GNU Texinfo 4.2
Table of Contents
This manual is for GNU Texinfo (version 4.2, 28 March 2002),
a documentation system that can produce both online information and a
printed manual from a single source.
Copyright (C) 1988, 90, 91, 92, 93, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 2000, 01, 02
Free Software Foundation, Inc.
Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document
under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.1 or
any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no
Invariant Sections, with the Front-Cover texts being "A GNU Manual,"
and with the Back-Cover Texts as in (a) below. A copy of the license is
included in the section entitled "GNU Free Documentation License."
(a) The FSF's Back-Cover Text is: "You have freedom to copy and modify
this GNU Manual, like GNU software. Copies published by the Free
Software Foundation raise funds for GNU development."
The first part of this master menu lists the major nodes in this Info
document, including the @-command and concept indices. The rest of
the menu lists all the lower level nodes in the document.
- Copying Conditions: Your rights.
- Overview: Texinfo in brief.
- Texinfo Mode: How to use Texinfo mode.
- Beginning a File: What is at the beginning of a Texinfo file?
- Ending a File: What is at the end of a Texinfo file?
- Structuring: How to create chapters, sections, subsections,
appendices, and other parts.
- Nodes: How to write nodes.
- Menus: How to write menus.
- Cross References: How to write cross references.
- Marking Text: How to mark words and phrases as code,
keyboard input, meta-syntactic
variables, and the like.
- Quotations and Examples: How to write quotations, examples, etc.
- Lists and Tables: How to write lists and tables.
- Indices: How to create indices.
- Insertions: How to insert @-signs, braces, etc.
- Breaks: How to force and prevent line and page breaks.
- Definition Commands: How to describe functions and the like
in a uniform manner.
- Conditionals: How to specify text for either TeX or Info.
- Defining New Texinfo Commands:
- Hardcopy: How to convert a Texinfo file to a file
for printing and how to print that file.
- Creating and Installing Info Files:
- Command List: All the Texinfo @-commands.
- Tips: Hints on how to write a Texinfo document.
- Sample Texinfo Files: Complete examples, including full texts.
- Include Files: How to incorporate other Texinfo files.
- Headings: How to write page headings and footings.
- Catching Mistakes: How to find formatting mistakes.
- Refilling Paragraphs: All about paragraph refilling.
- Command Syntax: A description of @-Command syntax.
- Obtaining TeX: How to Obtain TeX.
- Copying This Manual: The GNU Free Documentation License.
- Command and Variable Index: A menu containing commands and variables.
- Concept Index: A menu covering many topics.
--- The Detailed Node Listing ---
Overview of Texinfo
- Reporting Bugs: Submitting effective bug reports.
- Using Texinfo: Create printed or online output.
- Info Files: What is an Info file?
- Printed Books: Characteristics of a printed book or manual.
- Formatting Commands: @-commands are used for formatting.
- Conventions: General rules for writing a Texinfo file.
- Comments: Writing comments and ignored text in general.
- Minimum: What a Texinfo file must have.
- Six Parts: Usually, a Texinfo file has six parts.
- Short Sample: A short sample Texinfo file.
- History: Acknowledgements, contributors and genesis.
Using Texinfo Mode
- Texinfo Mode Overview: How Texinfo mode can help you.
- Emacs Editing: Texinfo mode adds to GNU Emacs' general
purpose editing features.
- Inserting: How to insert frequently used @-commands.
- Showing the Structure: How to show the structure of a file.
- Updating Nodes and Menus: How to update or create new nodes and menus.
- Info Formatting: How to format for Info.
- Printing: How to format and print part or all of a file.
- Texinfo Mode Summary: Summary of all the Texinfo mode commands.
Updating Nodes and Menus
- Updating Commands: Five major updating commands.
- Updating Requirements: How to structure a Texinfo file for
using the updating command.
- Other Updating Commands: How to indent descriptions, insert
missing nodes lines, and update
nodes in sequence.
Beginning a Texinfo File
- Sample Beginning: A sample beginning for a Texinfo file.
- Texinfo File Header:
- Document Permissions:
- Titlepage & Copyright Page: Creating the title and copyright pages.
