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wrong section in manpages

Hello list,

during learning how to write manpages, I looked over a few installed
ones on my machine, and in addition to having learned some things, I saw
some errors in the .TH lines.

For example in make(1) (surprisingly in the package `make'):

        $ zgrep ^\\.TH /usr/share/man/man1/make.1.gz
        .TH MAKE 1L "22 August 1989" "GNU" "LOCAL USER COMMANDS"

The second argument to .TH is the section number. I don't know, what the
suffix `L' should mean, but in any case the section in the name of the
manpage and the section specified in the file differ.

pwck(8) (in package `passwd') is still worse:

        $ zgrep ^\\.TH /usr/share/man/man8/pwck.8.gz
        .TH PWCK 1

Here the two sections differ completely. Moreover the 3rd to 5th
arguments to .TH are missing - however I think they are not very

I don't think it is feasable to write bugreports against all affected
packages. Maybe lintian is a good place to check for this? dh_installman
could also pay attention to this kind of error?

What do you think?


Uwe Zeisberger


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