Gem to add man pages support to ruby gems
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rbenv [#2] Add rbenv hook (#29) Nov 4, 2016
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README.md

Manpages

Build Status Gem

This plugin will add man pages support to ruby gems. Instead of adding a new command like gem-man it will try to link the files to a place the man command automatically discovers.

With rvm and chruby it works out of the box, but sadly for rbenv we need to add hooks that modify the man symlink depending on the ruby version currently used.

Installation

gem install manpages && gem manpages --update-all

This plugin automatically hooks into the ruby gems system. Every gem installed afterwards is checked for manpages. If this gem finds them, it exposes them to the man command.

Using this with rbenv

Sadly rbenv uses shims to hide the actual executables. This makes it a bit harder to make this gem work in that environment.

This gem provides hooks to change the man path for the current used ruby version. To install them execute the following line:

curl -o- https://raw.githubusercontent.com/bitboxer/manpages/master/rbenv/rbenv_hook_install.sh | bash

After the hooks are installed, rbenv will always change the man symlink to the currently used ruby version. Sadly rbenv does not provide a hook that is fired when switching ruby versions. This means that the path can only be corrected when executing a command provided by a gem. If you want to have the correct man page for a gem, you need to execute the command of that gem, first.

How this works

After a gem is installed, this plugin will check for a directory called man within the gem and link the manpages it finds to BIN_DIR/../share/man, where BIN_DIR is the directory where the executable of the gem is installed.

Most man versions will automatically search this directory and no additional work is required. If you install a gem that includes a man page (e.g. guard), you can simply use man guard and you will see the man page the gem provided.

Providing man pages with your gem

The most common way in the ruby world to create a man page is through a tool called ronn. Ronn uses a modified variant of markdown as source file. More details about the format can be found here. In the newest version kramdown also is able to generate man pages.

Make sure the resulting manpage is in a folder called man in the root of the gem. Files stored in that directory will automatically be exposed to the man command.

Examples for gems with manpages are guard or gem-man.