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What is the Best Email Program for Linux?

Pine is an email handler that is much friendlier than the plain ol' mail command. Pine sport s a full-screen interface and a context-sensitive list of commands on each screen. Even though it's text-based (no GUI) it's very easy to use and has enough features to satisfy almost any user. I personally recommend Pine and use it in a Linux environment, even though I access the Internet from a Windows machine. In case you're wondering why an email system would be named after a tree, here's the scoop. Pine was originally based on another email program called Elm (short for "ELectronic Mail"), written by Internet pioneer Dave Taylor. The name Pine was first an acronym for "Pine Is Not Elm," but today the official title is Program for Internet News and Email. (Revisionists: 1, Geeks: 0film at 11.)

Starting Pine

To fire up the Pine program, use the following command, and you'll see the Pine main menu screen:

% pine

PINE 4.10 MAIN MENU Folder: INBOX 3 Messages

? HELP - Get help using Pine
C COMPOSE MESSAGE - Compose and send/post a message
I MESSAGE INDEX - View messages in current folder
L FOLDER LIST - Select a folder OR news group to view
A ADDRESS BOOK - Update address book
S SETUP - Configure or update Pine
Q QUIT - Exit the Pine program

Copyright 1989-1999. PINE is a trademark of the U. of Washington

? Help       P PrevCmd     R RelNotes
O OTHER CMDS > [ListFldrs] N NextCmd   K KBLock

Typically, I press I to jump right into my INBOX, but Pine also offers several options: pressing C to send a message, L to see a list of my saved mail folders, or A to manage my address book. (We'll touch on those options later.)

If you want to bypass this opening screen, you can add the -i flag to your pine command and go directly to the INBOX screen.

For more information on the pine command, see the pine manual.

Previous Lesson: Other Mail Commands
Next Lesson: The Pine Inbox



Comments - most recent first
(Please feel free to answer questions posted by others!)

john     (11 Sep 2014, 22:31)
Go easy on me will you? I'm a newbee at Linux, but I am learning. It may take some time to learn since I'm what some call an old goat. That's ok, I'm not dead. My OS is Ubuntu 14.04 LTS. I like the GUI, but I want to learn the rest. Thanks.

Majed     (07 Dec 2011, 09:09)
@phani go to h t m l
phani kumar     (05 Feb 2011, 10:20)
how to install pine in windows
Russ     (13 Feb 2010, 21:44)
I am using ubuntu 9.1, with firefox for web surfing. I use aol for my email and just log in and off I go. Works good for me!
lslackware     (09 Feb 2010, 12:24)
1) wget
2) sudo apt-get install libssl0.9.7
3) sudo dpkg -i pine_4.64_i386.deb

Bob Rankin     (29 Jan 2010, 07:40)
Instructions for installing Pine are here:
sumeet     (29 Jan 2010, 06:36)
how to install pine in ubuntu

I welcome your comments. However... I am puzzled by many people who say "Please send me the Linux tutorial." This website *is* your Linux Tutorial! Read everything here, learn all you can, ask questions if you like. But don't ask me to send what you already have. :-)

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