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LESS(1)			    General Commands Manual		       LESS(1)

NAME
       less - opposite of more

SYNOPSIS
       less -?
       less --help
       less -V
       less --version
       less [-[+]aBcCdeEfFgGiIJKLmMnNqQrRsSuUVwWX~]
	    [-b	space] [-h lines] [-j line] [-k	keyfile]
	    [-{oO} logfile] [-p	pattern] [-P prompt] [-t tag]
	    [-T	tagsfile] [-x tab,...] [-y lines] [-[z]	lines]
	    [-#	shift] [+[+]cmd] [--] [filename]...
       (See  the  OPTIONS section for alternate	option syntax with long	option
       names.)

DESCRIPTION
       Less is a program similar to more (1), but which	allows backward	 move-
       ment in the file	as well	as forward movement.  Also, less does not have
       to read the entire input	file before  starting,	so  with  large	 input
       files  it  starts  up  faster than text editors like vi (1).  Less uses
       termcap (or terminfo on some systems), so it can	run on	a  variety  of
       terminals.   There is even limited support for hardcopy terminals.  (On
       a hardcopy terminal, lines which	should be printed at the  top  of  the
       screen are prefixed with	a caret.)

       Commands	 are based on both more	and vi.	 Commands may be preceded by a
       decimal number, called N	in the descriptions below.  The	number is used
       by some commands, as indicated.

COMMANDS
       In  the following descriptions, ^X means	control-X.  ESC	stands for the
       ESCAPE key; for example ESC-v means the	two  character	sequence  "ES-
       CAPE", then "v".

       h or H Help:  display  a	 summary of these commands.  If	you forget all
	      the other	commands, remember this	one.

       SPACE or	^V or f	or ^F
	      Scroll forward N lines, default one window (see  option  -z  be-
	      low).  If	N is more than the screen size,	only the final screen-
	      ful is displayed.	 Warning: some systems use  ^V	as  a  special
	      literalization character.

       z      Like  SPACE,  but	 if  N is specified, it	becomes	the new	window
	      size.

       ESC-SPACE
	      Like SPACE, but scrolls a	full screenful,	 even  if  it  reaches
	      end-of-file in the process.

       RETURN or ^N or e or ^E or j or ^J
	      Scroll  forward N	lines, default 1.  The entire N	lines are dis-
	      played, even if N	is more	than the screen	size.

       d or ^D
	      Scroll forward N lines, default one half of the screen size.  If
	      N	 is specified, it becomes the new default for subsequent d and
	      u	commands.

       b or ^B or ESC-v
	      Scroll backward N	lines, default one window (see option  -z  be-
	      low).  If	N is more than the screen size,	only the final screen-
	      ful is displayed.

       w      Like ESC-v, but if N is specified, it  becomes  the  new	window
	      size.

       y or ^Y or ^P or	k or ^K
	      Scroll backward N	lines, default 1.  The entire N	lines are dis-
	      played, even if N	is more	than the screen	size.	Warning:  some
	      systems use ^Y as	a special job control character.

       u or ^U
	      Scroll  backward	N  lines, default one half of the screen size.
	      If N is specified, it becomes the	new default for	 subsequent  d
	      and u commands.

       ESC-) or	RIGHTARROW
	      Scroll  horizontally right N characters, default half the	screen
	      width (see the -#	option).  If a number N	is specified,  it  be-
	      comes  the default for future RIGHTARROW and LEFTARROW commands.
	      While the	text is	scrolled, it acts  as  though  the  -S	option
	      (chop lines) were	in effect.

       ESC-( or	LEFTARROW
	      Scroll  horizontally  left N characters, default half the	screen
	      width (see the -#	option).  If a number N	is specified,  it  be-
	      comes the	default	for future RIGHTARROW and LEFTARROW commands.

       r or ^R or ^L
	      Repaint the screen.

       R      Repaint  the  screen,  discarding	any buffered input.  Useful if
	      the file is changing while it is being viewed.

       F      Scroll forward, and keep trying to read when the end of file  is
	      reached.	 Normally  this	 command would be used when already at
	      the end of the file.  It is a way	to monitor the tail of a  file
	      which  is	 growing  while	 it is being viewed.  (The behavior is
	      similar to the "tail -f" command.)

       g or < or ESC-<
	      Go to line N in the file,	default	1 (beginning of	file).	(Warn-
	      ing: this	may be slow if N is large.)

       G or > or ESC->
	      Go  to  line N in	the file, default the end of the file.	(Warn-
	      ing: this	may be slow if N is large, or if N  is	not  specified
	      and standard input, rather than a	file, is being read.)

       p or % Go to a position N percent into the file.	 N should be between 0
	      and 100, and may contain a decimal point.

       P      Go to the	line containing	byte offset N in the file.

       {      If a left	curly bracket appears in the top line displayed	on the
	      screen,  the  {  command	will  go  to  the matching right curly
	      bracket.	The matching right curly bracket is positioned on  the
	      bottom line of the screen.  If there is more than	one left curly
	      bracket on the top line, a number	N may be used to  specify  the
	      N-th bracket on the line.

       }      If a right curly bracket appears in the bottom line displayed on
	      the screen, the }	command	will go	to  the	 matching  left	 curly
	      bracket.	 The  matching left curly bracket is positioned	on the
	      top line of the screen.  If there	is more	than one  right	 curly
	      bracket  on  the top line, a number N may	be used	to specify the
	      N-th bracket on the line.

       (      Like {, but applies to parentheses rather	than curly brackets.

       )      Like }, but applies to parentheses rather	than curly brackets.

       [      Like {, but applies to square brackets rather than curly	brack-
	      ets.

       ]      Like  }, but applies to square brackets rather than curly	brack-
	      ets.

       ESC-^F Followed by two characters, acts like {, but uses	the two	 char-
	      acters  as  open and close brackets, respectively.  For example,
	      "ESC ^F <	>" could be used to go forward to the >	which  matches
	      the < in the top displayed line.

       ESC-^B Followed	by two characters, acts	like },	but uses the two char-
	      acters as	open and close brackets, respectively.	 For  example,
	      "ESC ^B <	>" could be used to go backward	to the < which matches
	      the > in the bottom displayed line.

       m      Followed by any lowercase	letter,	 marks	the  current  position
	      with that	letter.

       '      (Single  quote.)	 Followed  by any lowercase letter, returns to
	      the position which was previously	marked with that letter.  Fol-
	      lowed  by	another	single quote, returns to the position at which
	      the last "large" movement	command	was executed.  Followed	by a ^
	      or  $,  jumps  to	the beginning or end of	the file respectively.
	      Marks are	preserved when a new file is examined, so the  '  com-
	      mand can be used to switch between input files.

       ^X^X   Same as single quote.

       /pattern
	      Search forward in	the file for the N-th line containing the pat-
	      tern.  N defaults	to 1.  The pattern is a	regular	expression, as
	      recognized  by  the  regular expression library supplied by your
	      system.  The search starts at the	second line displayed (but see
	      the -a and -j options, which change this).

	      Certain  characters  are	special	if entered at the beginning of
	      the pattern; they	modify the type	of search rather  than	become
	      part of the pattern:

	      ^N or !
		     Search for	lines which do NOT match the pattern.

	      ^E or *
		     Search  multiple  files.	That is, if the	search reaches
		     the END of	the current file without finding a match,  the
		     search  continues	in  the	 next file in the command line
		     list.

	      ^F or @
		     Begin the search at the first line	of the FIRST  file  in
		     the  command  line	 list, regardless of what is currently
		     displayed on the screen or	the settings of	the -a	or  -j
		     options.

	      ^K     Highlight	any text which matches the pattern on the cur-
		     rent screen, but don't move to the	first match (KEEP cur-
		     rent position).

	      ^R     Don't  interpret  regular expression metacharacters; that
		     is, do a simple textual comparison.

       ?pattern
	      Search backward in the file for the  N-th	 line  containing  the
	      pattern.	 The  search starts at the line	immediately before the
	      top line displayed.

	      Certain characters are special as	in the / command:

	      ^N or !
		     Search for	lines which do NOT match the pattern.

	      ^E or *
		     Search multiple files.  That is, if  the  search  reaches
		     the  beginning  of	 the  current  file  without finding a
		     match, the	search continues in the	previous file  in  the
		     command line list.

