info (Unix)

Info is a software utility which forms a hypertextual, multipage documentation and help viewer working on a command line interface, useful when there is no GUI available.

Stable release
Written inC
Operating systemGNU
TypeDocumentation Viewer
LicenseGNU General Public License

Info reads info files generated by the texinfo program and presents the documentation as a tree with simple commands to traverse the tree and to follow cross references. For instance, pressing the space bar scrolls down within the current tree node or goes to the next node in the current document if already at the bottom of the current node, allowing to read the contents of an info file sequentially. Pressing the backspace key moves in the opposite direction. Furthermore:

  • ] goes to the next node in the current document.
  • [ goes to the previous node in the current document.
  • n goes to the next node on the same level as the current node.
  • p goes to the previous node on the same level as the current node.
  • u goes to the parent of the current node.
  • l goes to the last visited node.
  • Moving the cursor over a link (a word preceded by a * ) and pressing the enter key follows the link.

The C implementation of info was designed as the main documentation system of GNU based Operating Systems and was then ported to other Unix-like operating systems. However, info files had already been in use on ITS emacs. On the TOPS-20 operating system INFO was called XINFO.[1]

List of Info readers

  • info
  • pinfo
  • tkman
  • tkinfo
  • khelpcenter (click "Browse Info Pages")
  • emacs
  • info.vim (Vim plugin)
  • vinfo (Vim help-files fashioned reading)
  • GNOME Yelp

See also


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