slrn(1) User Manuals slrn(1)
slrn - An easy to use NNTP / spool based newsreader.
slrn [-aCdknmw] [-C-] [-Dname] [-f newsrc-file] [-i config-file] [-k0]
[--create] [-create] [--debug file] [--help] [--inews] [--kill-log
file] [--nntp [-h server] [-p port]] [--spool] [--version]
slrn is an easy to use but powerful NNTP / spool based newsreader.
It is highly customizable, supports scoring, free key bindings and can
be extended using the s-lang macro language.
To use slrn, you either need to set the NNTPSERVER environment variable
to the server you want to read news from or specify a server on the
command line. A newsrc file is needed, too. In case you do not yet
have one, you can create it using ‘‘slrn -f ~/.jnewsrc --create’’.
Inside slrn, online help is available via the ’?’ key.
The following options can be used when calling slrn from the command
line. They override both environment variables and settings in private
and global configuration files.
-a Read active file when checking for new news.
-C Use colors without checking if the terminal supports it.
-C- Don’t use colors, even if the terminal supports it.
-d Get group descriptions (taglines) from the news server. Please
note that this may cause a download of several hundred kilobytes
and thus can take a long time. The output is saved to a local
file, so you only need to do this once. May not be specified in
combination with --create.
-Dname Add name to the list of predefined preprocessing tokens, which
can be used in your slrnrc file to have conditionally inter-
preted lines. See the slrn reference manual for details.
Use file as the newsrc file for this session. This is perma-
nently set via the server configuration command.
Connect to the NNTP server on host, overriding the $NNTPSERVER
environment variable. If no port is given, the default NNTP
port (119) will be used. This option is only accepted after
--nntp or when NNTP is the default mode.
Read file as the initialization (slrnrc) file. The default is
to use .slrnrc (or slrn.rc on VMS, OS/2 and Windows) in your
-k Don’t read the score file.
-k0 Read the score file, but inhibit expensive scoring. A scoring
rule is expensive if it contains header lines that are not
included in the server’s overview files. This makes applying
-m Force mouse support (without checking if it works on the current
-n Do not check for new groups (usually resulting in a faster
-p N Use port N to connect to the NNTP server.
-w Wait for a key before switching to full screen mode, allowing
the user to read startup messages.
Read the active file (the list of all groups) from the news
server to create an initial newsrc file.
Obsolete version of --create.
Write debugging output to file.
--help Show help for command line switches.
Use an external inews program to post articles.
Keep a log of all articles that were killed by the scorefile in
--nntp Use builtin NNTP support for reading and posting (an external
program is used to post if slrn was compiled with --enable-
--pull Spool outgoing articles locally for slrnpull to send.
Read directly from spool.
Print version and some compile time settings.
slrn uses the following list of environment variables. Note: environ-
ment variables can be overridden by configuration files or command line
If this variable is set, slrn will assume that your terminal
supports ANSI color sequences. It also enables a workaround for
a problem with the mouse reporting when running slrn inside of
If set, slrn assumes that X11 is running.
EDITOR See $SLRN_EDITOR.
HOME See $SLRNHOME.
If no hostname is given, the value of this environment variable
NAME Set it to your realname, if slrn can’t determine it otherwise.
You can use this variable to tell slrn which NNTP server to con-
nect to. It can be overridden by the command line option -h.
The name of your organization.
On unix systems, slrn pipes the current article to ‘‘lpr -P
$PRINTER’’ to print it.
PWD This variable is only used on unix systems that don’t support
getcwd(3). In these cases, it should be set to the current
directory at the time slrn is invoked. This is usually done by
the shell and nothing the user has to worry about.
The value of this variable is used as the default if you do not
set replyto in your slrnrc file.
You can set this variable to a file slrn should read its online
help from. This is only needed when the default key bindings
have been changed and you want the help function to reflect
this. If unset, slrn looks for help.txt in the configuration
When interpreting filenames as relative to your home directory,
slrn uses this variable to find out what your home directory is.
If $SLRNHOME is unset, $HOME is used instead.
The editor to start for editing articles. If this variable is
unset, slrn subsequently looks at $SLANG_EDITOR, $EDITOR and
TMP Indicates the directory in which slrn should save temporary
TMPDIR See $TMP.
USER Your username, if slrn can’t get it from the system by other
VISUAL See $SLRN_EDITOR.
User-specific configuration file.
System-wide configuration file. config_dir is set at compile
time (/usr/local/etc by default).
default newsrc file for slrn.
Per user newsgroups descriptions.
Global newsgroup descriptions. share_dir is set at compile time
(/usr/local/share/slrn by default).
The documentation that comes with slrn, especially manual.txt, FAQ and
score.txt. If you consider writing s-lang macros, also look at
README.macros and slrnfuns.txt.
Recent versions of the slrn manual and the FAQ as well as additional
information can also be found on slrn’s official home page:
Questions about slrn that are not covered by existing documentation may
be posted to the newsgroup news.software.readers where they will be
answered by knowledgeable users or the author of the program. In addi-
tion, announcements of new versions of slrn are posted there.
The latest version of slrn is available from http://prdownloads.source-
John E. Davis <email@example.com>
Please send any bug reports to the current maintainer, Thomas Schultz
Unix August 2003 slrn(1)
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