Prehistoric pick-ing

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In the late 1970s, the pick command was pretty different. So was folder.

MH didn't exactly have subfolders back then. When you ran pick with its -keep switch, it would create a subfolder named select. The messages that pick found were linked into that select subfolder, and your current folder was set there.

To get in and out of the select subfolder, you used the commands folder -down and folder -up.

If you didn't use the pick -keep switch, you used a switch like -scan to scan the messages that pick found and/or -show to read them. Command lines could look like:

$ pick -subject ned -scan -show
(The MH history in the Section From Bruce Borden has a note about this.) The MH developers eventually decided to change pick and add MH sequences.

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Last change $Date: 1999/10/10 05:14:05 $

This file is from the third edition of the book MH & xmh: Email for Users & Programmers, ISBN 1-56592-093-7, by Jerry Peek. Copyright © 1991, 1992, 1995 by O'Reilly & Associates, Inc. This file is freely available; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation. For more information, see the file copying.htm.

Suggestions are welcome: Jerry Peek <>