Each HTML file that is generated for a message contains (where applicable):
In addition, Hypermail will convert references in each message to email addresses and URLs to hyperlinks so they can be selected. Email addresses can be converted to mailto: URLs or links to a CGI mail program.
To complement each set of HTML messages, four index files are created which sort the articles by date received, thread, subject, and author. Each entry in these index files are links to the individual articles and provide a bird's-eye view of every archived message.
Hypermail was originally developed and designed by Tom Gruber for Enterprise Integration Technologies (EIT) in Common Lisp. It was later rewritten in C by Kevin Hughes while at EIT. Hypermail is now being maintained by Kent Landfield <email@example.com>.
To see what Hypermail can do, take a look at these Hypermail-produced archives:
Usage: hypermail [options] Options: -a URL : URL to other archives -b URL : URL to archive information -c file : Configuration file to read in -d dir : The directory to save HTML files in -i : Read messages from standard input -l label : What to name the output archive -m mbox : Mail archive to read in -M : Use metadata -n listaddr : The submission address of the list -o keyword=val: Set config item -p : Show progress -s htmlsuffix : HTML file suffix (.html, .htm, ..) -t : Use Tables -T : Use index tables -u : Append all input messages -v : Show configuration variables only -V : Show version information and exit -x : Overwrite previous messages -0 number : Delete messages -1 : Read only one mail from input -L lang : Specify language to use (de en es sv fi fr is pl)
Using the flags -h, or -? with Hypermail will display this usage summary.
To tell Hypermail what mailbox to read in, use the -m option. If articles will be sent to Hypermail through standard input, use the -i option. Note that the -m and -i options can't be used together! By default, Hypermail will look for a file called mbox to read its articles in from.
The -d option specifies the directory to put the HTML files and index files that are created into. If the directory doesn't exist, a new one will be created with the name that is specified. If the -d option isn't used, Hypermail will look for a directory with the same name as the mailbox or will create one if needed.
example 1: hypermail -m "wu-ftpd" -d "/wu-ftpd" example 2: cat "/var/spool/mail/wu-ftpd" | hypermail -i
Note that Hypermail can only read messages in the UNIX mailbox format! Such archives are typically RFC 822 mail messages appended to each other that look similar to this:
From firstname.lastname@example.org Mon Jan 1 00:01:30 1994 Date: Mon, 1 Jan 1994 00:01:15 PDT From: email@example.com To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Hello, world! Hi, everyone, just saying hello! From email@example.com Mon Jan 1 00:02:00 1994 Date: Mon, 1 Jan 1994 00:01:45 PDT ...
The messages are typically separated by lines in this format:
From firstname.lastname@example.org Fri Jul 1 00:18:20 1994
The -c option tells Hypermail to read in settings from a configuration file. By default, the program will attempt to read settings from a file called .hmrc in the user's home directory if it exists.
In the configuration file, variables are set in the following manner:
variable = numberThe complete set of variables that Hypermail recognizes is described in the Configuration Options section.
variable = "string"
Archive Interface Options:
-b "About URL",
-a "Other Archives URL"
The -l option tells Hypermail what to call the archive - the name that is specified will be in the title of the index pages so users know what sort of messages are being archived.
The -a option includes a link labelled "Other mail archives" in the index pages to any specified URL. This way users who are looking at the archive have the opportunity to go to pointers to other mail archives. By default, this will be a pointer to the parent directory in which the archive files reside.
The -b option includes a link labelled "About this archive" in the index pages to any specified URL. This way users who are looking at the archive have the opportunity to go to information about the archive.
example: hypermail -l "WU-FTPD Development Archives" -a "http://www.landfield.com/wu-ftpd/" -b "http://www.landfield.com/wu-ftpd/mail-archive/"
In the index files for the archive, the above setting will produce something like this:
(top of page)
(list of indexed articles below)
The -x option tells Hypermail to explicitly overwrite any previous HTML files that may exist. Use this option only when it is desirable to completely rewrite the entire archive.
The -u option tells Hypermail to add message(s) to the end of the existing HTML file archive and integrate them into it by links and cross-references. All archive index files will be regenerated to include the new message.
Hypermail used to require that you only send it one message at a time when using the -u option, but it should now work reasonably when given mailboxes containing multiple messages.
When using the -u option, don't send any messages that Hypermail has already processed. If you want Hypermail to recognize that some messages are old messages that shouldn't be added to the archive again, send it a mailbox with a complete set of messages and avoid the -u option.
example 1: cat "one.letter" | hypermail -i -u -d "/wu-ftpd/mail-archives" example 2: hypermail -u -m "one.letter" -d "/wu-ftpd/mail-archives" example 3: hypermail -m "mailbox" -d "/wu-ftpd/mail-archives" -x example 4: hypermail -m "mailbox" -d "/wu-ftpd/mail-archives"
Note that no matter what options are specified, the index files are always rewritten. The date when Hypermail was last run is included in index pages, so it's easy to tell when the archive was last updated.
