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Re: May I remove a "feature" from man? [was: Bug#10039]

Bruce Perens wrote:
> From: Fabrizio Polacco <fpolacco@icenet.fi>
> > Bug#10039 exposed a problem with the "feature" of man to index all
> > the 'man' and 'MAN' subdirectory it finds in the HOME and current
> > directory, when it is invoked.
> Is this is consequence of your $MANPATH or is it in the "man" program?

Well, the feature hardcoded in the program is that for each entry in the
PATH, it looks for a "man" subdir and, if not already present in the
MANPATH, index it.
The code (which is ugly written IMO) has a bug with the entry for the
current directory: if the PATH lists the current dir as the "empty
entry", all search is done using a null string (which does nothing), but
if the current dir is listed as "." , the dot is compared with the
MANPATH entries (and fails because /usr/man != /usr/./man)

I can easily correct the bug in two different ways: to make man searches
the current dir even when the empty entry is used in PATH (and correct
the compare with MANPATH) or remove the feature for the current

I would prefere the latter because I was really annoyed of it (had to
remove all index.bt in clean: target of debian/rules).

Anyway, the whole feature seems strange to me, because usually man
hierarchies are at the same level of binary dirs, not under them.

> Is $HOME automaticaly in the MANPATH? If so, that's not bad. 

I was over-hasty in saying that (happens often on late evenings :-)
because of a comment in the source code. But it is true "if $HOME is in

>The current directory should not be in MANPATH and should not be
> indexed.

Well, if someone put it in the MANPATH ... should man ignore it?

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