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[Nmh-workers] Re: What is MH ?

From: Bill Wohler
Subject: [Nmh-workers] Re: What is MH ?
Date: Wed, 18 Jan 2006 16:14:23 -0800
User-agent: Gnus/5.11 (Gnus v5.11) Emacs/22.0.50 (gnu/linux)

Robert Elz <address@hidden> writes:

> To make full use of MH, you have to use it, together with all the rest of
> the power of the shell - and I don't just mean "show | lpr" or similar.
> We get offered glimpses from time to time of Jerry Peek's extensive
> collection of MH add-ons - that is the kind of thing that makes MH
> worth using.

The power of the shell is definitely the #1 item. Because of this you
can have the front-end of your choice, whether it is the command-line,
MH-E, exmh, or xmh.


The +imap:folder proposals have a bad smell to me.

So too does the custom filesystem suggestion. The user will have to
install a filesystem, hope that it is compatible with his system, and
mount it.

We already have inc -host -user -apop +folder. It would be best to
stick with that, adding an -imap flag. MH commands on the given folder
would access the files via the IMAP server (by virtue of an .imap file
that contains the IMAP info). Sub-folders (directories) and messages
(files) would be cached versions from the server.

Unfortunately, you wouldn't be able to use shell commands on the
(uncached) directories and files since they are up on the server.
That's the whole point of IMAP. If we want to view the directories
(folders) and files (messages), then we need to just suck down all the
mail from the IMAP server, treating it like a POP server. The user
would have the choice: use the inc flag -truncate to suck down all the
mail, or not to keep it on the server. By using aggressive caching, we
might be able to give the illusion of a mounted filesystem.

We would be amiss if we do not investigate GNU mailutils'


In the meantime, I applaud the Joels' efforts to clean up two decades
of detritus. I'm doing just that to MH-E as we speak ;-). And to those
who think nmh is dead, MH-E, which is based on nmh (and MH and GNU
mailutils) is hardly dead. It's in the 99th percentile or top-1000
projects at SourceForge.

I'm not sure why people think that these discussions are a waste of

Bill Wohler <address@hidden>  http://www.newt.com/wohler/  GnuPG ID:610BD9AD
Maintainer of comp.mail.mh FAQ and MH-E. Vote Libertarian!
If you're passed on the right, you're in the wrong lane.

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