News articles and mail messages use many "header lines" for addressing and other information. Usually, you only have to worry about the three that are displayed in the simple view in message windows: Newsgroups, To, and Subject. The other headers are only occasionally useful. In this appendix we describe all of the header lines and what they are used for.
Headers lines always come at the start of the message, and are separated from the body of the message by one or more blank lines.
|Newsgroups||*||This header contains the name of the group to which you are posting the article. You can list multiple groups if you wish, separated by commas or returns. When you send the message, MT-NewsWatcher edits the list to be separated by commas, which is required by the Usenet rules. Posting an article to multiple groups is called "cross-posting". Try to use cross-posting sparingly. It is considered quite rude to cross-post to a large number of groups. MT-NewsWatcher reminds you of this if you try to cross-post to more than 5 groups. There is an absolute limit of 20 groups in a single cross-posted message.|
|To||*||This header contains the email address of the primary recipient of a mail message. You can list multiple recipients if you wish. The current version of MT-NewsWatcher does not support any kind of "nicknames" or "aliases", so you must enter email addresses in full. Use commas or returns between addresses.|
|Subject||*||*||This header contains the subject of your message. MT-NewsWatcher may encode this header with MIME encoding (described in RFC 2047) if it contains non-Roman characters.|
This header identifies the sender of a message. MT-NewsWatcher generates the From header line in the following format:
where "email-address" is your email address and "full-name" is your full name, both of which are taken from the Personality being used to send the message.
|Organization||*||*||This optional header identifies the organization of the sender. MT-NewsWatcher uses the organization you enter in the Personality being used. If you don't specify an organization, the header line is not included in messages you send. Your news server may be configured to supply one in this case. MT-NewsWatcher may encode this header with MIME encoding (described in RFC 2047) if it contains non-Roman characters.|
|Cc||*||Use this optional header to list additional recipients of carbon copies of a mail message.|
|Bcc||*||List any blind carbon copy recipients in this header. "Blind" carbon copies are like carbon copies, except that the other recipients of the message do not see the blind carbon copy recipients and hence cannot tell that you sent them a copy.|
|Reply-To||*||*||Use this header if you want email replies to your message to be sent to an address which is different than the one you entered for the Personality being used. By default, email replies are sent to the address in the From header, which in turn is the one you entered for this Personality.|
Use this header if you want followups to be posted to some group or groups different than the ones you listed in the Newsgroups header. This is sometimes used with cross-posted messages to direct followups to one particular group rather than all the groups. For example:
You can also set this header to "poster" to request that replies to your posting be mailed to you directly rather than being posted to Usenet:
Whenever you followup to an article, MT-NewsWatcher checks for this header. If the header is present and the value is "poster", MT-NewsWatcher automatically opens the message window with the news icon unchecked and the mail icon checked (the reverse of the normal settings for a followup), and it displays a special alert to bring this to your attention.
This header line is restricted in the same way as the Newsgroups header line: MT-NewsWatcher warns you if it contains more than 5 groups, and it prohibits more than 20 groups.
|Keywords||*||*||You can list keywords describing your message in this header. In theory, if everyone used this header, it would make it easier to search for articles by keyword. Few people use it, however.|
Each news server administrator defines a collection of "distributions" for his or her news server, and assigns a default distribution to each group on the server. This header is usually used to limit the distribution of a message. In most cases, you should leave this header empty, in which case your news server will take care of distributing your message to the default distribution for the group to which you are posting your message. If you specify a distribution, your news server distributes the message to the more restrictive of the distribution you specify and the default distribution for the group. So you can distribute a message to a smaller number of sites than the default distribution for a group, but you cannot distribute a message to a larger number of sites than the default distribution for a group.
Unfortunately, the Distribution header doesn't always work properly, due to the complex topology of news feeds.
This header is used to record the path of computers through which a message travels as it is distributed. News administrators sometimes find it useful for troubleshooting. As the message is distributed from one news server to another, each server adds its domain name to the beginning of the header. The domain names are separated by exclamation points. MT-NewsWatcher generates an appropriate initial Path header for you in the form
At some sites, news administrators may require specially formatted Path header lines. If your site requires this, find out what Path header your administrator wants you to use, and enter it in the Extra news header lines field in the Signature & Headers dialog, which is accessible from the Personalities dialog. The Path header you enter overrides MT-NewsWatcher's default one. For example,
|Date||*||*||MT-NewsWatcher generates a Date header if you have configured your Mac with your local time zone. You do this with Apple's Map control panel, with the System 7.5 Date & Time control panel, or with third-party software like Pete Resnick's Network Time control panel. It is important that you have the date and time set correctly on your Mac, and that your time zone information is correct, or MT-NewsWatcher's Date header will be wrong. If you haven't configured your Mac with your local time zone, MT-NewsWatcher does not generate a Date header. Most news and mail servers will supply one for you in this case. This is not always true, however. Some servers require a Date header. This is particularly common with mail servers in Europe.|
|Message-ID||*||*||Each news posting must have a unique "message id". MT-NewsWatcher generates the message id and the header for you. Its format is described in the Personalities chapter, as well as the option to prevent MT-NewsWatcher sending a message-ID.|
|References||*||*||This header lists the message id of the message to which this message is a reply, plus the message id of the message to which that message was a reply, and so on back to the original message which started the thread. The message ids are listed in order from oldest to newest. MT-NewsWatcher generates this header for you.|
You can use this header to specify your preference for courtesy email copies of followups to your postings. There are three forms of this header:
The poster of the article never wants to get courtesy email copies of followups.
The poster of the article always wants to get courtesy email copies of followups.
The poster of the article always wants to get courtesy email copies at the special email address given in the header.
Whenever you followup or reply to an article, MT-NewsWatcher checks for this header. If the poster requests that courtesy copies never be sent, and if you try to turn on both the news and the mail icons, MT-NewsWatcher issues an alert informing you of the poster's request. The default button is Cancel. You can deliberately ignore the poster's wishes by clicking the OK button, which results in a followup and a courtesy email copy.
If the poster requests that courtesy copies always be sent, MT-NewsWatcher automatically turns on the mail icon on followups, and presents a note alert letting you know why it did this. If you later try to turn off the mail icon, MT-NewsWatcher issues an alert reminding you of the poster's request. The default button is Cancel. You can deliberately ignore the poster's wishes by clicking the OK button, which results in a followup with no courtesy email copy.
You can include this header in your own articles if you wish, either by specifying a setting for a Personality, or using the popup menu in the Mail-Copies-To field in the message window (you must have details showing in the message window to see this).
If you use this header in your own articles, you should be aware that only a few other newsreading programs understand and support it. Users are also permitted to override the behavior you have requested. So you shouldn't expect this header to work all of the time.
The X-Face header is an optional header that is quite popular on Macintosh newsgroups. It encodes a small, black and white image, which MT-NewsWatcher displays in article windows if the header is present.
To create your X-Face header, use the program Saving Face, and paste the resulting header into the Extra News (and, if you wish, Extra Mail) headers in your Personalities.
Additional headers may be inserted into news and mail messages, both by the news or email transport system, or by the originator or recipient of the message. Some such headers contain additional information about any transformations that have been performed on the message, or extra information about the recipient. Some senders also make up humorous or informational headers.
If you do create additional headers, their names must start with "X-", e.g. "X-No-Archive", to avoid conflict with essential message headers. Only do this if you know what you are doing. You can enter such additional headers in the Signature & Headers dialog which is available from the Personalities dialog, or enter them in the fields in the message window.
- Table of Contents
- Advanced features
- The Interface