	      ^F or @
		     Begin the search at the last line of the last file	in the
		     command line list,	regardless of what is  currently  dis-
		     played  on	the screen or the settings of the -a or	-j op-
		     tions.

	      ^K     As	in forward searches.

	      ^R     As	in forward searches.

       ESC-/pattern
	      Same as "/*".

       ESC-?pattern
	      Same as "?*".

       n      Repeat previous search, for N-th line containing the  last  pat-
	      tern.   If the previous search was modified by ^N, the search is
	      made for the N-th	line NOT containing the	pattern.  If the  pre-
	      vious  search  was  modified  by ^E, the search continues	in the
	      next (or previous) file if not satisfied in  the	current	 file.
	      If  the  previous	 search	was modified by	^R, the	search is done
	      without using regular expressions.  There	is no  effect  if  the
	      previous search was modified by ^F or ^K.

       N      Repeat previous search, but in the reverse direction.

       ESC-n  Repeat  previous	search,	but crossing file boundaries.  The ef-
	      fect is as if the	previous search	were modified by *.

       ESC-N  Repeat previous search, but in the reverse direction and	cross-
	      ing file boundaries.

       ESC-u  Undo  search  highlighting.   Turn  off  highlighting of strings
	      matching the current search pattern.  If highlighting is already
	      off  because of a	previous ESC-u command,	turn highlighting back
	      on.  Any search command will also	 turn  highlighting  back  on.
	      (Highlighting can	also be	disabled by toggling the -G option; in
	      that case	search commands	do not turn highlighting back on.)

       &pattern
	      Display only lines which match the pattern; lines	which  do  not
	      match  the  pattern  are not displayed.  If pattern is empty (if
	      you type & immediately followed  by  ENTER),  any	 filtering  is
	      turned  off, and all lines are displayed.	 While filtering is in
	      effect, an ampersand  is	displayed  at  the  beginning  of  the
	      prompt, as a reminder that some lines in the file	may be hidden.

	      Certain characters are special as	in the / command:

	      ^N or !
		     Display only lines	which do NOT match the pattern.

	      ^R     Don't  interpret  regular expression metacharacters; that
		     is, do a simple textual comparison.

       :e [filename]
	      Examine a	new file.  If the filename is missing,	the  "current"
	      file  (see  the :n and :p	commands below)	from the list of files
	      in the command line is re-examined.  A percent sign (%)  in  the
	      filename	is  replaced by	the name of the	current	file.  A pound
	      sign (#) is replaced by the  name	 of  the  previously  examined
	      file.   However,	two  consecutive  percent signs	are simply re-
	      placed with a single percent sign.  This allows you to  enter  a
	      filename	that  contains a percent sign in the name.  Similarly,
	      two consecutive pound signs are replaced	with  a	 single	 pound
	      sign.   The  filename  is	inserted into the command line list of
	      files so that it can be seen by subsequent :n and	 :p  commands.
	      If the filename consists of several files, they are all inserted
	      into the list of files and the first one is  examined.   If  the
	      filename contains	one or more spaces, the	entire filename	should
	      be enclosed in double quotes (also see the -" option).

       ^X^V or E
	      Same as :e.  Warning: some systems use ^V	as a special  literal-
	      ization  character.  On such systems, you	may not	be able	to use
	      ^V.

       :n     Examine the next file (from the list of files given in the  com-
	      mand  line).   If	a number N is specified, the N-th next file is
	      examined.

       :p     Examine the previous file	in the command line list.  If a	number
	      N	is specified, the N-th previous	file is	examined.

       :x     Examine  the first file in the command line list.	 If a number N
	      is specified, the	N-th file in the list is examined.

       :d     Remove the current file from the list of files.

       t      Go to the	next tag, if there were	more than one matches for  the
	      current tag.  See	the -t option for more details about tags.

       T      Go  to the previous tag, if there	were more than one matches for
	      the current tag.

       = or ^G or :f
	      Prints some information about the	file being  viewed,  including
	      its  name	and the	line number and	byte offset of the bottom line
	      being displayed.	If possible, it	also prints the	length of  the
	      file,  the  number  of  lines in the file	and the	percent	of the
	      file above the last displayed line.

       -      Followed by one of the command line option letters (see  OPTIONS
	      below),  this will change	the setting of that option and print a
	      message describing the new setting.  If a	^P (CONTROL-P) is  en-
	      tered  immediately  after	the dash, the setting of the option is
	      changed but no message is	printed.  If the option	letter	has  a
	      numeric  value (such as -b or -h), or a string value (such as -P
	      or -t), a	new value may be entered after the option letter.   If
	      no  new  value is	entered, a message describing the current set-
	      ting is printed and nothing is changed.

       --     Like the - command, but takes a long option  name	 (see  OPTIONS
	      below)  rather  than a single option letter.  You	must press RE-
	      TURN after typing	the option name.  A ^P immediately  after  the
	      second  dash suppresses printing of a message describing the new
	      setting, as in the - command.

       -+     Followed by one of the command line option letters this will re-
	      set  the	option	to its default setting and print a message de-
	      scribing the new setting.	 (The  "-+X"  command  does  the  same
	      thing  as	 "-+X"	on  the	command	line.)	This does not work for
	      string-valued options.

       --+    Like the -+ command, but takes a long option name	rather than  a
	      single option letter.

       -!     Followed	by  one	 of the	command	line option letters, this will
	      reset the	option to the "opposite" of its	 default  setting  and
	      print  a message describing the new setting.  This does not work
	      for numeric or string-valued options.

       --!    Like the -! command, but takes a long option name	rather than  a
	      single option letter.

       _      (Underscore.)   Followed	by one of the command line option let-
	      ters, this will print a message describing the  current  setting
	      of that option.  The setting of the option is not	changed.

       __     (Double underscore.)  Like the _ (underscore) command, but takes
	      a	long option name rather	than a single option letter.  You must
	      press RETURN after typing	the option name.

       +cmd   Causes  the specified cmd	to be executed each time a new file is
	      examined.	 For example, +G causes	less to	initially display each
	      file starting at the end rather than the beginning.

       V      Prints the version number	of less	being run.

       q or Q or :q or :Q or ZZ
	      Exits less.

       The  following four commands may	or may not be valid, depending on your
       particular installation.

       v      Invokes an editor	to edit	the current file  being	 viewed.   The
	      editor is	taken from the environment variable VISUAL if defined,
	      or EDITOR	if VISUAL is not defined, or defaults to "vi" if  nei-
	      ther  VISUAL  nor	EDITOR is defined.  See	also the discussion of
	      LESSEDIT under the section on PROMPTS below.

       ! shell-command
	      Invokes a	shell to run the shell-command given.  A percent  sign
	      (%)  in the command is replaced by the name of the current file.
	      A	pound sign (#) is replaced by the name of the previously exam-
	      ined  file.   "!!"  repeats the last shell command.  "!" with no
	      shell command simply invokes a  shell.   On  Unix	 systems,  the
	      shell  is	taken from the environment variable SHELL, or defaults
	      to "sh".	On MS-DOS and OS/2 systems, the	shell  is  the	normal
	      command processor.

       | <m> shell-command
	      <m>  represents  any  mark letter.  Pipes	a section of the input
	      file to the given	shell command.	The section of the file	to  be
	      piped  is	 between  the first line on the	current	screen and the
	      position marked by the letter.  <m> may also be ^	or $ to	 indi-
	      cate beginning or	end of file respectively.  If <m> is . or new-
	      line, the	current	screen is piped.

       s filename
	      Save the input to	a file.	 This only works if  the  input	 is  a
	      pipe, not	an ordinary file.

OPTIONS
       Command	line options are described below.  Most	options	may be changed
       while less is running, via the "-" command.

       Most options may	be given in one	of two forms: either a	dash  followed
       by  a  single  letter, or two dashes followed by	a long option name.  A
       long option name	may be abbreviated as long as the abbreviation is  un-
       ambiguous.   For	 example, --quit-at-eof	may be abbreviated --quit, but
       not --qui, since	both --quit-at-eof and --quiet begin with --qui.  Some
       long  option names are in uppercase, such as --QUIT-AT-EOF, as distinct
       from --quit-at-eof.  Such option	names need only	have their first  let-
       ter  capitalized; the remainder of the name may be in either case.  For
       example,	--Quit-at-eof is equivalent to --QUIT-AT-EOF.

