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What is Info?

This text documents the use of the GNU Info program, version 2.10.

Info is a program which is used to view info files on an ASCII terminal. info files are the result of processing texinfo files with the program makeinfo or with the Emacs command M-x texinfo-format-buffer. Finally, texinfo is a documentation language which allows a printed manual and online documentation (an info file) to be produced from a single source file.

Command Line Options

GNU Info accepts several options to control the initial node being viewed, and to specify which directories to search for info files. Here is a template showing an invocation of GNU Info from the shell:

info [--option-name option-value] menu-item...

The following option-names are available when invoking Info from the shell:

--directory directory-path
-d directory-path
Adds directory-path to the list of directory paths searched when Info needs to find a file. You may issue --directory multiple times; once for each directory which contains info files. Alternatively, you may specify a value for the environment variable INFOPATH; if --directory is not given, the value of INFOPATH is used. The value of INFOPATH is a colon separated list of directory names. If you do not supply INFOPATH or --directory-path a default path is used.
--file filename
-f filename
Specifies a particular info file to visit. Instead of visiting the file dir, Info will start with (filename)Top as the first file and node.
--node nodename
-n nodename
Specifies a particular node to visit in the initial file loaded. This is especially useful in conjunction with --file(1). You may specify --node multiple times; for an interactive Info, each nodename is visited in its own window, for a non-interactive Info (such as when --output is given) each nodename is processed sequentially.
--output filename
-o filename
Specify filename as the name of a file to output to. Each node that Info visits will be output to filename instead of interactively viewed. A value of - for filename specifies the standard output.
This option only has meaning when given in conjunction with --output. It means to recursively output the nodes appearing in the menus of each node being output. Menu items which resolve to external info files are not output, and neither are menu items which are members of an index. Each node is only output once.
Produces a relatively brief description of the available Info options.
Prints the version information of Info and exits.
Remaining arguments to Info are treated as the names of menu items. The first argument would be a menu item in the initial node visited, while the second argument would be a menu item in the first argument's node. You can easily move to the node of your choice by specifying the menu names which describe the path to that node. For example,
info emacs buffers
first selects the menu item `Emacs' in the node `(dir)Top', and then selects the menu item `Buffers' in the node `(emacs)Top'.

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