- The Top Node: Creating the `Top' node and master menu.
- Global Document Commands:
- Software Copying Permissions: Ensure that you and others continue to
have the right to use and share software.
Texinfo File Header
- First Line: The first line of a Texinfo file.
- Start of Header: Formatting a region requires this.
- setfilename: Tell Info the name of the Info file.
- settitle: Create a title for the printed work.
- End of Header: Formatting a region requires this.
- copying: Declare the document's copying permissions.
- insertcopying: Where to insert the permissions.
Title and Copyright Pages
- titlepage: Create a title for the printed document.
- titlefont center sp: The
- title subtitle author: The
- Copyright: How to write the copyright notice and
include copying permissions.
- end titlepage: Turn on page headings after the title and
- headings on off: An option for turning headings on and off
and double or single sided printing.
The `Top' Node and Master Menu
- Top Node Example:
- Master Menu Parts:
Global Document Commands
- documentdescription: Document summary for the HTML output.
- setchapternewpage: Start chapters on right-hand pages.
- paragraphindent: Specify paragraph indentation.
- exampleindent: Specify environment indentation.
Ending a Texinfo File
- Printing Indices & Menus: How to print an index in hardcopy and
generate index menus in Info.
- Contents: How to create a table of contents.
- File End: How to mark the end of a file.
- Tree Structuring: A manual is like an upside down tree ...
- Structuring Command Types: How to divide a manual into parts.
- makeinfo top: The
@top command, part of the `Top' node.
- unnumbered & appendix:
- majorheading & chapheading:
- unnumberedsec appendixsec heading:
- unnumberedsubsec appendixsubsec subheading:
- subsubsection: Commands for the lowest level sections.
- Raise/lower sections: How to change commands' hierarchical level.
- Two Paths: Different commands to structure
Info output and printed output.
- Node Menu Illustration: A diagram, and sample nodes and menus.
- node: Creating nodes, in detail.
- makeinfo Pointer Creation: Letting makeinfo determine node pointers.
- anchor: Defining arbitrary cross-reference targets.
- Node Names: How to choose node and pointer names.
- Writing a Node: How to write an
- Node Line Tips: Keep names short.
- Node Line Requirements: Keep names unique, without @-commands.
- First Node: How to write a `Top' node.
- makeinfo top command: How to use the
- Menu Location: Put a menu in a short node.
- Writing a Menu: What is a menu?
- Menu Parts: A menu entry has three parts.
- Less Cluttered Menu Entry: Two part menu entry.
- Menu Example: Two and three part menu entries.
- Other Info Files: How to refer to a different Info file.
- References: What cross references are for.
- Cross Reference Commands: A summary of the different commands.
- Cross Reference Parts: A cross reference has several parts.
- xref: Begin a reference with `See' ...
- Top Node Naming: How to refer to the beginning of another file.
- ref: A reference for the last part of a sentence.
- pxref: How to write a parenthetical cross reference.
- inforef: How to refer to an Info-only file.
- uref: How to refer to a uniform resource locator.
- Reference Syntax: What a reference looks like and requires.
- One Argument:
@xref with one argument.
- Two Arguments:
@xref with two arguments.
- Three Arguments:
@xref with three arguments.
- Four and Five Arguments:
@xref with four and five arguments.
Marking Words and Phrases
- Indicating: How to indicate definitions, files, etc.
- Emphasis: How to emphasize text.
Indicating Definitions, Commands, etc.
- Useful Highlighting: Highlighting provides useful information.
- code: Indicating program code.
- kbd: Showing keyboard input.
- key: Specifying keys.
- samp: A literal sequence of characters.
- verb: A verbatim sequence of characters.
- var: Indicating metasyntactic variables.
- env: Indicating environment variables.
- file: Indicating file names.
- command: Indicating command names.
- option: Indicating option names.
- dfn: Specifying definitions.
- cite: Referring to books not in the Info system.
- acronym: Indicating acronyms.
- url: Indicating a World Wide Web reference.
- email: Indicating an electronic mail address.
