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XI. PINE (E-Mail)

Electronic mail (e-mail) lets you send typed messages to other Chebucto Community Net members, and to people anywhere in the world, as long as they have an Internet e-mail address. Chebucto Community Net uses a mail managing program called Pine to send, recieve, read, write and store mail. To get to Pine, type "g mail" and press [ENTER]. You will arrive in your new mail folder. If there is any, it will appear as a list. Type "m" to go to the Pine main menu or "v" to view mail. You can also read your mail by using the arrow keys to select a message and then hit the right arrow or [ENTER] to read the message.

There are also a number of other functions that the user can set for Pine. These include using Pine to read and post to Newsgroups and other configuration options. The Community Net Keymap does not operate in Pine, it has instead its own sets of commands in its different sections. Remember that, '^' means to hold down the Control key while pressing the other key.


       ?     HELP               -  Get help using Pine
       c     COMPOSE MESSAGE    -  Compose and send a message
       i     FOLDER INDEX       -  View messages in current folder
       l     FOLDER LIST        -  Select a folder to view
       a     ADDRESS BOOK       -  Update address book
       s     SETUP              -  Configure or update Pine
       q     QUIT               -  Exit the Pine program

General Pine Commands

       ?  Display  help text
       o  Show other available commands
       m  MAIN MENU screen
       q  Quit Pine
       c  Compose a message to selected address
       l  FOLDER LIST screen
       g  Specify a folder to go to
       i  FOLDER INDEX screen

Sending Mail

From most areas in Pine, "c" will take you to the composing screen. The basics of editing are the same as for the Pico editor detailed later in this document. Look there for a detailed description of editing the message.

The top part of the composing screen contains a header for the address and some information about sending it. Below this is the actual message.

For example:

From: aa001@chebucto.ns.ca Sat Mar 18 10:48:34 1995
Date: Fri, 17 Mar 1995 23:07:11 -0400
From: John Smith <aa001@chebucto.ns.ca>
To: Jon Doe <aa002@chebucto.ns.ca>
Subject: Good News!

Pine Composing Help


The To: field in general

Type in the e-mail addresses you want to send mail to. If you are sending mail to someone else on CCN then you can just type their login name (such as aa001), or if the person is in your address book then you can just type the nickname you gave the person. When you move the cursor out of the To: field, the full addresses will be filled in. The To: field may be several lines long, and have many addresses in it separated by commas. You can move around the To: field and the header with the arrow keys.

Commands for editing the To: field

   Arrow keys      Move the cursor around.
   Delete key
   Back Space key  Erase character and move back one character.
   ^D  Del Char    Delete character under the cursor.  
   ^G  Help        Display this help screen.
   ^X  Send        Finish composing this message and send it off to the 
   ^C  Cancel      Stop sending this message.  Anything you have composed 
                   is lost.  You have a chance to confirm cancellation.

   ^R  Rich Hdr    Expand the header to show the Bcc: (Blind Carbon Copy) 
                   and Fcc: (File Carbon Copy) fields, so they can be 
      		   edited. Giving this command again hides these fields 
		   again but does not remove the information. 
   ^J  Attchmnts   Use this command to attach a file to a message.
                   First you will be prompted for the file name, and then
                   a description of the file you just attached.  Once the
                   file is attached it will be displayed in the
                   line in the message header with its size.  The 
                   contents of the file won't actually show in your 
   ^Y  Prev Page   Go back one page in the message text.
   ^V  Next Page   Go forward one page in the message text.
   ^K  Del Line    Delete the entire line the cursor is currently on.  
  		   The last batch of lines that were deleted one after 
		   another is  saved so they can be undeleted elsewhere. 
   ^U  Undel Line  Undelete the last line or series of lines you 
		   deleted.  To delete a series of lines and move them to 
 		   another part of your message addresses  be sure to 
		   delete them all at once.
                   Using the Del Line and Undel Line commands is a 
		   convenient way to rearrange the order of addresses in 
		   the To: field, or move addresses between the To:, Cc: 
		   and Bcc: fields. 

   ^O  Postpone    Temporarily stop working on the current message so you 
 		   may read other messages, or compose another message.  
		   You can then resume working on the postponed message 
		   by going back in to compose.  You will be asked if you 
		   want to continue the postponed message.  Only one 
		   message can be postponed at a time.  When you are 
		   ready to resume entering your message, choose 
		   Compose.  At that point you will be prompted with the 
		   question "Continue work in progress?". Choose yes and 
		   your existing message will appear.  Choose no, and you 
		   will be given a blank screen to compose a new 
		   message.  You may resume composing the previously 	
		   postponed message later. 

   ^T  To AddrBk   Go into the address book so you can browse through 
		   your addresses.  Put the cursor on the entry you want 
		   to send mail to and give the command to select the 
		   address ("S" Select).  You will return to the 
		   To:field, and the address will be filled in.  You may 
		   go into the address book several times to pick several 

Address formats

E-mail addresses can be structured many different ways. The most common way is:

somone@somehost Where somehost is usually the name of the system followed by abreviations for where the system is located. Such as CCN's address:

chebucto.ns.ca This tells the people that the machine is chebucto and that it is in Nova Scotia, Canada. So a full address would be:

aa001@chebucto.ns.ca But there can also be more complicated addresses that you may have to use. Just make sure that you use the address that people give you and it should work. Remember, that uppercase and lowercase letters makes a difference! Also, there are never spaces in any e-mail address.

