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Re: [Groff] empty line before .TH in man page produces sometimes an empt

From: walter harms
Subject: Re: [Groff] empty line before .TH in man page produces sometimes an empty page
Date: Mon, 02 Oct 2006 14:43:29 +0200
User-agent: Thunderbird (X11/20060911)

hi all,
iff i remember correctly you may use  '\"tep (t for tbl e for eqn p for pic etc)
in the first line to invoke the various precompilers.


Clarke Echols wrote:
> ABSOLUTELY NO LINES, other than genuine troff/groff comment lines
> should appear in a man page file before the .TH line.  You do *not*
> want troff/groff interpreting *anything* before it encounters the
> .TH macro call because .TH sets up page boundaries, end-of-page
> traps, and a bunch of other stuff that you want fully established
> and settled before you start interpreting text.  This has been the
> case for decades.
> In a source-code (SCCS) or revision (RCS) control environment, the
> first line in the file starts with .\" $Header:  [I think -- it's
> been many years since I did this stuff back in 1989-1992].  The
> RCS or SCCS software then fills in the line with date, revision
> version number, etc., but by making it a comment, it keeps the
> revision information invisible to troff/groff.
> Any line before .TH that is not a comment will create a break in
> no-fill mode, and in fill mode will create a non-empty buffer prior
> to the .TH line, causing unpredictable behavior, depending on various
> environment/status conditions.
> Clarke
> Bernd Warken wrote:
>> Consider the followin short man page:
>> $ cat manpage.1
>> \" comment
>> .TH MANPAGE 1 "2006 Oct 1" "manpage"
>> manpage \- test man page
>> This has a bug: the first line (with the comment) should start with a
>> dot.
>> For example, the man page bash.1 has this bug.
>> Without the dot, this line produces an empty space in the output.  In
>> text
>> or html output, this space is a single empty line, ok.
>> But in ps or dvi output, a whole empty page is created.  I consider
>> this a
>> bug in ps and dvi mode.
>> If you write some text before the .TH request this text is written in a
>> single line even in ps or dvi output.  But as soon as you add a line
>> that is
>> empty or has only spaces or a comment a whole empty page is created
>> in ps or dvi mode.
>> Bernd Warken
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