TUCoPS :: General Information :: wellman.txt

Commands & Oper. Manual For THE WELL

                          THE COMPLETE GUIDE                                  


                             TO THE WELL
                    (WHOLE EARTH LECTRONIC LINK)

                        Written by Mick Winter

                        TABLE OF CONTENTS

  Why the WELL?
  How much is it?

WELL etiquette

Hints on using this manual and The WELL

Logging on to The WELL (including UNINET)

Pacific Telephone packet-switching network

Helpful Hint:  Bailing out of whatever you're doing

Logging off

General information
  Changing your password
  Viewing one screen at a time
  If you accidentally logged on in uppercase
  Checking your storage space
  Checking your bill
  Getting help

  Finding out current conferences
  Current conference list
  Conference hosts
  Going to a conference
  Seeing the name of the conference you're currently in
  Participating in a conference

Topics and Responses
  Browsing topics
  Searching topic headers for a certain word or phrase
  Searching topics and responses for a certain word or phrase
  Seeing topics
  Skipping topics
  Seeing responses
  Seeing responses over a period of time
  Responding to topics
  Entering topics
  Practicing entering topics and responses

  Receiving mail
  Reading mail
  Responding to mail
  Deleting mail you've read
  Sending mail
  Sending mail with headers
  Finding out someone's userid
  If you send mail to a non-person
  Seeing mail that's been stored in your mailbox
  Making your mailbox private
  Sending mail you've already prepared with a word processor
  Secret mail
  Online mail help

  If somebody wants to chat with you
  How one chatter knows when the other chatter is done
  Online chat help
  Group chat

WELL user information
  Finding out who is registered on The WELL
  Finding out who is a participant in a conference
  Checking on a particular person's conference participation
  Finding biographical information on a particular WELL user
  Changing your biographical "finger file"

  Creating a file named "newfile"
  Editing "newfile"

Uploading and downloading files with XModem

Other networks

Quick Command Cards
  Options at Ok: prompt
  Options at Respond or pass? prompt

Questions & Answers

Advanced Features
  Making your own conference scanner (.cflist)
  Using a .profile file
  Using a .cfonce file
  Using a .cfrc file
  Changing how a prompt appears
  Moving files around
  Seeing what's in your private file directory
  Placing restrictions on files you've created

Advanced Conference Commands
  Display seen

  Defining Macros
  Creating a macro which lets you see which conferences you 
    haven't visited lately

Well Command List

Unix Command List


The WELL is a low-cost, computerized conferencing system centered 
in the San Francisco Bay Area with international access through 
UNINET.  The system runs on a VAX minicomputer with a capacity of 
40 phone ports at the offices of the Whole Earth Catalog and 
Whole Earth Review in Sausalito.  The service is co-developed 
with NETI (Network Technologies, International), of Ann Arbor, 

The WELL includes private electronic mail, computerized 
public and private conferencing, storage of files, and online 

With electronic mail, users can instantly transmit information to 
one another without fear of a busy signal or the other 
frustrations of "telephone tag."  A special "secret mail" option 
lets you ensure the security of your messages.  

Conferences cover a rapidly growing variety of subjects -- online 
computer user groups, movie reviews, local politics, national 
politics, science fiction, stock market, local gardening, 
spirituality, business, even The WELL itself.  

Groups can establish private conferences to which only group members 
and authorized guests have access.  There is no extra charge for this 

"Chat" lets you talk to any other person online at the same time 
you are. You can also use a public "group chat" with more than 
two people. 


Many people have been exposed to, and moved by, the Whole Earth 
Catalog "experience".  Most of these people have no prior 
computer experience.  The people at The WELL believe it can be 
the influence that brings this large non-computing WEC population 
and their talents and resources into the telecommunications 


The WELL costs $8 per month plus $3 per hour.  There is no charge 
for disk storage up to 256K bytes.  Above that there is a monthly 
charge of $1 per 10K.  This charge is based on a daily average of 
storage in your home directory.

