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makewhatis - Unix, Linux Command
makewhatis - Create the whatis database
makewhatis [-u] [-v] [-w] [-s sections ] [-c [catpath]] [manpath]
makewhatis reads all the manual pages contained in the given
sections of manpath or the preformatted pages contained in the given
sections of catpath. For each page, it writes a line in the whatis database; each line
consists of the name of the page and a short description, separated
by a dash. The description is extracted using the content of the
NAME section of the manual page.
Since other languages use a different term for the NAME section,
makewhatis recognizes the equivalent terms in Czech, Italian, Finnish, French,
German and Spanish.
manpath argument is given,
/usr/man is assumed by default.
Update database with new pages (files status was last changed 24 hours ago)
Use manpath obtained from man --path
-s sections |
Looks in the
manpath or catpath. If the option is absent, its value is assumed to be
'1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 n l' |
-c catpath |
The preformatted manual pages located in
catpath are scanned. If the argument is not provided, it is assumed to be the
first existing directory between
/usr/man/preformat and /usr/man. |
To rebuild only
/usr/X11R6/man/whatis and /usr/local/man/whatis
makewhatis /usr/X11R6/man /usr/local/man
To rebuild all the databases, including those of the Finnish, French
and Italian translations
LANGUAGE=fi:fr:it makewhatis -w
makewhatis may not handle too well manual pages written with non-standard troff
macros, such as the Tcl/Tk pages.
makewhatis does not work on preformatted translations.
John W. Eaton was the original author of
man. Zeyd M. Ben-Halim released man 1.2, and Andries Brouwer followed up with versions 1.3 thru 1.5p.
Federico Lucifredi <firstname.lastname@example.org> is the current maintainer.