Unix Command Syntax Conventions

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zillah

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I am looking for Unix command syntax conventions to describe the use the following : (may be we do not have all the conventions below )

1- boldface

2- italics Italic text indicates what ?

3- [x] Square brackets indicate what ?

4- {x} Braces ?

5- (x) paranthesis ?

6- y | z vertical lines indicate what ?

There is no comprehensive details in the link below:

http://cm.bell-labs.com/cm/cs/who/dmr/manintro.html
 
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zillah said:
I am looking for Unix command syntax conventions to describe the use the following : (may be we do not have all the conventions below )

1- boldface

2- italics Italic text indicates what ?

3- [x] Square brackets indicate what ?

4- {x} Braces ?

5- (x) paranthesis ?

6- y | z vertical lines indicate what ?
Well, the convention is whatever the author says it is. Are you talking about the conventions used in man pages?

When describing a command and its options, I don't recall italics, braces, or parentheses being used. The bold text would be used for the command itself, and possibly for its options.

A pipe (vertical line) indicates a logical OR where the choices are mutually exclusive. Brackets indicate an optional option or set of options.

grep [ -bchilnvsw ] [ -E | -F ] expression [ filename ... ]

indicates that grep can use any or all of the options -b, -c, -h, -i, etc., and MAY take the option -E OR -F (but not both), and MAY look for expression in zero or more files. The expression is required, as it is not surrounded by brackets.
 

zillah

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Are you talking about the conventions used in man pages?
Yes. Thanks for this explaination.

Could you please refer me to the source of this type of information on net. thanks again
 
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The reason that there is no convention for bold and italic fonts is that man pages must be reproducible on an ASCII terminal.

I have no idea where you might find the source of the other conventions. My belief is that they're just ... traditions.
 
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