Welcome to the Harris Geospatial product documentation center. Here you will find reference guides, help documents, and product libraries.

Harris Geospatial / Docs Center / IDL Reference / HELP / DOC_LIBRARY



The DOC_LIBRARY procedure extracts documentation headers from one or more IDL programs (procedures or functions). This command provides a standard interface to the operating-system specific DL_DOS and DL_UNIX procedures.

The documentation header of the .pro file in question must have the following format:

  • The first line of the documentation block contains only the characters ;+, starting in column 1.
  • The last line of the documentation block contains only the characters ;-, starting in column 1.
  • All other lines in the documentation block contain a ; in column 1.

The file template.pro in the general subdirectory of the examples subdirectory of the IDL distribution contains a template for creating your own documentation headers. Run the example procedure by entering template at the IDL command prompt or view the file in an IDL Editor window by entering .EDIT template.pro.

This routine is supplied for users to view online documentation from their own IDL programs. Though it could be used to view documentation headers from the lib subdirectory of the IDL distribution, we do not recommend doing so. The documentation headers on the files in the lib directory are used for historical purposes—most do not contain the most current or accurate documentation for those routines. The most current documentation for IDL’s built-in and library routines is found in IDL’s online help system (enter ? at the IDL prompt).

This routine is written in the IDL language. Its source code can be found in the file doc_library.pro in the lib subdirectory of the IDL distribution.


To view the documentation header for the library function DIST, enter:




UNIX-Only Keywords: [, DIRECTORY=string] [, /MULTI]



A string containing the name of the IDL routine in question. Under Windows or UNIX, Name can be “*” to get information on all routines.



This keyword is only available on UNIX platforms.

A string containing the name of the directory to search. If omitted, the current directory and !PATH are used.


This keyword is only available on UNIX platforms.

Set this keyword to allow printing of more than one file if the requested module exists in more than one directory.


Set this keyword to send the output of DOC_LIBRARY to the default printer. Under UNIX, if PRINT is a string, it is interpreted as a shell command used for output with the documentation from DOC_LIBRARY providing standard input (i.e., PRINT="cat > junk").

Version History



Pre 6.1

Deprecated the FILE, PATH, and OUTPUTS keywords

See Also


© 2018 Harris Geospatial Solutions, Inc. |  Legal
My Account    |    Store    |    Contact Us