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AsciiDoc ChangeLog

Version 8.6.7 (2012-03-17)

Release highlights

No major enhancements but quite a few bug fixes which, among other things, fixes Jython compatibility and improves Windows compatibility.

All additions and changes
  • Vim syntax highlighter: highlight entity refs in macro arguments.

  • Added files with .asciidoc extension to Vim file type detection. Patch submitted by Dag Wiers.

  • Added replacement3 substitution to enable ODT whitespace processing.

  • Added unbreakable option to XHTML and HTML 5 backends.

  • Implemented toc::[] block macro and toc-placement attribute for HTML backends to allow the Table of Contents placement to be set manually by the author.

  • Added FAQs: How can I control page breaks when printing HTML outputs? and Is it possible to reposition the Table of Contents in HTML outputs?.

  • Added --backend and --backend-opts options to the a2x command to allow a2x to use backend plugin code extensions. Patch submitted by Lex Trotman.

  • Added args block attribute to source highlight blocks to allow arbitrary parameters to be passed to the source highlighters.

  • If the ascii-ids attribute is defined then non-ascii characters in auto-generated IDs are replaced by their nearest ascii equivalents (to work around DocBook processor limitations).

  • Added global blockname attribute which is dynamically updated to identify the current block. See discussion list.

  • xhtml11, html5 backends: Include book part TOC entries for multi-part books. Patch submitted by Loïc Paillotin.

  • Removed code filter example from the AsciiDoc User Guide so that backends implemented as external plugins can compile the manual. See discussion list.

  • If the delimited block skip option is set then do not consume block title and attributes. This makes it possible for the comment delimited blocks to use an attribute list (previously the comment delimited block was hardwired to skip preceding attributes and titles). See discussion list.

  • Added backend-confdir intrinsic attribute.

Bug fixes
  • FIXED: slidy backend: broken stylesheet attribute. Patch submitted by Micheal Hackett.

  • FIXED: Restored missing themes to zip file distribution archive.

  • FIXED: Grammatical error in error messages. Patch submitted by Dag Wieers.

  • FIXED: Use configured normal substitution in preference to the default one.

  • FIXED: The eval block macro would execute multiple times if it evaluated to None.

  • FIXED: Duplicated entries in TOC of large document. Patch submitted by Sebastien Helleu.

  • FIXED: Python 2.4 backward incompatibility.

  • FIXED: 8.6.6 regression broke Jython compatibility. See discussion list.

  • FIXED: Leaky file handles in a2x and music and latex filters which created incompatibility problems for Jython.

  • FIXED: All Python filters are executed with the same Python interpreter that executes the asciidoc parent (previously filters were hardwired to execute the python interpreter). This prevents Python mix-ups.

  • FIXED: Microsoft Windows shelled command-line truncation that caused shelled commands to fail e.g. the data-uri attribute failure.

Version 8.6.6 (2011-09-04)

Release highlights
  • The AsciiDoc plugin architecture has been enhanced, unified and extended:

    • Plugin commands have been added to the asciidoc(1) --backend option.

    • An asciidoc(1) --theme option has been implemented to specify a theme and to manage theme plugins.

    • A plugin build command (for creating plugins) added.

    • build, install, list and remove plugin commands are all recognized by asciidoc(1) --backend, --filter and --theme options.

  • A security update by Kenny MacDermid removes the use of eval() on untrusted input (to disallow code malicious execution).

All additions and changes
Bug fixes

Version 8.6.5 (2011-05-20)

Release highlights
  • The addition of an html5 backend to generate HTML 5 output. Apart from the inclusion of audio and video block macros the html5 backend is functionally identical to the xhtml11 backend.

  • A new flask theme for xhtml11 and html5 backends inspired by the Flask website styling (see toc2 example in the next item below).

  • The new toc2 attribute generates a table of contents in the left hand margin (xhtml11 and html5 backends). This example was generated using the following command:

    asciidoc -b html5 -a icons -a toc2 -a theme=flask article.txt
  • a2x(1) now has a flexible mechanism for copying arbitrary resource files to HTML based outputs — this is very handy for generating EPUB files with embedded fonts and other resources.

    • The a2x(1) --resource option can be used to inject any file into EPUB output documents e.g. CSS resources such as fonts and background images.

    • Explicitly specified resources are added to the EPUB OPF manifest automatically.

    • You can explicitly specify file extension MIME types.

    • The enhanced resource processing works around a couple of DocBook XSL bugs (see EPUB Notes).

All additions and changes
Bug fixes
  • FIXED: epubcheck 1.1 previously issued a warning for files not registered in the manifest (epubcheck 1.0.5 did not). This resulted in a problem compiling the adventures-of-sherlock-holmes.txt example (the underline.png resource was not in the manifest).

Version 8.6.4 (2011-02-20)

Additions and changes
Bug fixes

Version 8.6.3 (2010-11-14)

Additions and changes
  • Added and unbreakable option to bulleted and numbered lists (thanks to Henrik Maier for this patch).

  • Added ifeval::[] system macro (thanks to Henrik Maier for suggesting this feature).

  • The image scale attribute sets the DocBook imagedata element scale attribute. Patch submitted by Henrik Maier.

  • DocBook preface, colophon and dedication style section titles now work. Based on patch submitted by Henrik Maier.

  • a2x: Do not inject xsltproc parameters if they were specified on the command-line (parameter double-ups generate xsltproc Global parameter already defined errors).

  • a2x: Refactored xsltproc parameter injection.

  • a2x: articles chunked at section level by default.

  • attributes, titles and specialcharacters sections are now read from the local asciidoc.conf file before the header is parsed. This fixes a regression problem. See

  • Document header attributes take precedence over configuration file attributes.

  • Refactored music, graphviz and latex filter configurations.

  • Refactored source filter configuration and added literal paragraph source style.

  • Separated paragraph styles from paragraph syntax — any style can be applied to any syntax.

  • Added listing and quote paragraph styles.

  • Renamed paragraph default style to normal.

  • Updated --help option text.

  • a2x: The asciidoc_opts, dblatex_opts, fop_opts and xsltproc_opts command-line options can be specified multiple times. This makes embedding multiple a2x options in document headers easier to manage and less error prone.

  • Added ASCIIMathML and LaTeXMathML support to slidy backend.

  • Pass the encoding attribute to the Pygments source highlight filter command.

  • a2x: HTML Help .hhk file named after AsciiDoc source file.

  • a2x: Added --xsl-file option to allow custom XSL stylesheets to be specified.

  • Make builds the man pages. Patch submitted by Sebastian Pipping. See

Bug fixes

Version 8.6.2 (2010-10-03)

Additions and changes
  • docbook45: Enclosed bibliographic lists in a bibliodiv — you can now include block titles with bibliographic lists.

  • Added optional keywords, description and title document header meta-data attributes to HTML backends for SEO.

  • AttributeEntry values can span multiple lines with a ' +' line continuation.

  • Added slidy backend (based on Phillip Lord’s slidy backend

  • Implemented OpenBlock partintro style for book part introductions.

  • Comment lines substitute special characters only.

  • Backend specific global configuration files (all except asciidoc.conf) are loaded after the header has been parsed — virtually any attribute can now be specified in the document header.

  • xhtml11: Volnitsky theme: allow bulleted lists to have intervening children.

  • xhtml11: refactored CSS font-family rules to start of file.

  • xhtml11: list bullets colored gray.

  • ifdef and ifndef system block macros accept multiple attribute names: multiple names separated by commas are ored; multiple attribute names separated by pluses are anded.

  • xhtml11: Volnitsky theme: set max-width on labeled lists.

  • Vim syntax highlighter: Entities inside quoted text are now highlighted.

  • Added role and id attributes to HTML outputs generated by OpenBlocks.

  • Allow floating titles to generate h1 (level 0) titles in HTML outputs.

  • Added a start attribute to numbered lists to set the start number. See:

  • Added two more docinfo attributes docinfo1 and docinfo2 to allow and control inclusion of a shared docinfo file. See

  • Vim syntax highlighter highlights multi-name conditional attributes.

  • LaTeX backend patch submitted by Andreas Hermann Braml (see

  • Implemented backend aliases; renamed docbook.conf to docbook45.conf and aliased docbook45 backend to docbook; aliased xhtml11 to html.

Bug fixes

Version 8.6.1 (2010-08-22)

Additions and changes
  • a2x: --resource-dir option renamed to --resource.

  • a2x: --resource option accepts both file and directory names.

  • a2x: Added -m,--resource-manifest option.

  • Added Vim syntax highlighting for quote attribute lists.

  • Load asciidoc.conf from all configuration directories before any other configuration files. This ensures that attributes used for conditional inclusion are set before backend configuration files are processed. Previously if you wanted to control global conf file inclusion your only choice was to modify the global asciidoc.conf file.

  • AsciiDoc Quote element attributes have been simplified and generalized — positional color and size attributes and named role attribute have been replaced by a single positional attribute.

Bug fixes
  • FIXED: BACKEND command argument was being ignored.

  • FIXED: Broken docinfo file functionality in html4 and xhtml11 backends (previously the docinfo file was included in the body instead of the header).

Regression issues

This release breaks compatibility with quoted element positional color and size attributes (HTML backends). To revert to the deprecated quote behavior define the deprecated-quotes attribute in the global asciidoc.conf file or on the command-line. For a more detailed explanation of the rationale behind this change see

Version 8.6.0 (2010-08-16)

Additions and changes
  • The AsciiDoc distribution can now be built “out of the box” from the distribution tarball or the Mercurial repository (provided you have the requisite build applications installed).

  • The global configuration files directory is ignored by both asciidoc and a2x if AsciiDoc configuration files are installed in the same directory as the asciidoc executable. This change allows both a system wide copy and multiple local copies of AsciiDoc to coexist on the same host PC.

  • CSS quirks mode is no longer the default xhtml11 output (

  • Relaxed anchor ID name syntax (

  • Added document files: doc/epub-notes.txt, doc/publishing-ebooks-with-asciidoc.txt.

  • a2x: If all other resource locations are exhausted then recursively search directories named images and stylesheets in the asciidoc configuration files directory.

  • a2x: options can also be set in the AsciiDoc source file. If the source file contains a line beginning with // a2x: then the remainder of the line will be treated as a2x command-line options.

  • Added dblatex table-width processing instruction — tables generated by dblatex now observe the AsciiDoc table width as a percentage (thanks to Gustav Broberg for suggesting this enhancement).

  • a2x: Don’t exit if the --epubcheck option is set and epubcheck is missing, issue warning and continue.

  • Added a global plaintext attribute for dealing with large amounts of imported text.

  • The author name format has been relaxed, if the the author does not match the formal specification then it is assigned to the firstname attribute (previously asciidoc exited with an error message).

  • FAQ and documentation updates.

  • Refactored chunked.xsl and epub.xsl files.

  • Exchanged article.epub for more relevant book.epub on website.

  • Put asciidoc.epub User Guide on website.

  • a2x: Chunking EPUB and HTML outputs set to a per chapter basis and the first chapter is separate from preceding contents.

  • Changed dates format in example article and books to suppress EPUB validation error.

  • Added style and role CSS classes to xhtml11 section templates.

  • Added the role element to xhtml11 backend block templates.

  • Suppressed md5 module deprecation warning from music and Graphviz filters.

  • Pygments ( option added to source code highlight filter. Based on Pygments source code filter written by David Hajage (

  • xhtml11: Added a new theme (volnitsky). Written and contributed by Leonid V. Volnitsky.

  • xhtml11: Set body element class name to document type.

  • Added refentryinfo element and contents (including revdate) to man page DocBook output. Man pages are now dated using the revdate attribute value if it has been defined. Based on patch supplied by Rainer Muller

  • Added {template:...} system attribute.

