html2text(1)                General Commands Manual               html2text(1)

       html2text - an advanced HTML-to-text converter

       html2text -help
       html2text -version
       html2text  [ -unparse | -check ] [ -debug-scanner ] [ -debug-parser ] [
       -rcfile path ] [ -style ( compact | pretty ) ] [ -width width  ]  [  -o
       output-file ] [ -nobs ] [ -ascii | -utf8 ] [ -nometa ] [ input-file ...

       html2text reads HTML documents from the input-files,  formats  each  of
       them  into  a stream of plain text characters, and writes the result to
       standard output (or into output-file, if the -o command line option  is

       If  no  input-files  are specified on the command line, html2text reads
       from standard input. A dash as the input-file is an  alternate  way  to
       specify standard input.

       html2text understands all HTML 3.2 constructs, but can render only part
       of them due to the limitations of the text output format. However,  the
       program attempts to provide good substitutes for the elements it cannot
       render.  html2text parses HTML 4 input, too, but not always as success-
       ful  as  other HTML processors. It also accepts syntactically incorrect
       input, and attempts to interpret it "reasonably".

       The way html2text formats the HTML documents is controlled  by  format-
       ting  properties  read  from  an  RC  file.  html2text attempts to read
       $HOME/.html2textrc (or the file specified by the -rcfile  command  line
       option);  if  that  file  cannot  be  read,  html2text attempts to read
       /etc/html2textrc.  If no RC file can be read (or if the  RC  file  does
       not override all formatting properties), then "reasonable" defaults are
       assumed. The RC file format is described in the  html2textrc(5)  manual

       Debian  version of html2text also can do input and output recoding (see
       /usr/share/doc/html2text/README.Debian for more info).  html2text tries
       to fetch encoding from HTML document. If encoding is not specified, you
       can use -ascii and -utf8 options.  Output is converted to user's locale
       charset (LC_CTYPE).

              By  default,  Debian  version of html2text use 'meta http-equiv'
              tag for input recoding. This option cancels this behavior.

       -ascii By default, when -nometa is supplied, html2text uses  UTF-8  for
              the output. Specifying this option, plain ASCII is used instead.
              To find out how non-ASCII characters are rendered, refer to  the
              file "ascii.substitutes".

       -utf8  By  default, when -nometa is supplied, html2text uses ISO 8859-1
              for the input. Specifying this option,  UTF-8  is  used  instead
              (both for input and output). This option implies -nobs.

       -check This  option  is  for  diagnostic purposes: The HTML document is
              only parsed and not processed otherwise. In this mode of  opera-
              tion,  html2text  will  report  on parse errors and scan errors,
              which it does not in other modes of operation. Note  that  parse
              and  scan errors are not fatal for html2text, but may cause mis-
              interpretation of the HTML code and/or portions of the  document
              being swallowed.

              Let  html2text  report  on the tokens being shifted, rules being
              applied, etc., while scanning the HTML document. This option  is
              for diagnostic purposes.

              Let  html2text report on each lexical token scanned, while scan-
              ning the HTML document. This option is for diagnostic purposes.

       -help  Print command line summary and exit.

       -nobs  By default, original html2text renders underlined  letters  with
              sequences  like  "underscore-backspace-character"  and  boldface
              letters like "character-backspace-character". Because of  issues
              with   UTF-8,   Debian  version  of  html2text  doesn't  produce
              backspaces, so this option really does nothing.

       -o output-file
              Write the output to output-file instead of  standard  output.  A
              dash as the output-file is an alternate way to specify the stan-
              dard output.

       -rcfile path
              Attempt to read the file specified in path as RC file.

       -style ( compact | pretty )
              Style pretty changes some of the default values of  the  format-
              ting parameters documented in html2textrc(5).  To find out which
              and how the formatting parameter defaults are changed, check the
              file "". If this option is omitted, style compact is
              assumed as default.

              This option is for diagnostic purposes:  Instead  of  formatting
              the  parsed  document, generate HTML code, that is guaranteed to
              be syntactically correct. If html2text has  problems  parsing  a
              syntactically  incorrect HTML document, this option may help you
              to understand what html2text thinks that the original HTML  code

              Print program version and exit.

       -width width
              By  default,  html2text  formats the HTML documents for a screen
              width of 79 characters. If redirecting the output into  a  file,
              or  if your terminal has a width other than 80 characters, or if
              you just want to get an idea  how  html2text  deals  with  large
              tables  and different terminal widths, you may want to specify a
              different width.

              System wide parser configuration file.

              Personal parser configuration file, overrides  the  system  wide

       HTML  3.2 (HTML 3.2 Reference Specification -

       Debian version of html2text have no http support. Use html2text through
       pipes  with  curl  or wget instead. See README.Debian for more informa-

       html2text was written to convert HTML 3.2 documents. When using it with
       HTML 4 or even XHTML 1 documents, some constructs present only in these
       HTML versions might not be rendered.

       html2text  was  written  up   to   version   1.2.2   by   Arno   Unkrig
       <> for GMRS Software GmbH, Unterschleissheim.

       Current maintainer and primary download location is:
       Martin Bayer <>

       This   man  page  was  modified  for  Debian  by  Eugene  V.  Lyubimkin
       <> <>

       html2textrc(5), less(1), more(1)

                                  2008-09-20                      html2text(1)
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