If this is not set the ps device  is
	      used  as default.	 This device name is overwritten by the	option

       There are some directories in which groff  installs  all	 of  its  data
       files.	Due  to	 different  installation habits	on different operating
       systems,	their locations	are not	absolutely fixed, but  their  function
       is clearly defined and coincides	on all systems.

   groff Macro Directory
       This  contains  all  information	 related to macro packages.  Note that
       more than a single directory is searched	for those files	as  documented
       in  groff_tmac(5).   For	 the  groff installation corresponding to this
       document, it is located at /usr/share/groff/1.18.1/tmac.	 The following
       files contained in the groff macro directory have a special meaning:

	      Initialization file for troff.  This is interpreted by troff be-
	      fore reading the macro sets and any input.

	      Final startup file for troff, it is parsed after all macro  sets
	      have been	read.

	      Macro file for macro package name.

   groff Font Directory
       This  contains  all  information	 related to output devices.  Note that
       more than a single directory is searched	for those files; see troff(1).
       For the groff installation corresponding	to this	document, it is	locat-
       ed at /usr/share/groff/1.18.1/font.  The	following files	 contained  in
       the groff font directory	have a special meaning:

	      Device description file for device name, see groff_font(5).

	      Font file	for font F of device name.

       The  following  example illustrates the power of	the groff program as a
       wrapper around troff.

       To process a roff file using the	preprocessors tbl and pic and  the  me
       macro set, classical troff had to be called by

       sh# pic |	tbl | troff -me	-Tlatin1 | grotty

       Using groff, this pipe can be shortened to the equivalent command

       sh# groff -p -t -me -T latin1

       An  even	 easier	 way  to call this is to use grog(1) to	guess the pre-
       processor and macro options and execute the generated command (by spec-
       ifying shell left quotes)

       sh# `grog -Tlatin1`

       The simplest way	is to view the contents	in an automated	way by calling

       sh# groffer

       On EBCDIC hosts (e.g. OS/390 Unix), output  devices  ascii  and	latin1
       aren't available.  Similarly, output for	EBCDIC code page cp1047	is not
       available on ASCII based	operating systems.

       Report bugs to  Include a  complete,	self-contained
       example that will allow the bug to be reproduced, and say which version
       of groff	you are	using.

       Information on how to get groff and related information is available at
       the  GNU	 website <>.  The most	recent
       released	version	of groff is available for anonymous ftp	at the groff
       development site	<

       Three groff mailing lists are available:
	      for reporting bugs,
	      for general discussion of	groff,
	      a	read-only list showing logs of commitments to the CVS  reposi-

       Details	on CVS access and much more can	be found in the	file README at
       the top directory of the	groff source package.

       There is	a free implementation of the grap preprocessor,	written	by Ted
       Faber <>.  The	actual version can be found at the
       grap   website	<>.
       This is the only	grap version supported by groff.

       Copyright (C) 1989, 2002	Free Software Foundation, Inc.

       This document is	distributed under the terms of the FDL (GNU Free Docu-
       mentation License) version 1.1 or later.	 You should  have  received  a
       copy of the FDL on your system, it is also available on-line at the GNU
       copyleft	site <>.

       This document is	based on the original groff man	page written by	 James
       Clark  <>.	 It was	rewritten, enhanced, and put under the
       FDL license by Bernd Warken <>.	It  is	maintained  by
       Werner Lemberg <>.

       groff  is  a GNU	free software project.	All parts of the groff package
       are protected by	GNU copyleft licenses.	The software  files  are  dis-
       tributed	under the terms	of the GNU General Public License (GPL), while
       the documentation files mostly use the GNU Free	Documentation  License

       The groff info file contains all	information on the groff system	within
       a single	document.  Beneath the detailed	documentation of all  aspects,
       it provides examples and	background information.	 See info(1) on	how to
       read it.

       Due to its complex structure, the groff	system	has  many  man	pages.
       They can	be read	with man(1) or groffer(1).

       Introduction, history and further readings:

       Viewer for groff	files:
	      groffer(1), gxditview(1),	xditview(1x).

       Wrapper programs	for formatters:
	      groff(1),	grog(1).

       Roff preprocessors:
	      eqn(1), grn(1), pic(1), refer(1),	soelim(1), tbl(1), grap(1).

       Roff language with the groff extensions:
	      groff(7),	groff_char(7), groff_diff(7), groff_font(5).

       Roff formatter programs:
	      nroff(1),	troff(1), ditroff(7).

       The intermediate	output language:

       Postprocessors for the output devices:
	      grodvi(1),    grohtml(1),	   grolbp(1),	grolj4(1),   grops(1),

       Groff macro packages and	macro-specific utilities:
	      groff_tmac(5),   groff_man(7),	groff_mdoc(7),	  groff_me(7),
	      groff_mm(7),     groff_mmse(7),	 groff_mom(7),	  groff_ms(7),
	      groff_www(7), mmroff(7).

       The following utilities are available:
	      addftinfo(1),	afmtodit(1),	 eqn2graph(1),	   groffer(1),
	      gxditview(1),  hpftodit(1),  indxbib(1), lookbib(1), pfbtops(1),
	      pic2graph(1), tfmtodit(1).

Groff Version 1.18.1		 05 July 2010			      GROFF(1)


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