CATMAN(8)                     Manual pager utils                     CATMAN(8)

       catman - create or update the pre-formatted manual pages

       catman [-d?V] [-M path] [-C file] [section] ...

       catman  is  used  to  create  an up to date set of pre-formatted manual
       pages known as cat pages.  Cat pages are generally much faster to  dis-
       play  than  the original manual pages, but require extra storage space.
       The decision to support cat pages is that of the  local  administrator,
       who must provide suitable directories to contain them.

       The  options  available  to  catman are the manual page hierarchies and
       sections to pre-format.  The default hierarchies are those specified as
       system  hierarchies  in  the man-db configuration file, and the default
       sections are either the colon-delimited  contents  of  the  environment
       variable  $MANSECT or the standard set compiled into man if $MANSECT is
       undefined.  Supplying catman with a set of whitespace-delimited section
       names will override both of the above.

       catman makes use of the index database cache associated with each hier-
       archy to determine which files need to be formatted.

       -d, --debug
              Print debugging information.

       -M path, --manpath=path
              Specify  an  alternate  colon-delimited  manual  page  hierarchy
              search  path.  By default, this is all paths indicated as system
              hierarchies in the man-db configuration file.

       -C file, --config-file=file
              Use this user configuration file  rather  than  the  default  of

       -?, --help
              Print a help message and exit.

              Print a short usage message and exit.

       -V, --version
              Display version information.

              If  $MANSECT is set, its value is a colon-delimited list of sec-
              tions and it is used  to  determine  which  manual  sections  to
              search  and  in  what order.  The default is "1 n l 8 3 2 3posix
              3pm 3perl 3am 5 4 9 6 7", unless overridden by the  SECTION  di-
              rective in /etc/manpath.config.

              If $MANPATH is set, its value is interpreted as the colon-delim-
              ited manual page hierarchy search path to use.

              man-db configuration file.

              A traditional global index database cache.

              An alternate or FSSTND compliant global index database cache.

       man(1), manpath(5), mandb(8)

       Wilf. (
       Fabrizio Polacco (
       Colin Watson (

2.9.1                             2020-02-25                         CATMAN(8)
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