NROFF(1) User Commands NROFF(1)

nroff - format documents for display or line-printer

nroff [-ehiq] [-mname] [-nN] [-opagelist] [-raN] [-sN]

[-Tname] [-uN] [filename...]

The nroff utility formats text in the named filename for typewriter-like devices. See also troff(1).

If no filename argument is present, nroff reads the standard input. An argument consisting of a `' is taken to be a file name corresponding to the standard input.

The following options are supported. Options can appear in any order so long as they appear before the files.


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


Uses output TAB characters during horizontal spacing to speed output and reduces output character count. TAB settings are assumed to be every 8 nominal character widths.


Reads the standard input after the input files are exhausted.


Does not print output that was read from an .rd request.


Prepends the macro file /usr/share/lib/tmac/name to the input files.


Numbers first generated page N.


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


Sets register a (one-character) to N.


Stops every N pages. nroff halts prior to every N pages (default N=1) to allow paper loading or changing, and resumes upon receipt of a NEWLINE.


Prepares output for a device of the specified name. Known names are:


Teletype Corporation Model 37 terminal — this is the default.

lp | tn300

GE — any line printer or terminal without half-line capability.




DASI-300 — 12-pitch.






DASI-382 (fancy DTC 382).


DASI-450 (Diablo Hyterm).


DASI-450 (Diablo Hyterm) — 12-pitch.


AJ 832.


Set the emboldening factor for the font mounted in position 3 to N. If N is missing, then set the emboldening factor to 0.

The following operand is supported:


The file containing text to be processed by nroff.

Example 1 Formatting with a macro package

The following command formats using the -me macro package, and stopping every 4 pages:

example% nroff −s4 −me

See environ(7) for descriptions of the following environment variables that affect the execution of nroff: LC_CTYPE, LC_MESSAGES, and NLSPATH.


temporary file (see NOTES)


standard macro files


terminal driving tables for nroff


index to terminal description files

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

CSI Enabled

checknr(1), col(1), eqn(1), man(1), tbl(1), troff(1), attributes(7), environ(7), me(7), ms(7), term(7)

/usr/tmp is currently a symbolic link to /var/tmp.

Previous documentation incorrectly described the numeric register yr as being the Last two digits of current year. yr is in actuality the number of years since 1900. To correctly obtain the last two digits of the current year through the year 2099, the definition given below of string register yy can be included in a document and subsequently used to display a two-digit year. Notice that any other available one- or two-character register name can be substituted for yy.

.\" definition of new string register yy--last two digits of year
.\" use yr (# of years since 1900) if it is < 100
.ie \n(yr<100 .ds yy \n(yr
.el \{             .\" else, subtract 100 from yr, store in ny
.nr ny \n(yr-100
.ie \n(ny>9 \{     .\" use ny if it is two digits
.ds yy \n(ny
.\" remove temporary number register ny
.rr ny \}
.el \{.ds yy 0
.\" if ny is one digit, append it to 0
.as yy \n(ny
.rr ny \} \}

November 1, 2007 OmniOS