bugGNU roff - Bugs: bug #61950, PROBLEMS and MORE.STUFF files not...


bug #61950: PROBLEMS and MORE.STUFF files not the best place for many of their items

Submitter:  Dave <barx>
Submitted:  Fri 28 Jan 2022 12:29:55 AM UTC
Category:  General Severity:  1 - Wish
Item Group:  Documentation Status:  None
Privacy:  Public Assigned to:  None
Open/Closed:  Open Planned Release:  None
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Sun 10 Jul 2022 02:27:25 PM UTC, comment #3: 

Similarly, most of the contents of the MORE.STUFF file are of general user interest and perhaps ought to be in user-facing documentation.

Dave <barx>
Group Member
Sun 30 Jan 2022 01:15:06 AM UTC, comment #2: 

True, though I have no particular objection to an obscure file in the source directory documenting obscure problems for people trying to build on obscure systems.

It's telling that the last time an item was added to the file was over 6 years ago, and the vast majority of the content dates back 15 or more years.

Dave <barx>
Group Member
Fri 28 Jan 2022 02:03:29 PM UTC, comment #1: 

Agreed.  And some of the items are of antiquarian interest only.

* I'm having problems compiling groff on 386BSD 0.1.
* While compiling on Xenix, ranlib libgroff.a fails.
* I get errors when I try to compile groff with Sun C++ version 3 or
* I get errors when I try to compile groff with Forte Development 6
  or 6u1, or Sun C++ version 5.0 through 5.2.
* I get warnings from the Sun linker while using gcc 3.4.0:

...are just a few.

G. Branden Robinson <gbranden>
Group administrator
Fri 28 Jan 2022 12:29:55 AM UTC, original submission:  

I don't have a proposed solution for this, but I want to log it as something that could be looked at someday.

The PROBLEMS file claims it "describes various problems that have been encountered in compiling, installing and running groff."  The file is indeed a useful place to list issues in compiling and installing the program, as anyone doing these things has the source tree at hand.

It's a less useful place to address user-facing issues, which is what a lot of this file is.  Users do not necessarily have such ready access to this file.  Granted, the source tree is browsable on the web, but the source tree is probably not where users will think to look upon encountering trouble, and nothing in our user-facing documentation points readers to this file.

Those items should instead go into some kind of FAQ or troubleshooting list that is shipped as part of groff's normal documentation and cross-referenced appropriately.

(Distantly related, bug #57855 proposes creation of an "examples" file, if someone is looking to take on multiple novice-user-help projects.)

Dave <barx>
Group Member


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    Follow 2 latest changes.

    Date Changed by Updated Field Previous Value => Replaced by
    2022-07-11 barx SummaryPROBLEMS file not the best place for many of its items PROBLEMS and MORE.STUFF files not the best place for many of their items
    2022-06-15 gbranden CategoryCore General

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