fmt (1) - Linux Manuals

fmt: simple optimal text formatter


fmt - simple optimal text formatter


fmt [,-WIDTH/] [,OPTION/]... [,FILE/]...


Reformat each paragraph in the FILE(s), writing to standard output. The option -WIDTH is an abbreviated form of --width=,DIGITS/.

With no FILE, or when FILE is -, read standard input.

Mandatory arguments to long options are mandatory for short options too.

-c, --crown-margin
preserve indentation of first two lines
-p, --prefix=,STRING/
reformat only lines beginning with STRING, reattaching the prefix to reformatted lines
-s, --split-only
split long lines, but do not refill
-t, --tagged-paragraph
indentation of first line different from second
-u, --uniform-spacing
one space between words, two after sentences
-w, --width=,WIDTH/
maximum line width (default of 75 columns)
-g, --goal=,WIDTH/
goal width (default of 93% of width)
display this help and exit
output version information and exit


Written by Ross Paterson.


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Copyright © 2020 Free Software Foundation, Inc. License GPLv3+: GNU GPL version 3 or later <>.
This is free software: you are free to change and redistribute it. There is NO WARRANTY, to the extent permitted by law.


Full documentation <>
or available locally via: info '(coreutils) fmt invocation'