September 16, 1994 University of Washington, Computing & Communications
Pine(TM) is an electronic mail system created and maintained by the Computing & Communications group at the University of Washington. Pine is a trademark of the University of Washington. Permission to use this document for non-commercial purposes, in original or modified form, is granted, provided that the original source of the document is acknowledged as University of Washington Computing & Communications and that this paragraph, as well as the notice above, are retained on the title page of any documentation based on this text.
Electronic mail (email) allows you to communicate quickly and easily with colleagues on campus and around the world. The use of email is rapidly increasing, changing teaching, learning, research, health care, business, and administration. Pine is a sophisticated yet easy-to-use email program that was created at the University of Washington with the specific goal of being responsive to new email users. Pine offers:
This document should be read at your computer while you use Pine. The text that follows does not tell you everything about Pine. It only introduces Pine's main options and summarizes basic email guidelines. The best way to learn to use Pine is to explore it on your own. Pine was designed to make it easy for you to learn to use email: there is information on each screen and in the online help that shows you what to do or answers your questions. Try the different options and have fun experimenting with Pine.
Before you can use Pine to correspond by email, you need to have a userid (an account) on a computer and log in. For details, see the computing consultant for your department.
To start: The details of how to start Pine vary considerably from site to site. Consult your local support staff for further information. After starting Pine, the Main Menu screen appears. Each Pine screen has a similar layout: the top line tells you the screen name and additional useful information, below that is the work area (on the Main Menu screen, the work area is a menu of options), then the message/prompt line, and finally the menu of commands.
To quit: When you want to leave Pine, type Q (Quit). For details, see "Quitting Pine and Logging Out".
The Main Menu
The Main Menu lists Pine's main options (see Figure 1). The letter you must type to enter your choice is to the left of each option or command name. You can usually type either uppercase or lowercase letters, and you should not press <Return> to enter commands.
From the Main Menu, you can read online help, write and send a message, look at an index of your mail messages, open or maintain your mail folders, update your address book, configure or update Pine, and quit Pine.
Figure 1. A Pine Main Menu Screen
PINE 3.90 MAIN MENU Folder:INBOX 2 Messages
? HELP - Get help using Pine
C COMPOSE MESSAGE - Compose and send a message
I FOLDER INDEX - View messages in current folder
L FOLDER LIST - Select a folder to view
A ADDRESS BOOK - Update address book
S SETUP - Configure or update Pine
Q QUIT - Exit the Pine program
Copyright 1989-1994. PINE is a trademark of the University of Washington. [Folder "INBOX" opened with 2 messages]
? Help P PrevCmd R RelNotes O OTHER CMDS L [ListFldrs] N NextCmd
Now that you know how to start Pine, you can explore on your own, or you can browse the rest of this document for a summary of Pine's main features.
Getting Help in Pine
To read the online help, use the Help command at the bottom of each screen. For example, at the Main Menu screen, type ? (Help). Because the help text is context sensitive, you never see all of it at once--only the part that relates to the Pine feature you are using. To exit the online help, type E (Exit Help).
To write a message, type C (Compose) to see the Compose Message screen.
PINE 3.90 COMPOSE MESSAGE Folder:INBOX 2 Messages To : Cc : Attchmnt: Subject : ----- Message Text -----
^G Get Help ^X Send ^R Rich Hdr ^Y PrvPg/Top ^K Cut Line ^O Postpone ^C Cancel ^D Del Char ^J Attach ^V NxtPg/End ^U UnDel Line ^T To AddrBk
Figure 2. A Pine Compose Message Screen
In the command menu above, the ^ character is used to indicate the Control key. This means you must hold down the Control key (written in this document as <Control>) while you press the letter for each command.
Press <Control>G (Get Help) to see additional commands. To move around, use the arrow keys or <Control>N (Next line) and <Control> P (Previous line). To correct errors, use <Backspace> or <Delete>.
You might start experimenting in Pine by sending yourself a message. The following section shows you how.
Writing and Sending a Test Message to Yourself
To write and send a test message to yourself:
If a user Jean Hughes at site art.somewhere.edu whose userid is jhughes were to compose such a test message, the completed screen would look like the example below.
PINE 3.90 COMPOSE MESSAGE Folder:INBOX 2 Messages
To : Jean Hughes <firstname.lastname@example.org> Cc : Attchmnt: Subject : Test ----- Message Text ----- This is a test.
^G Get Help ^X Send ^R Read File ^Y Prev Pg ^K Cut Text ^O Postpone ^C Cancel ^J Justify ^W Where is ^V Next Pg ^U UnCut Text ^T To Spell
Figure 3. A Pine Compose Message Screen
You are asked:
The message is sent, and a copy is saved to your sent-mail folder. (If you type n (no) the message is not sent, and you can continue to work on it.)