       Options are also	taken from the environment variable "LESS".  For exam-
       ple, to avoid typing "less -options ..."	each time less is invoked, you
       might tell csh:

       setenv LESS "-options"

       or if you use sh:

       LESS="-options";	export LESS

       On MS-DOS, you don't need the quotes, but you should replace  any  per-
       cent signs in the options string	by double percent signs.

       The  environment	variable is parsed before the command line, so command
       line options override the LESS environment variable.  If	an option  ap-
       pears in	the LESS variable, it can be reset to its default value	on the
       command line by beginning the command line option with "-+".

       For options like	-P or -D which take a following	string,	a dollar  sign
       ($)  must be used to signal the end of the string.  For example,	to set
       two -D options on MS-DOS, you must have a  dollar  sign	between	 them,
       like this:

       LESS="-Dn9.1$-Ds4.1"

       -? or --help
	      This  option displays a summary of the commands accepted by less
	      (the same	as the h command).  (Depending on how your  shell  in-
	      terprets	the  question  mark,  it may be	necessary to quote the
	      question mark, thus: "-\?".)

       -a or --search-skip-screen
	      Causes searches to start after the last line  displayed  on  the
	      screen, thus skipping all	lines displayed	on the screen.	By de-
	      fault, searches start at the second line on the screen (or after
	      the last found line; see the -j option).

       -bn or --buffers=n
	      Specifies	 the  amount  of  buffer  space	less will use for each
	      file, in units of	kilobytes (1024	bytes).	  By  default  64K  of
	      buffer  space  is	used for each file (unless the file is a pipe;
	      see the -B option).  The -b  option  specifies  instead  that  n
	      kilobytes	of buffer space	should be used for each	file.  If n is
	      -1, buffer space is unlimited; that is, the entire file  can  be
	      read into	memory.

       -B or --auto-buffers
	      By default, when data is read from a pipe, buffers are allocated
	      automatically as needed.	If a large amount of data is read from
	      the  pipe,  this	can cause a large amount of memory to be allo-
	      cated.  The -B option disables this automatic allocation of buf-
	      fers  for	pipes, so that only 64K	(or the	amount of space	speci-
	      fied by the -b option) is	used for the pipe.  Warning: use of -B
	      can  result  in  erroneous display, since	only the most recently
	      viewed part of the piped data is kept  in	 memory;  any  earlier
	      data is lost.

       -c or --clear-screen
	      Causes  full  screen  repaints  to  be painted from the top line
	      down.  By	default, full screen repaints are  done	 by  scrolling
	      from the bottom of the screen.

       -C or --CLEAR-SCREEN
	      Same as -c, for compatibility with older versions	of less.

       -d or --dumb
	      The -d option suppresses the error message normally displayed if
	      the terminal is dumb; that is, lacks some	important  capability,
	      such as the ability to clear the screen or scroll	backward.  The
	      -d option	does not otherwise change the behavior of  less	 on  a
	      dumb terminal.

       -Dxcolor	or --color=xcolor
	      [MS-DOS only] Sets the color of the text displayed.  x is	a sin-
	      gle character which selects the type of text whose color is  be-
	      ing  set:	 n=normal,  s=standout,	d=bold,	u=underlined, k=blink.
	      color is a pair of numbers separated by  a  period.   The	 first
	      number  selects  the foreground color and	the second selects the
	      background color of the text.  A single number N is the same  as
	      N.M, where M is the normal background color.

       -e or --quit-at-eof
	      Causes  less  to	automatically  exit the	second time it reaches
	      end-of-file.  By default,	the only way to	exit less is  via  the
	      "q" command.

       -E or --QUIT-AT-EOF
	      Causes less to automatically exit	the first time it reaches end-
	      of-file.

       -f or --force
	      Forces non-regular files to be opened.  (A non-regular file is a
	      directory	 or a device special file.)  Also suppresses the warn-
	      ing message when a binary	file is	opened.	 By default, less will
	      refuse to	open non-regular files.	 Note that some	operating sys-
	      tems will	not allow directories to be read, even if -f is	set.

       -F or --quit-if-one-screen
	      Causes less to automatically exit	if the entire file can be dis-
	      played on	the first screen.

       -g or --hilite-search
	      Normally,	 less  will highlight ALL strings which	match the last
	      search command.  The -g option changes this  behavior  to	 high-
	      light  only  the	particular  string which was found by the last
	      search command.  This can	cause less to run somewhat faster than
	      the default.

       -G or --HILITE-SEARCH
	      The  -G  option  suppresses all highlighting of strings found by
	      search commands.

       -hn or --max-back-scroll=n
	      Specifies	a maximum number of lines to scroll backward.	If  it
	      is necessary to scroll backward more than	n lines, the screen is
	      repainted	in a forward direction instead.	 (If the terminal does
	      not have the ability to scroll backward, -h0 is implied.)

       -i or --ignore-case
	      Causes searches to ignore	case; that is, uppercase and lowercase
	      are considered identical.	 This option is	ignored	if any	upper-
	      case  letters appear in the search pattern; in other words, if a
	      pattern contains uppercase letters, then that  search  does  not
	      ignore case.

       -I or --IGNORE-CASE
	      Like  -i,	 but searches ignore case even if the pattern contains
	      uppercase	letters.

       -jn or --jump-target=n
	      Specifies	a line on the screen where the "target"	line is	to  be
	      positioned.   The	 target	line is	the line specified by any com-
	      mand to search for a pattern, jump to a line number, jump	 to  a
	      file percentage or jump to a tag.	 The screen line may be	speci-
	      fied by a	number:	the top	line on	the screen is 1, the  next  is
	      2, and so	on.  The number	may be negative	to specify a line rel-
	      ative to the bottom of the screen: the bottom line on the	screen
	      is  -1, the second to the	bottom is -2, and so on.  Alternately,
	      the screen line may be specified as a fraction of	the height  of
	      the  screen,  starting with a decimal point: .5 is in the	middle
	      of the screen, .3	is three tenths	down from the first line,  and
	      so  on.  If the line is specified	as a fraction, the actual line
	      number is	recalculated if	the terminal  window  is  resized,  so
	      that  the	 target	 line remains at the specified fraction	of the
	      screen height.  If any form of the -j option  is	used,  forward
	      searches	begin  at  the line immediately	after the target line,
	      and backward searches begin at the target	line.  For example, if
	      "-j4" is used, the target	line is	the fourth line	on the screen,
	      so forward searches begin	at the fifth line on the screen.

       -J or --status-column
	      Displays a status	column at the left edge	of  the	 screen.   The
	      status  column  shows the	lines that matched the current search.
	      The status column	is also	used if	the -w or -W option is in  ef-
	      fect.

       -kfilename or --lesskey-file=filename
	      Causes  less  to	open and interpret the named file as a lesskey
	      (1) file.	 Multiple -k options may be specified.	If the LESSKEY
	      or  LESSKEY_SYSTEM  environment variable is set, or if a lesskey
	      file is found in a standard place	(see KEY BINDINGS), it is also
	      used as a	lesskey	file.

       -K or --quit-on-intr
	      Causes  less  to	exit  immediately  when	an interrupt character
	      (usually ^C) is typed.  Normally,	an interrupt character	causes
	      less  to	stop  whatever	it  is doing and return	to its command
	      prompt.  Note that use of	this option makes it impossible	to re-
	      turn to the command prompt from the "F" command.

       -L or --no-lessopen
	      Ignore  the  LESSOPEN  environment  variable (see	the INPUT PRE-
	      PROCESSOR	section	below).	 This option can be  set  from	within
	      less,  but  it will apply	only to	files opened subsequently, not
	      to the file which	is currently open.

       -m or --long-prompt
	      Causes less to prompt verbosely (like more),  with  the  percent
	      into the file.  By default, less prompts with a colon.

       -M or --LONG-PROMPT
	      Causes less to prompt even more verbosely	than more.

