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8.1 Parts of an Xref

Cross-references have two major parts: the first part is called the label; it is the name that you can use to refer to the cross reference, and the second is the target; it is the full name of the node that the cross-reference points to.

The target is separated from the label by a colon ‘:’; first the label appears, and then the target. For example, in the sample menu cross-reference below, the single colon separates the label from the target.

* Foo Label: Foo Target.        More information about Foo.

Note the ‘.’ which ends the name of the target. The ‘.’ is not part of the target; it serves only to let Info know where the target name ends.

A shorthand way of specifying references allows two adjacent colons to stand for a target name which is the same as the label name:

* Foo Commands::                Commands pertaining to Foo.

In the above example, the name of the target is the same as the name of the label, in this case Foo Commands.

You will normally see two types of cross-reference while viewing nodes: menu references, and note references. Menu references appear within a node’s menu; they begin with a ‘*’ at the beginning of a line, and continue with a label, a target, and a comment which describes what the contents of the node pointed to contains.

Note references appear within the body of the node text; they begin with *Note, and continue with a label and a target.

Like ‘Next’, ‘Prev’, and ‘Up’ pointers, cross-references can point to any valid node. They are used to refer you to a place where more detailed information can be found on a particular subject. Here is a cross-reference which points to a node within the Texinfo documentation: See Writing an Xref in the Texinfo Manual, for more information on creating your own texinfo cross references.

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