7. Receiving and Sending Mail

The most common way to use electronic mail at Hardlink is to use your own microcomputer mail software, such as Eudora, MSEIE, or Netscape. You can also use the mail software on UNIX systems. When you receive the message ``You have mail'' or ``You have new mail'', it means another user has sent you a message.

On Hardlink's UNIX systems, ``Pine'' is the easiest mail program for beginners to use, and it is the one described here. Online, see

The ``Mail'' program is also popular. See the Mail man page for information about it.

Starting the Pine Mailer

To start Pine and bring up its main menu, like that shown below, first be sure your terminal is identified correctly (see section 2.3). Then type
You should see a display like the following:
PINE 3.96        MAIN MENU        Folder:INBOX  3 Messages

    ?   HELP           - Get help using Pine

    C   COMPOSE        - Compose and send/post a message

    I   FOLDER INDEX   - View messages in current folder

    L   FOLDER LIST    - Select a folder OR news group to view

    A   ADDRESS BOOK   - Update address book

    S   SETUP          - Configure or update Pine

    Q   QUIT           - Exit the Pine program

Copyright 1989-1997.  PINE is a trademark of the University of Washington.

? Help                          P PrevCmd               R RelNotes
O OTHER CMDS   L [ListFldrs]    N NextCmd               K KBlock
The top line shows that you are at Pine's main menu, and that the current folder is INBOX, which contains three messages.

The bottom two lines here--and on every Pine menu screen--show commands you can give at this point. On this main menu, you see the primary options within Pine. To see those three messages in INBOX, you would type i. To see messages in some other folder, say if you had sorted earlier mail into folders by subject, you would type l for ``list''. To compose and send a message, you would type c. In each case, Pine brings up a new menu, with an appropriate set of possible commands on the bottom two lines.

Reading Mail

Here is what you might see if you type i on Pine's main menu to see what's in your INBOX:
PINE 3.96  FOLDER INDEX             Folder:INBOX  Message 3 of 3 NEW

1   Jun 27 remark              (1,417) Re: the problem you reported
2   Jul  1 jones@disney.com    (233) pine test 1
3   Jul  1 pete                (647) Clean socks

? Help        M Main Menu   P PrevMsg     - PrevPage   D Delete     R Reply
O OTHER CMDS  V [ViewMsg]   N NextMsg   Spc NextPage   U Undelete   F Forward
The header of each incoming message is displayed, showing when it was sent, who sent it, how many characters it contains, and the text of its subject line. One header line will be highlighted. It is the first message you have not yet read. Notice that the bottom two lines contain a new set of options--the names of commands you can use at this level of Pine.

To read a particular message, use the arrow keys or use the p (previous) and n (next) commands to highlight its header. Then press Return or give the command v to view its contents.

When you view any particular message, the bottom of that screen will display different options, so that you can handle the message as you wish: delete it, reply to it, forwared it, print it, etc. If you save a message, Pine asks for the name of another folder to put it in. Then, when you quit, Pine deletes it from the folder named INBOX.

All of these folders are actually files in a subdirectory named ``mail'', which Pine creates in your home directory the first time you run Pine. These mail-folder files are in a special format so that Pine can use them. Don't use some other editor to modify them.

Sending Mail to Others

To send a message to another user, select the c option from Pine's main menu. When you do this, Pine displays a template, highlighting the area where you will type the address, then the names of anyone who should receive a copy, the subject line, and the text:
PINE 3.96  COMPOSE MESSAGE            Folder:INBOX  2 Messages

To      :
Cc      :
Subject :
----- Message Text -----

^G Get Help  ^C Cancel   ^R Rich Hdr ^Y PrvPg/Top  ^K Cut Line   ^O Postpone
^X Send      ^D Del Char ^J Attach   ^V NxtPg/End  ^U UnDel Line ^T To AddrBk

This time, the prompts at the bottom of the screen show you how to send the message, cancel it, look up addresses in your ``address book'' (described below) and get additional help.

Pine has its own built-in editing commands that you can use while composing a message. This means you can type a message and revise it or fix errors in the message text before you send it, without learning how to use any other editing program. Use the ^G option to get help in altering your message.

Replying to Messages and Forwarding Messages

Replying to an incoming message in Pine is like composing an original message, except that the recipient's name is already filled in on the template. Pine gives you an option to include the original message with your reply. If you accept this option, Pine includes the character ``>'' before each line of the original message. It also asks if you want the reply to go to all other recipients of the original message or only to the sender.

If you forward a message that you have received, Pine automatically includes the text of the original message. You fill in the address of the new recipient and add any explanatory text you want.

Mail Addresses

To send a message to several other people, include their login names, separated by commas, on Pine's ``To:'' line. If any recipients of your message are not on the same computer system you are using, you must designate them as username@host, where host is the name of the other computer system and username is the user's login name on that system. If you are on Hardlink's UNIX system and want to send a message to ``tom'' as well as to ``jones'', type
     tom, jones@disney.com 
If you regularly send messages to the same group of people, you can define a single name to represent all of them, and put that name in your Pine address book. Use option A from Pine's main menu. Then type a question mark and follow the instructions displayed there to set up an address book. Then when you are at the ``To:'' line, just tell Pine to go to your address book and select the name that refers to that group. Pine will fill in all the addressees on the ``To:'' line.
Note: To send mail to support@hardlink.com, address your message to:

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