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Re: [Nmh-workers] sortm's Default of all is Brain-Damaged.

From: bergman
Subject: Re: [Nmh-workers] sortm's Default of all is Brain-Damaged.
Date: Thu, 11 Oct 2012 13:55:30 -0400

In the message dated: Thu, 11 Oct 2012 13:23:26 EDT,
The pithy ruminations from Ken Hornstein on 
<Re: [Nmh-workers] sortm's Default of all is Brain-Damaged.> were:
=> >Once again I've been bitten by a lone `sortm' defaulting to `all' when I
=> >intended to do `sortm lp'.  On a folder of some 20,000 emails that quite
=> >perturbs incremental backups!  `rmm' doesn't default to `all' so I'm not
=> >sure sortm should;  it's too destructive as the old order may not be
=> >reproducible.
=> Hm.  I guess to me "sortm" defaulting to "all" makes sense; I mean,
=> don't you want to that the vast majority of the time?  (I'm guessing

I'm with you on this one. I see "sortm" like "scan" or other tools that
default to a folder-wide scope, but can be restricted to a sequence or
set of messages.

=> "lp" is a sequence you created?).  And I guess I always figured the
=> order of messages was ephemeral; that's why sortm exists, after
=> all.

Yeah. The ephemeral message-ordering model of nmh doesn't play nicely with
backups, or things that index files (glimpse, nepomuk, google-desktop,
etc.)...but changing "sortm" doesn't alter that.

If you really wanted to eliminate problems caused to non-nmh packages
by renumbering messages, then messages could be cannonically stored in
hidden directores, using names based on unique hashes, and the existing
/path/to/folder/{1...N} message number structure that we know & love could
be entirely built from [symbolic] links--this would prevent nmh commands
that renumber messages from affecting backups or indicies.

The actual messages themselves could even be stored in a database or other
non-filesystem structure, with filesystem-level links being the end-user point
of access.


=> But I can't claim to be the arbiter of how people use nmh; what do others
=> think?
=> --Ken
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