pine command help
pine - a Program for Internet News and Email
pine [ options ] [ address , address ]
pinef [ options ] [ address , address ]
Pine is a screen-oriented message-handling tool. In its
default configuration, Pine offers an intentionally lim
ited set of functions geared toward the novice user, but
it also has a growing list of optional "power-user" and
personal-preference features. pinef is a variant of Pine
that uses function keys rather than mnemonic single-letter
commands. Pine's basic feature set includes:
View, Save, Export, Delete, Print, Reply and For
Compose messages in a simple editor (Pico) with
word-wrap and a spelling checker. Messages may be
postponed for later completion.
Full-screen selection and management of message
Address book to keep a list of long or frequently-
used addresses. Personal distribution lists may be
defined. Addresses may be taken into the address
book from incoming mail without retyping them.
New mail checking and notification occurs automati
cally every 2.5 minutes and after certain commands,
e.g. refresh-screen (Ctrl-L).
On-line, context-sensitive help screens.
Pine supports MIME (Multipurpose Internet Mail Exten
sions), an Internet Standard for representing multipart
and multimedia data in email. Pine allows you to save
MIME objects to files, and in some cases, can also initi
ate the correct program for viewing the object. It uses
the system's mailcap configuration file to determine what
program can process a particular MIME object type. Pine's
message composer does not have integral multimedia capa
bility, but any type of data file --including multimedia--
can be attached to a text message and sent using MIME's
encoding rules. This allows any group of individuals with
MIME-capable mail software (e.g. Pine, PC-Pine, or many
other programs) to exchange formatted documents, spread-
sheets, image files, etc, via Internet email.
low-level message-handling functions, including drivers
for a variety of different mail file formats, as well as
routines to access remote mail and news servers, using
IMAP (Internet Message Access Protocol) and NNTP (Network
News Transport Protocol). Outgoing mail is usually
handed-off to the Unix sendmail, program but it can
optionally be posted directly via SMTP (Simple Mail Trans
The command line options/arguments are:
address Send mail to address. This will cause
Pine to go directly into the message
-attach file Send mail with the listed file as an
Send mail with the listed file-list as
Send mail with the listed file as an
attachment, and remove the file after
the message is sent.
PC-Pine only. When using a remote con
figuration (-p <remote_config>) this
tells PC-Pine the local directory to
use for storing auxiliary files, like
debug files, address books, and signa
-bail Exit if the pinerc file does not
exist. This might be useful if the
config file is accessed using some
remote filesystem protocol. If the
remote mount is missing this will
cause Pine to quit instead of creating
a new pinerc.
-c context-number context-number is the number corre
sponding to the folder-collection to
which the -f command line argument
should be applied. By default the -f
argument is applied to the first
-conf Produce a sample/fresh copy of the
This is distinct from the per-user
-convert_sigs -p pinerc
Convert signature files into literal
-copy_abook <local_abook> <remote_abook>
Copy the local address book file to a
remote address book folder.
-copy_pinerc <local_pinerc> <remote_pinerc>
Copy the local pinerc file to a remote
-create_lu addrbook sort-order
Creates auxiliarly index (look-up)
file for addrbook and sorts addrbook
in sort-order, which may be dont-sort,
nickname, fullname, nickname-with-
lists-last, or fullname-with-lists-
last. Useful when creating global or
shared address books. After creating
the index file in this way, the file
should be moved or copied in a way
which preserves the mtime of the
address book file. The mtime of the
address book file at the time the
index file was built is stored inside
the index file and a comparison
between that stored value and the cur
rent mtime of the address book file is
done when somebody runs pine. If the
mtime has changed since the index file
was made, then pine will want to
rebuild the index file. In other
words, don't build the index file with
this option and then copy the address
book to its final destination in a way
which changes the file's mtime.
-d debug-level Output diagnostic info at debug-level
(0-9) to the current .pine-debug[1-4]
file. A value of 0 turns debugging
off and suppresses the .pine-debug
-d key[=val] Fine tuned output of diagnostic mes
sages where "flush" causes debug file
writing without buffering, "timestamp"
appends each message with a timestamp,
"imap=n" where n is between 0 and 4
where n is between 0 and 31 corre
sponding to the number of debug files
to maintain, and "verbose=n" where n
is between 0 and 9 indicating an
inverse threshold for message output.
-f folder Open folder (in first defined folder
collection, use -c n to specify
another collection) instead of INBOX.
-F file Open named text file and view with
-h Help: list valid command-line options.
-i Start up in the FOLDER INDEX screen.
-I keystrokes Initial (comma separated list of)
keystrokes which Pine should execute
-k Use function keys for commands. This
is the same as running the command
-n number Start up with current message-number
set to number.
-o Open first folder read-only.
-p config-file Use config-file as the personal con
figuration file instead of the default
-P config-file Use config-file as the configuration
file instead of default system-wide
configuration file pine.conf.
