Printable GMT documentation (manual & cookbook)

Hi, I understand the reasons for not providing pdf docs with v6, but I work in the field, largely offline for several months per year, so have used earlier versions with docs (manual & cookbook) I could print and take with me.

I’d like to move to v6, but this is an issue for me. As I understand it, even the man pages are no longer supported.

Does anyone know of a largely automated way I can generate printed docs from the online pages? Printing one page at a time is not really feasible.


Brent Wood

There is offline documentation (in HTML format) in the GMT’s share/doc/html directory.

If you move to GMT v6, you can simply type gmt docs home to visit the local HTML version of the documentation, or type gmt docs basemap to directly open the local documentation for the basemap module.

Thanks for replying.

Not here, GMT installed on Linux (Ubuntu) via apt. I can use gmt docs to open the online docs, but the local ones are not installed, or it seems, available via apt. Which I guess is a package issue more than a GMT one…

So short of a local compile of GMT (which I tend to regard as a last resort), any other suggestions?

The GMT version from Ubuntu apt is usually too old. For example, Ubuntu 20.04 is providing GMT 6.0.0 but the latest version is GMT 6.3.0. So installing GMT via apt is not recommended.

If you’re an Anaconda user, you can install GMT using conda install gmt -c conda-forge, which also provides the local version of the documentation.

Will a ‘make pdf’ give good and printable result in sphinx?

If so, I can build the docs and send you. Give me a ping.

Sounds good to me, if you can that would be great, much appreciated. I regularly use the main user manual & the cookbook.


Turned out it was a bit more difficult than I remembered. Will see what I can do. When time permits…

Not a problem, I appreciate the effort!!

I built the docs as html. Basically the same as you get when going to The Generic Mapping Tools Documentation — GMT 6.6.0 documentation.

I wanted to try building it as pdf, but ran into some issues, unfortunately.

Here’s the download link:

Hope it can be of some help (and use).

Hi Andreas,

Many thanks for this!!!

But my apologies, I have been working at sea without internet access… back early due to some vessel mechanical repairs but the document has been deleted from dropbox before I could download it.

Could it be re-posted? Please note I’m not sure how long I’ll be on shore for, as I’ll be back out as soon as the repairs are complete.



No problem. Please try again now.

The Windows installer comes with the full documentation included.

Thanks Joaquim, I don’t use Windows much. Generally I find that working on Linux is much more productive.

Andreas’s zip works perfectly on my Linux system, so I appreciate that effort!!

Hi Andreas,

Can you please share docs file again for downloading.
Thanks in Advance

Hi jjavediqbal,

Could you try one of the following:

  • There was a similar issue about this on github, see here.
  • Here’s a command that will download the docs and make a local copy using wget.
  • Here’s another way.

If you’re not able to get the docs using these tips, let me know and I’ll upload an archive for you and share.

Good news.

There was a request for a way to download the documentation.
Thanks to this PR, the docs are now available as a zip file.

Screenshot 2023-07-20 220546

This is great. I was able to create a PDF of the documentation HTML inside of Acrobat. I requested landscape orientation and the PDF is almost 3000 pages long and weighs-in at 82.5 MB. After Acrobat file compression, it comes to 24.5 MB. I won’t be printing it any time soon! But the PDF might come in handy (e.g., loss of internet connection or remote working). Links were retained.

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