  • Table of contents attribute toc can now be specified in the document header.

  • Reimplemented music and latex filter -m option functionality when the input is stdin using MD5 checksums.

  • Added latex filter.

  • Added auto file name generation to image generating filters (latex,music, graphviz).

  • Added counter2 and set2 system attributes (to implement image auto file name generation).

  • Undefined attribute in filter command generates error but does not exit.

  • Attribute substitution proceeds from start line to end line (previously was in reverse order which was really confusing).

  • Tidied up music filter code:

    • Format option is optional and default to abc unless Lilypond notation detected.

    • The -m option does not apply to stdin input.

  • Added paragraph styles to music and graphviz filters.

  • Documented dynamic template names. 753: Graphviz filter can now generate SVG format images. Patch submitted by Elmo Todurov, see: The xhtml11 SVG Graphviz template marked EXPERIMENTAL. No SVG support for other backends.

  • AsciiDoc template names can now contain embedded attribute references.

  • Added legalnotice tag to doc/article-docinfo.xml example.

  • xhtml11 backend: Callouts and callout lists display callout icons when the icons attribute is defined. See

  • Document attribute names are case insensitive everywhere, this makes using attribute entries more consistent e.g. previously :VERS: had to be refered to with {vers} ({VERS} did not work).

  • Hungarian translation of footer-text (submitted by Miklos Vajna). See

  • 0.1.2: Can now load AsciiDoc script named asciidoc. See Based on patch submitted by Phillip Lord.

  • German translation of footer-text (submitted by Simon Ruderich). See

  • Pushed HTML footer text into language conf files with the introduction of a [footer-text] configuration file template section. See

Bug fixes

Version 8.5.3 (2010-01-18)

Additions and changes
Bug fixes
  • FIXED: Regression: system attribute escaping did not work.

  • FIXED: Website: broken image links in chunked User Guide.

Version 8.5.2 (2009-12-07)

Additions and changes
  • Updated example article and book documents with the recommended explicit section name syntax (see the Special section titles vs. explicit template names sidebar in the AsciiDoc User Guide).

  • Added Italian language configuration file (contributed by Fabio Inguaggiato).

  • Added header table style. See:

  • Pass icons, data-uri, imagesdir, iconsdir attributes to asciidoc table style filter so that images are rendered in table cells.

  • Pass trace and verbose attributes to asciidoc table style filter so diagnostic information is printed from table cell source.

  • The eval system attribute can be nested inside other system attributes.

  • HTML outputs: Table and figure caption punctuation set to more usual syntax.

  • docbook backend: footnotes can now contain embedded images. See

  • CSS tweaks so that tables processed by DocBook XSL Stylesheets have the default asciidoc xhtml11 backend styling. See

  • Block titles take precedence over section titles to avoid titled delimited blocks being mistaken for two line section titles (see

  • Section title trace displays level and title text.

  • FAQ additions.

  • Added {zwsp} (zero width space) attribute.

  • Undefined paragraph styles are reported (previously threw a runtime error).

  • Eliminated empty preamble generation.

  • Floating titles now processed in all contexts.

  • Implemented auto-lettered appendix names and updated example documents.

  • Section numbering can be disabled in HTML outputs with a :numbered!: AttributeEntry.

  • xhtml11: Nicer default quote block styling.

  • Exclude floating titles from xhtml11 table of contents. Patch submitted by Mark Burton (see

  • Enhanced doc/article-docinfo.xml example docinfo file.

  • Vim syntax highlighter improvements.

Bug fixes

Version 8.5.1 (2009-10-31)

Additions and changes
  • If an AsciiDoc document file begins with a UTF-8 BOM (byte order mark) then it is passed transparently through to the output file. The BOM is stripped from included files. See

  • Added AsciiDoc role attribute to quoted text. Sets class attribute in HTML outputs; role attribute in DocBook outputs. See:

  • Conditional attribute syntax extended: they now accept multiple ORed or ANDed attribute names.

  • The xhtml11 backend dynamically processes footnotes using JavaScript.

  • Tidied up and namespaced xhtml11 JavaScript.

  • Superceded javascripts/toc.js with javascripts/asciidoc-xhtml11.js.

  • Added disable-javascript attribute (xhtml11 backend).

  • Styled HTML footnotes.

  • Added links to HTML footnote refs.

  • Added title attribute to inline image macros to display popup “tooltip” (HTML outputs only).

  • Single-quoted attribute values are substituted in block macros (just like the AttributeList element).

  • For consistency changed underscores to dashes in attribute names. Public attributes with underscores retained for compatibility.

  • Added Brazilian Portuguese language configuration file (contributed by Thiago Farina).

  • Added leveloffset attribute to make it easier to combine documents.

Bug fixes

Regression issues

There’s been quite a bit of tiding up to the xhtml11 JavaScript. The most obvious change is that the toc.js script has been superceded by asciidoc-xhtml11.js so if you’re linking you’ll need get a copy of the new file from the distribution javascripts directory.

If you use customised xhtml11 configuration file [header] and [footer] sections and you want them to use the new footnotes feature then you’ve got a bit more work to do:

  1. The onload event expression changed.

  2. The new <div id="content">...</div> div envelopes document content.

  3. You need to add <div id="footnotes">...</div> div to the [footnotes] section for footnotes to work.

  4. Drop the ifdef::toc[] macro that surround JavaScript inclusion.

Take a look at the [header] and [footer] changes in the xhtml11.conf diff to see what’s going on:

Version 8.5.0 (2009-10-04)

Additions and changes
Bug fixes

Regression issues

  • Tables generated by dblatex occupy 100% of the available space regardless of the width attribute setting. To restore width behavior change the pageunits miscellaneous parameter to pt. You can do this from the command-line with the -a pageunits=pt option. See DocBook table widths.

Version 8.4.5 (2009-05-24)

Additions and changes
  • Added manpage Name and Synopsis section title customization to languages configuration files.

  • Synopsis manpage section no longer mandatory.

  • Section markup templates can be specified by setting the title’s first positional attribute or template attribute.

  • The article and book document header can now include a revision remark.

  • A role attribute can now be applied to block elements. This adds the role attribute to DocBook elements. Patch submitted by Noah Slater).

  • Renamed revision and date attributes to more sensible and consistent revnumber and revdate (old names deprecated but still recognized).

  • Moved backend specific attributes to Appendix H in User Guide.

  • Renamed and generalized the docbook backend revision history inclusion mechanism to docinfo to reflect the use of all article or book information elements. The old revision history names still work but have been deprecated.

  • Refactored docbook.conf headers.

  • Moved line break replacement from [replacements] to [replacements2] so the replacement occurs after the mailto macro. This fixes bug

  • The typewriter to punctuation apostrophe replacement can be escaped with a backslash.

  • Graphviz filter outputs images to imagesdir if it is defined.

  • Made the block image macro generic so that it can be used for filter outputs. As a result Music and Graphviz filters:

    • Have been greatly simplified.

    • Honor the data-uri attribute.

    • html4 outputs no longer generate W3C validation warning.

  • The iconsdir attribute no longer requires a trailing directory separator character.

  • Removed borders around linked html4 images.

  • Added html4 specific HTML output for music filter.

  • a2x: Added --unsafe option (shortcut for --asciidoc-opts=--unsafe).

  • a2x: The FOP executable can now be named fop (this is the default name in some distributions).

  • Attributes are now substituted in the system macro attribute list.

  • If the output is set to stdout (i.e. no output directory is defined) then Music and Graphviz filters will output included images to the source file directory.

  • Added name directive to testasciidoc.

  • Added lots of testasciidoc new tests.

  • Moved language specific configuration parameters into lang-en.conf file.

  • lang attribute entry can be specified in the AsciiDoc source file (preceding the header).

  • Removed cruft from A-A-P scripts and documented them.

  • Added German language config file (lang-de.conf) contributed by Michael Wild.

  • Added French language config file (lang-fr.conf) contributed by Yves-Alexis Perez.

  • Added Russian language config file (lang-ru.conf) contributed by Artem Zolochevskiy.

  • Added Hungarian language config file (lang-hu.conf) contributed by Miklos Vajna.

Bug fixes

Regression issues

  1. A colon following the date in the AsciiDoc header is treated as a revision remark delimiter — this could be an issue if you have used a colon in the header date.

Version 8.4.4 (2009-04-26)

Additions and changes
  • Added table column and row spanning.

  • Table styles can now be applied per cell.

  • Vertical cell alignment can be applied to columns and individual cells.

  • Added table align attribute to set horizontal alignment for entire table.

  • Included Geoff Eddy’s update of the experimental LaTeX backend.

  • A new attribute named trace controls the output of diagnostic information. If the trace attribute is defined then element-by-element diagnostic messages detailing output markup generation are printed to stderr.

  • Added literal paragraph style (allows literal style to be applied to normal paragraphs).

  • Deleted unused replacements2 from xhtml11.conf.

  • Added replacements2 to default substitutions.

  • messages to stdout, only diffs to stderr.

  • Added transparency to smallnew.png image.

Bug fixes
  • All combinations of leading comments and attribute entries at the start of a document are now skipped correctly.

  • FIXED: ./configure doesn’t support --docdir as expected (patch submitted by Artem Zolochevskiy)

  • FIXED: Constrained quotes were incorrectly matched across line boundaries e.g. the string +\nabc+ incorrectly matched a monospace quote.

Version 8.4.3 (2009-04-13)

Additions and changes
  • DocBook outputs default to DocBook version 4.5 doctype (previously 4.2).

  • Configuration file [specialsections] definitions can be undefined by setting their configuration entry values blank.

  • The Makefile install target depends on the all target to ensure pre-install patches are applied.

  • now emits user friendly messages if:

    1. the configuration file is missing.

    2. an illegal backend is specified.

    3. an illegal test number is specified.

Bug fixes
  • Fixed missing template section error.

  • The --force option no longer deletes test data files that were not specified.

  • Dropped second quotes substitution in table cells — it had effectively disabled quote escaping in table cells.

Version 8.4.2 (2009-03-19)

Additions and changes
  • Added testasciidoc, a tool to verify AsciiDoc conformance.

  • A warning is issued if nested inline passthroughs are encountered.

  • asciidocapi: setting an attribute value to None will undefine (delete) the attribute (this in addition to the name! attribute name format that the asciidoc(1) command uses).

Version 8.4.1 (2009-03-10)

Additions and changes
  • AsciiDoc now has a Python API. The following minimal example compiles mydoc.txt to mydoc.html:

    from asciidocapi import AsciiDocAPI asciidoc = AsciiDocAPI()
  • Backtick quoting for monospaced text is now implemented as an inline literal passthrough. This makes more sense since monospace text is usually intended to be rendered literally. See Regression issues below for the impact this may have on existing documents. Here are some examples that would previously have had to be escaped:

    The `++i` and `++j` auto-increments.
    Paths `~/.vim` and `~/docs`.
    The `__init__` method.
    The `{id}` attribute.
  • Added --doctest option to asciidoc(1) command.

  • Added an optional second argument to BlockId element, this sets the {reftext} attribute which in turn is used to set the xreflabel attribute in DocBook elements.

  • Added lists to --help syntax summary.

  • {infile} and {indir} attributes reflect the current input file (previously always referred to the root document).

  • {docfile} (new) and {docdir} (previously deprecated) attributes refer to the root document specified on the asciidoc(1) command-line.

  • Vim syntax highlighter improvements.

  • Syntax summary command (asciidoc -h syntax) additions.

  • Admonition icons now have transparent backgrounds.

  • Changed yellow W3C badges to blue ones in page footers.

Bug fixes
  • Dropped asciidoc(1) broken undocumented --profile option.