       -n or --line-numbers
	      Suppresses  line numbers.	 The default (to use line numbers) may
	      cause less to run	more slowly in some cases, especially  with  a
	      very large input file.  Suppressing line numbers with the	-n op-
	      tion will	avoid this problem.  Using  line  numbers  means:  the
	      line number will be displayed in the verbose prompt and in the =
	      command, and the v command will pass the current line number  to
	      the  editor  (see	also the discussion of LESSEDIT	in PROMPTS be-
	      low).

       -N or --LINE-NUMBERS
	      Causes a line number to be displayed at the  beginning  of  each
	      line in the display.

       -ofilename or --log-file=filename
	      Causes  less  to copy its	input to the named file	as it is being
	      viewed.  This applies only when the input	file is	a pipe,	not an
	      ordinary	file.	If  the	file already exists, less will ask for
	      confirmation before overwriting it.

       -Ofilename or --LOG-FILE=filename
	      The -O option is like -o,	but it will overwrite an existing file
	      without asking for confirmation.

	      If  no log file has been specified, the -o and -O	options	can be
	      used from	within less to specify a log  file.   Without  a  file
	      name, they will simply report the	name of	the log	file.  The "s"
	      command is equivalent to specifying -o from within less.

       -ppattern or --pattern=pattern
	      The -p option on the command line	is  equivalent	to  specifying
	      +/pattern;  that	is, it tells less to start at the first	occur-
	      rence of pattern in the file.

       -Pprompt	or --prompt=prompt
	      Provides a way to	tailor the three prompt	 styles	 to  your  own
	      preference.  This	option would normally be put in	the LESS envi-
	      ronment variable,	rather than being typed	in with	each less com-
	      mand.  Such an option must either	be the last option in the LESS
	      variable,	or be terminated by a dollar sign.  -Ps	followed by  a
	      string  changes  the default (short) prompt to that string.  -Pm
	      changes the medium (-m)  prompt.	 -PM  changes  the  long  (-M)
	      prompt.	-Ph  changes  the  prompt  for	the  help screen.  -P=
	      changes the message printed by the = command.  -Pw  changes  the
	      message  printed while waiting for data (in the F	command).  All
	      prompt strings consist of	a sequence of letters and special  es-
	      cape sequences.  See the section on PROMPTS for more details.

       -q or --quiet or	--silent
	      Causes  moderately  "quiet"  operation: the terminal bell	is not
	      rung if an attempt is made to scroll past	the end	of the file or
	      before the beginning of the file.	 If the	terminal has a "visual
	      bell", it	is used	instead.  The bell will	 be  rung  on  certain
	      other  errors, such as typing an invalid character.  The default
	      is to ring the terminal bell in all such cases.

       -Q or --QUIET or	--SILENT
	      Causes totally "quiet" operation:	the  terminal  bell  is	 never
	      rung.

       -r or --raw-control-chars
	      Causes "raw" control characters to be displayed.	The default is
	      to display control characters using the caret notation; for  ex-
	      ample,  a	 control-A (octal 001) is displayed as "^A".  Warning:
	      when the -r option is used, less cannot keep track of the	actual
	      appearance  of  the screen (since	this depends on	how the	screen
	      responds to each type of control character).  Thus, various dis-
	      play  problems may result, such as long lines being split	in the
	      wrong place.

       -R or --RAW-CONTROL-CHARS
	      Like -r, but only	ANSI "color" escape sequences  are  output  in
	      "raw" form.  Unlike -r, the screen appearance is maintained cor-
	      rectly in	most cases.  ANSI "color"  escape  sequences  are  se-
	      quences of the form:

		   ESC [ ... m

	      where  the  "..."	is zero	or more	color specification characters
	      For the purpose of keeping  track	 of  screen  appearance,  ANSI
	      color  escape sequences are assumed to not move the cursor.  You
	      can make less think that characters other	than "m" can end  ANSI
	      color  escape  sequences	by  setting  the  environment variable
	      LESSANSIENDCHARS to the list of characters which can end a color
	      escape  sequence.	  And  you can make less think that characters
	      other than the standard ones may appear between the ESC and  the
	      m	 by  setting  the environment variable LESSANSIMIDCHARS	to the
	      list of characters which can appear.

       -s or --squeeze-blank-lines
	      Causes consecutive blank lines to	 be  squeezed  into  a	single
	      blank line.  This	is useful when viewing nroff output.

       -S or --chop-long-lines
	      Causes  lines  longer than the screen width to be	chopped	rather
	      than folded.  That is, the portion of a long line	that does  not
	      fit  in  the  screen width is not	shown.	The default is to fold
	      long lines; that is, display the remainder on the	next line.

       -ttag or	--tag=tag
	      The -t option, followed immediately by a TAG, will edit the file
	      containing  that tag.  For this to work, tag information must be
	      available; for example, there may	be a file in the  current  di-
	      rectory  called  "tags", which was previously built by ctags (1)
	      or an equivalent command.	 If the	environment variable LESSGLOB-
	      ALTAGS  is set, it is taken to be	the name of a command compati-
	      ble with global (1), and that command is executed	 to  find  the
	      tag.  (See http://www.gnu.org/software/global/global.html).  The
	      -t option	may also be specified from within less	(using	the  -
	      command)	as a way of examining a	new file.  The command ":t" is
	      equivalent to specifying -t from within less.

       -Ttagsfile or --tag-file=tagsfile
	      Specifies	a tags file to be used instead of "tags".

       -u or --underline-special
	      Causes backspaces	and carriage returns to	be treated  as	print-
	      able  characters;	 that  is,  they are sent to the terminal when
	      they appear in the input.

       -U or --UNDERLINE-SPECIAL
	      Causes backspaces, tabs and carriage returns to  be  treated  as
	      control  characters;  that  is, they are handled as specified by
	      the -r option.

	      By default, if neither -u	nor -U is given, backspaces which  ap-
	      pear  adjacent to	an underscore character	are treated specially:
	      the underlined text is displayed using the  terminal's  hardware
	      underlining  capability.	 Also, backspaces which	appear between
	      two identical characters are treated specially:  the  overstruck
	      text  is printed using the terminal's hardware boldface capabil-
	      ity.  Other backspaces are deleted,  along  with	the  preceding
	      character.   Carriage  returns immediately followed by a newline
	      are deleted.  other carriage returns are handled as specified by
	      the  -r  option.	 Text which is overstruck or underlined	can be
	      searched for if neither -u nor -U	is in effect.

       -V or --version
	      Displays the version number of less.

       -w or --hilite-unread
	      Temporarily highlights the first	"new"  line  after  a  forward
	      movement of a full page.	The first "new"	line is	the line imme-
	      diately following	the line  previously  at  the  bottom  of  the
	      screen.  Also highlights the target line after a g or p command.
	      The highlight is removed at the next command which causes	 move-
	      ment.   The  entire line is highlighted, unless the -J option is
	      in effect, in which case only the	status column is highlighted.

       -W or --HILITE-UNREAD
	      Like -w, but temporarily highlights the first new	line after any
	      forward movement command larger than one line.

       -xn,... or --tabs=n,...
	      Sets  tab	 stops.	 If only one n is specified, tab stops are set
	      at multiples of n.  If multiple values separated by  commas  are
	      specified,  tab  stops are set at	those positions, and then con-
	      tinue with the same spacing  as  the  last  two.	 For  example,
	      -x9,17  will  set	tabs at	positions 9, 17, 25, 33, etc.  The de-
	      fault for	n is 8.

       -X or --no-init
	      Disables sending the termcap initialization and deinitialization
	      strings  to  the	terminal.   This is sometimes desirable	if the
	      deinitialization string does something unnecessary, like	clear-
	      ing the screen.

       -yn or --max-forw-scroll=n
	      Specifies	a maximum number of lines to scroll forward.  If it is
	      necessary	to scroll forward more than n lines, the screen	is re-
	      painted  instead.	  The  -c  or -C option	may be used to repaint
	      from the top of the screen if desired.  By default, any  forward
	      movement causes scrolling.

