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This is only for Unix-like systems or, more specifically, systems
having a "man" manual repository.
Anyway, you can find everything transcripted later in this README.
The primary goal was to provide a man page for foo so that newbies
could get enlightenment when typing "man foo".
The secondary goal was to give some perspective about command options
for experienced users and programmers alike.
Hope you all find it useful, and may you want to contribute suggestions
and comments to:
The final goal should be to include metasyntactics in an extension of
the POSIX specification.
nroff -mandoc foo.7 | less
Edit the Makefile if you want to change the predefined name of the
C compiler (gcc) or the destination path (/usr/local).
To install manually:
First copy over the file foo.7 to the directory /usr/local/man/man7/
or to the directory /usr/local/share/man/man7/ (Create the directory
if necessary, but make certain that it appears either in the MANPATH
environment variable, or in the file-s /etc/man.config or similar).
Optionally, you can create the links bar.7 and baz.7 inside the same
cc -o foo foo.c
and put foo in /usr/local/bin
or elsewhere in your PATH.
TRANSCRIPTION of the man page
foo(7) Metasyntactic words foo(7)
foo -- abstraction representing any name
The options are sequences of characters that can alter the
behavior of the command. They are separated from each
other by at least one space, and consist typically in one
or more letters preceeded by at most two hyphens (minus
This man page tries to explain the usual meanings of every
possible option in every possible command.
Obviously, it can not even pretend to be complete but
merely orientative, so look at it with caution and use it
with extreme care and judgement. This should be your last
resort. Never use it unless there is no other source of
SUBSTITUTING the word foo by the desired command
In the same way, try also any or all of the follow
foo is the preferred way to represent any command, pro
gram, shell built-in, function or subroutine name. The
words bar(7), baz(7) and others serve the same purpose,
specially once foo(7) has already been used. Together
they are called metasyntactic variable names.
This man page, for instance, could have been called
options or even unix, linux, or any other thing of that
sort. That is why foo was chosen.
-- make subsequent hyphens no longer be interpreted as
signaling the beginning of an option
rm -- [filename starting with the character
mark option as having more than one character
--help, --version ...
(mainstream usage of -- )
Multi-character options tend to have single letter equivalents:
Exceptions are gcc(1), find(1), the X(7) server and its
related programs, which use long options preceded by
a single hyphen:
-display, -geometry ...
- use standard input in place of a file
(most used in command pipes)
select the mode of operation when there are more than two
telnet, nice ...
--all do not stop after processing the first item
(numerous; mainstream usage of -a)
input/output in plain ASCII text
grep, gzip, mc
--append [stuff], --add [stuff]
proceed without overwriting preexistent data
tee, ar, mail
-b set mode
set byte output mode
free, cpio ...
set binary operation mode
do not listen to manual input
generate more concise output
(Related to -q and -s, and opposite to --verbose)
--bus operate on bus
specify the size of data portions (on/to disk)
(mainstream usage of -b)
limit intermediate storage size (in-memory)
examine things before working on them
(note the difference with --test)
sort, mke2fs ...
--comp disable/reenable compression or compaction
(Related to -z)
--compile [non-numeric], --command [non-numeric]
process some instructions
(Similar to --exec)
gcc, sh, su ...
declare its argument to be a natural number
(Similar to -n)
start permanent background execution
run, fdmount ...
perform additional tasks for error detection
(mainstream usage of -d)
set directory mode or the directory to operate
CAUTION: this is normally irreversible
tar, tr, losetup
e typically without prepending hyphen
uncompress, be it a part or the whole
unace, unrar ...
execute some instructions
(Similar to -c)
sed, mysql ...
(mainstream usage of -e)
make exceptions, do not execute on arguments
CAUTION: contrast with the previous usage
override internal security mechanisms
(Resembling, but not exactly the same as -y)
ln, rm, rmmod
--fake do not perform any real action
(Similar to --test)
CAUTION: opposite to the previous usage
specify the file to use
(mainstream usage of -f)
launch visual interface for mouse interaction
useradd, lsof ...
(mainstream usage of -g)
display some help and exit
(Similar to -?)
(mainstream usage of -h)
output in a more easily readable format
(Also has to do with --help)
determine how (and whether) to print headers
w, nl, lpr ...
(Opposite to -y)
(mainstream usage of -i)
make no distinction between upper
case and lower case letters
(Related to --ignore)
ignore things, usually errors
make, top, env
invert the output somehow
(Similar to --reverse)
--include, --insert, --install [filename]
incorporate the contents of a file
dpkg, rpm ...
set the order in which things get evaluated
less, iptables ...
