Provided by: manpages_3.54-1ubuntu1_all bug


     mdoc — quick reference guide for the -mdoc macro package


     groff -mdoc files ...


     The -mdoc package is a set of content-based and domain-based macros used to format the BSD
     man pages.  The macro names and their meanings are listed below for quick reference; for a
     detailed explanation on using the package, see the tutorial sampler groff_mdoc(7).

     Note that this is not the usual macro package for Linux documentation, although it is used
     for documentation of several widely used programs; see man(7).

     The macros are described in two groups, the first includes the structural and physical page
     layout macros.  The second contains the manual and general text domain macros which
     differentiate the -mdoc package from other troff formatting packages.


   Title Macros
     To create a valid manual page, these three macros, in this order, are required:
     .Dd   Month day, year                       Document date.
     .Dt   DOCUMENT_TITLE [section] [volume]     Title, in upper case.
     .Os   OPERATING_SYSTEM [version/release]    Operating system (BSD).

   Page Layout Macros
     Section headers, paragraph breaks, lists and displays.
     .Sh   Section Headers.  Valid headers, in the order of presentation:
           NAME          Name section, should include the ‘.Nm’ or ‘.Fn’ and the ‘.Nd’ macros.
           SYNOPSIS      Usage.
           DESCRIPTION   General description, should include options and parameters.
           RETURN VALUE  Sections two and three function calls.
           ENVIRONMENT   Describe environment variables.
           FILES         Files associated with the subject.
           EXAMPLES      Examples and suggestions.
           DIAGNOSTICS   Normally used for section four device interface diagnostics.
           ERRORS        Sections two and three error and signal handling.
           SEE ALSO      Cross references and citations.
           CONFORMING TO
                         Conformance to standards if applicable.
           HISTORY       If a standard is not applicable, the history of the subject should be
           BUGS          Gotchas and caveats.
           other         Customized headers may be added at the authors discretion.
     .Ss   Subsection Headers.
     .Pp   Paragraph Break.  Vertical space (one line).
     .D1   (D-one) Display-one Indent and display one text line.
     .Dl   (D-ell) Display-one literal.  Indent and display one line of literal text.
     .Bd   Begin-display block.  Display options:
           -ragged          Unjustified (ragged edges).
           -filled          Justified.
           -literal         Literal text or code.
           -file name       Read in named file and display.
           -offset string   Offset display.  Acceptable string values:
                            left        Align block on left (default).
                            center      Approximate center margin.
                            indent      Six constant width spaces (a tab).
                            indent-two  Two tabs.
                            right       Left aligns block 2 inches from right.
                            xxn         Where xx is a number from 4n to 99n.
                            Aa          Where Aa is a callable macro name.
                            string      The width of string is used.
     .Ed   End-display (matches .Bd).
     .Bl   Begin-list.  Create lists or columns.  Options:
                 -bullet    Bullet Item List
                 -item      Unlabeled List
                 -enum      Enumerated List
                 -tag       Tag Labeled List
                 -diag      Diagnostic List
                 -hang      Hanging Labeled List
                 -ohang     Overhanging Labeled List
                 -inset     Inset or Run-on Labeled List
                 -offset    (All lists.) See ‘.Bd’ begin-display above.
                 -width     (-tag and -hang lists only.)  See ‘.Bd’.
                 -compact   (All lists.)  Suppresses blank lines.
     .El   End-list.
     .It   List item.


     The manual and general text domain macros are special in that most of them are parsed for
     callable macros for example:

           .Op Fl s Ar file
                       Produces [-s file]

     In this example, the option enclosure macro ‘.Op’ is parsed, and calls the callable content
     macro ‘Fl’ which operates on the argument ‘s’ and then calls the callable content macro ‘Ar’
     which operates on the argument ‘file’.  Some macros may be callable, but are not parsed and
     vice versa.  These macros are indicated in the parsed and callable columns below.

     Unless stated, manual domain macros share a common syntax:

           .Va argument [ . , ; : ( ) [ ] argument ... ]

     Note: Opening and closing punctuation characters are recognized as such only if they are
     presented one at a time.  The string ‘),’ is not recognized as punctuation and will be
     output with a leading white space and in what ever font the calling macro uses.  The
     argument list ‘] ) ,’ is recognized as three sequential closing punctuation characters and a
     leading white space is not output between the characters and the previous argument (if any).
     The special meaning of a punctuation character may be escaped with the string ‘\&’.  For
     example the following string,

           .Ar file1 , file2 , file3 ) .   Produces file1, file2, file3).

