FMT(1) General Commands Manual FMT(1)
fmt, fmt_mail - simple text and mail-message formatters
fmt [ -cs ] [ -width ] [ inputfile... ]
fmt_mail [ -cs ] [ -width ] [ inputfile ... ]
fmt is a simple text formatter that fills and joins lines to produce
output lines of (up to) the number of characters specified in the
-width option. The default width is 72. fmt concatenates the input-
files listed as arguments. If none are given, fmt formats text from
the standard input.
Blank lines are preserved in the output, as is the spacing between
words. fmt does not fill lines beginning with `.', for compatibility
with nroff(1). Nor does it fill lines starting with `From:' (but for
full compatibility with mail(1), use fmt_mail).
Indentation is preserved in the output, and input lines with differing
indentation are not joined (unless -c is used).
fmt can also be used as an in-line text filter for vi(1); the vi com-
reformats the text between the cursor location and the end of the para-
fmt_mail is a script that formats and sends mail messages. It leaves
mail header lines untouched, and runs the remainder of the message
through fmt -s. The resulting message is passed along to sendmail(8),
which routes it to the recipient.
-c Crown margin mode. Preserve the indentation of the first two
lines within a paragraph, and align the left margin of each sub-
sequent line with that of the second line. This is useful for
-s Split lines only. Do not join short lines to form longer ones.
This prevents sample lines of code, and other such "formatted"
text, from being unduly combined.
-width Fill output lines to up to width columns.
The environment variables LC_CTYPE, LANG, and LC_default control the
character classification throughout fmt. On entry to fmt, these envi-
ronment variables are checked in the following order: LC_CTYPE, LANG,
and LC_default. When a valid value is found, remaining environment
variables for character classification are ignored. For example, a new
setting for LANG does not override the current valid character classi-
fication rules of LC_CTYPE. When none of the values is valid, the
shell character classification defaults to the POSIX.1 "C" locale.
mail(1), nroff(1), vi(1)
28 December 1987 FMT(1)