What AnswerBook is... (long)

From: Richard Elling (elling@eng.auburn.edu)
Date: Sun Jun 16 1991 - 14:51:22 CDT

Many people have asked what AnswerBook is. From the liner notes:

        The System Software AnswerBook (TM) is Sun's system software
        documentation delivered on a single CD-ROM in a viewable and
        printable form.

The CD includes:
        Sun's system documentation in PostScript (R) form [see list below]
        Search index and book databases.
        Software to view, search, and browse the online documentation.
        Miscellaneous files - screen fonts [hand tweaked Palatino] and
        online help files.

Books which are included:
        All books found in the system software docuboxes. Updates included
        through 4.1.1b in this release.
        UNIX Man Pages.
        OpenWindows User's Guides including DeskSet and OpenLook docs.
        O'Reilly X11 books, volumes 0,1,2 and 7.
        Desktop Systems Installation Guides.
        Total over 16,000 pages with over 21,000 HyperText (?) links.

Noticably absent:
        Adobe PostScript books.
        Unbundled Products [I suspect this will change soon]

Problems for Administrators:
        Where to find 240Mb of disk space or a dedicated CD player?
        You can split out parts of the documentation and place them on
        separate servers, but it is not well documented nor in the
        installation script.

        For large installations, how to (help) prevent people from
        printing whole chapters or books when the printed documentation
        is also available down the hall?

Other notes:
        Seems to work only in OpenWindows (I couldn't get it to work in X11R4)
        This makes some sense since the documentation is in PostScript form.

        The installation script is *much* more advanced than the usual
        extract_unbundled. It's menu driven, very flexible, and includes
        some fairly sophisticated error checking.

        The directory structure is straightforward and easily extensible.
        This will make adding new manuals such as the unbundled product
        manuals very easy if you have the disk space. There is a file
        called "bookinfo" which tells the software where each manual is.
        You can also have your own ~/.bookinfo file. I'm looking forward
        to the day when I can add local man pages and other documentation
        to the system (big hint, Sun)

How to get it:
        I got mine through software maintenance. If you don't have software
        maintenance, see your Sun sales droid.

 Richard Elling Manager of Network Support
 Auburn University Engineering Administration
 relling@eng.auburn.edu KB4HB [] (205)844-2280
    "I am not an animal! I am a human bean!" -- Peanutman

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