Documentation of the GNU Project

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Table of Contents

How To Get GNU Documentation

GNU documentation is available by several different methods:

Frequently Asked Questions

FAQs are articles that contain answers to Frequently Asked Questions. They are common on USENET.

Descriptions of GNU Documentation

Here are descriptions of the GNU manuals. See below for a list of their ISBNs. To order one of these manuals direct from the FSF, use the FSF Order Form.

Debugging with GDB (Edition 4.12 for Version 4.14) tells how to run your program under GNU Debugger control, examine and alter data, modify a program's flow of control, and use GDB through GNU Emacs.

The GNU Emacs Manual (11th Edition for Version 19.33) describes editing with GNU Emacs. It explains advanced features, including outline mode and regular expression search; how to use special programming modes to write languages like C++ and TeX; how to use the tags utility; how to compile and correct code; how to make your own keybindings; and other elementary customizations.

Programming in Emacs Lisp: An Introduction (Edition 1.04) is for people who are not necessarily interested in programming, but who do want to customize or extend their computing environment. If you read it in Emacs under Info mode, you can run the sample programs directly.

The GNU Emacs Lisp Reference Manual (Edition 2.4 for Version 19.29) and The GNU Emacs Lisp Reference, Japanese Edition (Japanese DRAFT Revision 1.0, from English Edition 2.4 for Version 19.29) cover this programming language in depth, including data types, control structures, functions, macros, syntax tables, searching/matching, modes, windows, keymaps, byte compilation, and the operating system interface. The source code is available in FTP directory *

The GNU Awk User's Guide (Edition 1.0 for Version 3.0.0) tells how to use GAWK. It is written for those who have never used awk and describes features of this powerful string and record manipulation language.

GNU Make (Edition 0.50 for Version 3.75 Beta) describes GNU make, a program used to rebuild parts of other programs. The manual tells how to write "makefiles", which specify how a program is to be compiled and how its files depend on each other. Included are an introductory chapter for novice users and a section about automatically generated dependencies.

The Flex manual (Edition 1.03 for Version 2.3.7) teaches you to write a lexical scanner definition for the flex program to create a C++ or C-coded scanner that recognizes the patterns defined. You need no prior knowledge of scanners.

The Bison Manual (November 1995 Edition for Version 1.25) teaches you how to write context-free grammars for the Bison program that convert into C-coded parsers. You need no prior knowledge of parser generators.

Using and Porting GNU CC (November 1995 Edition for Version 2.7.2) tells how to run, install, and port the GNU C Compiler to new systems. It lists new features and incompatibilities of GCC, but people not familiar with C will still need a good reference on the C programming language. It also covers G++.

The Texinfo manual (Edition 2.20 for Version 3) explains the markup language that produces our online Info documentation & typeset hardcopies. It tells you how to make tables, lists, chapters, nodes, indexes, cross references, & how to catch mistakes. This second edition describes over 50 new commands.

The Termcap Manual (3rd Edition for Version 1.3), often described as "twice as much as you ever wanted to know about termcap," details the format of the termcap database, the definitions of terminal capabilities, and the process of interrogating a terminal description. This manual is primarily for programmers.

The C Library Reference Manual (Edition 0.07 for Version 1.09) describes the library's facilities, including both what Unix calls "library functions" & "system calls." We are doing small copier runs of this manual until it becomes more stable. Please send fixes to

The Emacs Calc Manual (Edition 2.02 for Version 2.02) is both a tutorial and a reference manual. It tells how to do ordinary arithmetic, how to use Calc for algebra, calculus, and other forms of mathematics, and how to extend Calc.

ISBNs of GNU Manuals

Here is a list of International Standard Book Numbers for the GNU manuals.
GNU Emacs Manual for Version 19.33
ISBN: 1882114051

Using and Porting GNU CC for Version 2.7.2
ISBN: 1882114361

Proceedings of the First Conference on Freely Redistributable Software
ISBN: 1882114477

Debugging with GDB Version 4.16
ISBN: 1882114094

GNU Make, Version 3.75 Beta
ISBN: 1882114795

GNU Emacs Lisp Reference Manual for Emacs Version 19.29
ISBN: 188211471X

The GNU Awk User's Guide
ISBN: 1882114264

Programming in Emacs Lisp: An Introduction
ISBN: 1882114418

The GNU C Library Reference Manual for Version 1.09 Beta
ISBN: 1882114531

Texinfo The GNU Documentation Format for Version 3
ISBN: 1882114639

Flex: The Lexical Scanner Generator, Version 2.3.7
ISBN: 1882114213

The Bison Manual: Using the YACC-compatible Parser Generator, for Version 1.25
ISBN: 1882114450

The Termcap Manual: The Termcap Library and Data Base
ISBN: 1882114876

Calc Manual: GNU Emacs Calc Version 2.02
ISBN: 1882114183

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Copyright (C) 1996, 1997 Free Software Foundation, Inc., 59 Temple Place - Suite 330, Boston, MA 02111, USA

Verbatim copying and distribution is permitted in any medium, provided this notice is preserved.

Updated: 22 Feb 1997 tower