MH & nmh: Email for Users & Programmers

May, 2006

Tour Through MH

This chapter takes you on a tour through MH Version 6.8.3. You'll use basic functions to send and receive mail, organize it, and do most of the basic things you'd do with MH. Along the way are some brief looks at advanced features that are covered in the next few chapters.

Want A Fast Overview?

Your online mh(1) manual page is a high-level summary of MH. In just a few pages, it covers the basics from setting up to reporting bugs. There are no examples, no information on some advanced features, and only one-line summaries of advanced commands. If you're good with UNIX, though, that manual page can get you started with MH in a hurry.

If your site doesn't have MH 6.8.3, try the tour anyhow. Except for MIME support, the basics of MH haven't changed much in years. If a feature works differently on your version, ask someone who knows MH or look at the online manual page for your version of MH -- or just try the next feature.

After you do the quick tutorial in this chapter, you'll have enough experience to handle your day-to-day mail with MH.

If you haven't thought about using one of the MH interfaces covered in this book -- xmh, MH-E, or exmh -- you might browse through the tour chapters for those programs now. If you're using a workstation or terminal that runs the X Window System, you can probably use xmh and exmh. If you use the GNU Emacs editor, or you're interested in trying a windowing interface to MH that doesn't require a windowing terminal, MH-E might be right for you. You don't have to choose one and stay with it forever: you can use MH and any of its front-ends, though running more than one at the same moment can cause problems if you aren't careful.

One big difference between MH and most other mail user agents is that you can use MH from a UNIX shell prompt (like % or $). Those three interfaces all hide the command line from you. Why would you want to read about plain MH if you can use an interface?