Man Reader is a utility app for reading OS X’s man pages and is now available at the Mac App Store. Man Reader allows quick, convenient and easy access to the man pages on your system, useful for programmers, system administrators and tweakers.
Man pages are available for the Unix commands used mostly in Terminal or when shell scripting. These man pages are normally displayed in Terminal using the “man” command e.g. “man man” gives you the man page for the man command.
However there are problems with this: the man page is displayed to you in your Terminal window page by page and when you have got to the bottom, you have to know to press ‘q’ to get out of the man page display, at which point it disappears completely. Hope you have a good memory!
There are various tricks to get around this: opening it in a separate window, piping it to Preview as a PDF, listing it as a single page etc, but none of these are really convenient, which is why I wrote Man Reader. Basically, I reckon that if I want a utility, then there must be other people who would want the same thing.
Man Reader assembles a list of the commands with available man pages on your system – this will vary according to what developer tools you have installed. These commands are listed for you and you can click on any one to display the man page for that command.
Man Reader Features:
- List of all available man pages on your system.
- Show only a section of the pages.
- Search for a man page by name.
- Display man page in text or HTML (different pages look best in different formats).
- Step back & forward through recently viewed man pages.
- Live links to ‘See Also’ entries.
- ‘Sticky notes’ at the side to jump to sub-sections in a page.
- Choose a font and size for the display.
- Convenient buttons in the toolbar allow quick access to commonly used utilities.
- Sand-boxed for OS X Lion & Mountain Lion.
- Search for text within a man page.
- Bookmark frequently visited pages.
- Search man page list using “Starts with” or “Contains”.
- Preferences for the marker tabs: choose a pre-made color set or design your own.
- Full screen mode now supported.
- Custom toolbar configurations now saved & restored correctly.
If you have any problems with Man Reader, any suggestions for future versions or encounter any bugs, please contact me.