ROFF(1) General Commands Manual ROFF(1)
roff - format text
roff [ +n ] [ -n ] [ -s ] [ -h ] file ...
nroff -mr [ option ] ... file ...
troff -mr [ option ] ... file ...
Roff formats text according to control lines embedded in the text in the given files. Encountering a nonexistent file terminates printing.
Incoming inter-terminal messages are turned off during printing. The optional flag arguments mean:
+n Start printing at the first page with number n.
-n Stop printing at the first page numbered higher than n.
-s Stop before each page (including the first) to allow paper manipulation; resume on receipt of an interrupt signal.
-h Insert tabs in the output stream to replace spaces whenever appropriate.
Input consists of intermixed text lines, which contain information to be formatted, and request lines, which contain instructions about how
to format it. Request lines begin with a distinguished control character, normally a period.
Output lines may be filled as nearly as possible with words without regard to input lineation. Line breaks may be caused at specified
places by certain commands, or by the appearance of an empty input line or an input line beginning with a space.
The capabilities of roff are specified in the attached Request Summary. Numerical values are denoted there by n or +n, titles by t, and
single characters by c. Numbers denoted +n may be signed + or -, in which case they signify relative changes to a quantity, otherwise they
signify an absolute resetting. Missing n fields are ordinarily taken to be 1, missing t fields to be empty, and c fields to shut off the
appropriate special interpretation.
Running titles usually appear at top and bottom of every page. They are set by requests like
Part1 is left justified, part2 is centered, and part3 is right justified on the page. Any % sign in a title is replaced by the current
page number. Any nonblank may serve as a quote.
ASCII tab characters are replaced in the input by a replacement character, normally a space, according to the column settings given by a
.ta command. (See .tr for how to convert this character on output.)
Automatic hyphenation of filled output is done under control of .hy. When a word contains a designated hyphenation character, that charac-
ter disappears from the output and hyphens can be introduced into the word at the marked places only.
The -mr option of nroff or troff(1) simulates roff to the greatest extent possible.
/usr/lib/suftab suffix hyphenation tables
Roff is the simplest of the text formatting programs, and is utterly frozen.
Request Break Initial Meaning
the current line is stopped.
to be invoked by request `.xx' (definition ends on line beginning `..').
and is not done, if n=0.