  • Em dash replacement now recognized at start of block.

Regression issues

Replacing backtick quoting with the inline literal passthrough raises two regression scenarios for existing documents:

  1. You have escaped the expansion of enclosed inline elements, for example: \{id}. You would need to delete the backslashes: {id} (if you don’t the backslashes will be printed). Mostly it’s just a case of interactively finding and replacing of all occurrences of `\.

  2. There are enclosed inline elements, for example: some *bold* monospaced. You would need to switch to plus character monospace quoting: +some *bold* monospaced+ (if you don’t the enclosed elements won’t be expanded).

If your existing documents include these cases and you don’t want to upgrade then use the -a no-inline-literal command-line option, alternatively put this in ~/.asciidoc/asciidoc.conf:


Version 8.3.5 (2009-02-02)

Additions and changes
  • Cached compiled regular expression delimiters (speed up User Manual compilation by 250%).

  • Created distinct list definitions for each numbered list style to allow nesting of all styles.

  • Roman numbers in numbered lists are followed by a closing parenthesis instead of a period to eliminate i, v, x item ambiguity with respect to alpha numbered list items.

  • Added **, ***, ****, ***** bulleted lists.

  • Added ..., ...., ..... implicit numbered lists.

  • Added :::, :::: labeled lists.

  • Updated User Guide for new list syntaxes.

  • Optimized paragraph and list termination detection with separate precompiled regular expressions for performance and to prevent reaching Python 100 named group limit.

  • Updated Vim syntax highlighter for new list syntaxes.

  • Allow template::[] macros in conf file entries sections (not just in template sections).

  • Dropped unused [listdef-numbered2] conf file sections.

  • Renamed ListBlock to more appropriate OpenBlock.

  • Implemented single-line versions of ifdef::[] and ifndef::[] macros.

  • html4 backend styling:

    • Underlined admonition captions.

    • Added side border to Example Blocks.

  • xhtml11 backend styling:

    • Dropped right hand margin from all but quote and verse blocks.

    • html4 backend: corrected over-sized width of caption in admonition block.

Bug fixes
  • Fixed broken numbered list nesting.

Compatibility issues

The roman numbered list parenthesis syntax is incompatible with the potentially ambiguous roman period syntax introduced in 8.3.2.

Version 8.3.4 (2009-01-20)

Additions and changes
  • Implemented a title float style. A floating title (or bridgehead) is rendered just like a normal section but is not formally associated with a text body and is not part of the regular section hierarchy so the normal ordering rules do not apply.

  • Implemented inline comment macro so comment lines can now appear inside block elements.

  • Comment lines are sent to the output if the showcomments attribute is defined (comment blocks are never sent to the output).

  • Single quoting attribute values in AttributeList elements causes them to be substituted like normal inline text (without single quoting only attribute substitution is performed).

  • Rewrote list item processing (was very crufty). List continuation and list blocks now work as expected. Updated and clarified list documentation in User Guide.

  • The revision attribute now recognizes the RCS $Id$ marker format.

  • An RCS $Id$ marker formatted revision line in the header does not need to be preceded by an author line.

  • If an RCS $Id$ formatted revision is specified and the author name has not already been set then the author name in the $Id$ marker will be used.

  • Updated Gouichi Iisaka’s Graphviz filter to version 1.1.3.

  • Added autowidth table attribute option for (X)HTML outputs.

  • DocBook backend now puts orgname optional attribute in DocBook header.

  • Deprecated undocumented companyname attribute in favor of DocBook’s corpname.

  • Removed explicit closing backslash from HTML4 self-closing tags to comply with WC3 recommendation.

Bug fixes
  • Fixed 8.3.3 regression whereby adjacent lists with the same syntax but different list styles were incorrectly treated as a single list.

Version 8.3.3 (2009-01-02)

This release supersedes 8.3.2.

Bug fixes
  • The broken and confusing numeration and numeration2 numbered list attributes have been dropped, use the style attribute instead.

Version 8.3.2 (2009-01-01)

Additions and changes
  • Added Gouichi Iisaka’s Graphviz filter to distribution.

  • The SidebarBlock element can now be rendered with an abstract style.

  • Reorganized filters into a separate subdirectory for each filter.

  • Updated and MANIFEST files to reflect new filters organization.

  • Added listing style to LiteralBlock element so listings with nested listing blocks can be rendered as a listing block.

  • Changed example code filter to use preferred ListingBlock syntax (the old ~ delimited filter syntax is no longer used).

  • Implemented enumeration and enumeration2 numbered list attributes for specifying the list numbering style (arabic, loweralpha, upperalpha, lowerroman and upperroman).

  • AsciiDoc now recognizes upperalpha, lowerroman and upperroman numbers in listdef-numbered2 numbered lists and sets the number style based on the style of the first numbered list item (alternative to setting enumeration2 attribute).

  • Updated formatlistpat definition in .vimrc example in User Guide.

  • You can now backslash escape system block macros.

  • Added Pychart FAQ.

  • Drop paragraph text and list text, index and label match groups from attributes — they are included in the element’s text and we don’t want them processed a second time as attributes.

  • Changed comment line block macro to a passthrough block macro to ensure no substitutions.

  • A subslist no longer has to be appended to a PassthroughBlock macro definition, if omitted no substitutions are performed.

  • Code tidy up: replaced deprecated <> operator with !=.

  • Removed unused linuxdoc code.

  • Code tidy ups: dropped old types module reference; replaced has_key() with preferred in operator.

Bug fixes
  • Old syntax source highlight filter regression: special characters where not escaped in DocBook outputs.

Version 8.3.1 (2008-12-14)

Additions and changes
  • Replaced the script with Ben Walton’s updated autoconf scripts — see INSTALL for details.

  • Added a generalized AttributeEntry syntax to allow arbitrary configuration file entries to be set from within an AsciiDoc document (suggested by Henrik Maier).

  • Listing delimited blocks in DocBook outputs now support IDs; IDs of titled Listing and Literal delimited blocks have been moved to the enclosing DocBook example tag (thanks to Vijay Kumar for this patch).

  • Replaced vertical typewriter apostrophe with punctuation apostrophe (thanks to Noah Slater).

Bug fixes
  • Regression: Excluding double-quotes from unquoted attribute values resulted in backward incompatibility, double-quotes in unquoted attribute values has been reinstated.

  • Regression: Text like &...; was sometimes mistaken for an entity reference — tightened up entity reference matching.

Version 8.3.0 (2008-11-29)

Additions and changes
  • AsciiDoc new tables is a complete redesign of the tables syntax and generation. The new syntax and features are a huge improvement over the old tables. The old tables syntax has been deprecated but is currently still processed.

  • Lists can now be styled like other block elements. This allows a single list syntax for glossary, qanda (Question and Answer) and bibliography lists instead of having to remember a different syntax for each type.

  • Inline passthroughs macros have been improved and block passthrough macros added. Attribute substitution can be optionally specified when the macro is called.

  • The passthrough block has a fully transparent passthrough delimited block block style called pass.

  • The asciimath and latexmath passthrough macros along with asciimath and latexmath passthrough blocks provide a (backend dependent) mechanism for rendering mathematical formulas. There are LaTeX Math, AsciiMathML and LaTeXMathML examples on the AsciiDoc website.

  • Reimplemented and cleaned up filter processing based on a patch submitted by Kelly Anderson. Uses the newer subprocess module instead of the deprecated popen2 module. Now works in Win32 command shell.

  • Addition FAQs, more documentation updates.

  • Arbitrary HTML/XML entities can be entered in AsciiDoc source.

  • Did away with the need for the shaded-literallayout.patch (thanks to Henrik Maier for this patch).

  • Implemented page break block macro.

  • Added line breaks and ruler processing instructions to DocBook outputs (thanks to Henrik Maier for this patch).

  • Added deg (degree) and wj (word joiner) entity attributes (thanks to Henrik Maier).

  • Tweaked DocBook indexterm2 macro to avoid white space preceding the term when used in table cells (thanks to Henrik Maier for this patch).

  • Title elements now process the options attribute like other block elements.

  • Added ‘single quoted’ element.

  • Spaces on both sides of a — em-dash are translated to thin space characters.

  • Improved detection and reporting of malformed attribute lists.

  • The list compact style is now a list option.

  • Added strong labeled list option which makes the labels bold (HTML outputs only).

  • Dropped unsupported linuxdoc backend.

  • Dropped deprecated xhtml-deprecated (version 6) backend.

  • Added breakable and unbreakable attribute options to tables to control table breaking across page boundaries (DocBook XSL/FO outputs). By and in collaboration with Henrik Maier.

  • Added pgwide attribute option to tables to table, block image, horizontal labeled lists. Specifies that the element should be rendered across the full text width of the page irrespective of the current indentation (DocBook XSL/FO outputs). Thanks to Henrik Maier for this patch.

  • Vim syntax highlighter: spaces before/after bullets no longer highlighted (which is ugly if using a theme that highlights with underlines). Thanks to Donald Chai for this patch.

  • Added a2x(1) --fop option.

  • Added a2x(1) --no-xmllint option.

  • Highlighted labelled list terms with the navy color in XHTML outputs.

  • Use w3m(1) as default a2x(1) text format generator (fallback to lynx(1)).

  • Changed callout formats in html4 and xhtml11 outputs to angle brackets to match source highlighter rendering.

  • Macros now inject user defined <optionname>-option attributes into markup.

  • Added IRC URLs to AsciiDoc inline macros.

  • Added depth attribute to include::[] system macro.

  • Added footnoteref inline macro.

  • Added stylesheet XHTML attribute to specify additional custom CSS stylesheet.

  • If a paragraph style is specified it will be added to the XHTML class attribute and DocBook role attribute.

  • Replacements can be set in a document using the reserved AttributeEntry name replacement.

  • The prefix for auto-generated section name IDs can be set with the idprefix attribute.

Bug fixes
  • Escaped quote skipped over leading and trailing quote instead of just the leading quote.

  • Fixed bug that was causing false negative safe mode warnings (patch submitted by Julien Palmas).

  • Placed priority of AttributeEntry, AttributeList and BlockTitle above Title. This ensures an AttributeEntry, AttributeList or BlockTitle followed by a same length leading ListingBlock delimiter is not mistaken for a two-line title.

  • Vim syntax highlighter: fixed multi-line quoted text.

  • Contstrained quote termination after non-space character enforced.

  • Vim syntax highlighter: unterminated quoted text is no longer highlighted.

  • Vim syntax highlighter: passthroughs now exactly match AsciiDoc semantics.

  • Vim syntax highlighter: escaped quoted text, attribute references and inline macros are not highlighted.

  • Vim syntax highlighter: TODO’s highlighted in CommentBlocks (thanks to Scott Wall); non-greedy $$...$$.

  • Vim syntax highlighter: Comment lines mistaken for vertical list labels (thanks to Scott Wall).

  • Vim syntax highlighter: Single unmatched $$ mistakenly highlighted remaining text (patch contributed by Scott Wall).

  • Callouts now work in source highlighted listing generated by dblatex.

  • Fixed exception that occured if undefined attribute was present in filter command.

  • AttributeList block can now follow a paragraph without intervening blank line.

  • The include macro tabsize attribute is no longer propagated to nested includes.


The following features were implemented but then but removed from this release:

  • pi, cdata and comment passthrough macros and passthrough block styles (creeping featurism, use pass macros instead).

  • Generic tag inline macro (creeping featurism, use pass macros instead).

Compatibility issues

Version 8.3.0 has a number of backward incompatibilities with respect to the previous 8.2.7 release:

  • The old table syntax is still processed but a DEPRECATED warning is issued.

  • Entity references have to be escaped with a backslash.

