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Re: [Nmh-workers] temporary files

From: Lyndon Nerenberg
Subject: Re: [Nmh-workers] temporary files
Date: Thu, 15 Mar 2012 12:08:10 -0700

On 2012-03-15, at 11:46 AM, Jon Steinhart wrote:

> Sure.  But I am still curious as to the purpose intended by @ in the
> first place if anybody knows.

From dist(1):

       See comp(1) for a description of the -editor and -noedit switches.  Note 
that while in
       the  editor,  the message being resent is available through a link named 
"@" (assuming
       the default whatnowproc).  In addition, the actual pathname of the 
message  is  stored
       in  the  environment  variable $editalt, and the pathname of the folder 
containing the
       message is stored in the environment variable $mhfolder.

It is provided as a fixed-name alias for the file being edited should you want 
run an external command on the composition file. (E.g. '!spell @'.)  Remember 
that this functionality pre-dates widespread availability of job control, or 
even cursor-addressable terminals (think DecWriter attached to the VAX).

The idea is that ./@ will always provide an invariant and memorable name for 
the composition file. Moving it to `mh-path`/@ defeats that goal.

I like Ken's idea about having a switch to turn this on and off.  People who 
don't want/need the link could disable it in .mh_profile.


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