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mail(1)                          User Commands                         mail(1)

       mail, rmail - read mail or send mail to users

   Sending Mail
       mail [-tw] [-m message_type] recipient...

       rmail [-tw] [-m message_type] recipient...

   Reading Mail
       mail [-ehpPqr] [-f file]

       mail [-x debug_level] [other_mail_options] recipient...

       A  recipient  is  usually  a domain style address ("user@machine") or a
       user name recognized by  login(1).  When  recipients  are  named,  mail
       assumes a message is being sent. It reads from the standard input up to
       an end-of-file (Control-d) or, if reading from a terminal device, until
       it reads a line consisting of just a period. When either of those indi-
       cators is received, mail adds the  letter  to  the  mailfile  for  each

       A letter is composed of some header lines followed by a blank line fol-
       lowed by the message content. The header lines section  of  the  letter
       consists of one or more UNIX postmarks:

       From sender date_and_time [remote from remote_system_name]

       followed by one or more standardized message header lines of the form:

       keyword-name: [printable text]

       where  keyword-name is comprised of any printable, non-whitespace char-
       acters other than colon (`:'). A MIME-version:  header  line  indicates
       that  the  message  is  formatted  as described in RFC 2045. A Content-
       Length: header line, indicating the number of bytes in the message con-
       tent, is always present unless the letter consists of only header lines
       with no message content. A Content-Type: header line that describes the
       type  of  the  message  content (such as text/plain, application/octet-
       stream, and so on) is also present, unless the letter consists of  only
       header  lines with no message content. Header lines may be continued on
       the following line if that line starts with white space.

   Sending Mail
       The following command-line arguments affect sending mail:

       -m message_type A Message-Type: line is added  to  the  message  header
                       with the value of message_type.

       -t              A  To:  line is added to the message header for each of
                       the intended recipients.

       -w              A letter is sent to a remote recipient without  waiting
                       for the completion of the remote transfer program.

       If  a letter is found to be undeliverable, it is returned to the sender
       with diagnostics that indicate the location and nature of the  failure.
       If  mail  is interrupted during input, the message is saved in the file
       dead.letter to allow  editing  and  resending.  dead.letter  is  always
       appended to, thus preserving any previous contents. The initial attempt
       to append to (or create) dead.letter is in the  current  directory.  If
       this fails, dead.letter is appended to (or created in) the user's login
       directory. If the second attempt also fails, no dead.letter  processing
       is done.

       rmail  only permits the sending of mail; uucp(1C) uses rmail as a secu-
       rity precaution. Any application programs that generate  mail  messages
       should  be  sure to invoke rmail rather than mail for message transport
       and/or delivery.

       If the local system has the Basic Networking Utilities installed,  mail
       can  be sent to a recipient on a remote system. There are numerous ways
       to address mail to recipients on remote systems depending on the trans-
       port  mechanisms  available to the local system. The two most prevalent
       addressing schemes are Domain-style and UUCP-style.

       Domain-style addressing

           Remote recipients are specified by appending an `@' and domain (and
           possibly  sub-domain)  information  to  the recipient name (such as
           user@sf.att.com). (The local system administrator  should  be  con-
           sulted for details on which addressing conventions are available on
           the local system.)

       UUCP-style addressing

           Remote recipients are specified by  prefixing  the  recipient  name
           with  the  remote  system  name  and  an exclamation point, such as
           sysa!user. If csh(1) is the default  shell,  sysa\!user  should  be
           used.  A series of system names separated by exclamation points can
           be used to direct a letter through an  extended  network  (such  as
           sysa!sysb!sysc!user or sysa\!sysb\!sysc\!user).

   Reading Mail
       The following command-line arguments affect reading mail:

       -e              Test for the presence of mail. mail prints nothing.

                       An  exit  status of 0 is returned if the user has mail.
                       Otherwise, an exit status of 1 is returned.

       -E              Similar to -e, but tests only for the presence  of  new

                        An  exit  status  of 0 is returned if the user has new
                       mail  to read,  an exit status of 1 is returned if  the
                       user   has no mail,  or an exit status of 2 is returned
                       if the user has mail which has already been read.

       -h              A window of headers are initially displayed rather than
                       the  latest  message.  The display is followed by the ?

       -p              All messages are printed without prompting for disposi-

       -P              All  messages  are  printed  with all header lines dis-
                       played, rather than the default selective  header  line

       -q              mail terminates after interrupts. Normally an interrupt
                       causes  only  the  termination  of  the  message  being

       -r              Messages are printed in first-in, first-out order.

       -f file         mail  uses  file  (such as mbox) instead of the default

       mail, unless otherwise influenced by command-line arguments,  prints  a
       user's  mail messages in last-in, first-out order. The default mode for
       printing messages is to display only those header  lines  of  immediate
       interest.  These  include,  but  are  not limited to, the UNIX From and
       >>From postmarks, From:, Date:,  Subject:,  and  Content-Length:  header
       lines,  and  any  recipient header lines such as To:, Cc:, Bcc:, and so
       forth. After the header lines have been displayed,  mail  displays  the
       contents (body) of the message only if it contains no unprintable char-
       acters. Otherwise, mail issues a warning statement  about  the  message
       having binary content and not display the content. This can be overrid-
       den by means of the p command.

       For each message, the user is prompted with a ? and a line is read from
       the  standard  input. The following commands are available to determine
       the disposition of the message:

       #                       Print the number of the current message.

       -                       Print previous message.

       <&lt;new-line>&gt;,+, or n      Print the next message.

