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ECN E-Mail: Using the vacation program

Running the "vacation" command from an ECN terminal will let you set up an "away message" for your ECN e-mail.

To run the vacation program, from your HOME directory, type:

% /usr/bin/vacation

This will start the interactive vacation program.



If you are going to be out of the office, not reading your email, you can use the vacation program to automatically reply to your incoming mail.

When you run it from the command line, vacation will create a file called .vacation.msg, which contains the message that is automatically sent. It also starts an editor for you to modify the message. Which editor is invoked is determined by your EDITOR environment variable. If you do not have a default editor set in your start-up shell file, then vi will be set.

A .forward file is also created if one does not exist in your home directory. Once created, the .forward file will contain a line of the form:

\username, "|/usr/bin/vacation username"

One copy of an incoming message is sent to the username and another copy is piped into vacation.

If a .forward file is present in your home directory, it will ask whether you want to remove it, which disables vacation and ends the installation.

The program automatically creates .vacation.pag and .vacation.dir, which contain a list of senders when vacation .vacation.dir, which contain a list of senders when vacation is enabled.


Activation and Deactivation

The presence of the .forward file determines whether or not vacation is disabled or enabled. To disable vacation, remove the .forward file, or move it to a new name.



In ~/.forward:

\cathyc, "/usr/bin/vacation cathyc"

Upon invoking /usr/bin/vacation, the program will tell you that a .vacation.msg file must be created, and will then put you into an editor to edit a vacation message template (the .vacation.msg file):

In ~/.vacation.msg:

From: cathyc (via the vacation program)
Subject: away from my mail

I will not be reading my mail for a while.
Your mail regarding "$SUBJECT" will be read when I return.

You can edit the first line of the file. The second line:

Your mail regarding "$SUBJECT" will be read when I return.

should remain. The sender's "subject" header will be replaced in the reply mail.

For more information, type:

% man vacation

Last Reviewed: 9/6/2007 -ag

Last Modified: Dec 19, 2016 11:12 am US/Eastern
Created: Sep 6, 2007 1:41 pm GMT-4 by admin