Xterm options for correct man page display?

Thomas Dickey dickey at radix.net
Sun Oct 7 10:43:20 UTC 2012

On Sun, Oct 07, 2012 at 09:09:13AM +0100, Jamie Paul Griffin wrote:
> [ Thomas Dickey wrote on Sat  6.Oct'12 at  7:32:00 -0400 ]
> > On Sat, Oct 06, 2012 at 07:31:07AM -0400, Thomas Dickey wrote:
> > > On Sat, Oct 06, 2012 at 10:45:52AM +0100, Jamie Paul Griffin wrote:
> > > > [ Ronald F. Guilmette wrote on Sat  6.Oct'12 at  2:25:04 -0700 ]
> > > > 
> > > > > 
> > > > > When I view man pages in a xterm window, some parts of them are coming
> > > > > out a bit garbled.
> > > > > 
> > > > > I'm sure that there must be some recommended option or options for
> > > > > xterm that will cause man pages to display properly.  If someone would
> > > > > tell me what those options are, I would appreciate it.  Thanks.
> > > > 
> > > > It will most likely be due to your locale settings. Also, I experimented with fonts in xterm and uxterm, only the default font allowed unicode charaters to display, so I am now using urxvt and it works great. I also changed my pager option in the shell start up file to less as opposed to more, and set lesscharset environment variable, man pages display fine now for me.
> > > 
> > > For people using UTF-8, the uxterm script works out of the box...
> > > 
> > > The usual problem with fonts is from overwriting the utf8Fonts resource
> > > setting via a too-wide "fonts" wildcard pattern.
> > 
> > For example
> > 
> > 	http://invisible-island.net/xterm/xterm.faq.html#utf8_fonts
> Hi Thomas - is understand what your saying about uxterm - it does display
> utf8 fonts correctly when leaving the font resource alone, but the default
> font is very small, too small for my eyes. 
> I installed a large number of utf8 supported X fonts, the ones I've tried
> don't display Chinese or Korean, or Russian fonts etc.  It became a little
> frustrating which made me change to another terminal.  The link you provided
> doesn't appear to be active.  Would you be kind enough to show the resource
> settings you have used?

Well - the default size is a compromise (there are people who apparently
use the smallest size regularly - looking at urxvt out-of-the-box, it's
true there)(*).  I generally use the font-size switching feature which I
adapted from rxvt (one of the features which was omitted in urxvt),
and switch to one of the two largest sizes using shift-keypad-plus.
There are differences in the default fonts' coverage for CJK fonts,
but between those two sizes I can see almost all characters.
> I spent a long time reading through the man page and trying out different
> resource settings and combinations of them, European fonts were never a
> problem, just the east Asian characters and Russian characters as I
> mentioned.

I haven't noticed a problem (with uxterm) for Russian characters - more
info might help.
> I've set my locale to en_GB.UTF-8 using /etc/login.conf and then cap_mkdb
> /etc/login.conf.  As I said in my previous email, urxvt has no problem
> displaying these characters but I'd like to get uxterm working properly none
> the less, as I'm sure the OP does as well.

(*) the default size when switching to TrueType fonts is roughly what I
    use normally for the bitmap fonts (much larger than the default), and
    I should have made it consistent.  It's configurable, and I later
    added a note in the manpage explaining how to do this...

    The default font for xterm has "always" been the "fixed" font, which
    as noted above I find too small for normal use.

Thomas E. Dickey
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