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       mh-draft - draft folder facility for nmh message system


       any nmh command


       There   are  a  number  of  interesting  advanced  facilities  for  the
       composition of outgoing mail.

   The Draft Folder
       The comp, dist, forw, and repl commands have two  additional  switches,
       -draftfolder   +folder   and  -draftmessage  msg  which  allow  you  to
       manipulate the various draft messages you are composing.

       If -draftfolder  +folder  is  used,  these  commands  are  directed  to
       construct a draft message in the indicated folder.  (The “Draft-Folder”
       profile entry may be used to declare a default  draft  folder  for  use
       with comp, dist, forw, and repl).

       If the swith -draftmessage msg is given, the specified draft is used to
       compose the message.  If -draftmessage msg is not used, then the  draft
       defaults  to  ‘new’  (create  a new draft) unless the user invokes comp
       with -use, in which case the default is ‘cur’.

       Hence, the user may  have  several  message  compositions  in  progress
       simultaneously.  Now, all of the nmh tools are available on each of the
       user’s message drafts (e.g.  show, scan, pick,  and  so  on).   If  the
       folder  does not exist, the user is asked if it should be created (just
       like with refile).  Also, the last draft message the user was composing
       is known as ‘cur’ in the draft folder.

       Furthermore,  the send command has these switches as well.  Hence, from
       the shell, the user can send off  whatever  drafts  desired  using  the
       standard  nmh  ‘msgs’ convention with -draftmessage msgs.  If no ‘msgs’
       are given, it defaults to ‘cur’.

       In addition, all five programs  have  a  -nodraftfolder  switch,  which
       undoes the last occurrence of -draftfolder folder (useful if the latter
       occurs in the user’s nmh profile).

       If the user does not give the -draftfolder  +folder  switch,  then  all
       these commands act “normally”.  Note that the -draft switch to send and
       show still refers  to  the  file  called  ‘draft’  in  the  user’s  nmh
       directory.   In the interests of economy of expression, when using comp
       or send, the user  needn’t  prefix  the  draft  ‘msg’  or  ‘msgs’  with
       -draftmessage.   Both  of  these  commands  accept  a ‘file’ or ‘files’
       argument, and they will, if  given  -draftfolder  +folder  treat  these
       arguments  as  ‘msg’ or ‘msgs’. (This may appear to be inconsistent, at
       first, but it saves a lot of typing) Hence,

              send -draftfolder +drafts first

       is the same as

              send -draftfolder +drafts -draftmessage first

       To make all this a bit more  clear,  here  are  some  examples.   Let’s
       assume that the following entries are in the nmh profile:

            Draft-Folder: +drafts
            sendf: -draftfolder +drafts

       Furthermore,  let’s  assume that the program sendf is a (symbolic) link
       in the user’s $HOME/bin/ directory to send.  Then, any of the commands


       constructs the message draft in the  ‘draft’  folder  using  the  ‘new’
       message  number.  Furthermore, they each define ‘cur’ in this folder to
       be that message draft.  If the user were to  use  the  quit  option  at
       ‘What  now?’  level,  then  later on, if no other draft composition was
       done, the draft could be sent with simply


       Or, if more editing was required, the draft could be edited with

            comp -use

       Instead, if other drafts had been composed in  the  meantime,  so  that
       this  message draft was no longer known as ‘cur’ in the ‘draft’ folder,
       then the user could scan the folder to see which message draft  in  the
       folder  should be used for editing or sending.  Clever users could even
       employ a back-quoted pick to do the work:

            comp -use ‘pick +drafts -to nmh-workers‘


            sendf ‘pick +drafts -to nmh-workers‘

       Note that in the comp example, the output from pick must resolve  to  a
       single  message draft (it makes no sense to talk about composing two or
       more drafts with one invocation of comp).  In  contrast,  in  the  send
       example,  as  many  message  drafts  as  desired can appear, since send
       doesn’t mind sending more than one draft at a time.

       Note that the argument -draftfolder +folder  is  not  included  in  the
       profile entry for send, since when comp, et. al., invoke send directly,
       they supply send with the UNIX pathname of the message draft, and not a
       -draftmessage msg argument. As far as send is concerned, a draft folder
       is not being used.

       It is important to realize that nmh treats  the  draft  folder  like  a
       standard nmh folder in nearly all respects.  There are two exceptions:

       First,  under no circumstancs will the -draftfolder folder switch cause
       the named folder to become the current folder.

       Obviously, if the folder appeared in the context of a standard  +folder
       argument to an nmh program, as in

            scan +drafts

       it might become the current folder, depending on the context changes of
       the nmh program in question.

       Second, although conceptually send deletes  the  ‘msgs’  named  in  the
       draft folder, it does not call delete-prog to perform the deletion.

   What Happens if the Draft Exists
       When  the comp, dist, forw, and repl commands are invoked and the draft
       you indicated already exists, these programs will prompt the user for a
       reponse directing the program’s action.  The prompt is

            Draft ‘‘/home/foobar/nmhbox/draft’’ exists (xx bytes).

       The appropriate responses and their meanings are:

            replace - deletes the draft and starts afresh
            list    - lists the draft
            refile  - files the draft into a folder and starts afresh
            quit    - leaves the draft intact and exits

       In  addition, if you specified -draftfolder folder to the command, then
       one other response will be accepted:

            new     - finds a new draft

       just as if -draftmessage new had been given.  Finally, the comp command
       will accept one more response:

            use     - re-uses the draft

       just as if -use had been given.