- emph & strong: How to emphasize text in Texinfo.
- Smallcaps: How to use the small caps font.
- Fonts: Various font commands for printed output.
Quotations and Examples
- Block Enclosing Commands: Different constructs for different purposes.
- quotation: Writing a quotation.
- example: Writing an example in a fixed-width font.
- verbatim: Writing a verbatim example.
- verbatiminclude: Including a file verbatim.
- lisp: Illustrating Lisp code.
- small: Forms for
- display: Writing an example in the current font.
- format: Writing an example without narrowed margins.
- exdent: Undo indentation on a line.
- flushleft & flushright: Pushing text flush left or flush right.
- noindent: Preventing paragraph indentation.
- cartouche: Drawing rounded rectangles around examples.
Lists and Tables
- Introducing Lists: Texinfo formats lists for you.
- itemize: How to construct a simple list.
- enumerate: How to construct a numbered list.
- Two-column Tables: How to construct a two-column table.
- Multi-column Tables: How to construct generalized tables.
Making a Two-column Table
- table: How to construct a two-column table.
- ftable vtable: Automatic indexing for two-column tables.
- itemx: How to put more entries in the first column.
- Multitable Column Widths: Defining multitable column widths.
- Multitable Rows: Defining multitable rows, with examples.
- Index Entries: Choose different words for index entries.
- Predefined Indices: Use different indices for different kinds
- Indexing Commands: How to make an index entry.
- Combining Indices: How to combine indices.
- New Indices: How to define your own indices.
- syncodeindex: How to merge two indices, using
font for the merged-from index.
- synindex: How to merge two indices, using the
default font of the merged-to index.
- Braces Atsigns: How to insert braces,
- Inserting Space: How to insert the right amount of space
within a sentence.
- Inserting Accents: How to insert accents and special characters.
- Dots Bullets: How to insert dots and bullets.
- TeX and copyright: How to insert the TeX logo
and the copyright symbol.
- pounds: How to insert the pounds currency symbol.
- minus: How to insert a minus sign.
- math: How to format a mathematical expression.
- Glyphs: How to indicate results of evaluation,
expansion of macros, errors, etc.
- Footnotes: How to include footnotes.
- Images: How to include graphics.
Inserting @ and Braces
- Inserting An Atsign: How to insert
- Inserting Braces: How to insert
- Not Ending a Sentence: Sometimes a . doesn't end a sentence.
- Ending a Sentence: Sometimes it does.
- Multiple Spaces: Inserting multiple spaces.
- dmn: How to format a dimension.
Inserting Ellipsis and Bullets
- dots: How to insert dots ...
- bullet: How to insert a bullet.
Inserting TeX and the Copyright Symbol
- tex: How to insert the TeX logo.
- copyright symbol: How to use
Glyphs for Examples
- Glyphs Summary:
- result: How to show the result of expression.
- expansion: How to indicate an expansion.
- Print Glyph: How to indicate printed output.
- Error Glyph: How to indicate an error message.
- Equivalence: How to indicate equivalence.
- Point Glyph: How to indicate the location of point.
- Print Glyph:
- Error Glyph:
- Point Glyph:
- Footnote Commands: How to write a footnote in Texinfo.
- Footnote Styles: Controlling how footnotes appear in Info.
Making and Preventing Breaks
- Break Commands: Cause and prevent splits.
- Line Breaks: How to force a single line to use two lines.
- - and hyphenation: How to tell TeX about hyphenation points.
- w: How to prevent unwanted line breaks.
- sp: How to insert blank lines.
- page: How to force the start of a new page.
- group: How to prevent unwanted page breaks.
- need: Another way to prevent unwanted page breaks.
- Def Cmd Template: How to structure a description using a
- Optional Arguments: How to handle optional and repeated arguments.
- deffnx: How to group two or more `first' lines.
- Def Cmds in Detail: All the definition commands.
- Def Cmd Conventions: Conventions for writing definitions.
- Sample Function Definition:
The Definition Commands
- Functions Commands: Commands for functions and similar entities.
- Variables Commands: Commands for variables and similar entities.