Hints for Writing a Message
Inserting a Plain Text File. If you want to send a "plain text" file with your message, you can insert the file in the body of your message using the <Control>R (Read in a File) command. Plain text files are files created by text editors such as Pico, the editor you use when you compose a Pine message. For information about inserting files, with your cursor in the Message Text: field, press <Control>G (Get Help).
Pine stores messages sent to you (including those you send to yourself) in your INBOX folder. Messages remain in your INBOX folder until you delete them or save them in other folders. (You will learn more about the INBOX and other folders in "Pine Folders".)
To see a list of the messages you have received in your INBOX folder:
If you have any messages, they are listed as shown in the following example for the user named "jhughes."
See "Moving Between Folders" if you want to list the messages in a folder other than your INBOX.
PINE 3.90 FOLDER INDEX Folder:INBOX Message 3 of 3 NEW
D 1 Jan 10 Mu Li (486) Proposal + A 2 Jan 10 Christine Smith (500) NSF + N 3 Jan 11 To: jhughes (448) Test
? Help M Main Menu P PrevMsg - Prev Page D Delete R Reply O OTHER CMDS V [ViewMsg] N NextMsg Spc Next Page U Undelete F Forward
Figure 4. A Pine Folder Index Screen
The selected message is highlighted. The first column on the left shows the message status. It may be blank, or it may contain "N" if the message is new (unread), "+" if the message was sent directly to you (it is not a copy or from a list), "A" if you have answered the message (using the Reply command), or "D" if you have marked the message for deletion. The rest of the columns in the message line show you the message number, date sent, sender, size, and subject. For details, press ? (Help).
Most of the commands you need to handle your messages are listed at the bottom of the screen. You can type O (Other Commands) to see the additional commands that are available. You do not need to see these commands on the screen to use them. That is, you never need to type O as a prefix for any other command.
To view a message:
To see the next message, press N (NextMsg).
To return to the index, press I (Index).
To reply to a message that you have selected at the Folder Index screen or that you are viewing:
You are asked whether you want to include the original message in your reply. Also, if the original message was sent to more than one person, you are asked if you want to reply to all recipients. Think carefully before you answer--it may be that you do not want your reply to be sent to more than just the author of the message. It is always a good idea to verify that the addresses in the To: and Cc: fields are correct before you send a message.
Incoming messages may quickly accumulate in your INBOX folder. Imagine what it would be like to find one hundred messages there. If you use email often, this may happen sooner than you expect. How should you organize the messages you wish to save?
Organizing Messages With Folders
A Pine folder, like a folder in your file cabinet, is a storage place for messages. As you use email, you accumulate many messages and can organize them into different folders by topic, correspondent, date, or any other category that is meaningful to you. You can create your own folders, and Pine automatically provides three:
Messages--whether they are in your INBOX or your other Pine folders--occupy storage space, and your storage space is limited.
Do not keep too many messages in your INBOX folder. A large INBOX reduces performance: it takes longer to display large lists of messages when you start Pine, and it requires more time to move between messages.
Delete your incoming messages right away if you do not want them, or save them to other folders if you do.
Moving Between Folders
When you start Pine and press I (Index) at the Main Menu, you see a list of messages in your INBOX folder. If you want to see the messages in another folder, you need to go to that folder. The following text shows you two ways to go to another folder from nearly anywhere in Pine.
To access your folders and the messages that are stored in them:
You see a Folder List screen like the following, in which your current folder is highlighted. (When you start Pine, the current folder is your INBOX.)
PINE 3.90 FOLDER LIST Folder:INBOX 3 Messages INBOX sent-mail saved-messages 101class
? Help M Main Menu P PrevFldr - PrevPage D Delete R Rename O OTHER CMDS V [ViewFldr] N NextFldr Spc NextPage A Add
Figure 5. A Pine Folder List Screen
To move most quickly to the index of another folder:
If you forget the name of the folder, press <Control>T (ToFldrs) and select a folder using the commands at the bottom of the screen.
You see the list of messages in the folder.
To delete a folder and all of the messages it contains:
You are asked:
Really delete "folder"?
The folder disappears. There is no way to undelete a deleted folder.
When you save a message, you are given a choice: you can store it in the saved- messages folder, or you can specify another folder.
Once you save a message, the copy in the INBOX folder is automatically marked for deletion so that you will only have one copy. When you quit Pine, you are asked to confirm whether or not you want to expunge the copy from the INBOX folder. To conserve space, it is a good idea to do this.
Saving a Message to the Saved-Messages Folder
To save a message to the saved-messages folder:
Type S (Save).
You are asked if you want to save the message to the saved-messages folder or to another folder:
SAVE to folder [saved-messages]:
Pine saves your message, and you see the following:
[Message "#" copied to folder "saved-messages" and marked deleted]
You will find it useful to create additional folders for storing messages on particular subjects.
To save a message to a folder you specify:
Type S (Save) to save a message.
You are asked if you want to save it to the saved-messages folder or another folder:
SAVE to folder [saved-messages]:
For example, to save a message to a folder named "papers," type papers and press <Return>.
