tblcvt(1) troffcvt preprocessor to convert tbl-format tables


tblcvt [ file ] ...


tblcvt examines troff input for tables that would normally be processed by the tbl program, i.e., for lines bracketed by the .TS table start and .TE table end requests. tblcvt parses table specifications and data and converts it to a form that troffcvt can more easily handle. This is useful for document processing commands that use troffcvt, since troffcvt has knowledge only of the troff input language, and knows nothing of the tbl input language.

tblcvt is a direct replacement for tbl. Suppose you would normally process a document using tbl and troff (or groff, etc.) like this:

% tbl file ... | troff ...

To format the document using tblcvt and troffcvt, use a command like this:

% tblcvt file ... | troffcvt ...

Actually, it's more likely that you'll be using one of the troffcvt front ends such as troff2html than that you'll be using troffcvt directly. troffcvt in the preceding command may be replaced by the name of the front end:

% tblcvt file ... | troff2html ...

If it seems that troffcvt or a front end are not reading the output from tblcvt , specify - after the option list to explicitly tell them to read the standard input after processing their other options:

% tblcvt file ... | troffcvt ... -
% tblcvt file ... | troff2html ... -


Diagnostic messages are written in this format:

tblcvt:line l (table t, section s): message...

This indicates that a problem was detected at line number l, and that tblcvt considers the line to be part of table number t and section s within the table. Section numbers start at one and are incremented for each .T& request that occurs within a table specification.


Paul DuBois, [email protected] .


For the most part, tblcvt assumes your tables make sense, i.e., are legal according to the tbl input language. tblcvt may complain about malformed table constructs (if it detects them), but it may also get confused by them and generate garbage output.

tblcvt generates troff output that uses long request names, so you can't use compatibility mode -C ( option) with troffcvt or a troffcvt front end.

tblcvt doesn't support vertically-spanned lines. It prints a warning when it detects one, but the table output won't be correct.