Introduction to Enscript

Enscript converts ASCII text files to PostScript, HTML, RTF, ANSI and overstrikes.

This package is known to build and work properly using an LFS-11.2 platform.



Enscript cannot convert UTF-8 encoded text to PostScript. The issue is discussed in detail in the Needed Encoding Not a Valid Option section of the Locale Related Issues page. The solution is to use paps-0.7.1, instead of Enscript, for converting UTF-8 encoded text to PostScript.

Package Information

Enscript Dependencies


texlive-20220321 (or install-tl-unx)

User Notes: https://wiki.linuxfromscratch.org/blfs/wiki/Enscript

Installation of Enscript

Install Enscript by running the following commands:

./configure --prefix=/usr              \
            --sysconfdir=/etc/enscript \
            --localstatedir=/var       \
            --with-media=Letter &&
make &&

pushd docs &&
  makeinfo --plaintext -o enscript.txt enscript.texi &&

If you have texlive-20220321 installed, you can create Postscript and PDF documentation by issuing (does not support parallel make):

make -j1 -C docs ps pdf

To test the results, issue: make check.

Now, as the root user:

make install &&

install -v -m755 -d /usr/share/doc/enscript-1.6.6 &&
install -v -m644    README* *.txt docs/*.txt \

If you built Postscript and PDF documentation, install it using the following command as the root user:

install -v -m644 docs/*.{dvi,pdf,ps} \

Command Explanations

--sysconfdir=/etc/enscript: This switch puts configuration data in /etc/enscript instead of /usr/etc.

--localstatedir=/var: This switch sets the directory for runtime data to /var instead of /usr/var.

--with-media=Letter: This switch sets the medium format to letter size instead of the A4 default.


Installed Programs: diffpp, enscript, mkafmmap, over, sliceprint, and states
Installed Libraries: None
Installed Directories: /etc/enscript, /usr/share/doc/enscript-1.6.6, and /usr/share/enscript

Short Descriptions


converts diff output files to a format suitable to be printed with enscript


is a filter, used primarily by printing scripts, that converts ASCII text files to PostScript, HTML, RTF, ANSI and overstrikes


creates a font map from a given file


is a script which calls enscript and passes the correct parameters to create overstriked fonts


slices documents with long lines


is an awk-like text processing tool with some state machine extensions. It is designed for program source code highlighting and for similar tasks where state information helps input processing