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/usr.bin/biff/biff.1

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  1.\" Copyright (c) 1980, 1990, 1993
  2.\"	The Regents of the University of California.  All rights reserved.
  3.\"
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  5.\" modification, are permitted provided that the following conditions
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  9.\" 2. Redistributions in binary form must reproduce the above copyright
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 28.\"     @(#)biff.1	8.1 (Berkeley) 6/6/93
 29.\" $FreeBSD$
 30.\"
 31.Dd March 20, 2010
 32.Dt BIFF 1
 33.Os
 34.Sh NAME
 35.Nm biff
 36.Nd "be notified if mail arrives and who it is from"
 37.Sh SYNOPSIS
 38.Nm
 39.Op Cm n | y | b
 40.Sh DESCRIPTION
 41The
 42.Nm
 43utility informs the system whether you want to be notified on your terminal
 44when mail arrives.
 45.Pp
 46Affected is the first terminal associated with the standard input,
 47standard output or standard error file descriptor, in that order.
 48Thus, it is possible to use the redirection facilities of a shell to
 49toggle the notification for other terminals than the one
 50.Nm
 51runs on.
 52.Pp
 53The following options are available:
 54.Bl -tag -width indent
 55.It Cm n
 56Disable notification.
 57.It Cm y
 58Enable header notification.
 59.It Cm b
 60Enable bell notification.
 61.El
 62.Pp
 63When header notification is enabled, the header and first few lines of
 64the message will be printed on your terminal whenever mail arrives.
 65A
 66.Dq "biff y"
 67command is often included in the file
 68.Pa .login
 69or
 70.Pa .profile
 71to be executed at each login.
 72.Pp
 73When bell notification is enabled, only two bell characters
 74.Tn ( ASCII
 75\\007)
 76will be printed on your terminal whenever mail arrives.
 77.Pp
 78If no arguments are given,
 79.Nm
 80displays the present notification status of the terminal to the
 81standard output.
 82.Pp
 83The
 84.Nm
 85utility operates asynchronously.
 86For synchronous notification use the
 87.Ev MAIL
 88variable of
 89.Xr sh 1
 90or the
 91.Va mail
 92variable of
 93.Xr csh 1 .
 94.Sh EXIT STATUS
 95The
 96.Nm
 97utility exits with one of the following values:
 98.Bl -tag -width indent
 99.It 0
100Notification is enabled.
101.It 1
102Notification is disabled.
103.It >1
104An error occurred.
105.El
106.Sh COMPATIBILITY
107Previous versions of the
108.Nm
109utility affected the terminal attached to standard error without first
110trying the standard input or output devices.
111.Sh SEE ALSO
112.Xr csh 1 ,
113.Xr mail 1 ,
114.Xr sh 1 ,
115.Xr comsat 8
116.Sh HISTORY
117The
118.Nm
119command appeared in
120.Bx 4.0 .
121It was named after the dog of Heidi Stettner.
122He died
123in August 1993, at 15.