If the person you are sending mail to is on the same system (CCN in this case) then you can just enter their user name and the rest of the address will fill in automatically. So you could just type in:

aa001 and when you moved out of the to: field the whole address would be filled in (aa001@chebucto.ns.ca).

Sometimes a person's email address has their name and then in brackets there is the e-mail address:

John Smith <aa001@chebucto.ns.ca>

In these cases you only need to enter the address (without the brackets). When you fill out someone's email address on the same system (CCN) then it will also automatically fill in their name.


The Carbon Copy field in general

The Cc: field is just like the To: field, except it is used for addressees that you wish to send a carbon copy to. That is, the message is not directly addressed to these recipients, but you wanted them to see the message. The only difference the recipients see is that their name is in the Cc: field, rather than the To: field.

All of the things that you can do with addresses in the to: field you can also do in the cc: field.


This field shows the attachments or other "parts" of the message you are composing.

The most common use for this field will be to attach a file to your mail message. You can just type the file name here and if the file is found and accessible it will be "attached". You will know it is attached when the size of the file is shown. You can also add a description of the file between the quote marks "". You can remove and edit attachments to your messages by editing the items in this field. If you delete the line, the file will not be included in your message. When you attach a file, it will not actually be shown in your message, but if the line is the "Attchmnts:" field, the file will be included.

Typing the file name here achieves the same result as using the ^J command.

If some one sends you a message with different parts or attachments, you may forward that message with its different parts if you like. When you do this the parts will show up in the "Attchmts" field too, but they will be in square brackets "[]". These attachments can be images, files, other messages, sounds and even video. The type will be shown. You can remove these attachments if you like by deleting the line from the field. This is something you might want to do often because messages with attachments can become very large and it is better to send smaller messages if that will do.


This is simply a few words summarizing the message that will show up in listings of the header when the recipient gets the message. You can type any text here you like. It's nice to make it as specific as possible. This shows up in the Index listings so the receiver can see what a message is about before actually reading it.


Using the Export command is the easiest way to take a message that you have received and put it in a plain file in your home directory. The file can then be edited, downloaded or used otherwise. The message will be written to the file with a small amount of the mail header information. You may want to edit the file to delete these headers if you don't want them.

Editing exported files is safe. Be aware, however, that it is not always safe to edit a Pine email folder directly.

To export a document, select it and then press "e". You will be asked for a filename (one is provided as a default) and where you want to export it - your personal files is the default for this.


When you press the TAB key, Pine advances to the next "interesting" message. When you are using Pine to read email, that message is the next new message in the folder (a new message is one you have not read before). When reading news folders, Pine cannot tell which messages you have read, which you have not, so the next "interesting" message is the next one which you have not yet deleted.



The Address Book provides you with a place to store and select names of people you regularly send e-mail to. Once you have entered some names and addresses you can select them again and go directly to the composing screen with the address already filled in.

 Address Book Navigation                 Address Book Commands
 -----------------------                 ---------------------
  P  Prev Address                      E  Edit selected entry 
  N  Next Address                      D  Delete selected entry
  -  Previous page of address book     A  Add a simple entry
 Spc Next page of address book         Z Add to a list entry
  W  Where is (search for word/        Y Print address book
        name in address book)          C compose letter to selected


You can get to the folder list by pressing "l". You use this to get to your sent mail and saved messages folders, as well as other things.

Navigating the Folder Screen          Operations on the Selected Folder
 ----------------------------          ---------------------------------
 P   Move to previous folder           V  View Index of selected folder
 N   Move to next folder               D  Delete
 -   Show previous page of listing     R  Rename
 Spc  Show next page of listing

FOLDER LIST Screen Commands

 A  Add a folder                   
 G  Specify a folder to go to      
    of current folder
 W  Whereis (search folder names)   
 Y  Print folder listing


The folder index displays the headers or summary information of each message in the current folder. This is useful if you want to quickly scan new messages, or find a particular message without having to go through the text of each message, or to quickly get rid of junk messages, etc. If the list is too long to fit on one screen, you can page up and down in the list with the -/SPACE commands. The current message is always highlighted, and its message number is shown in the status line. Each message line contains the following columns:

The first column shows the status of the message. It may be blank, or it may contain a "D" if the message is marked for deletion, or it may contain an "N" if the message is new (unread) and the text has never been looked at, or an "A" if the message has been answered (by using they Reply command). If the very first character of status is a "+", the message was sent directly to your account (you did not get it as part of a cc: or mailing list).

Messages in a folder are numbered, from one through the number of messages in the folder, to help you know where you are in the folder.

Date Sent
The date the message was sent. Note that by default, messages are ordered by arrived time, not by date sent. (The sort command can be used to change the order that messages are presented.)

The name of the person that sent the mail. Various formats are used for mail addresses, therefore, this may show the address of the sender rather than the full name. If you are the sender of the message, such as when you Cc: yourself on a message, rather than showing your name, it will show the name of the recipient of the message.

The number in parentheses is the number of characters in the message.

As much of the message's Subject line as will fit on the screen.

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