  • You have to explicitly precede horizontal style labeled lists with the [horizontal] style attribute — by default all labeled lists are rendered vertically.

  • The list compact style has been dropped and is now a list option (use options="compact" in attribute lists).

  • AsciiDoc version 6 sytnax no longer supported.

  • Linuxdoc been removed from the distribution.

  • The unsupported experimental latex backend has not been tested on this release.

  • The introduction of single-quote quoting requires that double-quote quoting is escaped with two backslashes.

Version 8.2.7 (2008-07-04)

Additions and changes
  • Added dvi, ps and tex output format options to a2x(1).

  • Added --dblatex option to a2x(1) so dblatex(1) can be used to generate PDFs.

  • Added custom dblatex(1) configuration files (in distribution ./dblatex directory) that are used by a2x(1).

  • dblatex(1) is now used to generate the distributed PDF version of the AsciiDoc User Guide.

  • If you don’t need a customized the link caption you can enter the http, https, ftp, file URLs and email addresses without any special macro syntax — you get the links by just cutting and pasting URLs and emails addresses. This also makes it easier to open links directly form AsciiDoc source ( most editors allow you to open URLs directly). The Vim syntax highlighter has been updated to reflect these changes.

  • Highlighted source code paragraphs have been implemented — it’s a much more convenient way to enter short code examples (see the online docs).

  • The source highlighter and music filter syntax has changed — they now used the ListingBlock syntax customized with source and music style attribute values. This follows the Paragraph styling convention introduced by the source paragraph (previous item) and is easier to read. The old syntax still works but has been deprecated.

  • QuoteBlocks now have a verse style — you no longer have to nest a verse LiteralBlock inside a QuoteBlock for verses. The verse style on the LiteralBlock has been deprecated (still works though) and the style attribute is positional attribute 1, pushing attribution and citetitle attributes to the right (you’ll need to insert a quote attribute into your existing QuoteBlocks).

  • It is no up to the DocBook processor to highlight source code syntax in <programlisting> elements rather than GNU Highlighter — this is the correct way to handle it, plus dblatex(1) makes a much better job.

  • scaledwidth and align attributes have been added to the image macro. They apply to DocBook outputs (specifically for PDF documents). scaledwidth sets the image size as a percent of the available page width; align applies left, center or right horizontal image justification.

  • Added a2x(1) --fop-opts=FOP_OPTS option (patch submitted by Miklos Vajna).

  • Added a2x(1) --dblatex-opts=DBLATEX_OPTS option.

  • Added Mikhail Yakshin’s FOP 0.95 patch which fixes a long-standing fo.xsl problem and allows PDF’s to be generated with FOP 0.95 (previously had to use FOP 0.20.5).

  • The User Guide has been updated and outdated FOP configuration and installation sections removed.

Bug fixes
  • Fixed stylesheets/xhtml11-manpage.css not being included when linkcss attribute was used.

  • Configuration file *-style attributes are now dumped correctly.

  • Fixed FAILED: malformed section entry LaTeX backend error.

See the also the AsciiDoc repository changelog.

Version 8.2.6 (2008-04-29)

Additions and changes
  • Enhancements to the Vim AsciiDoc syntax highlighter, for example, quoted text is now highlighted in titles and macro captions.

  • If you define the data-uri intrinsic attribute images referenced by image macros will be embedded in XHTML using the data: URI scheme. NOTE: Microsoft browser support for the data: URI scheme is currently limited to MSIE 8 beta 1.

  • Added toc-title attribute to allow custom table of contents titles.

  • Added references to Alex Efros’s AsciiDoc Cheatsheet to AsciiDoc website.

  • asciidoc(1) and a2x(1) man pages formatted to conform to man-pages(7) recommendations.

  • Old code-filter syntax (pre-8.1.0) is no longer recognized so that malformed two-line level 2 titles are no longer confused with code-filter block delimiters.

  • Added → ← ⇒ ⇐ arrow replacements from the Arrows block of Unicode.

  • Added DocBook refentry lang attribute — patch contributed by VMiklos.

  • AttributeEntry names can now be numeric (“named macro targets”).

  • Hide Table of Contents title if Table of Contents empty — patch contributed by Alex Efros.

  • Various XHTML CSS tweaks.

  • Code cleanup:

    • Replaced realpath() with Python 2.2 os.path.realpath() library function.

    • Replaced old string library functions with string methods.

    • Use file generators instead of readlines().

    • Renamed entities that shadowed builtins.

    • Standardized string quoting.

    • Dropped readlines() function.

Bug fixes
  • Fixed broken CSS for decimal ordered lists nested in alpha ordered list, thanks to Alex Efros.

  • A missing closing block delimiter now reports the opening delimiter line number instead of the end of file line number.

  • Fixed an error generated by the asciidoc -e option when there are no block definitions — patch contributed by Alejandro Mery.

  • Handle both \r\n (as well as \n) line separators that may be returned by {sys} attribute evaluation.

  • Numbered attribute names no longer interfere with positional attribute list values.

Version 8.2.5 (2007-11-18)

Bug fixes
  • Fixed exception thrown by illegal command-line arguments.

  • Rolled back the with warning bug fix introduced in 8.2.4 — it was incompatible with Python <2.5.

Version 8.2.4 (2007-11-10)

Additions and changes
  • You can now use the lang attribute to set the DocBook language attribute.

  • Attribute values can now contain attribute references.

  • If the lang attribute is defined then configuration files named like lang-<lang>.conf will be loaded automatically.

  • The help file name help-<lang>.conf is based on the AsciiDoc lang attribute, defaults to help.conf (English).

  • Admonition, figure and table captions have been factored into a predefined set of caption_* attributes. They only apply to directly generated (X)HTML outputs (DocBook stylesheets generate their own language specific captions based on the lang attribute).

  • Dropped platform dependent doc/asciidoc.chm file from distribution documentation formats.

Bug fixes
  • The spurious warning with will become a reserved keyword in Python 2.6 has been suppressed.

Version 8.2.3 (2007-09-12)

Additions and changes
  • Added VMiklos’s permalink patch for auto-generated section IDs (enabled by default by the sectids attribute).

  • Added FAQ to website.

  • Changed format of {localdate} attribute to ISO 8601 (%Y-%m-%d).

  • Added abc2ly --beams=None option to make conform to ABC’s notion of beams.

  • XHTML level 2 section headings are now styled with an underlining border.

  • XHTML links to AsciiDoc title elements are now implemented with title ID attributes (previously separate <a> element targets were generated.

  • Multi-word first, middle and last names can be entered in the header author line using the underscore as a word separator.

  • The nested inline macros restriction has now been lifted, for example you can now include links and inline images inside footnotes.

  • Help topic names can be shortened (so long as they are not ambiguous). For example asciidoc -hm will print the AsciiDoc man page.

  • Added {two_colons} and {two_semicolons} attributes for escaping labeled list ambiguity.

  • If quirks mode is disabled the XHTML Mime Type is set to the recommended application/xhtml+xml (rather than text/html).

Bug fixes
  • Author information is now correctly set when using attribute entries in the header instead of an author line (previously the author attribute was not being calculated correctly and there were attribute substitution problems).

Version 8.2.2 (2007-07-22)

Additions and changes
  • LaTeXMathML capability has been added for users who are more familiar with or prefer LaTeX math formulas to the ASCIIMathML notation (thanks to Arthur Sakellariou for the patch).

  • The source highlight and code filters now process embedded callouts.

  • Added an --attribute=ATTRIBUTE option to a2x(1) for passing attribute values to asciidoc(1) (a shortcut for --asciidoc-opts="-a ATTRIBUTE").

  • Image block and inline macros prepend optional {imagesdir} attribute to image link targets.

Bug fixes
  • Fixed an assertion error that occurred when a configuration file containing an include::[] macro was loaded using the --conf-file option and the configuration file name did not include an explicit directory path — patch submitted by Dmitry Potapov.

  • Asciidoc titles are only converted to lower case if all characters are upper case otherwise case is left unchanged — patch submitted by Dmitry Potapov.

  • Added a missing check that input is not stdin before loading configuration files from the document directory — patch submitted by Dmitry Potapov.

  • Attribute list items must evaluate to strings, numbers or None (previously it was possible to evaluate to other object types which resulted in surprising attribute values).

  • If an AsciiDoc document has no title an empty XHTML 1.1 title element is created — previously the title element was dropped which resulted in invalid XHTML 1.1.

  • The Vim syntax file no longer highlights escaped callouts.

  • The Vim syntax highlighter now correctly highlights Double-dollar passthroughs when they enclose dollar delimited ASCIIMathML and LaTeXMathML formulas.

Version 8.2.1 (2007-04-06)

Additions and changes
  • A number of improvements have been made to the Vim syntax highlighter, for example the word C++ is no longer mistaken for the start of an unconstrained monospace quote.

  • Labeled list definitions have been tightened — a list label can no longer containing trailing spaces. The following example is no longer recognized as a valid list label:

    Lorum ipsum

    This change implements the originally intended behavior (as per the AsciiDoc documentation and examples) so there should be very few compatibility issues.

Version 8.2.0 (2007-04-04)

Additions and changes
  • A Vim syntax file is now included in the AsciiDoc distribution (inspired by Felix Obenhuber’s asciidoc.vim script). You can find it (along with a Vim filetype detection script in the distribution ./vim/ directory (the scripts are installed automatically by the AsciiDoc installer ./ See Appendix J of the AsciiDoc User Guide for details.

  • Added toclevel attribute (1..4) which sets the number of title levels reported in the table of contents. Defaults to 2 and must be used with the toc attribute. Example usage:

    $ asciidoc -a toc -a toclevels=3 doc/asciidoc.txt
  • Added a listindex attribute which is the current list item index (1..). If this attribute appears outside a list its value is the number of items in the most recently closed list.

  • The single line titles syntax now accepts trailing suffixes — this syntax matches the title line syntax of a number of popular Wiki markups.

  • If a QuoteBlock has no attribution or citetitle then the DocBook <attribution> element is not generated (previously generated empty <attribution> element).

  • If the text of a labeled list item is blank then no texttag is written.

  • An end of line backslash performs line continuation for horizontal labeled list items.

  • The Revision line now accommodates Subversion $Id markers (in addition to CVS and RCS markers). Thanks to Tiago Sturmer Daitx for this patch.

  • Implemented a2x(1) option --skip-asciidoc which allows a2x(1) to convert DocBook XML files not derived from AsciiDoc sources.

  • If a2x(1) --doctype option is not specified it defaults to manpage if --format=manpage else defaults to article (previously --doctype always defaulted to article).

  • Added an External Resources section to the AsciiDoc home page.

Version 8.1.0 (2006-10-22)

Additions and changes
  • AsciiDoc generated XHTML documents now display a table of contents if the toc attribute is defined (JavaScript needs to be enabled for this to work). Thanks to Troy Hanson who contributed this feature based on a JavaScript by Mihai Bazon. I’ve simplified things somewhat to match Docbook XSL Stylesheets style, see Troy’s tpl User Guide for a fancier layout. Use the -a toc -a numbered command-line options to produce a number table of contents.

  • A music filter is included in the distribution ./filters/ directory. It translates music in LilyPond or ABC notation to standard classical notation in the form of a trimmed PNG image which is inserted into the AsciiDoc output document.

  • Incorporated Paul Melis’s Win32 filter patch. This workaround allows AsciiDoc to run filters under Windows.

  • Added script.

  • Rather than proliferate a confusing number of filter block delimiters the following convention has been adopted: delimiters belonging to DelimitedBlock filters distributed with AsciiDoc will consist of a word (normally a noun identifying the block content) followed by four or more tilde characters. This has necessitated changing existing filter delimiters (the old delimiters still work but may be deprecated in future versions):

    • The example code filter block delimiter is now the word code followed by four or more tilde characters.

