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/bin/mail replacement (next generation of mailx)



I would like to propose upgrade the "mailx" package (cmdline /bin/mail interface) to the newer source from the Heirloom project: http://heirloom.sourceforge.net/mailx.html . The new source is derived from the old one and is fully compatible with it.

Such a replacement (from old bsd mailx-8.1.x to the Heirloom's mailx-12.x) is already done in OpenSuse and Slackware.

Initially, the project was named as "nail". Since the version of 12.x it was renamed to the ordinary name of "mailx", (because the original mailx-8.x no more developed). Under the name of "nail" it is already in Fedora. I continue to maintain it as "nail", while the original mailx-8.x is used.

Mailx-12.x adds a lot of useful functionality to the "cmdline mail command", which seems to be expected long years ago. Without it, some tasks can be performed only by TUI or even GUI applications, which makes impossible to automate things by scripts.

My initial motivation to add nail/mailx to Fedora was inspired by the time of switching to Dovecot IMAP server and recommendation to switch from mailbox to Maildir format. The current /bin/mail do not work with Maildir, hence it cannot be used for reading mail from cmdline at all (until you still use mailbox format). Besides the Maildir support (which looks like a strong requirement for the upgrading), there are such features as MIME support, encodings, attachments, POP3/IMAP, direct SMTP, SSL etc., see http://heirloom.sourceforge.net/mailx.html

Note, that SSL support can be provided either by OpenSSL or by NSS. The use of NSS matches the recent requirements of Fedora's "Security Consolidation".

Any comments?


Dmitry Butskoy
http://www.fedoraproject.org/wiki/DmitryButskoy


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