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Subject: Refentry, man pages, and DocBook XSL 1.69.0

A personal request: If you have time and interest, please download
and try the "manpages" stylesheet in the DocBook XSL 1.69.0
release, within the next two weeks (before 2005-08-02).

The manpages stylesheet supports transformation of the contents of
the Refentry element to traditional Unix man pages (groff/nroff).

You can try it by using the manpages/docbook.xsl driver instead of
the HTML or PDF driver; like this

  xsltproc manpages/docbook.xsl myfile.xml
  java com.icl.saxon.StyleSheet myfile.xml manpages/docbook.xsl

There are a few more details in Bob Stayton's book -


If you have already been using the manpages stylesheet prior to
this release, I'd like to ask that you try the 1.69.0 version as
soon as possible, and report back on any problems you find.

I'd also like to ask you to consider trying it if you meet any of
the following descriptions:

  - you have Refentry content for which you are currently
    generating HTML and/or PDF output, but have never tried
    to generate man-page output

  - you have tried the manpages stylesheet in the past but found
    the output from it did not meet your needs or expectations

  - you are currently maintaining manpages that you've created or
    generated using a non-DocBook-XSL mechanism; for example,
    docbook2X or some older docbook-to-man system

Major improvements and changes were made for the 1.69.0 release.
The changes are detailed in the 1.69.0 release notes:


It closes out 44 bug reports and feature requests and adds more
than 35 new configuration parameters (for controlling hyphenation
and justification, handling of links, conversion of Unicode
characters, and "tuning" contents of man-page headers and footers).

The documentation for the new parameters is here:


If you have already been using the manpages stylesheet, it is
quite possible that this release breaks some of the behavior you
are currently expecting. I have tried to be very thorough about
documenting the rationale for all changes; so, for details, please
see the parameter documentation above, as well as the
manpages/ChangeLog file:


If find problems in the 1.69.0 release, please report them as soon
as possible. I would like to get them all fixed within the next
two weeks so that they can be included in the stable 1.69.1
release targeted for 2005-08-02.




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