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Re: Bug#450432: ... and even more bugs like this?

On Tue, Nov 13, 2007 at 01:44:23AM +0600, Ivan Shmakov wrote:
> 	What I'm expected to do, then?  (With respect to Debian BTS.)  I
> 	believe, start filing multiple bug reports would be a bad idea
> 	(for me now.)  May I suggest an explicit warning to be generated
> 	by Groff on unknown ``command'', so that lintian(1) will issue a
> 	warning on a malformed manual page, too?  (Or a ``strict check''
> 	mode for Groff, to be used especially by lintian and alike?)

The -wmac option to groff will emit a warning for this mistake. See the
"Warnings" node in 'info groff'.

It's not especially easy right now to make Lintian pass this, since man
doesn't expose an interface to add extra options to groff. I'll file a
bug for my own reference and see about adding one.

> 	And, out of curiosity, was the ``. Note:'' (and similar) ever
> 	rendered by Groff, and if it is, when the behaviour was changed?

No, it wasn't. As others have said, this is a moderately common mistake.
I usually fix it by putting \& (zero-width space) at the start of the
line, and indeed that's what groff's info documentation recommends.

> #!/bin/bash
> ### check-man-periods.sh --- Check man pages for ``period bugs''  -*- Sh -*-

I very much recommend against any attempt to parse *roff in shell, FWIW.
Even man-db's flex parser is ultimately doomed to failure and should
probably be replaced with something cunning involving custom groff
macros at some point.


Colin Watson                                       [cjwatson@debian.org]

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