       -[z]n or	--window=n
	      Changes  the  default scrolling window size to n lines.  The de-
	      fault is one screenful.  The z and w commands can	also  be  used
	      to  change the window size.  The "z" may be omitted for compati-
	      bility with some versions	of more.  If the number	n is negative,
	      it indicates n lines less	than the current screen	size.  For ex-
	      ample, if	the screen is 24 lines,	-z-4 sets the scrolling	window
	      to  20  lines.   If  the	screen	is  resized  to	 40 lines, the
	      scrolling	window automatically changes to	36 lines.

       -"cc or --quotes=cc
	      Changes the filename quoting character.  This may	 be  necessary
	      if  you are trying to name a file	which contains both spaces and
	      quote characters.	 Followed by a single character, this  changes
	      the  quote  character to that character.	Filenames containing a
	      space should then	be surrounded by that character	rather than by
	      double  quotes.	Followed  by  two characters, changes the open
	      quote to the first character, and	the close quote	to the	second
	      character.  Filenames containing a space should then be preceded
	      by the open quote	character and  followed	 by  the  close	 quote
	      character.   Note	 that  even  after  the	 quote	characters are
	      changed, this option remains -" (a dash  followed	 by  a	double
	      quote).

       -~ or --tilde
	      Normally lines after end of file are displayed as	a single tilde
	      (~).  This option	causes lines after end of file to be displayed
	      as blank lines.

       -# or --shift
	      Specifies	the default number of positions	to scroll horizontally
	      in the RIGHTARROW	and LEFTARROW commands.	 If the	number	speci-
	      fied  is	zero,  it  sets	the default number of positions	to one
	      half of the screen width.	 Alternately, the number may be	speci-
	      fied  as	a fraction of the width	of the screen, starting	with a
	      decimal point: .5	is half	of  the	 screen	 width,	 .3  is	 three
	      tenths  of the screen width, and so on.  If the number is	speci-
	      fied as a	fraction, the actual number of scroll positions	is re-
	      calculated if the	terminal window	is resized, so that the	actual
	      scroll remains at	the specified fraction of the screen width.

       --no-keypad
	      Disables sending the keypad initialization and  deinitialization
	      strings to the terminal.	This is	sometimes useful if the	keypad
	      strings make the numeric keypad behave in	an undesirable manner.

       --follow-name
	      Normally,	if the input file is renamed while an F	command	is ex-
	      ecuting, less will continue to display the contents of the orig-
	      inal file	despite	its name change.  If --follow-name  is	speci-
	      fied,  during an F command less will periodically	attempt	to re-
	      open the file by name.  If the reopen succeeds and the file is a
	      different	 file  from  the original (which means that a new file
	      has been created with the	same name as  the  original  (now  re-
	      named) file), less will display the contents of that new file.

       --     A	 command  line	argument of "--" marks the end of option argu-
	      ments.  Any arguments following this are	interpreted  as	 file-
	      names.  This can be useful when viewing a	file whose name	begins
	      with a "-" or "+".

       +      If a command line	option begins with +, the  remainder  of  that
	      option  is taken to be an	initial	command	to less.  For example,
	      +G tells less to start at	the end	of the file  rather  than  the
	      beginning,  and  +/xyz tells it to start at the first occurrence
	      of "xyz" in the file.  As	a special case,	 +<number>  acts  like
	      +<number>g; that is, it starts the display at the	specified line
	      number (however, see the caveat under the	 "g"  command  above).
	      If the option starts with	++, the	initial	command	applies	to ev-
	      ery file being viewed, not just the first	one.   The  +  command
	      described	previously may also be used to set (or change) an ini-
	      tial command for every file.

LINE EDITING
       When entering command line at the bottom	of the screen (for example,  a
       filename	for the	:e command, or the pattern for a search	command), cer-
       tain keys can be	used to	manipulate the command	line.	Most  commands
       have  an	alternate form in [ brackets ] which can be used if a key does
       not exist on a particular keyboard.  (Note  that	 the  forms  beginning
       with  ESC do not	work in	some MS-DOS and	Windows	systems	because	ESC is
       the line	erase character.)  Any of these	special	keys  may  be  entered
       literally  by  preceding	 it with the "literal" character, either ^V or
       ^A.  A backslash	itself may also	be entered literally by	 entering  two
       backslashes.

       LEFTARROW [ ESC-h ]
	      Move the cursor one space	to the left.

       RIGHTARROW [ ESC-l ]
	      Move the cursor one space	to the right.

       ^LEFTARROW [ ESC-b or ESC-LEFTARROW ]
	      (That  is, CONTROL and LEFTARROW simultaneously.)	 Move the cur-
	      sor one word to the left.

       ^RIGHTARROW [ ESC-w or ESC-RIGHTARROW ]
	      (That is,	CONTROL	and RIGHTARROW simultaneously.)	 Move the cur-
	      sor one word to the right.

       HOME [ ESC-0 ]
	      Move the cursor to the beginning of the line.

       END [ ESC-$ ]
	      Move the cursor to the end of the	line.

       BACKSPACE
	      Delete  the  character  to the left of the cursor, or cancel the
	      command if the command line is empty.

       DELETE or [ ESC-x ]
	      Delete the character under the cursor.

       ^BACKSPACE [ ESC-BACKSPACE ]
	      (That is,	CONTROL	and  BACKSPACE	simultaneously.)   Delete  the
	      word to the left of the cursor.

       ^DELETE [ ESC-X or ESC-DELETE ]
	      (That  is,  CONTROL and DELETE simultaneously.)  Delete the word
	      under the	cursor.

       UPARROW [ ESC-k ]
	      Retrieve the previous command line.

       DOWNARROW [ ESC-j ]
	      Retrieve the next	command	line.

       TAB    Complete the partial filename to the left	of the cursor.	If  it
	      matches  more than one filename, the first match is entered into
	      the command line.	 Repeated  TABs	 will  cycle  thru  the	 other
	      matching filenames.  If the completed filename is	a directory, a
	      "/" is appended to the filename.	(On MS-DOS systems, a  "\"  is
	      appended.)   The	environment variable LESSSEPARATOR can be used
	      to specify a different character to append to a directory	name.

       BACKTAB [ ESC-TAB ]
	      Like, TAB, but cycles in the reverse direction thru the matching
	      filenames.

       ^L     Complete	the partial filename to	the left of the	cursor.	 If it
	      matches more than	one filename, all matches are entered into the
	      command line (if they fit).

       ^U (Unix	and OS/2) or ESC (MS-DOS)
	      Delete  the  entire  command  line, or cancel the	command	if the
	      command line is empty.  If you have changed your line-kill char-
	      acter in Unix to something other than ^U,	that character is used
	      instead of ^U.

KEY BINDINGS
       You may define your own less commands by	using the program lesskey  (1)
       to  create  a  lesskey file.  This file specifies a set of command keys
       and an action associated	with each key.	You may	also  use  lesskey  to
       change the line-editing keys (see LINE EDITING),	and to set environment
       variables.  If the environment variable LESSKEY is set, less uses  that
       as  the	name of	the lesskey file.  Otherwise, less looks in a standard
       place for the lesskey file: On Unix systems, less looks for  a  lesskey
       file  called  "$HOME/.less".  On	MS-DOS and Windows systems, less looks
       for a lesskey file called "$HOME/_less",	and if it is not found	there,
       then looks for a	lesskey	file called "_less" in any directory specified
       in the PATH environment variable.  On OS/2 systems, less	 looks	for  a
       lesskey	file  called  "$HOME/less.ini",	 and  if it is not found, then
       looks for a lesskey file	called "less.ini" in any  directory  specified
       in the INIT environment variable, and if	it not found there, then looks
       for a lesskey file called "less.ini" in any directory specified in  the
       PATH  environment  variable.   See the lesskey manual page for more de-
       tails.

       A system-wide lesskey file may also be set up to	provide	key  bindings.
       If a key	is defined in both a local lesskey file	and in the system-wide
       file, key bindings in the local file take precedence over those in  the
       system-wide  file.   If the environment variable	LESSKEY_SYSTEM is set,
       less uses that as the name of the system-wide lesskey file.  Otherwise,
       less  looks  in	a  standard place for the system-wide lesskey file: On
       Unix systems, the system-wide lesskey file  is  /usr/local/etc/sysless.
       (However,  if  less  was	 built with a different	sysconf	directory than
       /usr/local/etc, that directory is where the sysless file	is found.)  On
       MS-DOS  and  Windows  systems, the system-wide lesskey file is c:\_sys-
       less.  On OS/2 systems, the system-wide lesskey file is c:\sysless.ini.

