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Bug#933: Pine wants to post my email reply, and other problems

[see the bug archives for previous discussion.  I don't propose to
 quote it all.]

>The first question is a discussion about how the posting facility
>works with pine. The second problem is, in fact, the solution to the
>first, in that it disables the feature that problem one found

Is this the `two wrongs make a right' concept of software maintenance?
I'll assume you meant that facetiously...

>I can do nothing functional about either of these issues.

As to the issue of Pine's attempts to post email, I should have
thought that the correct action (in the absence of any wish to try and
fix it directly) would be to report the problem to the upstream

It is observed fact that Pine and programs with a similar policy on
what constitutes a news article have a habit of posting to USENET
messages which were only intended to be mailed.  This is a user
interface deficiency rather than a bug in the actual functionality,
but given that Pine's only good point[1] is that it has a nicer user
interface than most mailers, I'd say it's a serious bug.

>I feel certain that Ian J. is more capable than myself at figuring
>out how to *properly* configure INN to work compatably with pine's
>NNTP feature

As to the NNTP problems: AFAICT the inewsinn package's postinst places
the name of the news server in /etc/news/server.  Pine's postinst
should either look there or, should there be no such file, it should
ask for a value to put there.  Having established a sensible value it
should insert it into the global Pine configuration file in the right

This much is certainly nothing whatsoever to do with INN; rather, it
is a serious functional bug in the Debian Pine package.  Looking at
the postinst for 3.91-3 (which may be out of date) I can find no
attemt to determine a sane value for the NNTP server.

(/etc/news/server should be documented somewhere.  The fact that it
isn't makes it clear why this problem has actually arisen.  I'd
suggest mailers.txt but many of Pine's infelicities stem from
confusion between mail and news, so perhaps that's not such a good
idea l-)

Moving on...

The message which according to Ian immediately erased is definitely a
bug in Pine, and again it should be reported to the upstream

This much is also nothing to do with INN.

The dodgy Path: line is (AFAIK) not something which will break posting
in and of itself - indeed, if Ian is getting to see it at all then he
must have made a posting successfully - but is certainly something
that ought not to be there, and if it is established that Pine is
inventing a bogus Path: line then this, too, should be reported to the
upstream maintainers.  As Ian says, it's not really Pine's job to do

One of the problems with USENET is that the written documentation is
widely scattered when it exists at all; one has to go by the de facto
standard of what other software does.  This makes it hard to argue
about the `right' way to do things.

Richard Kettlewell
http://www.elmail.co.uk/staff/richard/                    richard@uk.geeks.org

		   It was definitely murder - but was it art?

[1] OK, I'm a bit prejudiced as I don't actually like the Pine user
    interface.  If anyone wants to argue the pros and cons of Pine as
    a mailer with me then they are invited to do so by private email
    rather than debian-*.

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