    • The source highlight filter block delimiter is now the word source followed by four or more tilde characters.

  • Conditionally redefined subscript and superscripting so they use the old replacements mechanism when asciidoc7compatible is defined rather than the asciidoc 8 default unconstrained quoting (patch for affected files attached).

  • Moved the source highlight filter from ./examples/ to ./filter/.

  • Added {verbose} intrinsic attribute (useful for passing verbose flag to filters).

  • Added {outdir} intrinsic attribute.

  • Renamed {docdir} intrinsic attribute to unambiguous {indir} ({docdir} still works but may be removed in future release).

  • If asciidoc(1) outputs to stdout then intrinsic attribute {docname} is extracted from the input file name.

Version 8.0.0 (2006-08-27)

This is a major release because changes to quoting and index entry handling may break existing documents (see Additions and changes below and Appendix A: Migration Notes in the AsciiDoc User Guide).

Please report any problems you encounter.

Additions and changes
  • Quoting can can occur within words (based on patch submitted by Benjamin Klum). See the Unconstrained Quotes sub-section in the User Guide.

  • The underline and plus characters can be used as alternatives to the existing apostrophe and backtick quote characters. They are arguably better choices than the apostrophe and backtick as they are not confused with punctuation.

  • The syntax for index entry macros have have been deprecated from +...+ and ++...++ to ((...)) and (((...))) respectively. Rationale:

    • Bracketing is consistent other with [[...]] and <<...>> reference macros.

    • To easily confused with triple plus passthroughs.

    • To make way for the new monospace quoting.

  • Superscripts and subscripts are implemented as constrained quotes so they can now be escaped with a leading backslash and prefixed with with an attribute list.

  • An experimental LaTeX backend has been written by Benjamin Klum (a number additions in this release are to accommodate the LaTeX backend).

  • include macro file names now expand environment variables and tilde expansions.

  • A configuration file [quotes] entry can be undefined by setting to a blank value.

  • Added callto inline macro for Skype callto links.

  • Added colnumber attribute for table data markup.

  • A leading comment block or comment lines are now skipped (previously a document had to start with either attribute entries or a document Title).

  • Experimental rows attribute (number of source lines in table) available in table markup templates (used by experimental LaTeX backend).

  • Included install shell script written by Jacob Mandelson for installing the tarball distribution.

  • Added INSTALL documentation file.

  • Added replacements2 substitution options — a second replacements section.

  • Added the ability to redefine normal and verbatim substitutions with subsnormal and subsverbatim entries in configuration file [miscellaneous] section.

  • By default AttributeEntry values are substituted for specialcharacters and attributes, if you want a different AttributeEntry substitution set the attributeentry-subs attribute.

  • The name in name=value configuration file entries can now end with a backslash, just escape the trailing backslash with a backslash. For example:


    Results in name=abc\ and value=xyz —  previously this would have escaped the = character.

  • A blank configuration file section deletes any preceding section with the same name (applies to non-markup template sections).

  • A command-line attribute value with a @ suffix does not override existing document and configuration file attributes (normally command-line attributes have precedence over document and configuration file attributes).

  • localtime attribute is now encoded from the native system encoding to the output encoding. Patch submitted by FKtPp — here’s his description of the problem:

    “I am a Chinese user of AsciiDoc and I find that when I use UTF-8 (the default encoding) to write asciidoc documents in Windows platform the resulting html footer line will get screwed. It was caused by a localized tzname that was always encoded in the windows native encoding, which in my case is cp936.”

  • a2x(1) can generate Open Document Text files using docbook2odf. Currently docbook2odf(1) only processes a subset of DocBook, unimplemented elements are skipped.

  • The a2x(1) format option defaults to xhtml (previously a format had to be specified explicitly).

  • The -d, \--doctype=DOCTYPE option has been added to a2x(1) which is a shortcut for --asciidoc-options="--doctype=DOCTYPE".

  • Replaced a2x(1) --no-icons and --no-copy options with their negated equivalents: --icons and --copy respectively. The default behavior has also changed: copying and use of icons is disabled by default. Rationale:

    • To make the default behavior more consistent since use of icons and CSS stylesheets does not apply to all formats.

    • To make the default behavior less surprising (the creation of icon and stylesheet output files must now be explicit).

  • a2x(1) has been bumped from version 0.1.1 to version 1.0.0.

Bug fixes
  • Removed duplicate ./doc/a2x.1.txt from distribution tarball.

  • Documentation errata.

  • Attribute replacement is no longer performed twice in Titles and AttributeEntrys.

  • a2x(1) skipped asciidoc(1) execution when rerun with different --asciidoc-options options, it now always executes asciidoc(1). The problem was that previously asciidoc(1) was executed only if the output file was missing or older than the source file.

Version 7.1.2 (2006-03-07)

Additions and changes
  • Support for ASCIIMathML has been added. See Appendix I: ASCIIMathML Support in the User Guide and the examples at

  • You can now prefix quoted text with inline attributes lists. You can use this to set font size and color (XHTML and HTML outputs).

  • Added ##...## quoting — it does nothing — it’s purpose is to allow inline attributes to be applied to normal text.

  • An inline passthrough mechanism has been implemented.

  • Configuration file comment lines can be escaped with a backslash — this is to allows the inclusion of configuration lines that start with a hash character.

  • The scriptsdir attribute can be used to specify the name of the directory containing linked JavaScripts (see the User Guide for details.

  • The BackendBlock has been renamed PassthroughBlock for consistency with the new inline passthrough naming.

  • a2x(1) now works with the older bash(1) version 2.05b. Patch submitted by Francis Daly.

  • Content included by the include1::[] system macro is no longer subject to attribute substitution so that ambiguities no longer arise when used to include CSS or JavaScript files.

Version 7.1.1 (2006-02-24)

Additions and changes
  • The caption attribute can be used to customize admonition captions as well as image, table and example block element title prefixes (xhtml11 and html4 backends).

  • You can now override the default icon image using the icon attribute to specify the path of the linked image (xhtml11 and html4 backends only).

  • The deprecated imagesdir attribute is no longer recognized (use iconsdir instead).

  • Added Appendix H: Using AsciiDoc with non-English Languages to the AsciiDoc User Guide.

  • Added Admonition Icons and Captions subsection to the User Guide explaining how to customize Admonition elements.

Bug fixes
  • a2x(1) failed when configuration files were installed in the global /etc/asciidoc/ directory — it was only searching the directory containing the asciidoc executable (thanks to Christian Wiese for finding and submitting a patch this bug).

  • The html4 backend admonition caption now correctly displays the admonition caption attribute (previously displayed the style attribute).

Version 7.1.0 (2006-01-13)

Additions and changes
  • a2x(1) toolchain wrapper utility. This overcomes the biggest hurdle for new users which seems to be assembling and using a working DocBook XML toolchain. With a2x(1) you can generate XHTML (chunked and unchunked), PDF, man page, HTML Help and text file outputs from an AsciiDoc input file with a single command. All you need to install (in addition to AsciiDoc) is xsltproc(1), DocBook XSL Stylesheets and optionally FOP (if you want PDF) or lynx(1) (if you want text).

  • Block titles can now start with any non-space character (previously where not allowed to start with .~-_ characters).

  • ./stylesheets/docbook.css renamed to ./stylesheets/docbook-xsl.css to clarify its function.

  • Renamed ./docbook-xsl/manpages.xsl to ./docbook-xsl/manpage.xsl for consistency.

  • Admonition and navigation icons moved to ./images/icons/ to clarify usage and conform with a2x(1) usage.

  • Renamed xhtml11 intrinsic attribute imagesdir to iconsdir to keep vocab consistent and changed default value to ./images/icons (previously ./images). imagesdir attribute still accepted but deprecated.

  • Unused image files have been weeded out of the distribution.

  • Packager notes (appendix B) have been updated to reflect the needs of a2x(1).

The renaming of the xhtml11 backend imagesdir intrinsic attribute and it’s new default value introduces a backward compatibility issue: if you use the icons attribute you will need to either move your icons to the new default ./images/icons location or include an --attribute{nbsp}iconsdir="your_icons_path" option in your asciidoc commands.
Bug fixes
  • Backslash line continuation is now observed in verbatim paragraphs.

  • Fixed errors generated by example ./examples/website/ script.

Version 7.0.4 (2005-12-08)

Additions and changes
  • Added ternary conditional attributes {<name>@<regexp>:<value1>[:<value2>]} and {<name>$<regexp>:<value1>[:<value2>]}.

  • Safety violations now generate errors (they previously generated warnings).

  • asciidoc(1) now defaults to safe mode, consequently the [miscellaneous] safe mode entry and --safe command-line option are no longer necessary (though for backward compatibility asciidoc(1) still accepts the --safe option).

  • Backend Blocks are now flagged unsafe (they could be used to include arbitrary and hence potentially unsafe output content).

  • Filters are no longer considered unsafe. There’s not much point in insisting on filter safety since the installation of an unsafe filter would require the introduction of new or modified configuration files — if your application configurations can be compromised you’re in all sorts of trouble (safe mode protects against unsafe input files not unsafe configuration). As with all filters, before installing, you should verify that they can’t be coerced into generating malicious output or exposing sensitive information.

Bug fixes
  • Fixed a lot of glaring grammatical and factual errors in the User Guide.

Version 7.0.3 (2005-12-01)

Additions and changes
  • Added --safe and --unsafe command-line options — AsciiDoc can now be executed in a safe mode which disallows the execution of arbitrary code or the inclusion of arbitrary files (see Appendix C in the AsciiDoc User Guide).

  • Included source-highlight filter in the distribution ./examples/source-highlight-filter/ directory (based on filter submitted by Ryan Phillips).

  • Included the DocBook XSL Stylesheets 1.69.1 customizations used to generate the distributed AsciiDoc documentation (read the asciidoc-docbook-xsl.txt file in the distribution ./docbook-xsl/ directory).

  • AsciiDoc DocBook XSL Stylesheet drivers moved from ./doc/ to ./docbook-xsl/.

  • Modified ./doc/manpages.xsl so only URL content is displayed in manpages.

Bug fixes
  • Explicitly set table CSS border style (xhtml11 backend) to solid because default border styles vary from browser to browser.

Version 7.0.2 (2005-08-28)

Additions and changes
  • There are now long versions of all AsciiDoc options.

  • If the --backend is not specified it defaults to xhtml11.

  • Added CSS simulated frames layout to the examples website (see ./examples/website/layout2/README-website.txt). This layout does not work with IE6 and the original tables based layout is still the default.

  • Support page added to AsciiDoc website.

Bug fixes
  • Invalid options are now trapped gracefully.

  • Documentation errata.

Version 7.0.1 (2005-06-24)

Additions and changes
  • Reverted to use of strong, em, tt XHTML tags — they’re more obvious and no less correct than span tags, besides, the generated file sizes are smaller (the User Guide was 11% smaller).

  • Table title rendered with caption tag rather than a separate div.

  • The AsciiDoc stylesdir attribute (if specified) is now recognized when searching for embedded stylesheets (previously only searched default ./stylesheets directory).

  • Default charset encoding changed from ISO-8859-1 to UTF-8 — it’s less language specific and displays most common languages.

  • template::[] macros now expand in all configuration file sections previously only in markup template sections.

  • Cleaned up example website layout CSS and configuration (presentation has not been changed).

  • Refactored xhtml11.conf configuration file.

  • Set consistent and sensible permissions on distributed files.

  • White space is now stripped from DSV formatted table cell data.

  • class="tableblock" attribute added to tables generated by xhtml-deprecated-css.conf to assist CSS.