If this is the first time you have named this folder, you see the message:
Folder "papers" doesn't exist. Create?
Type y or press <Return> to create the folder.
Once you have created the folder, or whenever you type the name of a folder that already exists, you see a message like this one:
[Message "#" copied to folder "papers" and marked deleted]
To forward to a message that you have selected at the Folder Index screen or that you are viewing:
A copy of the message opens and the To: field is highlighted.
You keep your Pine folders clean by routinely deleting messages. There are two steps to deleting a message: marking it for deletion, then expunging it.
To mark for deletion a message you do not want:
If you are looking at the Folder Index screen when you mark a message for deletion, a "D" appears in the left-hand column of the message line.
If you are looking at the Message Text screen when you mark a message for deletion, a "DEL appears in the upper right corner of your screen. The next message, if there is one, appears.
Undeleting a Message
If you change your mind about a message you have marked for deletion, use the U (Undelete) command to remove the deletion mark any time before you expunge a message. After you expunge a message, Pine cannot get it back.
Expunging a Message
A message that is marked for deletion remains in Pine until you expunge it. You can expunge a message that is marked for deletion at any time, or you can wait until you quit Pine. Once you have a few messages marked for deletion, you may want to expunge them before you continue to work, because it is easier to look through a folder index that contains fewer messages.
To expunge a message:
You are asked:
Expunge "#" message(s) from "folder"?
Messages marked for deletion disappear.
As you use email, you build a list of email correspondents. Some of their addresses may be difficult to type or remember. You can use the Pine Address Book to store email addresses for individuals or groups, to create easily remembered "nicknames" for these addresses, and to quickly retrieve an email address when you are composing a message. Here is a sample page from an Address Book:
Figure 6. A Pine Address Book Screen
PINE 3.90 ADDRESS BOOK Folder:INBOX Message 1 of 3
gomez Gonzalez, George email@example.com mu Li, Mu firstname.lastname@example.org chris Smith, Christine K. email@example.com rt Research Team DISTRIBUTION LIST: gomez chris firstname.lastname@example.org
? Help M MainMenu P PrevEntry - PrevPage D Delete S CreateList O OTHER CMDS E [Edit] N NextEntry Spc NextPage A Add Z AddToList
There are two ways to set up an individual address in your Address Book. You can add an address manually or take it more easily from an incoming message. With either method, you specify nicknames for your correspondents. You can also set up a group (list) address in your Address Book, but only manually.
Adding an Individual Address
To add an individual address manually:
To take an individual address from a message you are viewing or have selected in the index:
If you routinely send messages to a group, you can create a list address. That way you do not need to type each personŐs address every time you send a message to the group.
To create a list address:
When composing a message, at the To: or the Cc: (Carbon Copy) fields you can enter an email address in any of the following ways:
For example, if your Address Book looked like the one in Figure 6, you could type the following nickname in the To: field:
After you pressed <Return>, Pine would provide the full address for Mu from the Address Book as follows:
To: Mu Li <email@example.com>
Move to the Address Book (with your cursor in the To: or Cc: field press <Control>T) and use the arrow keys to highlight the name you want. Type S (Select) or press <Return>.
Pine offers other options. To use them, at the Pine Main Menu, type S (Setup). You see a message asking you to choose from the options below or cancel:
Choosing Printer Variables
Pine provides three options for printing. When choosing the appropriate option, you should contact your departmental computer consultant for advice.
To choose the printing method for Pine:
Once you have chosen the printer variables, to print messages from either the Folder Index screen or the View Message screen, type Y (Print). You will be asked to confirm your choice.
Note that you can also use this command to print Pine's online help text.
Pine has other useful features that have not been covered in this introductory document. Although originally designed for novice email users, Pine has evolved to support many advanced features. It has become an easy-to-use program for sending, receiving, and filing Internet electronic mail messages and bulletin board (Netnews) messages including multimedia attachments. There is also a PC version of Pine for use with IMAP mail servers. If you would like to learn more about Pine:
Electronic mail is a unique medium of communication. Messages can be replied to or forwarded with speed and ease, and email has the potential to reach a wide audience. These features can also be misused. There are a few basic guidelines for the responsible use of email that can help you avoid common mistakes while you enjoy the full benefits of this technology.
The privacy of an email message cannot be guaranteed. An email message may be forwarded, printed, or permanently stored by any recipient. Email can be misdirected, even when you are careful. Do not put something in an email message that you would not want read by everybody. And if you receive a message intended for someone else, let the sender know.
Email does not show the subtleties of voice or body language. Avoid attempts at irony or sarcasm. The most effective email is short, clear, and relevant. If you receive a message that makes you upset, do not respond immediately, and in any case, avoid "flaming," that is, sending an angry or rude message.
As you use email, keep the following tips in mind:
To quit Pine:
You are asked:
Really quit pine?