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OpenSolaris 2009.06 - man page for fspec (opensolaris section 4)

fspec(4)				   File Formats 				 fspec(4)

       fspec - format specification in text files

       It  is  sometimes  convenient to maintain text files on the system with non-standard tabs,
       (tabs that are not set at every eighth column). Such files must generally be converted  to
       a standard format, frequently by replacing all tabs with the appropriate number of spaces,
       before they can be processed by system commands. A format specification occurring  in  the
       first  line  of	a text file specifies how tabs are to be expanded in the remainder of the

       A format specification consists of a sequence of parameters separated by blanks	and  sur-
       rounded	by  the brackets <: and :>. Each parameter consists of a keyletter, possibly fol-
       lowed immediately by a value. The following parameters are recognized:

       ttabs	  The t parameter specifies the tab settings for the file. The value of tabs must
		  be one of the following:

		      o      A list of column numbers separated by commas, indicating tabs set at
			     the specified columns.

		      o      A '-' followed immediately by  an	integer  n,  indicating  tabs  at
			     intervals of n columns.

		      o      A '-' followed by the name of a ``canned'' tab specification.
		  Standard  tabs  are  specified  by  t-8,  or equivalently, t1,9,17,25, etc. The
		  canned tabs that are recognized are defined by the tabs(1) command.

       ssize	  The s parameter specifies a maximum line size. The value of  size  must  be  an
		  integer.  Size  checking is performed after tabs have been expanded, but before
		  the margin is prepended.

       mmargin	  The m parameter specifies a number of spaces to be prepended to each line.  The
		  value of margin must be an integer.

       d	  The d parameter takes no value. Its presence indicates that the line containing
		  the format specification is to be deleted from the converted file.

       e	  The e parameter takes no value. Its presence indicates that the current  format
		  is  to  prevail  only  until another format specification is encountered in the

       Default values, which are assumed for parameters not supplied, are t-8 and m0.  If  the	s
       parameter  is  not  specified,  no size checking is performed. If the first line of a file
       does not contain a format specification, the above defaults are	assumed  for  the  entire
       file. The following is an example of a line containing a format specification:

       * <:t5,10,15 s72:> *

       If a format specification can be disguised as a comment, it is not necessary to code the d

       ed(1), newform(1), tabs(1)

SunOS 5.11				    3 Jul 1990					 fspec(4)

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