INPUT PREPROCESSOR
       You may define an "input	preprocessor" for less.	 Before	less  opens  a
       file, it	first gives your input preprocessor a chance to	modify the way
       the contents of the file	are displayed.	An input preprocessor is  sim-
       ply  an executable program (or shell script), which writes the contents
       of the file to a	different file,	called the replacement file.  The con-
       tents  of  the replacement file are then	displayed in place of the con-
       tents of	the original file.  However, it	will appear to the user	as  if
       the  original  file  is opened; that is,	less will display the original
       filename	as the name of the current file.

       An input	preprocessor receives one command line argument, the  original
       filename,  as  entered  by  the user.  It should	create the replacement
       file, and when finished,	print the name of the replacement file to  its
       standard	 output.  If the input preprocessor does not output a replace-
       ment filename, less uses	the original file, as normal.  The input  pre-
       processor  is not called	when viewing standard input.  To set up	an in-
       put preprocessor, set the LESSOPEN environment variable	to  a  command
       line  which  will  invoke  your	input preprocessor.  This command line
       should include one occurrence of	the string "%s",  which	 will  be  re-
       placed by the filename when the input preprocessor command is invoked.

       When less closes	a file opened in such a	way, it	will call another pro-
       gram, called the	input postprocessor, which  may	 perform  any  desired
       clean-up	 action	 (such	as  deleting  the  replacement file created by
       LESSOPEN).  This	program	receives two command line arguments, the orig-
       inal  filename  as entered by the user, and the name of the replacement
       file.  To set up	an input postprocessor,	set the	LESSCLOSE  environment
       variable	 to a command line which will invoke your input	postprocessor.
       It may include two occurrences of the string "%s";  the	first  is  re-
       placed  with the	original name of the file and the second with the name
       of the replacement file,	which was output by LESSOPEN.

       For example, on many Unix systems, these	two scripts will allow you  to
       keep files in compressed	format,	but still let less view	them directly:

       lessopen.sh:
	    #! /bin/sh
	    case "$1" in
	    *.Z) uncompress -
		 if [ -s /tmp/less.$$ ]; then
		      echo /tmp/less.$$
		 else
		      rm -f /tmp/less.$$
		 fi
		 ;;
	    esac

       lessclose.sh:
	    #! /bin/sh
	    rm $2

       To  use these scripts, put them both where they can be executed and set
       LESSOPEN="lessopen.sh %s",  and	LESSCLOSE="lessclose.sh	%s %s".	  More
       complex	LESSOPEN  and LESSCLOSE	scripts	may be written to accept other
       types of	compressed files, and so on.

       It is also possible to set up an	input preprocessor to  pipe  the  file
       data  directly to less, rather than putting the data into a replacement
       file.  This avoids the need to decompress the entire file before	start-
       ing to view it.	An input preprocessor that works this way is called an
       input pipe.  An input pipe, instead of writing the name of  a  replace-
       ment file on its	standard output, writes	the entire contents of the re-
       placement file on its standard output.  If  the	input  pipe  does  not
       write  any characters on	its standard output, then there	is no replace-
       ment file and less uses the original file, as normal.  To use an	 input
       pipe,  make  the	first character	in the LESSOPEN	environment variable a
       vertical	bar (|)	to signify that	the input  preprocessor	 is  an	 input
       pipe.

       For  example, on	many Unix systems, this	script will work like the pre-
       vious example scripts:

       lesspipe.sh:
	    #! /bin/sh
	    case "$1" in
	    *.Z) uncompress -c $1  2>/dev/null
		 ;;
	    esac

       To  use	this  script,  put  it	where  it  can	be  executed  and  set
       LESSOPEN="|lesspipe.sh  %s".   When  an input pipe is used, a LESSCLOSE
       postprocessor can be used, but it is usually not	necessary since	 there
       is no replacement file to clean up.  In this case, the replacement file
       name passed to the LESSCLOSE postprocessor is "-".

       For compatibility with previous versions	of less, the input  preproces-
       sor or pipe is not used if less is viewing standard input.  However, if
       the first character of LESSOPEN is a dash (-), the  input  preprocessor
       is  used	 on  standard input as well as other files.  In	this case, the
       dash is not considered to be part  of  the  preprocessor	 command.   If
       standard	input is being viewed, the input preprocessor is passed	a file
       name consisting of a single dash.  Similarly, if	the first two  charac-
       ters of LESSOPEN	are vertical bar and dash (|-),	the input pipe is used
       on standard input as well as other files.  Again, in this case the dash
       is not considered to be part of the input pipe command.

NATIONAL CHARACTER SETS
       There are three types of	characters in the input	file:

       normal characters
	      can be displayed directly	to the screen.

       control characters
	      should  not  be displayed	directly, but are expected to be found
	      in ordinary text files (such as backspace	and tab).

       binary characters
	      should not be displayed directly and  are	 not  expected	to  be
	      found in text files.

       A "character set" is simply a description of which characters are to be
       considered normal, control, and binary.	 The  LESSCHARSET  environment
       variable	 may  be  used to select a character set.  Possible values for
       LESSCHARSET are:

       ascii  BS, TAB, NL, CR, and formfeed are	control	characters, all	 chars
	      with  values  between  32	and 126	are normal, and	all others are
	      binary.

       iso8859
	      Selects an ISO 8859 character set.  This is the same  as	ASCII,
	      except  characters  between  160	and  255 are treated as	normal
	      characters.

       latin1 Same as iso8859.

       latin9 Same as iso8859.

       dos    Selects a	character set appropriate for MS-DOS.

       ebcdic Selects an EBCDIC	character set.

       IBM-1047
	      Selects an EBCDIC	character set used by  OS/390  Unix  Services.
	      This  is the EBCDIC analogue of latin1.  You get similar results
	      by setting either	LESSCHARSET=IBM-1047 or	LC_CTYPE=en_US in your
	      environment.

       koi8-r Selects a	Russian	character set.

       next   Selects a	character set appropriate for NeXT computers.

       utf-8  Selects  the  UTF-8  encoding  of	 the  ISO 10646	character set.
	      UTF-8 is special in that it supports  multi-byte	characters  in
	      the  input  file.	  It  is  the only character set that supports
	      multi-byte characters.

       windows
	      Selects a	character set appropriate for  Microsoft  Windows  (cp
	      1251).

       In  rare	cases, it may be desired to tailor less	to use a character set
       other than the ones definable by	LESSCHARSET.  In this case, the	 envi-
       ronment variable	LESSCHARDEF can	be used	to define a character set.  It
       should be set to	a string where each character in the string represents
       one  character  in  the character set.  The character "." is used for a
       normal character, "c" for control, and "b" for binary.  A decimal  num-
       ber  may	 be  used  for	repetition.  For example, "bccc4b." would mean
       character 0 is binary, 1, 2 and 3 are control, 4, 5, 6 and  7  are  bi-
       nary,  and  8 is	normal.	 All characters	after the last are taken to be
       the same	as the last, so	characters 9  through  255  would  be  normal.
       (This  is an example, and does not necessarily represent	any real char-
       acter set.)

       This table shows	the value of LESSCHARDEF which is equivalent  to  each
       of the possible values for LESSCHARSET:

	    ascii     8bcccbcc18b95.b
	    dos	      8bcccbcc12bc5b95.b.
	    ebcdic    5bc6bcc7bcc41b.9b7.9b5.b..8b6.10b6.b9.7b
		      9.8b8.17b3.3b9.7b9.8b8.6b10.b.b.b.
	    IBM-1047  4cbcbc3b9cbccbccbb4c6bcc5b3cbbc4bc4bccbc
		      191.b
	    iso8859   8bcccbcc18b95.33b.
	    koi8-r    8bcccbcc18b95.b128.
	    latin1    8bcccbcc18b95.33b.
	    next      8bcccbcc18b95.bb125.bb

       If  neither  LESSCHARSET	nor LESSCHARDEF	is set,	but any	of the strings
       "UTF-8",	"UTF8",	"utf-8"	or "utf8" is found in the LC_ALL,  LC_TYPE  or
       LANG environment	variables, then	the default character set is utf-8.