Bug fixes
  • Illegal character set encoder (specified by the AsciiDoc encoding attribute) and character data are trapped gracefully.

  • AsciiDoc table format attribute in table attribute lists were not recognized.

  • The nested horizontal labeled list example in the AsciiDoc User Guide has been dropped — it generated invalid DocBook markup.

Version 7.0.0 (2005-06-06)

This is a major release with many code and documentation changes. Please report any problems you encounter.

Additions and changes
  • A new xhtml11 backend generates XHTML 1.1 with integrated CSS2 replacing the previous xhtml, css, and css-embedded backends.

  • The CSS stylesheets have finally been rewritten.

  • The asciidoc(1) command help now includes user customizable help topics. When asciidoc is invoked with the --help option the command argument is interpreted as a help topic.

  • The previous example website has been replaced by the actual AsciiDoc website (see ./examples/website/.

  • XHTML generation options now controlled by the following attributes: badges, linkcss, icons, numbered, quirks, theme, stylesdir, imagesdir (see the User Guide for details.

  • By default HTML and XHTML are output as stand-alone documents (no embedded CSS and no linked admonition icon images).

  • Documents encoded with the UTF-8 Unicode character set are now processed thanks to a patch supplied by Viktor Vasilev.

  • The -a ^name command-line syntax to undefine an attribute has been deprecated in favor of the -a name! syntax.

  • AttributeEntry syntax addition: :name!: to undefine name attribute.

  • Added template system block macro to allow the inclusion of one configuration file template section within another.

  • A verse style attribute can now be applied to literal paragraphs and blocks to reproduce line breaks and white space from the source document.

  • Replacements and Special Words can now be escaped with leading backslashes.

  • Replacements are now processed in configuration file order (previous ordering was indeterminate).

  • System macros can now be used in the base asciidoc.conf configuration file.

  • Deprecated features that emitted warnings in prior versions are no longer tolerated.

  • The eval system attribute expression evaluates to False the attribute is undefined, if it evaluates to True the result is an empty string.

  • The Paragraph and DelimitedBlock presubs parameter can be aliased as subs.

  • Added verbatim substitutions option.

  • Renamed List Continuation Block to List Block and renamed the listcontinuation option to list.

  • Deprecated default substitutions option (use normal instead).

  • The section-numbers section numbering attribute has be renamed numbered.

  • Dropped the #UNDER CONSTRUCTION# block macro.

  • Rewrote Paragraph and DelimitedBlock handlers adding a styles configuration entry.

Bug fixes
  • Included files are no longer read inside conditionally excluded content.

  • Manpage command names containing dashes (in the manpage NAME section) were misinterpreted as the spaced dash command name/purpose separator. Bug report and patch supplied by David Greaves.

  • Unexpected error following malformed author line error.

Version 6.0.3 (2005-04-20)

Additions and changes
  • Special characters are now substituted in AttributeEntry element values.

  • Spaced and unspaced em dashes are now recognized (previously only spaced em dashes were recognized).

  • Replaced the table noborders option with richer frame and grid attributes.

  • The duplicate macro warning message now only occurs when the verbose (-v) option is enabled.

  • Single lines starting with two forward slashes hard up against the left margin are treated as comments and are not processed.

  • Renamed section delimited block option to sectionbody to more accurately reflect it’s role.

  • Added a List Continuation block — a specialized delimited block that is functionally equivalent to the List Item Continuation feature except that the list contained within the block does not require explicit + list item continuation lines.

  • Dropped deprecated <u> tags from generated HTML.

  • Literal Block delimiters must now consist of at least four points (previously three) to avoid lone ellipsis ambiguity.

Bug fixes
  • Some system attribute evaluation failures caused unexpected exceptions to occur.

Version 6.0.2 (2005-03-30)

Additions and changes
  • Three new system block macros have been added — eval, sys and sys2 which are the block macro equivalents to the same named system attributes.

  • Intrinsic macros have been renamed system macros along with action attributes which have been renamed system attributes:

    • To reflect their common (though contextually different) behavior.

    • To avoid confusion with intrinsic attributes.

Bug fixes
  • Asciidoc now searches in /etc/asciidoc/filters for filters.

Version 6.0.1 (2005-03-06)

Additions and changes
  • A global configuration file location /etc/asciidoc has been added and is now processed before all other locations (patch supplied by Fredrik Steen).

  • Recoded tempfile.mktemp() and other artifacts that are no longer necessary or desirable (patches supplied by Fredrik Steen).

  • Added BUGS file to the distribution.

Bug fixes
  • Illegal comment syntax in css-embedded-stylesheet.conf resulted in illegal CSS in files generated by the css-embedded backend.

Version 6.0.0 (2005-01-28)

This release has had some fairly major code and documentation changes. Please report any problems you encounter.

A lot of new stuff. A new major version number — some regression incompatibility (hopefully mitigated by deprecated warnings).

Went mad trying to rein in the current feature anarchy — established a unified notion of document attributes. Attempted to introduce a consistent vocabulary — renamed many poorly or inconsistently named entities.

Actually, deprecated syntax is still processed correctly in almost all cases. One source of incompatibility that may arise if you have customized CSS stylesheets is the change of AsciiDoc CSS class names (see below). I guess the moral is if you’ve done a lot of configuration file customization and are happy with version 5 then you may want to stay put.

This version requires Python 2.3 or better to run.
Additions and changes
  • Glossary entries have been renamed attributes. This eliminates confusion with the accepted meaning of glossary.

  • An AttributeEntry block element has been added so that document attributes can be assigned from within an AsciiDoc document.

  • The AttributeList block element has been added which is a more general solution than the (now deprecated) DelimitedBlock arguments.

  • An BlockId element has been added for setting block element anchor (link target) IDs.

  • Quoted text can now span multiple lines (thanks to James Bowlin for this patch).

  • Inline macros can now span multiple lines.

  • ‘`double backtick / apostrophe’' quotes generate “curly quotes”.

  • A warning is now emitted for out of order list item (applies to explicitly enumerated numbered list items).

  • Added include action attribute.

  • A line of three or more apostrophes generates an HTML horizontal ruler (<hr/> tag). You will get a warning if processed with non-HTML backend.

  • An {imagesdir} attribute specifies image file location for images referenced in configuration files when generating HTML (the default location is images).

  • An {stylesdir} attribute specifies the location of CSS stylesheets when generating styled HTML (the default location for configured markup is .).

  • The use of the (often inappropriately named) {caption} attribute list entry has been deprecated, use {0} instead.

  • New ExampleBlock delimited block along with associated variants Note, Tip, Warning, Caution and Important.

  • The docbook.conf file now facilitates the optional inclusion of a DocBook revision history file.

  • To better reflect their purpose the following block elements have been renamed: VerbatimBlock to ListingBlock; IndentedBlock to LiteralBlock; IndentedParagraph to LiteralParagraph; CustomBlock to BackendBlock; SimpleSection to SectionBody. Any corresponding CSS class names have also been changed which could result in backward incompatibility in customized stylesheets.

  • Swapped plain DocBook admonition icons for Jimmac’s DocBook icons ( The original plain icons have been moved to ./images/plain.

  • Renamed html backend to xhtml to better reflect it’s function (former html-4 backend renamed to html).

  • A new inline anchor macro syntax [[[<id>]]] is available, it displays [<id>] at the anchor location and is for anchoring bibliography list entries.

  • An optional single-line titles syntax can be used.

  • Tweaks to distributed CSS stylesheets and FOP fo.xsl customization file.

  • List Item Continuation has been implemented which allows additional block elements to be included in list items by separating them from the preceding list item element with a line containing a single plus character.

  • A new Horizontal Labeled List list type has been added. Generates two column list — the first column contains the list element labels, the second contains the element text. Same syntax as Vertical Labeled Lists except the double colon label suffix is followed by the start of the list item text.

Bug fixes
  • Fixed broken backslash line continuation.

  • Labeled list end tags were not undergoing attribute substitution.

  • Documents without any author information now generate legitimate DocBook (previously if the author line was not included in the document header then an empty (illegal) DocBook author element was generated).

  • Multiple spaces in filter command arguments were replaced by a single space. The ./examples/asciidoc2text/ script now indents text correctly.

Version 5.1.1 (2004-10-10)

15-December-2004: Interim update: Updated to fix broken join_lines function — no other changes.

  • PDF documentation is now produced from DocBook XML using XSLTLib and FOP. Previously we processed DocBook SGML with jw(1) (which used Dvips to convert DVI files to PDF). FOP has come a long way in the last 12 months and produces very acceptable PDF under both Linux and Windows.

  • Sections detailing how to install and use the DocBook XSL Stylesheets, xsltproc, FOP toolchain and the AsciiDoc XSLT drivers have been added to the User Guide.

  • The PDF output from the he example article template has been included in the distribution (./doc/article.pdf).

  • Special characters are emitted using decimal Unicode character codes (previously used named character entities which cannot be assumed included in non-HTML documents).

  • Added registered trademark ® to [replacements].

  • CSS stylesheet tweaks.

  • Admonitions (Note, Tip, Important, Warning, Caution) include icons when generating css output.

Version 5.1.0 (2004-09-18)

  • Callouts have been implemented (see the Callouts section of the AsciiDoc User Guide for details).

  • Added XSL drivers for generating XHTML, chunked XHTML and HTML Help from DocBook XML using XSL stylesheets and xsltproc(1).

  • Added CSS stylesheet for HTML generated from DocBook XML using XSL stylesheets.

  • Distribution contains HTML Help formatted User Guide (./doc/asciidoc.chm), the User Guide tells you how it’s generated.

  • Images referred to by distributed stylesheets are now located in the ./images subdirectory (previously located in .).

  • Filters path names are now handled properly under Cygwin.

  • The usual documentation and examples additions, updates and polishing.

Version 5.0.9 (2004-09-09)

  • The convention of using a .asc file extension for AsciiDoc files has been dropped in favor of the familiar .txt extension. It makes more sense in that AsciiDoc is a text presentation format and because .asc clashed with the same extension used by other applications. It’s only a naming convention — you don’t have to switch if you don’t want to.

  • Changed the subscript formatting character from underline to tilde since underscores in file names are reasonably common (especially in link and image macros).

  • An alternative syntax for the index term inline macro has been added: ++<primary>,<secondary>,<tertiary>++.

  • Index terms that have secondary and tertiary entries now additionally generate separate index terms for the secondary and tertiary entries.

  • A +<primary>+ index term inline macro has been added which displays the term in the primary text flow.

  • Added alternative variable list definition using double semi-colon terminator as opposed to the standard double colon terminator so variable lists can be nested to two levels.

  • Footnotes now appear on a separate line in HTML and Linuxdoc outputs.

  • Python version compatibility is checked at startup.

  • Preface and appendix section titles in multi-part Book documents are meant to be out of sequence — warnings are no longer emitted when outputting HTML.

  • Empty section warnings have been replaced by error messages and are emitted only if invalid markup would result.

  • Missing macro sections or invalid macro name warnings are only generated at startup if the -v (verbose) option is set. Otherwise they are deferred until a matching macro is encountered in the input file.

  • Missing or invalid table definition warnings are only generated at startup if the -v (verbose) option is set. Otherwise they are deferred until a matching table is encountered in the input file.

  • AsciiDoc now makes more of an effort to continue in the face of errors.

  • Fixed broken ./examples/website/main.aap script.

  • Converted distribution text files DOS text format as a sop to Windows users with challenged text editors.

  • Documentation additions and corrections.

Version 5.0.8 (2004-05-15)

  • Spurious out of sequence level 2 warnings no longer appear when processing book document multi-part book top level Preface and Appendix sub-sections since they are (correctly) out of sequence.

