mdoc-update - Man Page

mdoc(5) documentation format support


mdoc update [Options]* ASSEMBLIES


mdoc update is responsible for the following:

mdoc update does not rely on documentation found within source code, though it can import XML Documentation Comments via the -i option.

See mdoc(1) and mdoc(5) for more information.



Allow mdoc update to delete members from documentation files.   The only members deleted are members which are no longer present within ASSEMBLIES and are not present in any other assembly versions.

If a type is no longer present, the documentation file is not deleted, but is instead renamed to have a .remove extension.

Version detection is done with the //AssemblyVersion elements; if there are no //AssemblyVersion elements for a given <Type> or  <Member/>, then the <Type> will be renamed and/or the  <Member/> will be removed.


EXPERIMENTAL.  This is not 100% reliable, but is intended to serve as an aid for documentation writers.

Inspect member bodies to determine what exceptions can be generated from the member.

SOURCES is an optional comma-separated list of the following sources that should be searched for exceptions:

        added   Only generate <exception/> elements for members 
                  added during the current program execution.
                  This keeps mdoc-update from re-generating
                  <exception/> elements for all members (and thus
                  prevents re-insertion for members that had the
                  <exception/> elements removed).
        all     Find exceptions created in the member itself, 
                  references to members in the same assembly, 
                  and references to members in dependent 
        asm     Find exceptions created in the member itself and
                  references to members within the same assembly
                  as the member.
        depasm  Find exceptions created in the member itself and
                  references to members within dependent 

If SOURCES isn't provided (the default), then only exceptions created  within the member itself will be documented.

LIMITATIONS: Exception searching is currently implemented by looking for the exception types that are explicitly created based on the known compile-time types.  This has the following limitations:

  • This will not find exceptions which are implicit to the IL, such as NullReferenceException and IndexOutOfRangeException.
  • This will find exceptions which are not thrown, e.g.

        public void CreateAnException ()
            Exception e = new Exception ();
  • This will not "follow" delegate and interface calls:

        public void UsesDelegates ()
            Func<int, int> a = x => {throw new Exception ();};
            a (4);

    The function UsesDelegates() won't have any exceptions documented.

  • This will find exceptions which "cannot happen", such as ArgumentNullExceptions for arguments which are "known" to be non-null:

        public void A ()
            B ("this parameter isn't null");
        public void B (string s)
            if (s == null)
                throw new ArgumentNullException ("s");

    For the above, if --exceptions=asm is provided then A() will be documented as throwing an ArgumentNullException, which cannot happen.


Specify a flag to alter behavior.  Valid flags include:


See the -fno-assembly-versions documentation, below.


Do not generate /Type/AssemblyInfo/AssemblyVersion and /Type/Members/Member/AssemblyInfo elements.

This is useful to prevent "churn" during updates.  Normally, if a type or member hasn't changed but the assembly version has changed, then all types and members will be updated to include a new //AssemblyVersion element, thus increasing the amount of changes that need review before committing (assuming all changes are actually reviewed before commit).

WARNING: This will interact badly with the --delete option, as --delete uses the //AssemblyVersion elements to track version changes.  Thus, if you have a member which is present in an early assembly version and is removed in a subsequent assembly version, such as System.Text.UTF8Encoding.GetBytes(string) (which is present in .NET 1.0 but not in .NET 2.0), then the member will be removed when the --delete -fno-assembly-versions options are specified, the member was present in an earlier version of the assembly, and the current version of the assembly does not contain the member.

Consequently, this option should only be specified if types and members will never be removed from an assembly.

-i,  --import=FILE

Import documentation found within FILE.

FILE may contain either csc /doc XML or ECMA-335 XML.

-L,  --lib=DIRECTORY

Add DIRECTORY to the assembly search path, so that dependencies of ASSEMBLIES can be found without documenting those assemblies.

-o,  --out=DIRECTORY

Place the generated stubs into DIRECTORY.

When updating documentation, DIRECTORY is also the source directory.


ASSEMBLY is a dependency for one of ASSEMBLIES which should not be documented but is required to process one of ASSEMBLIES. Add the directory containing ASSEMBLY to the assembly search path.

This option is equivalent to specifying -L `dirname ASSEMBLY`.


When updating documentation for an assembly, if a type or member is encountered which didn't exist in the previous version of the assembly a <since version="VERSION"/> element will be inserted.


Only update documentation for the type TYPE.

-h,  -?,  --help

Display a help message and exit.

See Also

mdoc(1),  mdoc(5),  mdoc-assemble(1), mdoc-export-html(1), mdoc-validate(1),

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Referenced By

mdoc(1), mdoc(5), mdoc-validate(1), monodocer(1).