       If that string is not found, but	your system supports the setlocale in-
       terface,	less will use setlocale	to determine the character set.	  set-
       locale  is controlled by	setting	the LANG or LC_CTYPE environment vari-
       ables.

       Finally,	if the setlocale interface is also not available, the  default
       character set is	latin1.

       Control	and  binary  characters	 are  displayed	 in  standout (reverse
       video).	Each such character is displayed in caret notation if possible
       (e.g.  ^A for control-A).  Caret	notation is used only if inverting the
       0100 bit	results	in a normal printable character.  Otherwise, the char-
       acter  is displayed as a	hex number in angle brackets.  This format can
       be changed by setting the LESSBINFMT environment	variable.   LESSBINFMT
       may begin with a	"*" and	one character to select	the display attribute:
       "*k" is blinking, "*d" is bold, "*u" is underlined, "*s"	 is  standout,
       and  "*n"  is  normal.  If LESSBINFMT does not begin with a "*",	normal
       attribute is assumed.  The remainder of LESSBINFMT is  a	 string	 which
       may  include one	printf-style escape sequence (a	% followed by x, X, o,
       d, etc.).  For example, if LESSBINFMT is	 "*u[%x]",  binary  characters
       are  displayed  in  underlined hexadecimal surrounded by	brackets.  The
       default if no LESSBINFMT	is specified is	"*s<%X>".  The default	if  no
       LESSBINFMT  is specified	is "*s<%02X>".	Warning: the result of expand-
       ing the character via LESSBINFMT	must be	less than 31 characters.

       When the	character set is utf-8,	the LESSUTFBINFMT environment variable
       acts similarly to LESSBINFMT but	it applies to Unicode code points that
       were successfully decoded but are unsuitable for	display	 (e.g.,	 unas-
       signed  code  points).	Its  default  value is "<U+%04lX>".  Note that
       LESSUTFBINFMT and LESSBINFMT  share  their  display  attribute  setting
       ("*x")  so specifying one will affect both; LESSUTFBINFMT is read after
       LESSBINFMT so its setting, if any,  will	 have  priority.   Problematic
       octets  in  a  UTF-8  file (octets of a truncated sequence, octets of a
       complete	but non-shortest form  sequence,  illegal  octets,  and	 stray
       trailing	 octets)  are displayed	individually using LESSBINFMT so as to
       facilitate diagnostic of	how the	UTF-8 file is ill-formed.

PROMPTS
       The -P option allows you	to tailor the prompt to	your preference.   The
       string  given  to  the  -P option replaces the specified	prompt string.
       Certain characters in the string	are interpreted	specially.  The	prompt
       mechanism  is  rather complicated to provide flexibility, but the ordi-
       nary user need not understand the details of constructing  personalized
       prompt strings.

       A  percent sign followed	by a single character is expanded according to
       what the	following character is:

       %bX    Replaced by the byte offset into the current input file.	The  b
	      is followed by a single character	(shown as X above) which spec-
	      ifies the	line whose byte	offset is to be	used.  If the  charac-
	      ter  is a	"t", the byte offset of	the top	line in	the display is
	      used, an "m" means use the middle	line, a	"b" means use the bot-
	      tom  line,  a "B"	means use the line just	after the bottom line,
	      and a "j"	means use the "target" line, as	specified  by  the  -j
	      option.

       %B     Replaced by the size of the current input	file.

       %c     Replaced by the column number of the text	appearing in the first
	      column of	the screen.

       %dX    Replaced by the page number of a line in the  input  file.   The
	      line to be used is determined by the X, as with the %b option.

       %D     Replaced	by  the	 number	of pages in the	input file, or equiva-
	      lently, the page number of the last line in the input file.

       %E     Replaced by the name of the editor (from the VISUAL  environment
	      variable,	 or  the  EDITOR environment variable if VISUAL	is not
	      defined).	 See the discussion of the LESSEDIT feature below.

       %f     Replaced by the name of the current input	file.

       %i     Replaced by the index of the current file	in the list  of	 input
	      files.

       %lX    Replaced	by  the	 line number of	a line in the input file.  The
	      line to be used is determined by the X, as with the %b option.

       %L     Replaced by the line number of the last line in the input	file.

       %m     Replaced by the total number of input files.

       %pX    Replaced by the percent into the current input  file,  based  on
	      byte  offsets.  The line used is determined by the X as with the
	      %b option.

       %PX    Replaced by the percent into the current input  file,  based  on
	      line  numbers.  The line used is determined by the X as with the
	      %b option.

       %s     Same as %B.

       %t     Causes any trailing spaces to be removed.	 Usually used  at  the
	      end of the string, but may appear	anywhere.

       %x     Replaced by the name of the next input file in the list.

       If any item is unknown (for example, the	file size if input is a	pipe),
       a question mark is printed instead.

       The format of the prompt	string can be  changed	depending  on  certain
       conditions.   A	question mark followed by a single character acts like
       an "IF":	depending on the following character, a	 condition  is	evalu-
       ated.   If the condition	is true, any characters	following the question
       mark and	condition character, up	to  a  period,	are  included  in  the
       prompt.	 If  the condition is false, such characters are not included.
       A colon appearing between the question mark and the period can be  used
       to establish an "ELSE": any characters between the colon	and the	period
       are included in the string if and only if the IF	 condition  is	false.
       Condition characters (which follow a question mark) may be:

       ?a     True if any characters have been included	in the prompt so far.

       ?bX    True if the byte offset of the specified line is known.

       ?B     True if the size of current input	file is	known.

       ?c     True if the text is horizontally shifted (%c is not zero).

       ?dX    True if the page number of the specified line is known.

       ?e     True if at end-of-file.

       ?f     True  if	there is an input filename (that is, if	input is not a
	      pipe).

       ?lX    True if the line number of the specified line is known.

       ?L     True if the line number of the last line in the file is known.

       ?m     True if there is more than one input file.

       ?n     True if this is the first	prompt in a new	input file.

       ?pX    True if the percent into the current input file, based  on  byte
	      offsets, of the specified	line is	known.

       ?PX    True  if	the percent into the current input file, based on line
	      numbers, of the specified	line is	known.

       ?s     Same as "?B".

       ?x     True if there is a next input file (that is, if the current  in-
	      put file is not the last one).

       Any  characters	other than the special ones (question mark, colon, pe-
       riod, percent, and backslash) become literally part of the prompt.  Any
       of  the	special	 characters may	be included in the prompt literally by
       preceding it with a backslash.

       Some examples:

       ?f%f:Standard input.

       This prompt prints the filename,	if known; otherwise the	string	"Stan-
       dard input".

       ?f%f .?ltLine %lt:?pt%pt\%:?btByte %bt:-...

       This  prompt  would print the filename, if known.  The filename is fol-
       lowed by	the line number, if known, otherwise  the  percent  if	known,
       otherwise the byte offset if known.  Otherwise, a dash is printed.  No-
       tice how	each question mark has a matching period, and how the %	 after
       the %pt is included literally by	escaping it with a backslash.

       ?n?f%f .?m(file %i of %m) ..?e(END) ?x- Next\: %x..%t

       This  prints  the  filename if this is the first	prompt in a file, fol-
       lowed by	the "file N of N" message if there  is	more  than  one	 input
       file.   Then,  if  we are at end-of-file, the string "(END)" is printed
       followed	by the name of the next	file, if there is one.	 Finally,  any
       trailing	spaces are truncated.  This is the default prompt.  For	refer-
       ence, here are the defaults for the other two prompts (-m  and  -M  re-
       spectively).  Each is broken into two lines here	for readability	only.