--keep do not perform normal elimination
rman, bzip2 ...
(mainstream usage of -k)
--kill eliminate the things dictated by the output
(note the difference with --delete)
CAUTION: normally irreversible, and
opposite to the previous usage
-l control output format (usually making it larger)
--list generate list formatted output
fdisk, pgrep ...
(mainstream usage of -l)
--long not always in the same sense as --verbose
--log enable/disable logging (output to a file)
set line count/numbering
col, wc, nm ...
use an alternative map instead of the default
bash, lilo, reset ...
--not negate something, usually a part of the main output
(not just verbosity, like -q, -s or --brief)
sed, mesg ...
declare [argument] to be a natural number
(Similar to --count)
lp, dmesg ...
--output [filename], --object [filename]
specify the destination file to write results to
(mainstream usage of -o)
set an option
read, cal ...
specify port (commonly in TCP/IP programs)
nmap, sshd ...
specify protocol (also in TCP/IP programs)
use words with same beginning
In traditional practice, it is verbosity what
has to be asked for explicitely, making this
(Related to --silent and --brief, and
opposite to --verbose)
gdb, ping ...
(mainstream usage of -q)
apply to all directories underneath
(mainstream usage of -r)
somehow reverse output/presentation
(Similar to --invert)
cat, xterm ...
disable part of the functionality
bash, jobs, ps
resume operation as if it had not been interrupted
vim, nmap ...
supress output (in a much greater degree than -q)
(Related to --quiet and --brief, and
opposite to --verbose)
(mainstream usage of -s)
limit total input
(as opposed to -b, which limits size for fragments)
shred, xargs ...
--test do not perform any real action
(Similar to --fake)
lilo, unzip ...
(mainstream usage of -t)
specify a terminal
skill, ul, emacs
fmt, vi ...
do not replace if newer
man, mv ...
(mainstream usage of -u)
output information about execution
(Opposite to --brief, --quiet and --silent)
(mainstream use of -v)
output information about the program
chattr, lsof ...
If there is a -V option, the trend is for -V
to have this meaning, with a few exceptions:
fsck, lsof, sox
--wait do not start execution immediately
host, open ...
write to the device
mount, hwclock ...
ptx, banner ...
passwd, jw ...
-x same meanings and usage as -e
--yes do not ask for confirmation
(Opposite to --interactive, and
related to --force)
(mainstream usage of -y)
--zip apply compression
(mainstream usage of -z)
a capital or upper case letter is used only after the
corresponding lower case letter has already been used.
This implies, on the one hand, that what -V means for
a program can be -v on another program and viceversa.
On the other hand, resorting to capitals frequently
implies there are already so many options present that
the need for good documentation can not be ignored.
(Similar to -h)
do the opposite to whatever the normal option does
chmod, xlock ...
open at the line specified by [number]
more, vi ...
foo can also represent any filename.
CAUTION: In ordinary practice, filenames beginning with
foo, bar, etc. designate files that can be safely deleted
or overwritten at any time without warning.
Nothing really prevents foo from becoming the name of a
real program in the future. Only the inclusion of meta
syntactic variable names as part of the POSIX standard
could avoid that possibility.
Send corrections/enhancements to <email@example.com>.
At least two examples should be found for an usage to be
Copyright © 2002 Juanjo Garcia <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This is free software; see the source for copying condi
tions. There is NO warranty; not even for MERCHANTABILITY
or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE.
Permission is granted to make and distribute verbatim
copies of this manual provided the copyright notice and
this permission notice are preserved on all copies.
Permission is granted to copy and distribute modified ver
sions of this manual under the conditions for verbatim
copying, provided that the entire resulting derived work
is distributed under the terms of a permission notice
identical to this one.
Permission is granted to copy and distribute translations
of this manual into another language, under the above con
ditions for modified versions, except that this permission
notice may be included in translations approved by the
Free Software Foundation instead of in the original
Written by Juanjo Garcia.
1959 - Use of the word foo among programmers is first con
stated at M.I.T.
1978 - The words foo and bar reputedly gained widespread
acceptance since their appeareance as subroutine names in
examples from famous books, like "The C programming lan
guage" by Kernighan & Ritchie.
2001 - Rfc3092 describing foo was published following the
work of Eric S. Raymond in the jargon file.
sh(1) or bash(1), man(1), apropos(1), whatis(1), info(1)
- Enviado Por:
- Enviado el:
- 28 Jun 2010
- Tamaño del archivo:
- 22.70 Kb
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