Mail/News Clients

Mail Clients help you retrieve (Fetchmail), sort (Procmail), read and compose responses (Nail, Mutt, Pine, Kmail, Balsa, Evolution, Mozilla) to email.

News clients also help you retrieve, sort, read and compose responses, but these messages travel through USENET (a worldwide bulletin board system) using the Network News Transfer Protocol (NNTP).


Introduction to Nail

The Nail package contains nail, a command-line Mail User Agent derived from Berkeley Mail which is intended to provide the functionality of the POSIX mailx command with additional support for MIME messages, IMAP (including caching), POP3, SMTP, S/MIME, message threading/sorting, scoring, and filtering. Nail is especially useful for writing scripts and batch processing.

Package information

Nail dependencies


OpenSSL-0.9.7e or Mozilla NSS (from Mozilla-1.7.5 or Firefox-1.0 or Thunderbird-1.0), Heimdal-0.6.3 or MIT krb5-1.4 (for IMAP GSSAPI authentication) and MTA

Installation of Nail

Install Nail by running the following commands.

make SENDMAIL=/usr/sbin/sendmail

Now, as the root user:

make PREFIX=/usr install UCBINSTALL=/usr/bin/install &&
ln -sf nail /usr/bin/mail &&
ln -sf nail /usr/bin/mailx

Command explanations

make SENDMAIL=/usr/sbin/sendmail: This changes the default MTA path of /usr/lib/sendmail.

make PREFIX=/usr install UCBINSTALL=/usr/bin/install: This changes the default installation path of /usr/local and the default install command path of /usr/ucb.

Configuring Nail

Config files

/etc/nail.rc, ~/.mailrc and ~/.nailrc


Installed Programs: nail
Installed Libraries: None
Installed Directories: None
Symbolic Links: mail and mailx

Short Descriptions


is a command-line mail user agent compatible with the mail command found on commercial Unix versions.


is a symbolic link to nail.


is a symbolic link to nail.