I am very happy to announce the much-delayed second public release of
the metamail software. (If you were a beta tester, please note that the
new version is slightly improved, and you, too, should upgrade). This
second release, metamail version 2.2, is available as a compressed tar
file via the following various mechanisms, at least one of which should
work for nearly everyone:
1. Anonymous ftp from thumper.bellcore.com, directory pub/nsb, file
2. Send mail to "mailserver(_at_)thumper(_dot_)bellcore(_dot_)com" with a
of "metamail-sources". You will get back the sources in MIME format,
which means you need to already have an older version of metamail or
some other MIME reader in order for it to be useful. If you do,
however, you should get the compressed tar file automatically extracted
from the mail and stuck into a file with a funny name on /tmp.
3. Send mail to "mailserver(_at_)thumper(_dot_)bellcore(_dot_)com" with a
of "metamail-sources-uu". You will get back the sources as a UUENCODED
compressed tar file, probably in several pieces. This is the most
painful way, but probably the only option if you have neither ftp access
nor a previous version of a MIME-compliant mail reader. The good news
is that you'll be able to use method #2 for later upgrades.
4. The new version will probably appear on the funet archive before too
long. (This message is notifying the funet administrators that a new
version is available.)
5. If you can't retrieve the software using any of the above methods,
send me mail.
The new version has several major advantages over the old version, and I
recommend that all metamail users upgrade. Aside from fixing one
security hole (the postcheck program) and one core-dumping bug, the new
release includes dozens of additional fixes and enhancements. In
particular, it includes greatly enhanced portability (it now runs on
almost every UNIX variant, plus MS-DOS), vastly improved documentation
(man pages), additional mailcap entries, directions for patching several
additional mail readers (MH-E, Mush, Batmail, UUPC), and a new program,
"mailto", that makes it much easier for users to generate their own
multimedia mail. There is also now a "contrib" directory that includes
a couple of MIME-related tools for Emacs and a README.DOS file for DOS
users. (DOS users should note that metamail has not been nearly as
extensively tested yet on DOS as on UNIX, but it is reported to
Beyond simply replacing your old version of the software with the new
version, you should also compare the new prototype mailcap file to your
site's mailcap file, as there are several new entries you may want.
Finally, several of the mailer patches have been improved, so if you
have any complaints about your mailer's behavior with metamail, you may
want to re-patch. (Users of some variants of Berkeley mail, in
particular, may find the new patches essential in order to work with
xmail or mailtool.)
A more complete and detailed list of changes is in the file
"2.2.CHANGES" in the pub/nsb directory on thumper. If you don't have
ftp access, send mail to mailserver(_at_)thumper(_dot_)bellcore(_dot_)com with
line of "2.2.CHANGES".
Note that I did not make this version available as a patch file, because
there were so many changes that a patch file is actually BIGGER. I
intend to provide patch files in future releases.
Thanks are due to all the many people who helped with this release of
metamail -- you are now acknowledged in a CREDITS file in the top-level
directory. And thanks to all of you who have given me so much
encouragement since the first public release of metamail.
-- Nathaniel Borenstein <nsb(_at_)thumper(_dot_)bellcore(_dot_)com>