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Section: User Contributed Perl Documentation (1)
Updated: 2016-03-20


pod2text - Convert POD data to formatted ASCII text 


pod2text [-aclostu] [--code] [--errors=style] [-i indent]
    [-q quotes] [--nourls] [--stderr] [-w width]
    [input [output ...]]

pod2text -h 


pod2text is a front-end for Pod::Text and its subclasses. It uses themto generate formatted ASCII text from POD source. It can optionally useeither termcap sequences or ANSI color escape sequences to format the text.

input is the file to read for POD source (the POD can be embedded incode). If input isn't given, it defaults to "STDIN". output, ifgiven, is the file to which to write the formatted output. If outputisn't given, the formatted output is written to "STDOUT". Several PODfiles can be processed in the same pod2text invocation (saving moduleload and compile times) by providing multiple pairs of input andoutput files on the command line. 


-a, --alt
Use an alternate output format that, among other things, uses a differentheading style and marks "=item" entries with a colon in the left margin.
Include any non-POD text from the input file in the output as well. Usefulfor viewing code documented with POD blocks with the POD rendered and thecode left intact.
-c, --color
Format the output with ANSI color escape sequences. Using this optionrequires that Term::ANSIColor be installed on your system.
Set the error handling style. "die" says to throw an exception on anyPOD formatting error. "stderr" says to report errors on standard error,but not to throw an exception. "pod" says to include a POD ERRORSsection in the resulting documentation summarizing the errors. "none"ignores POD errors entirely, as much as possible.

The default is "die".

-i indent, --indent=indent
Set the number of spaces to indent regular text, and the default indentationfor "=over" blocks. Defaults to 4 spaces if this option isn't given.
-h, --help
Print out usage information and exit.
-l, --loose
Print a blank line after a "=head1" heading. Normally, no blank line isprinted after "=head1", although one is still printed after "=head2",because this is the expected formatting for manual pages; if you'reformatting arbitrary text documents, using this option is recommended.
-m width, --left-margin=width, --margin=width
The width of the left margin in spaces. Defaults to 0. This is the marginfor all text, including headings, not the amount by which regular text isindented; for the latter, see -i option.
Normally, L<> formatting codes with a URL but anchor text are formattedto show both the anchor text and the URL. In other words:


is formatted as:

    foo <>

This flag, if given, suppresses the URL when anchor text is given, so thisexample would be formatted as just "foo". This can produce lesscluttered output in cases where the URLs are not particularly important.

-o, --overstrike
Format the output with overstrike printing. Bold text is rendered ascharacter, backspace, character. Italics and file names are rendered asunderscore, backspace, character. Many pagers, such as less, know howto convert this to bold or underlined text.
-q quotes, --quotes=quotes
Sets the quote marks used to surround C<> text to quotes. Ifquotes is a single character, it is used as both the left and rightquote. Otherwise, it is split in half, and the first half of the stringis used as the left quote and the second is used as the right quote.

quotes may also be set to the special value "none", in which case noquote marks are added around C<> text.

-s, --sentence
Assume each sentence ends with two spaces and try to preserve that spacing.Without this option, all consecutive whitespace in non-verbatim paragraphsis compressed into a single space.
By default, pod2text dies if any errors are detected in the POD input.If --stderr is given and no --errors flag is present, errors aresent to standard error, but pod2text does not abort. This isequivalent to "--errors=stderr" and is supported for backwardcompatibility.
-t, --termcap
Try to determine the width of the screen and the bold and underlinesequences for the terminal from termcap, and use that information informatting the output. Output will be wrapped at two columns less than thewidth of your terminal device. Using this option requires that your systemhave a termcap file somewhere where Term::Cap can find it and requires thatyour system support termios. With this option, the output of pod2textwill contain terminal control sequences for your current terminal type.
-u, --utf8
By default, pod2text tries to use the same output encoding as its inputencoding (to be backward-compatible with older versions). This optionsays to instead force the output encoding to UTF-8.

Be aware that, when using this option, the input encoding of your PODsource should be properly declared unless it's US-ASCII. Pod::Simplewill attempt to guess the encoding and may be successful if it'sLatin-1 or UTF-8, but it will warn, which by default results in apod2text failure. Use the "=encoding" command to declare theencoding. See perlpod(1) for more information.

-w, --width=width, -width
The column at which to wrap text on the right-hand side. Defaults to 76,unless -t is given, in which case it's two columns less than the width ofyour terminal device.


As long as all documents processed result in some output, even if thatoutput includes errata (a "POD ERRORS" section generated with"--errors=pod"), pod2text will exit with status 0. If any of thedocuments being processed do not result in an output document, pod2textwill exit with status 1. If there are syntax errors in a POD documentbeing processed and the error handling style is set to the default of"die", pod2text will abort immediately with exit status 255. 


If pod2text fails with errors, see Pod::Text and Pod::Simple forinformation about what those errors might mean. Internally, it can alsoproduce the following diagnostics:
-c (--color) requires Term::ANSIColor be installed
(F) -c or --color were given, but Term::ANSIColor could not beloaded.
Unknown option: %s
(F) An unknown command line option was given.

In addition, other Getopt::Long error messages may result from invalidcommand-line options. 


If -t is given, pod2text will take the current width of your screenfrom this environment variable, if available. It overrides terminal widthinformation in TERMCAP.
If -t is given, pod2text will use the contents of this environmentvariable if available to determine the correct formatting sequences for yourcurrent terminal device.


Pod::Text, Pod::Text::Color, Pod::Text::Overstrike,Pod::Text::Termcap, Pod::Simple, perlpod(1)

The current version of this script is always available from its web site at<>. It is also part of thePerl core distribution as of 5.6.0. 


Russ Allbery <>. 


Copyright 1999, 2000, 2001, 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015,2016 Russ Allbery <>

This program is free software; you may redistribute it and/or modify itunder the same terms as Perl itself.




This document was created byman2html,using the manual pages.