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flist, flists - list the number of messages in given sequence(s)


flist [+folder1 [+folder2 ...]] [-sequence name1 [-sequence name2 ...]] [-all | -noall]
[-showzero | -noshowzero] [-recurse | -norecurse] [-fast | -nofast] [-alpha |
-noalpha] [-version] [-help]

flists is equivalent to flist -all


Flist is used to search a list of folders and display the number of messages in these
folders that are in a given sequence or set of sequences (for example the “unseen
sequence). This is especially useful if you use some mechanism such as slocal or procmail
(typically in conjunction with rcvstore) to pre-sort your mail into different folders
before you view it.

By default, the command flist will search the current folder for the given sequence or
sequences (usually “unseen”). If (possibly multiple) folders are specified on the command
line with +folder, then all these folders are searched for the given sequence(s). Flist
will display for each folder searched, the number of messages in each of the specified
sequences, and the total number of messages.

The option -sequence is used to specify the name of a sequence in which to search for.
This option may be used multiple times to specify multiple sequences. If this is not
given, then the default is to search for all the sequences specified by the “Unseen-
Sequence” profile component. For more details about sequences, read the mh-sequence(5) man

Typically, flist will produce a line for each sequence, for every folder that is searched,
even those which do not contain any messages in the given sequence. Specifying
-noshowzero will cause flist to print only those folder/sequence combinations such the
folder has a non-zero number of messages in the given specified sequence.

If -recurse is given, then for each folder that is search, flist will also recursively
descend into those folders to search subfolders for the given sequence.

If -fast is given, only the names of the folders searched will be displayed, and flist
will suppress all other output. If this option is used in conjunction with -noshowzero,
then flist will only print the names of those folders searched that contain messages in in
at least one of the specified sequences..SS "Multiple Folders" If the option -all is given
(and no folders are specified with +folder), then flist will search all the folders in the
top level of the users nmh directory. These folders are all preceded by the read-only
folders, which occur as “atr-cur-” entries in the user's nmh context.

An example of the output of flist -all is:

/work/Mail has 5 in sequence unseen (private); out of 46
inbox+ has 10 in sequence unseen ; out of 153
junklist has 0 in sequence unseen ; out of 63
postmaster has 1 in sequence unseen ; out of 3

The “+” after inbox indicates that it is the current folder.

The “private” flag indicates that the given sequence for that folder is private. See the
mh-sequence(5) man page for details about private sequences.

If the option -all and +folder are both specified, then flist will search this folder, and
all its first level subfolders for the given sequence. You may specify multiple folders
in this way.

If flist is invoked by a name ending with “s” (e.g. flists), then the switch -all is
assumed by default.

The sorting order for the listing is alphabetical (with -alpha), or in a priority order
defined by the “Flist-Order” profile entry (with -noalpha). Each item in the “Flist-
Order” is a folder name or a folder name pattern that uses * to match zero or more
characters. Longer matching patterns have precedence over shorter matching patterns. For

Flist-Order: personal petproject mh* * admin *junk

This order puts a few interesting folders first, such as those with mail addressed to you
personally, those about a pet project, and those about mh-related things. It places
uninteresting folders at the end, and it puts everything else in the middle in
alphabetical order.

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