[ Added comp.os.linux.setup as receiver. ]
cro...@mars.vais.net (Chris Roger) writes in comp.os.linux.development.apps:
?Tim Bass (b...@cais.cais.com) wrote:
?: Keep getting these e-mails with MIME in the headers marked M
?: in ELM. ELM has trouble, and is complaining:
?: sh: metamail: command not found
?: .... did a find / | grep metamail and found some stuff in the emacs
?: area... do I need something else?
?: It seems kinda wierd to put the emacs stuff in my PATH for elm and
?: metamail. Must be something else I'm missing, right?
?Metamail is an application; part of the andrew system.
?If you had it, it would probably be in /usr/andrew/bin/
Metamail is backage in it's own.
Look via anonymous ftp:
That is NOT definetely part of Andrew system. And Elm's documentaion
refers to THAT metamail!
Very many mail reader program includes binary of metamail however.
Elm's standard distrinution is in source form, so you have supposedly
to get metamail when you compile Elm. Elm's Configure says that you
need metamail if you turn Mime support on. So that people with compiled
elm with MIME support, should also compile metamail (and install both :-)).
File ANNOUNCE from that directory (thumper.bellcore.com:/pub/nsb) follows: ----
On behalf of Bellcore, I am happy to announce the availability of version 2.7
of the "metamail" software to the email community. This package, which is
available free of charge for unlimited use by anyone for any purpose, is
offered in the hope of making multimedia mail (using the MIME standard) more
The basic idea of "multimedia" electronic mail is to extend email as we now
know it to include many other types of data beyond plain English text. In
particular, there is no reason, in principle, why email should not include
text in any of the world's languages and character sets, nor why email should
not include pictures, sounds, animations, active spreadsheets, or any other
kind of data that can be stored on a computer.
In recent years, various research systems and even some commercial products
have extended email to include some or all of these capabilities. Until
recently, however, none of them worked together, and all of them required
whole communities of users to abandon their old tools en masse in favor of the
new tools of a single software vendor.
Recent developments have the promise of changing all of that. There is a new
proposed standard for the format of multimedia mail, which would make software
from different vendors able to work together smoothly with multimedia mail, as
they do now with plain text mail. The software being announced here
implements that proposed standard, but takes it a step further by
incorporating it into the existing tools with which people read mail today,
allowing multimedia mail to be adopted in an evolutionary rather than a
Metamail is a package that can be used to convert virtually ANY mail-reading
program (on UNIX, DOS, or Commorodore Amiga) into a multimedia mail-reading
program. It is an extermely generic implementation of MIME (Multipurpose
Internet Mail Extensions), the proposed standard for multimedia mail formats
on the Internet. The implementation is extremely flexible and extensible,
using a "mailcap" file mechanism for adding support for new data formats when
sent through the mail. At a heterogeneous site where many mail readers are in
use, the mailcap mechanism can be used to extend them all to support new types
of multimedia mail by a single addition to a mailcap file.
The core of the package is a mechanism that allows the easy configuration of
mail readers to call external "viewers" for different types of mail. However,
beyond this core mechanism, the distribution includes viewers for a number of
mail types defined by the MIME standard, so that it is useful immediately and
without any special site-specific customization or extension. Types with
built-in support in the metamail distribution include:
1. Plain US ASCII (i.e., English) text, of course.
2. Plain text in the ISO-8859-8 (Hebrew/English) character set.
3. Richtext (multifont formatted text, termcap-oriented viewer)
4. Image formats (using the xloadimage program under X11)
5. Audio (initial "viewer" for SPARCstations)
6. Multipart mail, combining several other types
7. Multipart/alternative mail, offering data in multiple formats.
8. Encapsulated messages
9. Partial & external messages (for large data objects)
10. Arbitrary (untyped) binary data
Other media types and character sets may be easily supported with the mailcap
mechanism, using the provided types as examples/templates. The metamail
software also provides rudimentary support for the use of non-ASCII characters
in certain mail headers, as described by a companion document to the proposed
The metamail distribution comes complete with a small patch for each of over a
dozen popular mail reading programs, including Berkeley mail, mh, Elm, Xmh,
Xmail, Mailtool, Emacs Rmail, Emacs VM, Andrew, and others. Crafting a
patch for additional mail readers is relatively straightforward.
In order to build the metamail software, a single "make" command followed by a
relatively short compilation will suffice. Patching your mail reader is
somewhat harder, but can usually be accomplished in less than an hour if you
have the sources at hand. The experience of most users is that the metamail
package can easily be used to get multimedia mail working with your existing
mail readers in less than half a day.
To retrieve the file, use anonymous ftp to the machine thumper.bellcore.com
(Internet address 188.8.131.52). Type "cd pub/nsb". In that directory, you
1. mm2.7.tar.Z -- this is a compressed tar file containing the core metamail
distribution. Uncompress it, untar it, and read the top-level "README" file
for further instructions. Strictly speaking, this is the only thing you
really need to retrieve. Note that the "2.7" will change in future releases.
2. contrib2.7.tar.Z -- another compressed tar file, this one containing lots
of useful MIME and metamail-related utilities contributed by metamail users,
including software for building multimedia mail-based services, and MIME-
related utilities for Emacs, Tk, SGI, Mac, DOS, Amiga, and more. Binaries for
DOS are also included. Note that the "2.7" will change in future releases.
3. A subdirectory called "samples". Except for the README file, each file in
this directory (except the one named ".MS_MsgDir", which should be ignored) is
a sample MIME-format message, which can be used to test your metamail
installation. There is also now a compressed tar file of this directory,
The distribution is mirrored in Europe in the directory mail/metamail on the
machine src.doc.ic.ac.uk, and on ftp.funet.fi in /pub/unix/mail/metamail.
If you do not have ftp access to any of these machines, but desire a copy of
the metamail distribution, send mail to "mailser...@thumper.bellcore.com" with
a subject line of "autosend: metamail-sources-uu" for a uuencoded compressed
tar file containing the complete metamail distribution. Once you have MIME
software installed, you can download anything from the thumper ftp server by
sending mail to "mail-ser...@thumper.bellcore.com" (note the "-" in this
address, unlike the previous one) with a subject that is the name of the file
you want to download, such as "pub/nsb/contrib2.7.tar.Z"
Metamail and MIME are discussed on the newsgroup "comp.mail.mime". If you
cannot read news, the same information is available as the mailing list is
INFO-M...@thumper.bellcore.com. Requests to join the list should be directed
If you do not wish to join the mailing list or read the newsgroup, but you DO
want to know about future releases of metamail, please send mail indicating
this interest to n...@bellcore.com.
Please feel free to recirculate this announcement as widely as possible.
-- Nathaniel S. Borenstein <n...@bellcore.com>
Member of Technical Staff, Bellcore