-pinerc file Output fresh pinerc configuration to
file, preserving the settings of vari
ables that the user has made. Use
file set to ``-'' to make output go to
standard out. <IP> -registry cmd 20
For PC-Pine only, this option affects
the values of Pine's registry entries.
Possible values for cmd are set,
clear, and dump. Set will always
reset Pine's registry entries accord
ing to its current settings. Clear
will clear the registry values. Dump
will display the values of current
registry settings. Note that the dump
will write values into the registry
only if there currently aren't any
-r Use restricted/demo mode. Pine will
only send mail to itself and functions
like save and export are restricted.
-sort order Sort the FOLDER INDEX display in one
of the following orders: arrival,
date, subject, orderedsubj, thread,
from, size, score, to, cc, or reverse.
Arrival order is the default. The
OrderedSubj choice simulates a
threaded sort. Any sort may be
reversed by adding /reverse to it.
Reverse by itself is the same as
-supported Some options may or may not be sup
ported depending on how Pine was com
piled. This is a way to determine
which options are supported in the
particular copy of Pine you are using.
-url url Open the given url. Cannot be used
with -f, -F, or -attach options.
-v Version: Print version information.
-version Version: Print version information.
-x config Use configuration exceptions in con
fig. Exceptions are used to override
your default pinerc settings for a
particular platform, can be a local
file or a remote folder.
-z Enable ^Z and SIGTSTP so pine may be
-option=value Assign value to the config option
option e.g. -signature-file=sig1 or
(Note: feature-list values are addi
There are several levels of Pine configuration. Configu
ration values at a given level over-ride corresponding
values at lower levels. In order of increasing prece
o system-wide pine.conf file.
o personal .pinerc file (may be set via built-in
o command-line options.
o system-wide pine.conf.fixed file.
There is one exception to the rule that configuration val
ues are replaced by the value of the same option in a
higher-precedence file: the feature-list variable has val
ues that are additive, but can be negated by prepending
"no-" in front of an individual feature name. Unix Pine
also uses the following environment variables:
DISPLAY (determines if Pine can display IMAGE
SHELL (if not set, default is /bin/sh )
MAILCAPS (semicolon delimited list of path names to
/usr/spool/mail/xxxx Default folder for incoming
~/mail Default directory for mail
~/.addressbook Default address book file.
~/.addressbook.lu Default address book index
~/.pine-debug[1-4] Diagnostic log for debugging.
~/.pinerc Personal pine config file.
~/.newsrc News subscription/state file.
~/.signature Default signature file.
~/.mailcap Personal mail capabilities
~/.mime.types Personal file extension to
MIME type mapping
/etc/mailcap System-wide mail capabilities
/etc/mime.types System-wide file ext. to MIME
/usr/local/lib/pine.info Local pointer to system admin
/usr/local/lib/pine.conf System-wide configuration
/usr/local/lib/pine.conf.fixed Non-overridable configura
/tmp/.\usr\spool\mail\xxxx Per-folder mailbox lock files.
~/.pine-interrupted-mail Message which was interrupted.
~/mail/postponed-msgs For postponed messages.
~/mail/sent-mail Outgoing message archive
~/mail/saved-messages Default destination for Saving
pico(1), binmail(1), aliases(5), mailaddr(7), sendmail(8),
Pine Information Center: http://www.washington.edu/pine
Source distribution: ftp://ftp.cac.washing
Pine Technical Notes, included in the source distribution.
C-Client messaging API library, included in the source
The University of Washington Pine development team (part of the UW Office
of Computing & Communications) includes:
Project Leader: Mike Seibel
Principal authors: Mike Seibel, Steve Hubert, Laurence Lundblade*
C-Client library & IMAPd: Mark Crispin
Pico, the PIne COmposer: Mike Seibel
Documentation: Many people!
PC-Pine for Windows: Tom Unger, Mike Seibel
Project oversight: Terry Gray, Lori Stevens
Principal Patrons: Ron Johnson, Mike Bryant
Additional support: NorthWestNet
Initial Pine code base: Elm, by Dave Taylor & USENET Community Trust
Initial Pico code base: MicroEmacs 3.6, by Dave G. Conroy
User Interface design: Inspired by UCLA's "Ben" mailer for MVS
Suggestions/fixes/ports: Folks from all over!
Copyright 1989-2002 by the University of Washington.
Pine and Pico are trademarks of the University of Washington.
$Date: 2002/01/08 16:03:14 $
Comments - most recent first
(Please feel free to answer questions posted by others!)
(12 Apr 2010, 05:41
nice explanation i like it
I welcome your comments. However... I am puzzled by many people
who say "Please send me the Linux tutorial." This website *is* your Linux Tutorial! Read everything here, learn
all you can, ask questions if you like. But don't ask me to send what you already have. :-)
NO SPAM! If you post garbage, it will be deleted, and you will be banned.
by Bob Rankin
All rights reserved - Redistribution is allowed only with permission.