[OpenBSD]

Manual Page Search Parameters

MAN(1) General Commands Manual MAN(1)

man
display manual pages

man [-achw] [-C file] [-M path] [-m path] [-S subsection] [-s section] [section] name ...

man -f command ...

man -k keyword ...

The man utility displays the BSD manual pages entitled name. Pages may be selected according to a specific category (section) or machine architecture (subsection).

The options are as follows:

Display all of the manual pages for a specified section and name combination. Normally, only the first manual page found is displayed.
file
Use the specified file instead of the default configuration file. This permits users to configure their own manual environment. See man.conf(5) for a description of the contents of this file.
Copy the manual page to the standard output instead of using more(1) to paginate it. This is done by default if the standard output is not a terminal device.
command
A synonym for whatis(1). It looks up a given command and gives the header line from the manual page. command is case insensitive.
Display only the “SYNOPSIS” lines of the requested manual pages.
keyword
A synonym for apropos(1). It shows which manual pages contain instances of any of the given keywords in their title line. keyword is case insensitive.

For instance, to list all man pages which contain “mount” in the “NAME” line of the man page:

$ man -k mount

Which would produce a list much like this:

amd (8) – automatically mount file systems
amq (8) – automounter query tool
domountroothooks (9) – run all mountroot hooks
exports (5) – define remote mount points for NFS mount requests
getfsstat (2) – get list of all mounted file systems
getmntinfo (3) – get information about mounted file systems
mount (8) – mount file systems
mount, unmount (2) – mount or dismount a filesystem
mount_cd9660 (8) – mount an ISO-9660 filesystem
mount_ext2fs (8) – mount an ext2fs file system
mount_ffs (8) – mount a Berkeley Fast File System
mount_msdos (8) – mount an MS-DOS file system
mount_nfs (8) – mount NFS file systems
mount_nnpfs (8) – mount the nnpfs filesystem
mount_ntfs (8) – mount an NTFS file system
mount_procfs (8) – mount the process file system
mount_udf (8) – mount a UDF filesystem
mount_vnd, vnconfig (8) – configure vnode disks
mountd (8) – service remote NFS mount requests
...
    
path
Override the list of standard directories which man searches for manual pages. The supplied path must be a colon (‘:’) separated list of directories. This search path may also be set using the environment variable MANPATH. The subdirectories to be searched, and their search order, are specified by the “_subdir” line in the man configuration file.
path
Augment the list of standard directories which man searches for manual pages. The supplied path must be a colon (‘:’) separated list of directories. These directories will be searched before the standard directories or the directories specified using the -M option or the MANPATH environment variable. The subdirectories to be searched, and their search order, are specified by the “_subdir” line in the man configuration file.
subsection
Restricts the directories that man will search to those of a specific machine(1) architecture. subsection is case insensitive.

By default manual pages for all architectures are installed. Therefore this option can be used to view pages for one architecture whilst using another.

This option overrides the MACHINE environment variable.

[-s] section
Restricts the directories that man will search to a specific section. The currently available sections are:

1
General commands (tools and utilities).
2
System calls and error numbers.
3
Libraries.
3f
Fortran programmer's reference guide.
3p
perl(1) programmer's reference guide.
4
Device drivers.
5
File formats.
6
Games.
7
Miscellaneous.
8
System maintenance and operation commands.
9
Kernel internals.
X11
An alias for X11R6.
X11R6
X Window System.
local
Pages located in /usr/local.
n
Tcl/Tk commands.

The man configuration file, man.conf(5), specifies the possible section values, and their search order. Additional sections may be specified.

List the pathnames of the manual pages which man would display for the specified section and name combination.

Guidelines for OpenBSD man pages can be found in mdoc(7).

If both a formatted and an unformatted version of the same manual page, for example cat1/foo.0 and man1/foo.1, exist in the same directory, and at least one of them is selected, only the newer one is used. However, if both the -a and the -w options are specified, both file names are printed.

As some manual pages are intended only for specific architectures, man searches any subdirectories, with the same name as the current architecture, in every directory which it searches. Machine specific areas are checked before general areas. The current machine type may be overridden by setting the environment variable MACHINE to the name of a specific architecture, or with the -S option. MACHINE is case insensitive.
Any non-null value of the environment variable MANPAGER will be used instead of the standard pagination program, more(1).
The standard search path used by man may be overridden by specifying a path in the MANPATH environment variable. The format of the path is a colon (‘:’) separated list of directories. The subdirectories to be searched, as well as their search order, are specified by the “_subdir” line in the man configuration file.
Specifies the pagination program to use when MANPAGER is not defined.

/etc/man.conf
default man configuration file

The man utility exits 0 on success, and >0 if an error occurs.

apropos(1), intro(1), whatis(1), whereis(1), intro(2), intro(3), intro(4), intro(5), man.conf(5), intro(6), intro(7), mdoc(7), intro(8), intro(9)

The man utility is compliant with the IEEE Std 1003.1-2008 (“POSIX.1”) specification.

The flags [-aCcfhMmSsw] are extensions to that specification.

A man command first appeared in Version 3 AT&T UNIX.

The -w option first appeared in Version 7 AT&T UNIX; -f and -k in 4BSD; -M in 4.3BSD; -a in 4.3BSD-Tahoe; -c and -m in 4.3BSD-Reno; -h in 4.3BSD-Net/2; -C in NetBSD 1.0; and -s and -S in OpenBSD 2.3.

October 9, 2011 OpenBSD-5.1