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<!-- Copyright (c) 1998, 1999 Nik Clayton, All rights reserved.

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<chapter id="overview">
  <title>Overview</title>
  
  <para>Welcome to the FreeBSD Documentation Project.  Good quality
    documentation is very important to the success of FreeBSD, and the
    FreeBSD Documentation Project (FDP) is how a lot of that documentation
    is produced.  Your contributions are very valuable.</para>
  
  <para>This document's main purpose is to clearly explain <emphasis>how
      the FDP is organised</emphasis>, <emphasis>how to write and submit
      documentation to the FDP</emphasis>, and <emphasis>how to
      effectively use the tools available to you when writing
      documentation</emphasis>.</para>
  
  <para>Every one is welcome to join the FDP.  There is no minimum
    membership requirements, no quota of documentation you need to
    produce per month.  All you need to do is subscribe to the
    <email>freebsd-doc@FreeBSD.org</email> mailing list.</para>

  <para>After you have finished reading this document you should:</para>
  
  <itemizedlist>
    <listitem> 
      <para>Know which documentation is maintained by the FDP.</para>
    </listitem>
    
    <listitem>
      <para>Be able to read and understand the SGML source code for the
	documentation maintained by the FDP.</para>
    </listitem>
    
    <listitem> 
      <para>Be able to make changes to the documentation.</para>
    </listitem>
    
    <listitem>
      <para>Be able to submit your changes back for review and eventual
	inclusion in the FreeBSD documentation.</para>
    </listitem> 
  </itemizedlist>

  <sect1>
    <title>The FreeBSD Documentation Set</title>

    <para>The FDP is responsible for four categories of FreeBSD
      documentation.</para>
    
    <variablelist>
      <varlistentry>
        <term>Manual pages</term>

        <listitem>
          <para>The English language system manual pages are not written by
	    the FDP, as they are part of the base system. However, the FDP can
	    (and has) re-worded parts of existing manual pages to make them
	    clearer, or to correct inaccuracies.</para>

          <para>The translation teams are responsible for translating the
	    system manual pages in to different languages.  These translations
	    are kept within the FDP.</para>
        </listitem>
      </varlistentry>

      <varlistentry>
        <term>FAQ</term>
	
        <listitem>
          <para>The FAQ aims to address (in short question and answer format)
	    questions that are asked, or should be asked, on the various
	    mailing lists and newsgroups devoted to FreeBSD.  The format does
	    not permit long and comprehensive answers.</para>
        </listitem>
      </varlistentry>

      <varlistentry>
        <term>Handbook</term>

        <listitem>
          <para>The Handbook aims to be the comprehensive on-line resource and
	    reference for FreeBSD users.</para>
        </listitem>
      </varlistentry>
 
      <varlistentry>
         <term>Web site</term>
	
         <listitem>
           <para>This is the main FreeBSD presence on the World Wide Web,
	    visible at <ulink
	      url="http://www.FreeBSD.org/">http://www.FreeBSD.org/</ulink>
	    and many mirrors around the world.  The web site is many people's
	    first exposure to FreeBSD.</para>
	</listitem>
      </varlistentry>
    </variablelist>
    
    <para>These four groups of documentation are all available in the
      FreeBSD CVS tree.  This means that the logs and changes to these
      files are visible to anyone, and anyone can use a program such as
      <application>CVSup</application> or
      <application>CTM</application> to keep their own local copies of
      this documentation.</para>
    
    <para>In addition, many people have written tutorials or other web
      sites relating to FreeBSD.  Some of these are stored in the CVS
      repository as well (where the author has agreed to this).  In
      other cases the author has decided to keep their documentation
      separate from the main FreeBSD repository.  The FDP endeavours to
      provide links to as much of this documentation as
      possible.</para>
  </sect1>                                                                     
  
  <sect1>                                                                      
    <title>Before you start</title>                                            
    
    <para>This document assumes that you already know:</para>                  
    
    <itemizedlist>                                                             
      <listitem>                                                               
	<para>How to maintain an up-to-date local copy of the FreeBSD
	  documentation.  Either by maintaining a local copy of the
	  FreeBSD CVS repository (using <application>CVS</application>
	  and either <application>CVSup</application> or
	  <application>CTM</application>) or by using
	  <application>CVSup</application> to download just a
	  <emphasis>checked-out</emphasis> copy.</para>
      </listitem>
      
      <listitem>                                                               
	<para>How to download and install new software using either the
	  FreeBSD Ports system or &man.pkg.add.1;.</para>
      </listitem>                                                              
    </itemizedlist>                                                            
  </sect1>      
</chapter>

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