  • A warning is no longer emitted for empty Index sections since this is normal when generating DocBook outputs.

  • Fixed: [quotes] configuration file entries where not being overridden by downstream configuration file entries.

  • Footnote text is now output enclosed in square brackets in HTML documents.

  • Added superscripts and subscripts to the standard PRS configuration files.

  • Adjusted CSS stylesheets so list titles don’t have so much space between title and first list item (broken in IE6 due to poor CSS compliance). Lessened sidebar title top margin.

Version 5.0.7 (2004-04-22)

  • The version 5.0.6 README incorrectly stated that AsciiDoc would run under Python 2.0, in fact it requires Python 2.1 or better. The README has been corrected.

  • Documented techniques for combining and splitting AsciiDoc documents and processing the combined and split parts (see the Tips and Tricks section of the User Guide).

  • An example of marking up superscripts and subscripts is documented in the Tips and Tricks section of the User Guide (the example configuration file is in the AsciiDoc examples directory).

  • Added ellipsis to shipped [replacements]; three periods output an ellipsis entity.

  • Removed unused SectionClose class.

  • The AsciiDoc Preamble element is output as a DocBook Preface when processed as a book document type (in older AsciiDoc versions a warning was issued and processing stopped).

  • Fixed a quoting anomaly: quoted text can no longer begin or end with with white space.

Version 5.0.6 (2004-03-07)

  • New image macro implements optional image scaling and linking and works in both inline and block contexts. The image macro obsolesces the existing graphic block macro and icon inline macro.

  • Macro substitution section names now have -inlinemacro and -blockmacro suffixes to resolve context ambiguity, make their purpose clearer and relieve section namespace congestion.

  • Header derived glossary entries can now be overridden from the command-line.

  • Special character substitution is now performed on AuthorLine derived author names.

  • A macro or block argument called options can be used as a shortcut for a list named arguments with zero length string values.

  • Tables can be output without borders using the options="noborders" argument.

  • Table data lines that do not immediately follow a table section underline can now be blank. This allows CSV data with embedded blank lines to be processed correctly.

  • Blank DSV format table data lines are silently skipped.

  • Tightened up on enforcement of configuration file section names to reduce the possibility of section content being seen as a section header line.

  • Section titles can be optionally suffixed with title arguments enclosed in double square brackets.

  • A replacement has been added to asciidoc.conf to replace inline double dashes with the &mdash; entity.

  • Changed the .UNDER-CONSTRUCTION. macro syntax to #UNDER-CONSTRUCTION# so it is not mistaken for a BlockTitle. Similarly changed the .NEW. replacement with &#35;NEW&#35;.

  • &#35;NEW&#35; and #UNDER-CONSTRUCTION# macros are now included in the DocBook backend.

  • Replaced shipped smallnew.gif with smallnew.png.

  • Documentation tidy ups.

Version 5.0.5 (2004-02-25)

  • Fixed the disappearing paragraph titles problem that was caused by Inline macros (incorrectly) processing BlockTitles.

  • Tightened AuthorLine validation. Previously invalid email addresses and embedded special characters in the AuthorLine resulted in invalid output markup.

Version 5.0.4 (2004-02-09)

  • Reinstated missing infile, outfile, filetype and filetype-<filetype> glossary entries.

  • As of version 5.0.3 asciidoc(1) now requires Python 2.0 or greater, this has now been documented.

Version 5.0.3 (2004-01-23)

  • Fixed problem that caused any filters directory file containing .conf (not just those with the .conf extension) from being loaded.

  • All [miscellaneous] configuration file entries can now be referenced like glossary entries (they are now processed internally as glossary entries).

  • The output file line terminator (previously hardwired to \r\n is now set using the newline entry in the configuration file [miscellaneous] section.

  • The misspelt blocktitles configuration file entry name has been corrected (to blocktitle).

  • An {empty} glossary entry has been added to the default configuration which is useful for outputting trailing blank lines from configuration file substitution sections.

Version 5.0.2 (2003-12-18)

  • New (alternative) anchor and xref macro syntax (old syntax still valid).

  • DocBook mediaobject and inlinemediaobject tags are generated in place of graphic and inlinegraphic tags by the AsciiDoc graphic and icon macros. If a macro argument is specified it is the alternative text output if the target document format does not support the specified graphic file format.

  • Dropped the LinuxDoc left and right square bracket special character substitutions as they interfered with macro substitution.

  • Documentation updates and corrections.

Version 5.0.1 (2003-12-09)

  • Fixed problem with anchor tag when generating CSS styled HTML.

Version 5.0 (2003-12-08)

This release has had some fairly major code and documentation changes. Please report any problems you encounter.

  • AsciiDoc can now produce a full-blown multi-part DocBook book including dedication, abstract, preface, colophon, glossary, appendix, bibliography and book part elements using the new specialsections configuration file section.

  • All Section element children (Paragraph, DelimitedBlock, List, Table, BlockMacro) can now be titled using the BlockTitle element. A BlockTitle element is a single line containing a title and beginning with a period.

  • The index and backmatter macros have been dropped, superseded by specialsections.

  • The AsciiDoc Preface element has been renamed Preamble (to avoid confusion with the DocBook book preface element).

  • Out of sequence titles are now tolerated with a warning. This allows book document level 0 sections to be processed.

  • An anchor inline macro has been added for document link target creation.

  • Note, Tip, Important and Warning paragraph types have been added to support the corresponding DocBook elements.

  • Title substitution is now performed in SidebarBlock titles.

  • DocBook graphics now output as figure and informalfigure elements rather than mediaobjects. This ensures numbered figures and a lists of figures are produced by the DocBook toolchain.

  • You can now escape block argument lines by appending a backslash. Alternatively, if you embed arguments in the delimiter line AsciiDoc does not check for an arguments line.

  • The default DocBook backend file extension has been changed from .docbook to .xml (.sgml for the docbook-sgml backend).

  • Warnings are output by default (previously they only printed when verbose option enabled).

  • A Question and Answer variable list definition has been added to the shipped configuration files, primarily to create DocBook qanda DocBook elements.

  • Fixed broken code-filter -b linuxdoc option. The asciidoc.asc User Guide can now be processed by linuxdoc(1) (although tables are dropped because LinuxDoc does not implement tables).

Compatibility issues:
  1. Table titles are no longer in the arguments line, use the new BlockTitles.

  2. Graphic titles are no longer in the graphic block macro caption, use the new BlockTitles.

  3. The code-filter title must be placed in a preceding BlockTitle.

  4. SidebarBlock titles must be placed in a preceding BlockTitle.

  5. The DelimitedBlock option sidebar has been renamed to section.

  6. The default DocBook backend file extension has been changed from .docbook to .xml (.sgml for the docbook-sgml backend).

Version 4.2 (2003-11-26)

  • The default HTML output is now XHTML 1.0 markup. To output the former HTML 4 markup specify the html-4 backend.

  • The default DocBook output is now DocBook XML. To output the former DocBook SGML specify the docbook-sgml backend. The associated docbook-sgml.conf file illustrates how to support minor DTD variations. Examples of using the xmlto(1) command for DocBook conversion have been added to the User Guide.

  • Glossary entries set using the command-line -g option can now be referenced in configuration files.

  • Configuration dumps (-c command-line option) no longer output redundant undefined glossary entries.

  • DelimitedBlock arguments can now be specified in a separate arguments line immediately following the leading delimiter line, This is in preference to the existing delimiter embedded arguments. Reasons:

    • The syntax is in keeping with the Tables arguments syntax.

    • It’s easier to enter and implements line continuation.

  • A new QuoteBlock DelimitedBlock definition has been added to the distribution configuration files.

  • The table arguments lines can be continued using the backslash line continuation character.

  • Added new calculated glossary reference type {<name>%<value>}.

  • Double-quote characters can now appear in unquoted positional arguments.

Version 4.1 (2003-11-13)

  • Added DSV (Delimiter Separated Values) tables format.

  • {eval:<expr>} glossary references drop the containing line if <expr> evaluates to None.

  • Block, Table and Macro arguments can now be positional (quoted or unquoted).

  • Vocabulary change: DelimitedBlock, Table and Macro attributes are now referred to as arguments. This makes more sense in light of the extended syntax and avoids confusion with backend markup tag attributes.

  • tablewidth table ruler parameter can now be expressed in percent units (0..100). If between 0 and 1 then the original fractional unit measure is applied.

  • The use of quoting for generating footnotes and index entries has been dropped in favor of footnote and indexterm inline macros.

  • backmatter inline macro included in distribution.

  • Fixed: CSS styled HTML tables are now fully XHTML 1.0 conformant.

  • Fixed: tablewidth was processed incorrectly when passed as table argument.

  • Fixed: Glossary references like {x=\{y}} were one character off if \{x] was defined and {y} was not.

Version 4.0 (2003-11-08)

This release has had some fairly major code and documentation changes. Please report any problems you encounter.

Stuart Rackham

  • Added tables to AsciiDoc.

  • Added two special subs options: default specifies the default substitution options and none specifies no substitution. These options can only appear singly.

  • Line continuation using a trailing backslash character is available in Paragraphs, ListItems, Tables.

  • The left and right quotes for quoted text can now be specified separately.

  • Shipped configuration files implement footnotes (only useful for DocBook output) using \[[]] quoting.

  • Shipped configuration files implement index terms (only useful for DocBook and LinuxDoc output) using \(()) quoting.

  • The shipped html backend configuration now emits valid HTML 4.01 Transitional.

  • Added new calculated glossary reference types {<name>!<value>} and {<name>#<value>}.

  • The DelimitedBlock params option has been dropped in favor of the new block attributes mechanism. If you have customized block params options you may need to adjust source files to use the block attributes syntax. The example code filter has been updated to reflect these changes.

  • The code filter now has a -t tabsize option.

  • Replaced -w option with -v (verbose) option. The warnings option was just to confusing.

  • Named attributes can now be specified in macro calls.

  • The tabsize attribute is recognized in the built-in include macros. A tabsize of zero suppresses tab expansion.

  • The configuration file [options] section has been split into [miscellaneous] and [titles]. If you have customized any of these settings you will need to adjust the affected configuration files.

  • Configuration file [miscellaneous] entries can now also be set using the command-line -g option.

  • Fixed: error that occurred when attempting to use zero length configuration and source files.

  • Fixed: blocking filter halt problem.

  • Fixed: inline macro escape prefix problem.

  • Fixed: missing macros from configuration dump problem.

  • Fixed: named macros were dumped incorrectly.

  • Many documentation changes/additions/corrections.

Version 3.2.2 (2003-10-26)

  • Added -n option (synonym for -g section-numbers).

  • Dropped the processing commentary (hey, this is Unix).

  • Added new calculated glossary reference type {<name>?<value>}. <name> is the glossary entry name and <value> is the text substituted if the glossary entry is defined. <value> can only contain literal text (no glossary references allowed).

  • Added asciidoc2text to distribution examples/asciidoc2text directory (converts AsciiDoc source to text file with section numbering).

  • Fixed incorrect nesting of Simple lists inside Variable lists.

  • List definitions have been modified so that list items can be indented. This allows a more intuitive indentation of nested lists in AsciiDoc source.

  • Lists must be separated from preceding paragraphs by a blank line. This is to avoid paragraph lines being mistaken for list items.

  • Corrected asciidoc man page documentation error: the`-f` option does not search relative to source document directory for the configuration file.

  • Minor updates to various distribution .conf files.

  • Included badges.conf in examples directory.

  • css-embedded-stylesheet.conf now supports footer badges.

  • The default in-line element processing order has been changed: Glossary References are now processed before Inline Macros. This allows glossary expansions to occur inside macro references.