- Typed Functions: Commands for functions in typed languages.
- Typed Variables: Commands for variables in typed languages.
- Abstract Objects: Commands for object-oriented programming.
- Data Types: The definition command for data types.
Conditionally Visible Text
- Conditional Commands: Specifying text for HTML, Info, or TeX.
- Conditional Not Commands: Specifying text for not HTML, Info, or TeX.
- Raw Formatter Commands: Using raw TeX or HTML commands.
- set clear value: Designating which text to format (for
all output formats); and how to set a
flag to a string that you can insert.
- set value: Expand a flag variable to a string.
- ifset ifclear: Format a region if a flag is set.
- value Example: An easy way to update edition information.
- documentlanguage: Declaring the current language.
- documentencoding: Declaring the input encoding.
Defining New Texinfo Commands
- Defining Macros: Defining and undefining new commands.
- Invoking Macros: Using a macro, once you've defined it.
- Macro Details: Beyond basic macro usage.
- alias: Command aliases.
- definfoenclose: Customized highlighting.
Formatting and Printing Hardcopy
- Use TeX: Use TeX to format for hardcopy.
- Format with tex/texindex: How to format with explicit shell commands.
- Format with texi2dvi: A simpler way to format.
- Print with lpr: How to print.
- Within Emacs: How to format and print from an Emacs shell.
- Texinfo Mode Printing: How to format and print in Texinfo mode.
- Compile-Command: How to print using Emacs's compile command.
- Requirements Summary: TeX formatting requirements summary.
- Preparing for TeX: What to do before you use TeX.
- Overfull hboxes: What are and what to do with overfull hboxes.
- smallbook: How to print small format books and manuals.
- A4 Paper: How to print on A4 or A5 paper.
- pagesizes: How to print with customized page sizes.
- Cropmarks and Magnification: How to print marks to indicate the size
of pages and how to print scaled up output.
- PDF Output: Portable Document Format output.
Creating and Installing Info Files
- Creating an Info File:
- Installing an Info File:
Creating an Info File
- makeinfo advantages:
makeinfo provides better error checking.
- Invoking makeinfo: How to run
makeinfo from a shell.
- makeinfo options: Specify fill-column and other options.
- Pointer Validation: How to check that pointers point somewhere.
- makeinfo in Emacs: How to run
makeinfo from Emacs.
- texinfo-format commands: Two Info formatting commands written
in Emacs Lisp are an alternative
- Batch Formatting: How to format for Info in Emacs Batch mode.
- Tag and Split Files: How tagged and split files help Info
to run better.
- makeinfo html: Generating HTML output.
Installing an Info File
- Directory File: The top level menu for all Info files.
- New Info File: Listing a new Info file.
- Other Info Directories: How to specify Info files that are
located in other directories.
- Installing Dir Entries: How to specify what menu entry to add
to the Info directory.
- Invoking install-info:
Sample Texinfo Files
- Short Sample Texinfo File:
- GNU Sample Texts:
- Using Include Files: How to use the
- texinfo-multiple-files-update: How to create and update nodes and
menus when using included files.
- Include File Requirements: What
- Sample Include File: A sample outer file with included files
within it; and a sample included file.
- Include Files Evolution: How use of the
has changed over time.
- Headings Introduced: Conventions for using page headings.
- Heading Format: Standard page heading formats.
- Heading Choice: How to specify the type of page heading.
- Custom Headings: How to create your own headings and footings.
- makeinfo Preferred:
makeinfo finds errors.
- Debugging with Info: How to catch errors with Info formatting.
- Debugging with TeX: How to catch errors with TeX formatting.
- Using texinfo-show-structure: How to use
- Using occur: How to list all lines containing a pattern.
- Running Info-Validate: How to find badly referenced nodes.
Finding Badly Referenced Nodes
- Using Info-validate: How to run
- Unsplit: How to create an unsplit file.
- Tagifying: How to tagify a file.
- Splitting: How to split a file manually.
Copying This Manual
- GNU Free Documentation License: License for copying this manual.
Documentation is like sex: when it is good, it is very, very good; and
when it is bad, it is better than nothing.