These charges are billed monthly to the user's credit card -- 
MasterCard or Visa.  Pacific Telephone's access charges appear on 
your regular phone bill.  If you reach the WELL through UNINET, 
those charges will appear as WELL charges on your credit card 


       |                                                        |
       |                    **** NOTICE ****                    |
       |                                                        |
       |                 As a user of the WELL,                 |
       |              you own the words you write.              |
       |                                                        |
       |     That means you are the publisher.  You take        |
       |     responsibility for their content, and no one may   |
       |     reuse them without your permission.                |
       |                                                        |
       |     Hosts of conferences, in the community interest,   |
       |     may delete a comment but may not amend it.         |
       |                                                        |
       |     Hosts are also empowered, under duress, to ban a   |
       |     nuisance member from their conference.             |
       |     Nevertheless, because hosts are not always         |
       |     "present", or necessarily knowledgeable, they      |
       |     cannot be held responsible for damaging comments   |
       |     that appear in their conferences.  Responsibility  |
       |     rests with the writer.                             |
       |                                                        |

The WELL is a community of people which functions on mutual 
respect and cooperation.  Computer conferencing is a totally 
different medium from FTF (face-to-face) communication.  The 
facial expressions, tones of voice, and other nuances we use in 
live conversations are totally lost on The WELL.  

All that travels over the phone lines is words.  Please pay 
careful attention to how you use those words.  Sarcasm, for 
example, doesn't travel well.  Which is why people frequently use 
such symbols as  :-)  (Look at it sideways) when they want to let 
someone know that what they have just entered was meant to be 

Remember that words you might enter in a burst of inspired 
passion or indignant anger will be there for you (and everyone) 
to read long after your intense feelings have disappeared.  This 
isn't meant to discourage spontaneity and the expression of 
feelings on The WELL.  It's merely to remind you to be aware of 
the long-term existence and effects of what you write. (Some 
conferences have a special "flame" topic where members can rant 
and rave to their heart's content.)

Please remember that it's safer, more polite, and more persuasive 
to attack a person's comments rather than the person him/herself 
when you find you disagree with what they've said. 

People on The WELL generally avoid "obscene" language (no, we're 
not going to try to define that here) except in conferences where 
such language is acceptable - or even encouraged.  There are no 
rigid rules about this.  Just remember we are a heterogeneous 
community of individuals with varying standards.

Naturally, information on passwords for this and other systems, 
credit card numbers or any other information which was gained or 
can be used illegally is not allowed.

It's very helpful to make full use of the Help and Test 
conferences during your first days on The WELL.  Don't leave 
requests for help (and complaints about The WELL) in every 
conference you enter.  The Help conference is for asking 
questions, the Test conference for practicing entering items 
and responses and editing them.  

If you have any questions on what's appropriate in a particular 
conference, just ask the conference host(s).  All hosts are 
volunteers who are very willing to help out new users on The 


Note:  Whenever you log on to The WELL or give a command at a prompt 
in The WELL, make sure you type the command in lowercase.  Uppercase 
can cause problems such as slashes interspersed throughout your 
onscreen text.

When you see this:  <cr>   in the manual or onscreen help 
information, it means "carriage return".  You should press the 
Return key on your computer.  This key may say "return", "enter", 
or simply have an arrow like this: <--'.

Example:  When you see something like this:

At the prompt, type      mail <cr>      

It means type the word "mail" and then do a Carriage Return by 
pressing the Return or Enter key. 


If you're logging on for the first time to register with The 
WELL, you'll need to have your credit card number (Visa or 
MasterCard) and its expiration date available.  You'll choose a 
user identification (userid) and a temporary password during the 
registration procedure.

1.   Make sure your computer system, communications software, and 
     modem are properly installed and operating.  For full 
     information, see their respective instruction manuals.

2.  In the San Francisco Bay Area

          Dial The WELL's Sausalito number (332-6106) or the 
          packet-switching number (440-1444).  (More on the 
          packet later in this manual.)

    Through UNINET (across the U.S. and in 50 countries)

               Note: To reach UNINET outside the U.S., contact 
               your local postal, telephone, and telegraph (PTT) 
               administration.  Tell them you want to link up 
               with UNINET and ask them what procedure to follow.

         To find out your local UNINET number, call UNINET at 
         800-821-5340.  Then dial the number you're given.  

         You'll see:


         (If the L? appears garbled, perhaps as XXX, just 
         continue.  It means the network hasn't yet determined 
         your terminal's operating speed.)

         Type     <cr> period <cr>

         You'll see:

         uninet pad xxxxxx port yy

         Type   well <cr>

3.   When you connect with The WELL, you'll see a prompt 
     something like this: 

         Welcome to the WELL--lower case input only, please...

         Type User I.D. or "newuser"


4.  If you are not yet registered with The WELL, 

         type      newuser <cr>      

         You'll see a series of questions which lead you through 
         registering with The WELL.  