  • Glossary entries are now allowed in Author and Revision lines.

  • Default List subs options and Paragraph presubs options are assigned the following default value if not specified:

  • Documentation changes/additions/corrections.

Version 3.2 (2003-05-26)

  • Added a -s command-line option to suppress the output of [header] and [footer] sections.

  • Article document headers are no longer mandatory: this allows AsciiDoc to process arbitrary chunks of text. When used in conjunction with the new -s command-line option corresponding chunks of backend markup can be generated.

  • AsciiDoc now emits a warning message and continues when an out of sequence section title is detected (previously it failed and halted). This allows document sections to be processed separately.

  • Optional presubs and postsubs entries have been added to DelimitedBlock and Paragraph definitions. As a consequence substitution options are no longer legal in options entries.

  • presubs and postsubs substitutions are processed in the order the options are specified (rather than the fixed options order of previous versions).

  • ./filters subdirectories are automatically searched for filter commands.

  • A title-subs configuration option specifies the substitutions performed on document Header and Section titles.

  • A subs entry in now included in List configuration file definitions that specified substitutions performed on list entry text.

  • Configuration files are auto-loaded from ./filters subdirectories.

  • Added example code filter (see ./examples/filters).

  • Bug fix: if section was empty you may have got erroneous missing tag "paragraph" error.

  • Internal code tidy up.

Version 3.1 (2003-05-18)

  • In version 3.0 a [macros] section entry of the form name was equivalent to name=. An entry of the form name now undefines the entry (to bring it in line with the behavior of other special sections).

  • Paragraphs have now been generalized (in the same way as Lists and DelimitedBlocks).

  • The indentsize option has been dropped as as consequence of paragraph generalization.

  • Pipe | characters can be included in substituted tag and substitution section text using the {brvbar} (broken vertical bar) glossary reference.

  • Removed the restriction requiring substitution section text placeholders | to be on a separate line.

  • Added an -e asciidoc(1) command option that excludes implicit configuration files (used in conjunction with -c generated configuration files).

  • Version 3.0 documentation has undergone a considerable cleanup.

  • The dumping of quoted section entries (see -c option) now works correctly.

  • The format of special section entries has been made consistent: name undefines the entry; name= sets the entry value to a blank string; name=value sets the entry value to value.

  • As a consequence of the previous change the caret prefix is no longer used in glossary configuration file entries (although it is still used when undefining an entry using the -g command-line option).

Version 3.0 (2003-05-13)

This version is the culmination of work begun in the 2.x releases whereby fixed policy has been replaced by extensible mechanisms.

  • Added -c command-line option to dump a composite asciidoc(1) configuration file to stdout.

  • Lists and Delimited Blocks are now defined by a set of configuration file parameter sections. The user can modify the default definitions or add new ones.

  • Block content can now be processed through external filters.

  • The default behavior for Custom Blocks is to perform glossary substitution (previously there was no substitution inside Custom Blocks).

  • The old 2.x style macros have been reimplemented; as with Lists and Delimited Blocks there syntax and behavior can be configured by the user. The default macro syntax remains the same but the semantics are now (hopefully) a bit more intelligible.

  • Block and Builtin macros use :: delimiter instead of the 2.x single colon delimit (to distinguish them from inline macros). The 2.x syntax is still supported for backward compatibility.

  • Nested lists are now supported and IndentedParagraphs can be included in list items.

  • Conditional source inclusion can be specified using built in ifdef, ifndef and endif macros.

  • The new conditional source inclusion feature has been used to reduce the number of default configuration files down to one per backend.

  • A change of name: 2.x Substitutions are now called Replacements and the 2.x [substitutions] configuration file section is now called [replacements] (the old name is still recognized for backward compatibility).

  • The line break is now implemented as a Replacements substitution.

  • Inline icon macro for inline images has been added to default configuration files.

Version 2.2 (2003-04-07)

  • The master.conf configuration file name has been deprecated in favor of asciidoc.conf.

  • The standard configuration files set is now loaded from the .asciidoc folder in the users home directory (if it exists) and then from the source document directory. Configuration files that don’t exist are silently skipped.

  • Configuration files named like the source file will be automatically loaded if they are found in the source file directory. For example if the source file is mydoc.asc and the -b html option is used then asciidoc(1) will look for mydoc.conf and mydoc-html.conf in that order.

  • The characters used to quote formatted text can be configured and extended by the user (see the master.conf [quotes] section).

  • Quoted text can now be escaped by prefixing a backslash character to the leading quote.

  • The double single-quote '' strong text quote has been deprecated in favor of an asterisk * character.

  • Added \{eval:expression}, \{sys:command} and \{sys2:command} glossary reference actions.

  • Trailing brace characters } are now allowed inside glossary references provided they are escaped with a backslash character.

  • Glossary entries can now be escaped by prefixing a backslash character to the leading brace character (use this in preference to placing the backslash inside the brace).

  • The output macro has been deprecated (use the new include1 macro inside a CustomBlock).

  • The default document type is article (asciidoc no longer attempts to guess).

  • Files included within DelimitedBlocks are not searched for block termination underlines. This ensures the entire file is part of the DelimitedBlock.

  • include macros can now be used in configuration files.

  • Corrected {infile} and {outfile} glossary entry documentation.

  • File inclusion is now limited to a depth of 5 to catch recursion loops.

  • Inline tags have been deprecated, they’re not necessary and they immediately make the source document backend specific. Use CustomBlocks or Substitutions instead.

Version 2.1 (2003-03-17)

  • Added section auto numbering {sectnum} glossary entry (auto-numbering function contributed by Ludovico Magnocavallo).

  • asciidoc(1) now correctly returns non-zero exit status if an error occurs.

  • An AsciiDoc example website has been included in the AsciiDoc distribution examples/website directory.

  • NOTE: The asciidoc wrapper script included in the 2.0 distribution has been dropped, if you’ve symlinked or aliased to asciidoc you’ll need to change them to point directly to instead.

  • An RCS $Id$ marker can be used as the document header revision line (based on a patch submitted by Ludovico Magnocavallo).

  • In addition to the name=value glossary entry format two new ones have been introduced: name (the default value is set to an empty string) and ^name (the glossary entry is undefined).

  • The -q command-line option has been deprecated and the -w level command-line option added.
    NOTE: By default skipped substitution warnings are now suppressed.

  • If a configuration file specified with the -f command-line option is not found relative to the current working directory then the search is repeated relative to the asciidoc(1) directory. This allows global configuration files to be used.

  • Added {infile}, {outfile} predefined glossary entries.

  • Added under-construction macro to HTML article configuration files.

  • Deprecated {asciidoc_version} glossary entry in favor of {asciidoc-version} (to it consistent with other entries).

Version 2.0 (2003-02-24)

  • The emphasized, strong and monospaced words options have been generalized with the introduction of macro based special words lists.

  • Glossary references can now appear in both the document and macro bodies.

  • All output files use crlf line termination (previously used UNIX lf (newline) termination).

  • Added [substitutions] section which implements arbitrary regular expression based substitutions.

  • An optional master.conf configuration file can be used for entries that are not backend or document type specific.

  • Special character definitions moved from the code to the new [special_characters] configuration file section.

  • Configuration file glossary added.

  • Command-line -g glossary entry added.

  • A new book document type has been implemented for the docbook backend. It outputs DocBook book documents.

  • A major internal change has been the implementation of parametrized user definable macros. Internally most document elements are now processed as macros.

  • Configuration file macro variables can be specified with default values (literals or other macro variables).

  • An attempt has been made to tighten up the vocabulary used to describe the AsciiDoc document syntax.

  • The term abstract has been replaced by the more general term preface and a new preface section introduced into article configuration files (replacing the synopsis sections).

  • Any section elements can now be put in the document preface (previous versions only allowed paragraphs).

  • AsciiDoc Blocks have been unified and their behavior can be user defined and parametrized.

  • An output inclusion allows an external file to be written directly to the backend output file.

  • A new CustomBlock has been added. Default behavior is to insert the enveloped AsciiDoc source lines directly into the output file.

  • A line break tag can be inserted by terminating a line with a + character (only really useful for HTML backends).

  • An fourth section level has been introduced.

  • The SidebarBlock delimiter line characters have been changed. The deprecated underline is still accepted.

  • Levels 2 and 3 title underline characters have been changed. The deprecated underlines are still accepted.

  • Lines with backend specific inline tags can be inserted into AsciiDoc source files.

  • Single words enveloped by underscores are no longer emphasized. This feature was deprecated as it is redundant (use single quotes instead) and was being applied to file names with underscores.

  • A -q quiet option has been added to suppress warning messages.

  • Badge images sourced locally.

  • Added author and author-mail meta tags to HTML configuration files.

Version 1.5 (2003-01-08)

  • Implemented sidebar document elements.

  • Explicit checks for user specified configuration files and input file (rather than throwing exception).

Version 1.4 (2003-01-04)

  • New configuration file options emphasizedwords and strongwords. These allow the definition of words that will always be emphasized or rendered in a strong font without inline formatting.

  • Document and section titles are no long subject to inline formatting.

  • Multiple configuration files can be overlaid in a single command.

  • Configuration file tags and options entries can now be overridden on an entry by entry basis (previously the entire section was overloaded).

  • Configuration file tags and options entries are now cached this has resulted in around 37% performance improvement over version 1.3.

  • Variable lists can now contain multiple terms per list item.

  • Placeholder paragraph eliminated from empty sections that contain subsections.

  • Added {asciidoc_version} substitution variable.

  • More documentation additions and tidy ups.

Version 1.3 (2003-01-01)

  • A new strong text formatting convention has been implemented: Word phrases enclosed in pairs of single quote characters (acute accents) are rendered in a strong font (usually bold).

  • Paragraphs can now be followed immediately by Simple lists and Ordered lists without an intervening blank line.

  • A user specified configuration file (asciidoc(1) -f option) overlays the default configuration file rather than replacing it. Custom configuration files need only contain those sections that have been customized.

  • Comment Block delimiters have been relaxed slightly. They must start with three forward slashes /// but the remainder can contain any characters, this allows comments to be embedded in the delimiter line.

  • Leading non-digit characters preceding revision number are now ignored.

  • Set default indentsize [option] from 2 to documented default value of zero in HTML backend html-article.conf and html-manpage.conf files.

  • Fixed error that occurred when taking input from stdin without explicitly specifying a document type.

  • Restored file name and line number error message information.

  • Changed deprecated -t option to -d in asciidoc --help and usage command output.

  • CSS styles tweaking.

  • Code, configuration file and documentation tidy ups.

Version 1.2 (2002-12-28)

  • Implemented include URL to allow file inclusion.

  • fileextension configuration file [option] renamed to more sensible outfilesuffix (fileextension still accepted by this version but will be dropped in future).

  • Improved error reporting.

  • CSS backends generate valid XHTML.

  • New css-embedded backend generates HTML with embedded stylesheets (use the css backend for linked stylesheets). The css-embedded backend output contains no linked images so the generated html files are completely self contained.

  • Bug fixes.

Version 1.1 (2002-12-03)

  • Added css (cascading style sheets) backend

  • Implemented IndentedBlock document element.

  • Tabsize command-line option has been deprecated in favor of configuration file.

  • Default indent width changed to zero.

  • Added {localdate} and {localtime} substitution variables.

  • Added optional [options] configuration file section with fileextension, tabsize and indentsize options.

  • Implemented {authorinitials} substitution variable.

  • Added https link type.

  • Corrected [graphic] substitution from {title} to {caption} in linuxdoc-article.conf configuration file.

  • Fixed error that occurred when == title underline was used.

Version 1.0 (2002-11-25)

First AsciiDoc public release along with AsciiDoc web site ( and project registration (