       ?n?f%f .?m(file %i of %m) ..?e(END) ?x- Next\: %x.:
	    ?pB%pB\%:byte %bB?s/%s...%t

       ?f%f .?n?m(file %i of %m) ..?ltlines %lt-%lb?L/%L. :
	    byte %bB?s/%s. .?e(END) ?x-	Next\: %x.:?pB%pB\%..%t

       And here	is the default message produced	by the = command:

       ?f%f .?m(file %i	of %m) .?ltlines %lt-%lb?L/%L. .
	    byte %bB?s/%s. ?e(END) :?pB%pB\%..%t

       The  prompt expansion features are also used for	another	purpose: if an
       environment variable LESSEDIT is	defined, it is used as the command  to
       be  executed when the v command is invoked.  The	LESSEDIT string	is ex-
       panded in the same way as the prompt strings.  The  default  value  for
       LESSEDIT	is:

	    %E ?lm+%lm.	%f

       Note that this expands to the editor name, followed by a	+ and the line
       number, followed	by the file name.  If your editor does not accept  the
       "+linenumber"  syntax,  or  has other differences in invocation syntax,
       the LESSEDIT variable can be changed to modify this default.

SECURITY
       When the	environment variable LESSSECURE	is set to 1, less  runs	 in  a
       "secure"	mode.  This means these	features are disabled:

	      !	     the shell command

	      |	     the pipe command

	      :e     the examine command.

	      v	     the editing command

	      s	 -o  log files

	      -k     use of lesskey files

	      -t     use of tags files

		     metacharacters in filenames, such as *

		     filename completion (TAB, ^L)

       Less can	also be	compiled to be permanently in "secure" mode.

COMPATIBILITY WITH MORE
       If the environment variable LESS_IS_MORE	is set to 1, or	if the program
       is invoked via a	file link named	"more",	less behaves (mostly) in  con-
       formance	 with  the  POSIX "more" command specification.	 In this mode,
       less behaves differently	in these ways:

       The -e option works differently.	 If the	-e option is not set, less be-
       haves  as if the	-E option were set.  If	the -e option is set, less be-
       haves as	if the -e and -F options were set.

       The -m option works differently.	 If the	-m  option  is	not  set,  the
       medium  prompt  is used,	and it is prefixed with	the string "--More--".
       If the -m option	is set,	the short prompt is used.

       The -n option acts like the -z option.  The normal behavior of  the  -n
       option is unavailable in	this mode.

       The  parameter  to  the	-p option is taken to be a less	command	rather
       than a search pattern.

       The LESS	environment variable is	 ignored,  and	the  MORE  environment
       variable	is used	in its place.

ENVIRONMENT VARIABLES
       Environment variables may be specified either in	the system environment
       as usual, or in a lesskey (1) file.  If environment variables  are  de-
       fined in	more than one place, variables defined in a local lesskey file
       take precedence over variables defined in the system environment, which
       take precedence over variables defined in the system-wide lesskey file.

       COLUMNS
	      Sets the number of columns on the	screen.	 Takes precedence over
	      the number of columns specified by the TERM variable.   (But  if
	      you  have	 a  windowing  system  which  supports	TIOCGWINSZ  or
	      WIOCGETD,	the window system's idea  of  the  screen  size	 takes
	      precedence over the LINES	and COLUMNS environment	variables.)

       EDITOR The name of the editor (used for the v command).

       HOME   Name  of	the user's home	directory (used	to find	a lesskey file
	      on Unix and OS/2 systems).

       HOMEDRIVE, HOMEPATH
	      Concatenation of the HOMEDRIVE and  HOMEPATH  environment	 vari-
	      ables is the name	of the user's home directory if	the HOME vari-
	      able is not set (only in the Windows version).

       INIT   Name of the user's init directory	(used to find a	 lesskey  file
	      on OS/2 systems).

       LANG   Language for determining the character set.

       LC_CTYPE
	      Language for determining the character set.

       LESS   Options which are	passed to less automatically.

       LESSANSIENDCHARS
	      Characters  which	may end	an ANSI	color escape sequence (default
	      "m").

       LESSANSIMIDCHARS
	      Characters which may appear between the ESC  character  and  the
	      end   character  in  an  ANSI  color  escape  sequence  (default
	      "0123456789;[?!"'#%()*+ ".

       LESSBINFMT
	      Format for displaying non-printable, non-control characters.

       LESSCHARDEF
	      Defines a	character set.

       LESSCHARSET
	      Selects a	predefined character set.

       LESSCLOSE
	      Command line to invoke the (optional) input-postprocessor.

       LESSECHO
	      Name of the lessecho program (default "lessecho").  The lessecho
	      program  is needed to expand metacharacters, such	as * and ?, in
	      filenames	on Unix	systems.

       LESSEDIT
	      Editor prototype string (used for	the v command).	  See  discus-
	      sion under PROMPTS.

       LESSGLOBALTAGS
	      Name  of	the command used by the	-t option to find global tags.
	      Normally should be set to	"global" if your system	has the	global
	      (1) command.  If not set,	global tags are	not used.

       LESSHISTFILE
	      Name  of	the  history file used to remember search commands and
	      shell commands between invocations of less.  If set  to  "-"  or
	      "/dev/null",  a  history	file  is  not  used.   The  default is
	      "$HOME/.lesshst" on Unix systems,	"$HOME/_lesshst"  on  DOS  and
	      Windows  systems,	 or "$HOME/lesshst.ini"	or "$INIT/lesshst.ini"
	      on OS/2 systems.

       LESSHISTSIZE
	      The maximum number of commands to	save in	the history file.  The
	      default is 100.

       LESSKEY
	      Name of the default lesskey(1) file.

       LESSKEY_SYSTEM
	      Name of the default system-wide lesskey(1) file.

       LESSMETACHARS
	      List  of characters which	are considered "metacharacters"	by the
	      shell.

       LESSMETAESCAPE
	      Prefix which less	will add before	each metacharacter in  a  com-
	      mand  sent  to the shell.	 If LESSMETAESCAPE is an empty string,
	      commands containing metacharacters will not  be  passed  to  the
	      shell.

       LESSOPEN
	      Command line to invoke the (optional) input-preprocessor.

       LESSSECURE
	      Runs less	in "secure" mode.  See discussion under	SECURITY.

       LESSSEPARATOR
	      String  to  be  appended to a directory name in filename comple-
	      tion.

       LESSUTFBINFMT
	      Format for displaying non-printable Unicode code points.

       LESS_IS_MORE
	      Emulate the more (1) command.

       LINES  Sets the number of lines on the screen.  Takes  precedence  over
	      the number of lines specified by the TERM	variable.  (But	if you
	      have a windowing system which supports TIOCGWINSZ	 or  WIOCGETD,
	      the  window  system's  idea  of the screen size takes precedence
	      over the LINES and COLUMNS environment variables.)

       PATH   User's search path (used to find a lesskey file  on  MS-DOS  and
	      OS/2 systems).

       SHELL  The  shell  used	to execute the ! command, as well as to	expand
	      filenames.

       TERM   The type of terminal on which less is being run.

       VISUAL The name of the editor (used for the v command).

SEE ALSO
       lesskey(1)

COPYRIGHT
       Copyright (C) 1984-2009	Mark Nudelman

       less is part of the GNU project and is free software.  You  can	redis-
       tribute	it and/or modify it under the terms of either (1) the GNU Gen-
       eral Public License as published	by the Free  Software  Foundation;  or
       (2) the Less License.  See the file README in the less distribution for
       more details regarding redistribution.  You should have received	a copy
       of  the	GNU General Public License along with the source for less; see
       the file	COPYING.  If not, write	to the Free  Software  Foundation,  59
       Temple  Place, Suite 330, Boston, MA  02111-1307, USA.  You should also
       have received a copy of the Less	License; see the file LICENSE.

       less is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY
       WARRANTY;  without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FIT-
       NESS FOR	A PARTICULAR PURPOSE.  See the GNU General Public License  for
       more details.

AUTHOR
       Mark Nudelman <markn@greenwoodsoftware.com>
       See http://www.greenwoodsoftware.com/less/bugs.html for the latest list
       of known	bugs in	less.
       Send bug	reports	or comments to the above address or to
       bug-less@gnu.org.
       For more	information, see the less homepage at
       http://www.greenwoodsoftware.com/less.

			   Version 436:	07 Jul 2009		       LESS(1)

NAME | SYNOPSIS | DESCRIPTION | COMMANDS | OPTIONS | LINE EDITING | KEY BINDINGS | INPUT PREPROCESSOR | NATIONAL CHARACTER SETS | PROMPTS | SECURITY | COMPATIBILITY WITH MORE | ENVIRONMENT VARIABLES | SEE ALSO | COPYRIGHT | AUTHOR

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