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man pages section 1: User Commands

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Updated: Wednesday, July 27, 2022



roffbib - format and print a bibliographic database


roffbib [-e] [-h] [-m filename] [-np] [-olist] [-Q] [-raN] 
     [-sN] [-Tterm] [-V] [-x] [filename] ...


roffbib prints out all records in a bibliographic database, in bibliography format rather than as footnotes or endnotes. Generally it is used in conjunction with sortbib(1):

example% sortbib database | roffbib


roffbib accepts all options understood by nroff(1) except – i and –q.


Produce equally-spaced words in adjusted lines using full terminal resolution.


Use output tabs during horizontal spacing to speed output and reduce output character count. TAB settings are assumed to be every 8 nominal character widths.

–m filename

Prepend the macro file /usr/share/lib/tmac/tmac.name to the input files. There should be a space between the –m and the macro filename. This set of macros will replace the ones defined in /usr/share/lib/tmac/tmac.bib.


Number first generated page p.


Print only page numbers that appear in the comma-separated list of numbers and ranges. A range NM means pages N through M; an initial N means from the beginning to page N; a final N means from page N to end.


Queue output for the phototypesetter. Page offset is set to 1 inch.


Set register a (one-character) to N. The command-line argument – rN1 will number the references starting at 1.

Four command-line registers control formatting style of the bibliography, much like the number registers of ms. The flag –rV2 will double space the bibliography, while –rV1 will double space references but single space annotation paragraphs. The line length can be changed from the default 6.5 inches to 6 inches with the –rL6i argument, and the page offset can be set from the default of 0 to one inch by specifying –rO1i (capital O, not zero).


Halt prior to every N pages for paper loading or changing (default N =1). To resume, enter NEWLINE or RETURN.


Specify term as the terminal type.


Send output to the Versatec. Page offset is set to 1 inch.


If abstracts or comments are entered following the %X field key, roffbib will format them into paragraphs for an annotated bibliography. Several %X fields may be given if several annotation paragraphs are desired.



file of macros used by nroff/troff


See attributes(7) for descriptions of the following attributes:


See Also

addbib(1), nroff(1), sortbib(1), attributes(7)


Users have to rewrite macros to create customized formats.