Re: Please keep an eye on manpage encoding issues (especially in etch).
Thank you for sharing a problem, Clytie. :-)
From: Clytie Siddall <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Re: Please keep an eye on manpage encoding issues (especially in etch).
Date: Sun, 12 Nov 2006 17:06:40 +1030
> On 12/11/2006, at 3:48 PM, Kobayashi Noritada wrote:
> >>> Manpage encoding issues are seen for some packages and for some
> >>> languages; some manpages are encoded in UTF-8 and unreadable in any
> >>> environment.
> >> Can we specify the encoding in the manpage text in some way?
> > No, the input encoding is determined by the locale and input manpage
> > path, which is hard-coded in man-db's src/encodings.c.
> Users of some languages, like mine, will need UTF8 anyway, and will
> set their man conf correspondingly. In any case, UTF8 will be used
> increasingly. It is, or should be, the standard encoding for
Yes, exactly I think so. I hear Fedora have forced manpages to be
encoded in UTF-8 and Debian should do so in the future, or at least
support UTF-8 manpages for languages that have used non-UTF8 ones in
some way (e.g. by detecting input encodings, or by completely
switching to UTF-8).
However, completely switching manpage encodings to UTF-8 will require
both modification of man-db's encoding handling and conversion of all
the old non-UTF8 manpages (e.g. EUC-JP ones used for Japanese, and
latin-1 ones used for European languages), which will be a big
transition and will be controversial. Actually it was controversial
at least in a thread starting from my post in this April in a
So, in the first mail, I proposed determining some policy about
encodings of manpages and creating system to check manpage encodings
in the future. After that, or in parallel, we should do some
transition or support.
> But meanwhile, we need a way to label non-UTF8 manpages, or manpages
> which don't match the man conf encoding setting. Bruno, what do you
Yes, a number of non-UTF8 manpages are now used for many languages for
which only non-UTF8 ones are approved. And at least for etch, we now
need conversion of UTF-8 manpages for those languages.
 http://lists.debian.or.jp/debian-users/200604/threads.html#00078 (in Japanese)