dist - redistribute a message to additional addresses
dist [+folder] [msgs] [-form formfile] [-annotate | -noannotate]
[-inplace | -noinplace] [-draftfolder +folder] [-draftmessage msg]
[-nodraftfolder] [-editor editor] [-noedit] [-whatnowproc program]
[-nowhatnowproc] [-version] [-help]
Dist is similar to forw. It prepares the specified message for
redistribution to addresses that (presumably) are not on the original
The default message form contains the following elements:
If a file named “distcomps” exists in the user’s nmh directory, it will
be used instead of this default form. You may specify an alternate
forms file with the switch -form formfile. The form used will be
prepended to the message being resent.
If the draft already exists, dist will ask you as to the disposition of
the draft. A reply of quit will abort dist, leaving the draft intact;
replace will replace the existing draft with a blank skeleton; and list
will display the draft.
Only those addresses in “Resent-To:”, “Resent-cc:”, and “Resent-Bcc:”
will be sent. Also, a “Resent-Fcc: folder” will be honored (see
send(1)). Note that with dist, the draft should contain only
“Resent-xxx:” fields and no body. The headers and the body of the
original message are copied to the draft when the message is sent. Use
care in constructing the headers for the redistribution.
If the -annotate switch is given, the message being distributed will
be annotated with the lines:
where each address list contains as many lines as required. This
annotation will be done only if the message is sent directly from dist.
If the message is not sent immediately from dist, “comp -use” may be
used to re-edit and send the constructed message, but the annotations
won’t take place. Normally annotations are done inplace in order to
preserve any links to the message. You may use the -noinplace switch
to change this.
See comp(1) for a description of the -editor and -noedit switches.
Note that while in the editor, the message being resent is available
through a link named “@” (assuming the default whatnowproc). In
addition, the actual pathname of the message is stored in the
environment variable $editalt, and the pathname of the folder
containing the message is stored in the environment variable $mhfolder.
The -draftfolder +folder and -draftmessage msg switches invoke the nmh
draft folder facility. This is an advanced (and highly useful)
feature. Consult the mh-draft(5) man page for more information.
Upon exiting from the editor, dist will invoke the whatnow program.
See whatnow(1) for a discussion of available options. The invocation
of this program can be inhibited by using the -nowhatnowproc switch.
(In truth of fact, it is the whatnow program which starts the initial
edit. Hence, -nowhatnowproc will prevent any edit from occurring.)
/etc/nmh/distcomps The standard message skeleton
or <mh-dir>/distcomps Rather than the standard skeleton
$HOME/.mh_profile The user profile
<mh-dir>/draft The draft file
Path: To determine the user’s nmh directory
Current-Folder: To find the default current folder
Draft-Folder: To find the default draft-folder
Editor: To override the default editor
fileproc: Program to refile the message
whatnowproc: Program to ask the “What now?” questions
comp(1), forw(1), repl(1), send(1), whatnow(1)
‘+folder’ defaults to the current folder
‘msg’ defaults to cur
If a folder is given, it will become the current folder. The message
distributed will become the current message.
Dist originally used headers of the form “Distribute-xxx:” instead of
“Resent-xxx:”. In order to conform with the ARPA Internet standard,
RFC-822, the “Resent-xxx:” form is now used. Dist will recognize
“Distribute-xxx:” type headers and automatically convert them to
Dist does not rigorously check the message being distributed for
adherence to the transport standard, but post called by send does. The
post program will balk (and rightly so) at poorly formatted messages,
and dist won’t correct things for you.
If whatnowproc is whatnow, then comp uses a built-in whatnow, it does
not actually run the whatnow program. Hence, if you define your own
whatnowproc, don’t call it whatnow since comp won’t run it.
If your current working directory is not writable, the link named “@”
is not available.