Print Readable Man Pages

Ever wonder how you can get a man page in into a format you can read and print? There’s many methods of doing it (copy and paste is one) but one the easiest I’ve found is:

man command | col -x -b  > command.txt

Where command is the Linux command man page you want to print/view.  From there, open up command.txt in your favorite gui text editor (gedit, kate) and you have a readable format that could be printed quite easily for reference.

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Author: devnet

devnet has been a project manager for a Fortune 500 company, a Unix administrator, a Technical Writer, and a System Analyst during his 10 years working with Technology.

  • IMHO, much better (and easier) is using konqueror as a man and info pages reader; in konqueror’s location bar, type man:command -where command stands for the prog you’re looking for. Then you can browse the man page in a comfortable and nice way (uses CSS so the information looks more clearer), use inlay links (to related manpages), etc. Of course, you can print and preview print results.

  • That will work great for KDE based desktops! Thanks for that tip! It is true that Konqueror makes life easier for those of us that choose KDE.

  • Actually, even better is if you do ‘#command’ gets the the man page and ‘##command’ gets you the info page. I document more kwickies here:

    But I’m not sure why the need for the col pipe. If I just redirect to a file, it looks fine to me. Maybe because I use ‘less’ as my MANPAGER?