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mh-alias(4)							  mh-alias(4)



NAME
  mh-alias - Alias file	for MH message system

DESCRIPTION

  Aliasing allows you to send mail to a	person or group	of persons without
  typing their complete	mail address.  Both your MH personal alias file	and
  the system alias file	for mail delivery, /usr/lib/mh/MailAliases, process
  aliases in the same way.  You	can specify the	name of	your personal alias
  file in your .mh_profile.

  A line of the	alias file can have the	following formats:

       alias : address-group
       alias ; address-group
       < alias-file

  The first line of the	example	is the standard	format.	 The alias appears at
  the start of the line, followed by a colon, followed by the address or
  addresses that it represents.

  If the alias is terminated with a semicolon (;) instead of a colon (:), the
  mail system outputs both the alias and the address-list in the correct for-
  mat.

  If the line starts with a <&lt;, the file	named after the	<&lt; is read for more
  alias	definitions.  The reading is done recursively, so a <&lt; can occur	in
  the beginning	of an alias file with the expected results.

  Addresses can	be expressed in	the following formats:

       alias: address1,	address2, address3, ...
       alias: <file
       alias: =group
       alias: +group
       alias: *

  Addresses are	normally given in a list, separated by a comma and one or
  more spaces.	If the list goes over one line,	you can	create a continuation
  line by placing a back-slash (\) immediately before the new-line character.

  If the address-group begins with a <&lt;,	the file named after the <&lt; is read
  and its contents added to the	address	list for the alias.

  If the address-group starts with an =, then the file /etc/group is con-
  sulted for the group named after the =.  Each	login name occurring as	a
  member of the	group is added to the address list for the alias.

  If the address-group starts with a +,	then the file /etc/group is consulted
  to determine the group-id of the group named after the +.  Each login	name
  occurring in the /etc/passwd file whose group-id is indicated	by this	group
  is added to the address list for the alias.

  If the address-group is simply *, then the file /etc/passwd is consulted
  and all login	names with a user-id greater than a given number (usually
  200) are added to the	address	list for the alias.

  Aliases are resolved at posting time in the following	way.  A	list of	all
  the addresses	from the message is built and duplicate	addresses are
  eliminated.  If the message originated on the	local host, then alias reso-
  lution is performed for those	addresses in the message that have no host
  specified.  For each line in the alias file, aliases are compared against
  all of the existing addresses.  If there is a	match, the matched alias is
  removed from the address list, and each new address in the address-group is
  added	to the address list, if	it is not already on the list.

  The alias itself is not usually output; the address-group that the alias
  maps to is output instead.  However, if the alias is terminated with a
  semicolon (;)	instead	of a colon (:),	both the alias and the address are
  output in the	correct	format.	 This makes replies possible, because in MH
  aliases and personal aliases are unknown to the mail transport system.

  MH alias files are expanded into the headers of messages posted.  This
  aliasing occurs first, at posting time, without the knowledge	of the mes-
  sage transport system.  In contrast, once the	message	transport system is
  given	a message to deliver to	a list of addresses, for each address that
  appears to be	local, a system-wide alias file	is consulted.  These aliases
  are not expanded into	the headers of messages	delivered.

  An alias file	must not reference itself directly, or indirectly through
  another alias	file, using the	<&lt;file construct.

  Using	Aliasing

  To use aliasing in MH, you need to set up a personal alias file.  It can
  have any name, but it	is usually called aliases, and is usually located in
  your Mail directory.	To set up the file, you	need to	perform	the following
  steps.

  First, add the following line	to your	.mh_profile:

       Aliasfile: aliases

  If you have chosen a different name for your file, you should	use this
  instead of aliases.  If your file is in a directory other than your Mail
  directory, you must supply the full pathname.

  Next,	create the file	aliases	in your	Mail directory.

  You can now start to add aliases to your aliases file.

EXAMPLES

  This section gives an	example	of an alias file, followed by an explanation
  of the entries:

       sgroup: fred, fear, freida
       fred: frated@UCI
       work-committee: <work.aliases
       staff: =staff
       wheels: +wheel
       everyone: *

  On the first line of the example, sgroup is defined as an alias for the
  three	names frated@UCI, fear,	and freida. On the second line of the exam-
  ple, fred is defined as an alias for frated@UCI. Next, the definition	of
  work-committee is given by reading the file work.aliases in your Mail
  directory.  The alias	staff is defined as all	users who are listed as
  members of the group staff in	the /etc/group file.  The alias	wheels is
  defined as all users whose group-id in /etc/passwd is	equal to the group
  wheel.  Finally, the alias everyone is defined as all	users with a user-id
  in /etc/passwd greater than 200.



FILES

  /usr/lib/mh/MailAliases
	    System alias file.

  $HOME/.mh_profile
	    Your user profile.

RELATED	INFORMATION

  ali(1), send(1), whom(1), group(4), passwd(4), mh_profile(4),	mtstailor(4),
  conflict(8), post(8)