Provided by: menu_2.1.46ubuntu1_amd64 bug


       update-menus - generate Debian menu system


       update-menus  [-v]  [-d]  [-h|--help]  [--version]  [--menufilesdir  <dir>]  [--menumethod
       <method>] [--nodefaultdirs] [--stdout]


       Before the advent of update-menus, when the system administrators installed a package onto
       a  Debian  system,  they  would need to edit various window manager configuration files to
       make the new program show up on, for example, fvwm's menus. The menus could easily  become
       out  of  sync with what programs were actually available, with some menu items that didn't
       work, and other programs that lacked a menu entry.  update-menus and Debian's menu package
       aim to solve this problem.

       update-menus  automatically  generates menus of installed programs for window managers and
       other menu programs. It should be run  whenever  a  menufile(5)  or  menu-method  file  is
       changed.   update-menus  will  be run automatically when Debian packages that contain menu
       files are installed on or removed from the system.

       update-menus uses the package-supplied menu  entry  files  (in  /usr/share/menu)  for  its
       information  about  the menus (but this can be overruled by the system administrator/user;
       see below). If a menu entry file is executable, update-menus executes the menu entry file,
       and uses its stdout to generate the menu database.


       -v     Verbose output. Shows all arguments to the /etc/menu-methods programs.

       -d     Debug output. Generates loads of unintelligible output.

       -h, --help
              Display usage help and exit.

       --menufilesdir <dir>
              Adds directory <dir> to the list of directories to search for menu files in.

       --menumethod <method>
              Process only the menu method <method> instead of all the menu methods found.

              Disables the search of menu entries in system menu directories.

              Do not discard menu entries for packages that are not installed according to dpkg.

              Remove the menus by calling the menu-methods with --remove.

              Output  the  menu  list  in  a  format suitable as input for install-menu or a menu
              method file.

              Output version information and exit.


       There are several ways to tune the operation of update-menus:

       per menu entry, in /etc/menu/$package
              In these directories the system administrator or user can override the default menu
              files    (If   a   file   /etc/menu/$package   exists,   than   the   corresponding
              /usr/share/menu/$package file isn't read any more). Users who want to override  the
              system wide defaults put their files in ~/.menu. See also menufile(5)
       per window-manager in /etc/menu-methods/$wm
              In  these configuration files, one can tune generated system.${wm}rc files for each
              individual window manager. For example, one can specify that the wm  should  ignore
              any  icons  that  the packages may supply, or set the default wrapper for text-only
              applications (usually, an xterm is started to run a text-only application like vi).
              Users  who  want  to  override the system wide defaults put their files in ~/.menu-
              methods. For more info, see /usr/share/doc/menu/html.
       globally, in /etc/menu-methods/translate_menus
              This file contains translations that will be performed for all menu entries and all
              window managers. You can specify things like: `All sections that start with "Games"
              should be mapped to "Applications/Games"', or `menuentry "gnuplot"  should  have  a
              title  of "GnuTeken"'. Look at the default /etc/menu-methods/translate_menus for an
              example. Users who want to override the system default translate file, put  one  in
              ~/.menu-methods/translate_menus.   Note:  This  should  not  be  used  for  a  full
              translation of the menu. Use po files as explained in the source package.
       error report configuring, in /etc/menu-methods/menu.config
              This file contains general information for the overall behaviour  of  update-menus.
              At the moment you can only configure how verbose the output of update-menus is, and
              where  it  sends  the  output.  The  amount  of   information   is   specified   by
              `verbosity=VAL'.  Use VAL=quiet to stop update-menu from reporting anything but the
              most important errors, VAL=normal, VAL=verbose, VAL=debug  for  progressively  more

              To  specify  where  the  output should go, use `method=stdout', `method=stderr', or
              `method=syslog facility priority'. `Facility' is one of auth,  authpriv,  authcron,
              authdaemon,  authkern,  authlocal0, authlocal1, authlocal2, authlocal3, authlocal4,
              authlocal5,  authlocal6,  authlocal7,  authlpr,  authmail,  authnews,   authsyslog,
              authuser,  authuucp. `priority' is one of emerg, alert, crit, err, warning, notice,
              info, debug.


       Menu files: (Earlier listed directories override those listed later.)
                     Menu files added by the user. (Isn't read if root runs update-menus)
                     Menu files added by the system administrator.
                     Architecture-dependant menu files provided by other Debian packages.
                     Architecture-independant menu files provided by other Debian packages.
                     Menu files provided by the menu package.
       Menu methods:
                     Executable configuration files that are added by window managers  and  other
                     menu programs, these files are run by update-menus to generate menus for the
                     different programs. Also in this directory is the translate_menus file, used
                     for local configuration of the shape of the menu trees.
                     For  users  to  override  the system-defaults of /etc/menu-methods.  If this
                     directory exists, no files in /etc/menu-methods are read any more.


       Distribution is subject to the GNU General Public License.


       update-menus may not work properly when run by a normal user, to generate menus  for  that
       user.  This  is usually because the window manager doesn't expect the system.${wm}rc files
       in the directory (usually ~/.${wm}, configurable in /etc/menu-methods). If you see such  a
       thing,  and you find a solution, please mail <>. It should work OK
       for fvwm and fvwm2: I usually test the package first as an ordinary user.


       Joost Witteveen <>, original idea by Lars  Wirzenius  <>.  Now
       maintained by Bill Allombert <>.


       To  Joey  Hess,  for  a  lot  of good ideas and pre-release testing, and to Tom Lees for a
       update-menus in pure C (of which I only used one function, but that's life).

       Man page by Joey Hess, <>


       menufile(5), /usr/share/doc/menu/html