repl - reply to a message (only available within the message handling sys-
repl [msg] [+folders] [options]
Marks out the original message as replied to. When the message is shown
on the listing produced by scan, it is marked with a dash (-). The fol-
lowing lines are also added to the message:
where the address list contains one line for each addressee. The mail
system will annotate the message only if it is sent immediately. If the
message is not sent immediately, you can send it later with comp -use,
but the annotations will not take place.
Specifies who will receive copies of the reply. By default the mail
system sends the reply to the sender of the original message, and
copies to all other names in the To: and cc: lines. You can change this
behavior by using the -cc option. This sends copies of the replies
only to the specified names. There are four values: -cc all sends
copies to all the names on the original message; -cc to sends copies
only to those names in the To: field; -cc cc sends copies only to those
names in the cc: field; and -cc me sends a copy of the reply to your-
There is also a -nocc option, which stops copies of the reply being
sent to the named people. It takes the same values as -cc. So, for
example, -nocc cc would stop replies being sent to the names in the cc:
field of the original message.
Specifies the folder in which the draft message is created. If you do
not send the draft, it is stored in this folder.
This option is usually set up in your .mh_profile. See mh_profile(4)
for more information. If you have this option set up, you can override
it by using the -nodraftfolder option.
Specifies the editor you wish to use to write your reply. The default
editor provided is prompter. You can specify any legal editor as an
You can also set up an editor in your .mh_profile file. See
mh_profile(4) for more details.
Specifies a folder to receive copies of your reply. More than one
folder can be named, each preceded by -fcc.
Specifies how the original message is formatted in the draft. By
default, the mail system does not include a copy of the original mes-
sage in your reply. If you use the -filter filterfile option, the ori-
ginal message may be included in your reply, and formatted according to
the information in the file you name.
The filter file for repl should be a standard form file for mhl, as
repl will invoke mhl to format the message being replied to. There is
no default filter file for repl; you must create your own. A filter
file that is commonly used is:
This outputs a blank line and then the body of the message being
replied to, indented by one tab-stop.
Varies the appearance of the mail header for the reply. The mail system
will construct the header according to the instructions in the named
file. In order for repl to operate correctly, this must be an mhl file;
see mh-format(4) for more information. This option overrides the header
set up by the system file /usr/lib/mh/replcomps.
Prints out a list of valid options to the command.
Causes annotation to be done in place, in order to preserve links to
the annotated message.
Calls repl without an editor. This option takes you straight to the
What now? prompt, without allowing you to edit your reply. This will
usually produce a reply with no text in the body of the message.
Allows you to modify the list of recipients. The mail system asks you
whether each of the addresses that would normally be placed in the To:
and cc: fields should actually receive a copy of the reply.
Sets the maximum width of the header line. Lines exceeding this width
Specifies an alternative whatnow program. Normally, repl invokes the
default whatnow program. See whatnow(1) for a discussion of available
options. You can specify your own alternative to the default program
using the -whatnowproc program option. If you do specify your own
program, you should not call it whatnow.
You can suppress the whatnow program entirely by using the -nowhat-
nowproc option. However, as the program normally starts the initial
edit, the -nowhatnowproc option will prevent you from editing the mes-
The default settings for this command are:
+folder defaults to the current folder
msg defaults to the current message
Use repl to reply to a message that you have received.
By default, repl replies to the current message in the current folder. If
you want to reply to another message, you can specify a message number as
the msg argument. You can also specify a message in another folder by sup-
plying a +folder argument. You can supply both a msg and a +folder argu-
ment. If you specify a folder without giving a message number, repl will
reply to the current message in the named folder.
When you reply to a message, repl automatically fills in the mail header
for you, taking the information it needs from the mail header of the origi-
nal message. The following example shows how repl constructs the mail
header for the return message:
To: <<Reply-To>> or <<From>> or <<sender>>
cc: <<cc>>, <<To>>, and yourself
Subject: Re: <<Subject>>
In-reply-to: Your message of <<Date>>.
Field names enclosed in angle brackets (< >) indicate the contents of the
named field from the original message.
Normally, repl replies to the original sender, and sends carbon copies to
all the addressees on the original message.
You can create a different mail header from the default and use it every
time you reply to mail. If you create an alternative mail header and store
it in the file replcomps in your Mail directory, repl will use it instead
of the default header file. This must be an mhl file; see mh-format(4) for
If you do not have a draft folder set up, repl creates your new draft in a
file called draft in your Mail directory. This file must be empty before
you can create a new draft, which means that you can only store one draft
at a time. If it is not empty, the mail system will ask you what you want
to do with the existing contents. The options are:
Aborts repl, leaving the draft intact.
Replaces the existing draft with the appropriate message form.
Displays the draft message.
Refiles the existing draft message in the specified folder, and pro-
vides a new message form for you to complete.
If you want to be able to have more than one draft at a time, you can set
up a draft folder in your .mh_profile. This allows you to keep as many
unsent drafts as space allows, and still create new messages as you wish.
To do this, make sure that the following line is in your .mh_profile:
For more information on how to do this, see mh_profile(4).
If you set up a draft folder, all draft messages are created in that
folder. If you decide not to send the draft, by typing quit at the What
now? prompt, the message is stored in the draft folder. You can then re-
edit the message, or send it at a later date, by using the comp -use com-
Note that while in the editor, the message being replied to is available
through a link named @ (assuming the default whatnowproc). In addition, the
actual pathname of the message is stored in the environment variable $edi-
talt, and the pathname of the folder containing the message is stored in
the environment variable $mhfolder. If your current working directory is
not writable, the link named @ is not available.
Path: To determine your Mail directory
Alternate-Mailboxes: To determine your mailboxes
Draft-Folder: To find the default draft folder
Editor: To override the default editor
Msg-Protect: To set mode when creating a new message (draft)
fileproc: Program to refile the message
mhlproc: Program to filter message being replied to
whatnowproc: Program to ask the "What now?" questions
1. This example replies to message number 15 in the current folder:
% repl 15
2. The next example creates your reply in the folder +drafts. If you
decide not to send the draft reply, the mail system will store it in
% repl -draftfolder +drafts
3. The next example places a copy of your reply in your +copylog folder:
% repl -fcc +copylog
The default system reply template.
The user-supplied alternative to the standard reply template.
The user profile.
The draft file.
comp(1), dist(1), forw(1), prompter(1), send(1), whatnow(1), mh-format(4)