   Manual Domain Macros
     Name    Parsed    Callable     Description
     Ad      Yes       Yes          Address. (This macro may be deprecated.)
     An      Yes       Yes          Author name.
     Ar      Yes       Yes          Command-line argument.
     Cd      No        No           Configuration declaration (section four only).
     Cm      Yes       Yes          Command-line argument modifier.
     Dv      Yes       Yes          Defined variable (source code).
     Er      Yes       Yes          Error number (source code).
     Ev      Yes       Yes          Environment variable.
     Fa      Yes       Yes          Function argument.
     Fd      Yes       Yes          Function declaration.
     Fn      Yes       Yes          Function call (also .Fo and .Fc).
     Ic      Yes       Yes          Interactive command.
     Li      Yes       Yes          Literal text.
     Nm      Yes       Yes          Command name.
     Op      Yes       Yes          Option (also .Oo and .Oc).
     Ot      Yes       Yes          Old style function type (Fortran only).
     Pa      Yes       Yes          Pathname or filename.
     St      Yes       Yes          Standards (-p1003.2, -p1003.1 or -ansiC)
     Va      Yes       Yes          Variable name.
     Vt      Yes       Yes          Variable type (Fortran only).
     Xr      Yes       Yes          Manual Page Cross Reference.

   General Text Domain Macros
     Name    Parsed    Callable     Description
     %A      Yes       No           Reference author.
     %B      Yes       Yes          Reference book title.
     %C      No        No           Reference place of publishing (city).
     %D      No        No           Reference date.
     %J      Yes       Yes          Reference journal title.
     %N      No        No           Reference issue number.
     %O      No        No           Reference optional information.
     %P      No        No           Reference page number(s).
     %R      No        No           Reference report Name.
     %T      Yes       Yes          Reference article title.
     %V      No        No           Reference volume.
     Ac      Yes       Yes          Angle close quote.
     Ao      Yes       Yes          Angle open quote.
     Ap      Yes       Yes          Apostrophe.
     Aq      Yes       Yes          Angle quote.
     At      No        No           AT&T UNIX
     Bc      Yes       Yes          Bracket close quote.
     Bf      No        No           Begin font mode.
     Bo      Yes       Yes          Bracket open quote.
     Bq      Yes       Yes          Bracket quote.
     Bx      Yes       Yes          BSD.
     Db      No        No           Debug (default is "off")
     Dc      Yes       Yes          Double close quote.
     Do      Yes       Yes          Double open quote.
     Dq      Yes       Yes          Double quote.
     Ec      Yes       Yes          Enclose string close quote.
     Ef      No        No           End font mode.
     Em      Yes       Yes          Emphasis (traditional English).
     Eo      Yes       Yes          Enclose string open quote.
     Fx      No        No           FreeBSD operating system
     No      Yes       Yes          Normal text (no-op).
     Ns      Yes       Yes          No space.
     Pc      Yes       Yes          Parenthesis close quote.
     Pf      Yes       No           Prefix string.
     Po      Yes       Yes          Parenthesis open quote.
     Pq      Yes       Yes          Parentheses quote.
     Qc      Yes       Yes          Straight Double close quote.
     Ql      Yes       Yes          Quoted literal.
     Qo      Yes       Yes          Straight Double open quote.
     Qq      Yes       Yes          Straight Double quote.
     Re      No        No           Reference end.
     Rs      No        No           Reference start.
     Rv      No        No           Return values (sections two and three only).
     Sc      Yes       Yes          Single close quote.
     So      Yes       Yes          Single open quote.
     Sq      Yes       Yes          Single quote.
     Sm      No        No           Space mode (default is "on")
     Sx      Yes       Yes          Section Cross Reference.
     Sy      Yes       Yes          Symbolic (traditional English).
     Tn      Yes       Yes          Trade or type name (small Caps).
     Ux      Yes       Yes          UNIX
     Xc      Yes       Yes          Extend argument list close.
     Xo      Yes       Yes          Extend argument list open.

     Macro names ending in ‘q’ quote remaining items on the argument list.  Macro names ending in
     ‘o’ begin a quote which may span more than one line of input and are close quoted with the
     matching macro name ending in ‘c’.  Enclosure macros may be nested and are limited to eight

     Note: the extended argument list macros (‘.Xo’, ‘.Xc’) and the function enclosure macros
     (‘.Fo’, ‘.Fc’) are irregular.  The extended list macros are used when the number of macro
     arguments would exceed the troff limitation of nine arguments.

     The macros UR (starting a URI/URL hypertext reference), UE (ending one), and UN (identifying
     a target for a reference) are also available.  See man(7) for more information on these


     doc.tmac          Manual and general text domain macros.
     tmac/doc-common   Common structural macros and definitions.
     tmac/doc-nroff    Site dependent nroff style file.
     tmac/doc-ditroff  Site dependent troff style file.
     tmac/doc-syms     Special defines (such as the standards macro).


     groff_mdoc(7), mdoc.samples(7), man(7), man-pages(7)


     This page is part of release 3.54 of the Linux man-pages project.  A description of the
     project, and information about reporting bugs, can be found at