The -p option shows a progress report as Hypermail reads in and writes out messages - the number of files that Hypermail is reading and writing and the file names of the directory and files created are shown. This information is written to standard output.
The -v option shows the configuration variables and their values that Hypermail would use if it was run with the same configuration file and command line options. This is useful when starting up a new list or modifying a list configuration file. Once the information is displayed, Hypermail terminates and not actual processing occurs.
The -V option prints the Hypermail version information. Once the information is displayed, Hypermail terminates and not actual processing occurs.
The -0 option list message numbers that should be deleted from the html archive. The mbox is not changed. It is equivalent to the delete_msgnum option.
setenv HM_MBOX /home/john/my_mailbox setenv HM_FILEMODE 0600
In the configuration file, variables must be in lowercase and separated by their values with an equals (=) sign. Blank lines and lines beginning with the # character are skipped:
mbox = "/home/john/my_mailbox" filemode = 0600While the example uses quotes ("), they is not required when used in the configuration file.
Below is a list of the more important configuration variables. For a complete list, see hmrc.html.
de (de_DE) - GermanThe directory /usr/share/i18n/locales on many systems has the locale codes that are available on that system.
en (en_US) - English
es (es_ES) - Spanish
fi (fi_FI) - Finnish
fr (fr_FR) - French
el (el) - Greek
gr (el_GR) - Greek
is (is_IS) - Icelandic
pl (pl_PL) - Polish
sv (sv_SE) - Swedish
Define as 2 for more complex conversion to html similar to that in txt2html.pl. Showhtml = 2 will normally produce nicer looking results than showhtml = 1, and showhtml = 0 will look pretty dull, but 1 and 2 run risks of altering the appearance in undesired ways.
Settings are processed in this order:
It is important to note that this is different from many programs. In Hypermail's case what you put on the command line DOES NOT override what is specified in the configuration file. This may change in the future.
Sorting: In the date and thread index files, note that these lists are sorted by the date the articles were received by the system's mail daemon, not by the date they were written on. The order of articles in the date index may not necessarily match the order in which the article files are written and linked together. Because of this, it is a good idea to make sure the mailbox is sorted by date with the most recent messages towards the bottom.
Running Hypermail automatically: All that's needed to start archiving email messages is to set up Hypermail to do incremental updates in your /etc/aliases file. Here's what an entry might look like (the last line is one unbroken line):
#After adding the entry, make sure newaliases is run to update the mail aliases. This entry will run Hypermail and update/create the archive whenever a new message is received. Hypermail also works well as a cron job. Because sendmail may run Hypermail as different users, you will want to make sure that archive directories and files are made readable and writeable by a trusted sendmail user (or read/writable by everyone if you can't do that) when they are created. This will ensure that there will be no problems incrementally updating the archive.
# WU-FTPD Mailing List Archives
wulist: "|/usr/local/bin/hypermail -i -u -d /wu-ftpd/mail-archive -l \"WU-FTPD Mailing List Archive\""
If you are running Linux kernel version 2.4 or higher, dnotify looks like it provides another way to automate Hypermail.
Including HTML in messages: One can include formatted HTML in message bodies by enclosing the HTML with the <HTML> tag (in either uppercase or lowercase). This tag must be on a line by itself:
This text will not be parsed... <html> this text will be parsed as HTML. </html> This text will not be parsed...
There is no limit to how often the <HTML> tag can be used in an article.
If you are are looking for more information on Hypermail and its features and developmental status, check out SourceForge: Project Info - hypermail and hypermail.org. Additional documentation and the hypermail development list archives are available there.
Hypermail is available free of charge under GNU Public License. More details about the GPL are available at http://www.fsf.org/copyleft/gpl.html.
Currently, SourceForge: Project Info - hypermail has the most recent version.
A version (probably older) is also available via FTP from ftp.landfield.com/hypermail/hypermail.tar.gz.
The Hypermail Development Center also has beta development versions of hypermail available from time to time.
I'd also like to thank Kevin Hughes for developing the initial C version of Hypermail. Kevin also provided a great deal of assistance with restarting the current hypermail development.
There are a great deal of people that also contributed to Hypermail's development. The Hypermail Development Center Credits page is an attempt to let you know just who they are.
Hypermail development is currently being fostered by <Kent Landfield>.
hypermail(1), hmrc(4), Hypermail List Configuration File. and Customizing Hypermail Pages
Please send any feature requests, bug fixes, and comments on Hypermail to <email@example.com>.
Last updated December 26, 2001