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From: "Michael Kerrisk (man-pages)" <>
To: "G. Branden Robinson" <>
Cc: linux-man <>
Subject: Re: [PATCH] drop spurious t comment header
Date: Fri, 24 Jul 2020 12:13:33 +0200
Message-ID: <> (raw)
In-Reply-To: <20200724000315.yx5otylik6oqqy6d@localhost.localdomain>

Hi Branden, Mike,

On Fri, 24 Jul 2020 at 02:03, G. Branden Robinson
<> wrote:
> At 2020-07-23T17:53:33-0400, Mike Frysinger wrote:
> > From: Mike Frysinger <>
> >
> > A bunch of pages have this random comment at the start of its header,
> > but most do not.  Just trim it everywhere.
> It's pretty misleading to call it "random";


> it is a hint to the man
> program to preprocess the man page text through tbl.

Yes, that's my understanding. But I believe that these days it's no
longer needed(?). tbl(1) just gets used as needed, regardless of the
presence of the 't' comment, right?

> This is documented in subsection "Interaction with preprocessors" of
> groff_man(5).
> The patch itself might be fine; the first couple of pages it alters
> indeed use no tables, according to the check I ran:
>         grep -l '^\.\s*TS' man[1-8]/*
> ...but the comment is certainly not meaningless noise, which is what
> "random" suggests, and I would not characterize the change this in a
> commit message.

See my comments above. For 15 years or at least, I've not paid any
attention to adding the 't' comments when I added tables to pages, and
I do recall anyone reporting ill effects. So, I'm inclined to apply
Mike's patch, but will hold off a moment, in case there's other



Michael Kerrisk
Linux man-pages maintainer;
Linux/UNIX System Programming Training:

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Thread overview: 7+ messages / expand[flat|nested]  mbox.gz  Atom feed  top
2020-07-23 21:53 Mike Frysinger
2020-07-24  0:03 ` G. Branden Robinson
2020-07-24 10:13   ` Michael Kerrisk (man-pages) [this message]
2020-07-24 12:15     ` G. Branden Robinson
2020-07-24 12:30       ` Michael Kerrisk (man-pages)
2020-07-24 13:13         ` Stefan Puiu
2020-07-24 15:17           ` Michael Kerrisk (man-pages)

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