elmand say 'yes' when it asks you whether it should create a
Elm will then read in your mail from
/usr/spool/mail/yourusername, tell you how
many messages you have, and show you a one-line summary of each
message (date, sender, number of lines and subject line). It will show
the messages in reverse-sent order, i.e. the one most recently sent will be
first. The pointer will be at the first new message received. There will also
be a 3-line menu of things you can do.
You can read the currently highlighted message by just hitting
j to move
down one message and
k to move up.
Before you do anything further, like saving messages or replying, when
you're using elm for the first time you should type
o to get to the options menu and then
> to save these options. They will be written
to a file called
elmrc in a directory called
.elm in your home directory.
You should then make some decisions about whether you want to use these
default options, or change them. If you want to look at them and
possibly change them, edit that file with emacs by typing
All the lines that start with three hashes (
show the default setting, which is the one you're currently using.
Here are some places where you may want to think about changing that default:
copy = ON(default OFF)
ccmessages you want copies of to yourself, and you have important messages you send for future reference or if they get lost.
metoo = ON(default OFF)
ONyou'll have the message twice.
savename = OFF(default ON)
forcename = ON(default OFF)
pointnew = OFF(default ON)
sortby = Reverse-Sent(default)
owithin elm, then
sfor 'sorting criteria', and then
Ra couple of times each, to see all the options. Reverse-Sent has the advantage of being roughly chronological, so the new stuff is all together, but you will also notice if a message took particularly long to arrive, which will help you understand why the contents may be irrelevant by now :-) You can always re-order your current folder if you need to, but Reverse-Sent is a good default.
print = perl -e 'print "Disabled. Type s to save to file, then !lpr it."; exit(1);'
pby mistake all the time and would end up printing random messages to printers at the other end of campus. If you want to print a message you can always save it to a file and print that. If you do want to be able to print, here's the place to customize how.
To see a list of commands used in elm, type ? twice. The most important ones are:
<Return>--- display the currently highlighted message
j--- move down to the next non-deleted message
k--- move up to the next non-deleted message
<Return>--- go to message number
m--- mail a message. Will ask you for the e-mail address of the person
hto change the subject line or add recipients, after you're done editing.
r--- reply to the current message (just to the sender)
g--- group-reply to the current message (i.e. to everyone who got the original message --
f--- forward the current message to some other person
p--- print the current message
d--- delete the current message (i.e. mark it as to-be-deleted when you quit)
u--- undelete the current message (i.e. remove the 'to-be-deleted' mark, a D in the first column)
c--- change folder (
>is short for your
!for your incoming folder, use
=as a prefix to other folders in your
q--- quit, will ask whether to delete, keep, or store messages
x--- exit, leaves folder untouched (but asks if it has changed,
X--- quick exit, leaves folder untouched and doesn't ask any questions
?--- display help (type ? again for a list of commands)
+--- move down one screen (or use the right cursor key)
---- move up one screen (or use the left cursor key)
a--- go to the alias menu. It is useful to define abbreviations for
aagain to make an alias for the sender of the current message, or
nto make a new alias in general. To create a lot of aliases or sort the existing ones you may want to go and edit your
.elm/aliases.textfile directly. Make some from within elm first so you'll know what the format is. Type
newaliasafterwards to activate the changes. You will be told if you've made obvious mistakes.
h--- show the header of the current message
l--- limit display. Lets you show only the messages from or to a particular person etc.
userlevel = 1
alwaysdelete = ON
filtermechanism. And elm can handle MIME-encoded messages. For more information about elm, look at Getting Started in Elm (DCG), at the files in
/usr/local/lib/elm, or check out this Elm Site.
To find people's e-mail addresses use
finger lastname@host If you don't know
which computer they're using, but they're at Stanford, use
whois. If they're not at Stanford look at the How to find
people's E-mail addresses FAQ. Also find out about the
departmental mailing lists.