Columbia MM
MM Manual


You can mark messages to help you find them again later. You can put a flag on the message, or you can manipulate its seen status, or you can mark it with a keyword. Besides these markings, you can also find messages simply by using message sequences like from, subject and text, among others.


If you want to remember to look at a message again, you can flag it. The command flag sets the message status to flagged. Type flag or just fl at the R> prompt; at the MM> prompt add a message number (or other message sequence).


You can refer to all the messages you flagged with the message sequence flagged, as in h fl (headers flagged) or r fl (read flagged). The group of flagged messages would probably be messages you need to follow up by doing something or sending a reply. When the message is no longer so important, use the command unflag to remove the flagged status. Deleting does not remove the flag, although once you expunge, the flag disappears along with the message.

One effect of the flagged status is that the message will appear (along with new messages) every time you start a new MM session:

Columbia MM, version 0.90.0(7)
Please report all problems using MM's BUG command, or send mail to BUG-MM.
Suggestions are also welcome.
Reading /f/u1/d00000/yourid/mbox ...
19 messages read
 F     3) 20-Jun Joe Brennan         corrupted mbox (2285 chars)
N     20) 06-Jul Howie Kaye          Jul 18 meeting cancelled (106 chars)

Flagged messages are also displayed whenever you get a file. The display is controlled by a variable, display-flagged-messages, which is normally set to yes. If you don't want to see headers of flagged messages automatically, give the command set display-flagged-messages no and then save it with the save-init command. Turn it back on by setting it back to yes and save-init again.


The statuses seen and unseen normally show whether you really did or did not see the message, but you can manipulate them with the commands mark (mark it as seen) and unmark. If you use the command r to read new mail, as most people do, changing an old message to unseen will make it appear again the next time. On the other hand, if you want to avoid seeing a new message, you could mark it as seen without ever looking at it.

This shows how unmark changes the status. The status of seen is indicated by no status letter, while U means unseen.

MM>headers 6
       6) 21-Jun Don Lanini          Emacs question (1036 chars)
MM>unmark 6
MM>headers 6
U      6) 21-Jun Don Lanini          Emacs question (1036 chars)


Keywords can be used somewhat like flags, and they also do a job similar to that of message sequences like text and subject. If you want to group messages that are related, you can place a keyword in them, and then refer to the group by keyword. Some messages may arrive with keywords placed in them by the sender.

The keywords appear in a header field labelled Keywords. The message header display will show a K if there is any keyword present. A message may have more than one keyword.

MM>headers 73
    K 73) 20-Jun Joseph Brennan     Meeting on Sept 21 (378 chars)

 Message 73 (378 chars)
Return-Path: <jb51>
Received: by (5.59/FCB)
        id AA01344; Monday, 7 Sep 92 10:50:29 EDT
Date: Monday, 7 Sep 92 10:50:28 EDT
From: Joe Brennan <>
To: fb2
Cc: mm33, hk12
Subject: Meeting on Sept 21
Message-Id: <>
Keywords: manual

Let's meet on Sept 21 at 2:00 to go over plans for this semester.


In the example, a group of messages with the keyword manual could be referred to by the message sequence keyword, as in headers keyword manual. It may be that headers text manual or headers subject manual would retrieve too many other messages. To assign the keyword yourself, use the command keyword with the keyword(s) you want to use. At the MM> prompt, follow it with a message number (or other message sequence) to identify the messages.

MM>keyword manual 10,15,19:21

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