The Linux Documentation Project HOWTO Generator

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Welcome to the LDP HOWTO Generator. By following through this form you will be able to generate the skeleton of your new HOWTO, customised to your particular needs. Examples of markup used can be found in the HOWTO Template SGML source along with the resulting HOWTO Template HTML output.

Note1: This Generator requires JavaScript.
Note2: Currently this is in Beta, most of the planned functionality is implemented, and the while the functionality is tested I would like more people to test this.
Note3: This version employs the new set of categories worked out by Gerd Berget.
Please read the home page for updates.

Input fields

Heading Definition

All HOWTOs have to have a number of fields defined in order to be usable by others and also to be easily maintained. Fields marked like this are mandatory, while fields marked like this are optional.

Header information for the HOWTO

This will be the title of your HOWTO. For practical reasons it should not be more than one line (72 characters) long, preferrably less. It is important to be precise as well as concise.

Your name(s)

The email address you wish to be contacted at. HOWTOs are long lived documents, make sure your email address is equally durable. If needed the Linux Documentation Project can provide an email address, inquire for more information.

Input a version number and date, for instance "V0.01". Version number is free format.

Input a date, for instance "2000-05-11". Recommended date format is ISO standard for dates:"YYYY-MM-DD".

Chose the category that best fits your HOWTO. This will be used in categorising and in generating lists of HOWTOs. If no category fits choose the last category which is No Fit and someone will help you.

If applicable, choose a second category that fits your HOWTO. If no category fits chose the last category which is No Fit.

If applicable, choose a third category that fits your HOWTO. If no category fits chose the last category which is No Fit.

A string of comma separated keywords that will aid search engines in locating your document.

A single word used in creating indices. Use a word as descriptive of your HOWTO as possible. This word can also be the file name of the saved contents of this Generator.

A single line used for brief description in indices. Be as descriptive of your HOWTO as possible.

All HOWTOs have an abstract, a single, brief paragraph that should tell your readers what this HOWTO is going to be about. Avoid using linebreaks.


Having defined the heading the time has come to the main body of the HOWTO. It is divided into sections and sub sections but here we will only do sections and just a few sub sections. This will give you the pattern to flesh out the rest of the document. Suggested titles are in editable boxes where appropriate, entire sections can be removed if you feel they are not needed for your topic.

Do keep in mind that this is just a quick start template based system that suggests a few more or less common conventions; this should not be regarded as a straightjacket.

As the title suggests, an introduction. Expand on the abstract, give the background, be creative.

1.1 Copyright

All documents are copyrighted and it is up to the author to determine how their documents are to be distributed. For the LDP to be able to distribute your document as part of the body of works that it contains it is necessary that the copyrights allow this by being one of the free copyrights of which there is a few to chose from. Additionally you can roll your own but to be effective you have to know how copyright laws work.

An overview of several copyright licenses for documentation as well as software can be found at GNU.
To be accepted into The Linux Documentation Project the document has to be licensed according to either GFDL, Creating Commons or TLDP copyright, for more information please look at the licensing section of the Author Guide.
Copyright selection
Copyright description

GNU Free Documentation Licence

This is the license recommended by GNU for documentation.

This document is Copyright © <date> <name>. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.1 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts.

[Creative Commons] [Attribution-ShareAlike 1.0] License

This is a recommended used for documentation.

Copyright © <date> <name>. You are free:
  • to copy, distribute, display, and perform the work
  • to make derivative works
  • to make commercial use of the work
Under the following conditions:
Attribution. You must give the original author credit.
Share Alike. If you alter, transform, or build upon this work, you may distribute the resulting work only under a license identical to this one.
  • For any reuse or distribution, you must make clear to others the license terms of this work.
  • Any of these conditions can be waived if you get permission from the author.

1.2 Disclaimer

We live in the age of lawyers, a disclaimer can save you legal problems, court cases and bankrupcy. This is not a joke. As always there is number of choices:
Disclaimer selection
Disclaimer description

Simple Disclaimer

This is one used a number of places.

Use the information in this document at your own risk. I disavow any potential liability for the contents of this document. Use of the concepts, examples, and/or other content of this document is entirely at your own risk.

All copyrights are owned by their owners, unless specifically noted otherwise. Use of a term in this document should not be regarded as affecting the validity of any trademark or service mark.

Naming of particular products or brands should not be seen as endorsements.

You are strongly recommended to take a backup of your system before major installation and backups at regular intervals.


If you feel you need no disclaimers you can check this box.

We are now finished with the fixed formats header and are ready to fill in the main contents of this HOWTO. Each chapter below has a title as well as a small text field with the title repeated. If you are not satisfied with the proposed title you can change it in the small single line text box, making it the title of your own HOWTO.

Furthermore if you do not need the chapter at all you can remove it by unchecking the checkbox at the right edge which removes the chapter by commenting it out.

You can also change the level of a chapter from section to subsection or subsubsection. Note that the next few introductory chapters are given a default setting of subsection while the rest are given a default value of section.


You are now ready to convert your epic HOWTO into an SGML file. The entries in the boxes above will be compiled when pressing the compile button below and the resulting SGML code will be outputted to the text box below that button.

When you start the compilation the status field of your browser tracks where in the compilation process you are. On a 1GHz Pentium it should take about a second. When finished the status bar should display the string LinuxDoc SGML Compilation Done. If the process hangs and does not finish, please contact the author with as much information as possible, preferrably with the information in the JavaScript Console if available.

Your next step then will be to copy the entire content of that box and paste it into a text editor and save the contents to a file. Filename is suggested to be the Index word you filled in at the top of this form.