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proper stream to aim --help output to

Many programs offer helpful usage text when passed an invalid argument,
or --help, -help etc. However there seems to be no consensus on which
stream to aim the output at : stdout or stderr.

Generally the output is large enough to require the use of a page to
read, which means you have to have a vague idea of which stream it is
coming from.

I have looked through debian policy and googled around, throwing in
keywords like 'posix' to see if there is some consensus on which is
best, preferred, or mandatory, but I haven't turned up anything.

Can anyone tell me a reason why aiming usage text at stderr is a _good_
idea? I find it very annoying when I fire something at less (e.g. ssh
--help) and it isn't caught, and I need to redirect the streams.

Would anyone else like there to be some kind of agreement on which to

Jon Dowland

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