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Here is a raw man page. Is there a way I can parse it under Windows to make it more readable?

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  • something to parse roff? Nov 17, 2014 at 6:45
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    Cygwin, probably.
    – Daniel B
    Nov 17, 2014 at 6:53

2 Answers 2

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I am affiliated with the webpage that Giacomo1968 has posted in his answer. I have ported the essence of mandoc suite to Windows (MinGW/MSYS) and I have created that page. My thanks to the authors and contributors of mandoc suite and MinGW/MSYS! So you have 3 options:

  1. UPDATE: With this option, you only need Windows and the pre-built binaries of mandoc (mdocml), available on my webpage. You do NOT need to have MinGW, or MSYS, or cygwin runtime installed! Go to my page Viewing man pages in Windows or MinGW/MSYS, please read the disclaimer, download the zip-file with pre-built binaries, for example mdocml-1.13.1-win32-embedeo-02.zip, extract locally and then run either of the following commands on Windows command line (cmd.exe) with your man-page as an argument:

    mandoc.exe openvpn.8 | more
    

    or, my preferred way, convert to an html page:

    mandoc.exe -Thtml -Oman=%N.%S.html openvpn.8 > openvpn.8.html
    

    Besides, it is a good idea to be aware of mandoc, if you ever come across the idea of writing your own man-pages. In my view, mandoc suite is superior to a roff-only tool set and a better "common denominator" from author's perspective.

  2. However if your man-page is overly "traditional" roff, or if you are not happy with mandoc's formatting, you might want to format/view your man-page with GNU troff (groff). For example, you can get groff pre-built binaries for Windows from ezwinports.

  3. You can search for an online html variant of your man-page. However I would not recommend this option, because there is always risk that the online document might cover different version of the software than the version that you have locally.

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Seems like this manioc suite of tools would work for you:

Manual pages, also called man pages, are a well supported, popular way to document software in Unix, BSD, and GNU/Linux operating systems. A text formatter program is required to process the intrinsic formats of man pages into other formats suitable for viewing. GNU/Linux systems typically use groff and some BSD systems, like OpenBSD for example, use mandoc suite of programs as a text formatter. To view man pages in Windows, however, you still need a formatting program. Hence we have decided to build for Windows the main programs of mandoc suite and put together the binaries for download with a short explanation on usage and building from sources.

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