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Re: [Nmh-workers] Default setup broken on Debian?

From: Ken Hornstein
Subject: Re: [Nmh-workers] Default setup broken on Debian?
Date: Mon, 02 Mar 2015 13:19:51 -0500

>I'm having some trouble with the default setup of nmh 1.6-2 on Debian,
>upgrading from 1.5-release-0.2 (i.e. switching from wheezy to jessie).
>Where previously show'ing an email with HTML and text would bring up
>something in a pager in my terminal window, I'm now getting a range of
>behaviours, from invoking my browser on often-non-existent temp files
>through to throwing up a series of new terminal windows.

That's ... interesting, because BEFORE 1.6 it certainly wouldn't do that
out of the box.  Basically, before 1.6 it was pretty unusable by default
on HTML email.  I cannot understand how it worked right for you without
a lot of specific customization.

>This looks as if it's a bit of a recap of past topics, such as
>  "What are and what should be the qualifications for a current nmh user"
>  http://lists.nongnu.org/archive/html/nmh-workers/2014-05/msg00100.html
>  "nmh not using w3n or elinks"
>  http://lists.nongnu.org/archive/html/nmh-workers/2014-05/msg00176.html

>From that (and a later) thread, we finally determined that Norm WAS in
fact running a HTML converter; he just didn't realize it.

>Looking at several of the past threads on this, which seem to touch on
>exactly the same issue, the one thing I can observe is that the Debian
>/etc/nmh/mhn.defaults is very different to some that I see in the mail
>archive.  For example, the second thread above has the following for
>  charset=%{charset}; %p/usr/bin/lynx -child -dump -force-html
>      ${charset:+--assume_charset "$charset"} %F

Right, that's what we distribute.

>.. while I guess HTML is caught by the mhshow-show-text entry under
>  run-mailcap --action=view 'text/%s:%F'

That ... looks like a Debian-ism.  Our configuration process does not do

>.. invoking "run-mailcap", it doesn't surprise me that Debian's sending
>me off to my web browser, but this does seem contrary to the 1.6 release
>highlight that "Mhshow will by default only display text parts that are
>not marked as attachments, and using a single pager."

Well, I believe that is an accurate statement IF you build from the tar
file that we distribute.  We don't have control over how system packages are
built and configured.

>I guess I should really be making that last comment to the Debian
>package maintainer, but can anyone suggest some useful advice for me to
>offer them?

That seems to be Alexander Zangerl, and I know he's on this list (last
time I checked).

>.. big improvement, but where do I go for a canonical version?  Has
>anyone rigged this stuff up to use antiword, pdftotext, or even
>image-to-ASCII conversions?

Well, first off ... what happens if you build from our source tar file?
That's pretty much as canonical as you can get.  Any of those tools you
describe should be relatively straightforward to get working, as long as
they output their stuff on standard output.


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