       !command                Escape to the shell to do command.

       a                       Print message that arrived during the mail ses-

       d, or dp                Delete  the  current message and print the next

       d n                     Delete message number n. Do not go on  to  next

       dq                      Delete message and quit mail.

       h                       Display a window of headers around current mes-

       h n                     Display a window of headers around message num-
                               ber n.

       h a                     Display  headers  of all messages in the user's

       h d                     Display headers of messages scheduled for dele-

       m [ persons ]           Mail  (and  delete)  the current message to the
                               named persons.

       n                       Print message number n.

       p                       Print current  message  again,  overriding  any
                               indications  of  binary  (that is, unprintable)

       P                       Override default brief mode and  print  current
                               message again, displaying all header lines.

       q, or Control-d         Put  undeleted  mail  back  in the mailfile and
                               quit mail.

       r [ users ]             Reply to the  sender,  and  other  users,  then
                               delete the message.

       s [ files ]             Save  message  in  the  named  files  (mbox  is
                               default) and delete the message.

       u [ n ]                 Undelete message  number  n  (default  is  last

       w [ files ]             Save   message  contents,  without  any  header
                               lines, in the named files (mbox is default) and
                               delete the message.

       x                       Put all mail back in the mailfile unchanged and
                               exit mail.

       y [ files ]             Same as -w option.

       ?                       Print a command summary.

       When a user logs in, the presence of mail, if  any,  is  usually  indi-
       cated. Also, notification is made if new mail arrives while using mail.

       The  permissions  of  mailfile can be manipulated using chmod(1) in two
       ways to alter the function of mail. The other permissions of  the  file
       can  be  read-write (0666), read-only (0664), or neither read nor write
       (0660) to allow different levels of privacy. If changed to  other  than
       the  default (mode 0660), the file is preserved even when empty to per-
       petuate the desired permissions. (The administrator can  override  this
       file preservation using the DEL_EMPTY_MAILFILE option of mailcnfg.)

       The  group  ID of the mailfile must be mail to allow new messages to be
       delivered, and the mailfile must be writable by group mail.

       The following command-line arguments cause mail  to  provide  debugging

       -x debug_level          mail  creates a trace file containing debugging

       The -x option causes mail to create a file  named  /tmp/MLDBGprocess_id
       that  contains debugging information relating to how mail processed the
       current message. The absolute value of debug_level  controls  the  ver-
       boseness   of  the  debug  information.  0  implies  no  debugging.  If
       debug_level is greater than 0, the debug file is retained only if  mail
       encountered  some  problem while processing the message. If debug_level
       is less than 0, the debug file is always be retained.  The  debug_level
       specified   via   -x   overrides   any   specification   of   DEBUG  in
       /etc/mail/mailcnfg. The information provided by the -x option  is  eso-
       teric and is probably only useful to system administrators.

   Delivery Notification
       Several  forms  of notification are available for mail by including one
       of the following lines in the message header.

       Transport-Options: [ /options ]

       Default-Options: [ /options ]

       >&gt;To: recipient [ /options ]

       Where the "/options" can be one or more of the following:

       /delivery       Inform the sender that  the  message  was  successfully
                       delivered to the recipient's mailbox.

       /nodelivery     Do not inform the sender of successful deliveries.

       /ignore         Do not inform the sender of failed deliveries.

       /return         Inform  the  sender  if mail delivery fails. Return the
                       failed message to the sender.

       /report         Same as /return except that the original message is not

       The  default  is /nodelivery/return. If contradictory options are used,
       the first is recognized and later, conflicting, terms are ignored.

       The following operand is supported for sending mail:

       recipient       A domain style address ("user@machine") or  user  login
                       name recognized by login(1).

       See  largefile(5) for the description of the behavior of mail and rmail
       when encountering files greater than or equal  to  2  Gbyte  (  2 **31

       See  environ(5) for descriptions of the following environment variables
       that affect the execution of mail: LC_CTYPE, LC_MESSAGES, and NLSPATH.

       TZ       Determine the timezone used with date and time strings.

       The following exit values are returned:

       0        Successful completion when the user had mail.

       1        The user had no mail or an initialization error occurred.

       >&gt;1       An error occurred after initialization.

       dead.letter             unmailable text

       /etc/passwd             to identify sender and locate recipients

       $HOME/mbox              saved mail

       $MAIL                   variable containing path name of mailfile

       /tmp/ma*                temporary file

       /tmp/MLDBG*             debug trace file

       /var/mail/*.lock        lock for mail directory

       /var/mail/:saved        directory for holding  temp  files  to  prevent
                               loss of data in the event of a system crash

       /var/mail/user          incoming mail for user; that is, the mailfile

       See attributes(5) for descriptions of the following attributes:

       tab()     allbox;     cw(2.750000i)|    cw(2.750000i)    lw(2.750000i)|
       lw(2.750000i).  ATTRIBUTE TYPEATTRIBUTE VALUE AvailabilitySUNWcsu

       chmod(1), csh(1), login(1),  mailx(1),  uucp(1C),  uuencode(1C),  vaca-
       tion(1), write(1), attributes(5), environ(5), largefile(5)

       Solaris Advanced User's Guide

       The  interpretation  and  resulting  action taken because of the header
       lines described in the Delivery Notifications  section  only  occur  if
       this  version of mail is installed on the system where the delivery (or
       failure) happens. Earlier versions of mail might not support any  types
       of delivery notification.

       Conditions sometimes result in a failure to remove a lock file.

       After an interrupt, the next message might not be printed. Printing can
       be forced by typing a p.

SunOS 5.10                        4 Jun 2004                           mail(1)