    If you have already registered with The WELL,

         type    youruserid <cr>. 

          (The userid is the identification you are given when 
          you register with The WELL. Make sure you use 
          lowercase letters.)

5.   Next you'll see the password prompt      password:

6.   Type your password <cr>. (You are given a temporary password 
     when you first register with The WELL. When you type this 
     password, it will not appear on your screen).  Make sure you 
     use lowercase letters.

7.   If you have entered the right userid and password, you'll 
     see a greeting something like this:
     You are now logged in to the WELL.

     PicoSpan T3.2;  designed by Marcus Watts
      copyright 1984 NETI; all rights reserved

     Welcome to the Entry conference

After a series of text, you'll see this prompt: 


You're now ready to begin.


If you live anywhere in the 415 or 408 area codes, you can reach 
The WELL more cheaply through a special Pacific Telephone number.  

At the time of this manual update, there was no charge for using 
this number as Pacific Telephone was still beta testing this 
service.  In the near future, rates will be set and approved by 
the Public Utilities Commission.  These rates will be 
considerably cheaper than current long distance rates to The 
WELL's Sausalito number.

To use the packet, do the following:

     1.   Dial 440-1444

     2.   When your communications software indicates that you 
          have made connection, type:  <cr> . <cr> (Return period 

          You'll then see something like this:

               PPS*NET: 495 271 1444

     3.  Type: 4954611199 <cr>

          You'll then be connected to The WELL.


To get out from anything, any place on The WELL, type     Control-C
(hold down the Control key and press C).  This will stop whatever 
action you are doing or command you have given, and take you back 
to whatever you were doing prior to that.



To log off The WELL, type         quit      at the Ok: prompt.  
You'll be officially logged off.  You can now disconnect your 
phone or do whatever is necessary through your software to break 
the connection with The WELL. 

                       GENERAL INFORMATION


It's a good precaution to change your password occasionally, 
perhaps every few months. This is to help prevent anyone else 
discovering and using your password.  To do this:

At Ok: type:    set passwd <cr>

Type    oldpassword <cr>      then type     newpassword <cr>   (Your 
new password should have 6-8 characters).  Next retype
     newpassword <cr>       You'll return to the Ok: prompt.

Note:  If you forget your password, call The WELL at (415) 332-4335 
and we'll give you a new one.


The WELL is set up so that you view 24 lines at a time on your screen.  
At the    --More--   prompt, press <spacebar>   to see the next 
24 lines.  (Press   <cr>   to see one just more line.)

If you would rather see information displayed continuously, which 
you might want to do when viewing a long text file, type    
     nopager     at the Ok: prompt.

To turn the pager back on, type   define pager more 


Uppercase makes The WELL do funny things, most of them 
undesirable, like lots of /backslashes/

To get out of this state, at the Ok: prompt, type      !stty -lcase


Your monthly WELL charge entitles you to 256K of free storage 
space.  Excess storage space is billed at $1 per 10K. 

To check how much space you're currently using, type  files -l   at 
the Ok: prompt.

You'll see the total amount of space used, and the size of each 
individual file.

To remove a file, type    !rm filename


To see your WELL connect time and charges since the beginning of 
the month, type     bill <cr>


For help information at any time from any prompt, type    help
or      ?

For help information on a specific command or topic, type
   help command/topic name       Example:    help  mail     or    
   help  conferences

For very detailed help, type     !man topic

     Example:  !man mail

Enter your selection or [return] to display menu;
control-d to exit.
: 2



To see an up-to-date list of available conferences, type    
    ? conf      (or   help conferences)  at the Ok: prompt.


As of this update of The WELL Manual, there were the following 
conferences on The WELL:

        * * * * * * * Conferences on The WELL * * * * * * *
------------------------  The real world  -----------------------------
Legal (go legal)        Jokes (g jokes)         Politics (g pol)
Garage--autos (g gar)   Music (g mus)           Writers (g wri)
Medical (g med)         Spirituality (g spi)    Science Fiction (g sf) 
Games (g game)          Human Resources (g hum) Desktop Publishing (g desk)
Gardening (g gard)      Photography (g pho)     Education (g edu)
Movies (g mov)          Sexuality (g sex)       Women in Telecom (g wit)
Business (g biz)        Peace (g pea)           The Corner Pub (g pub)  
The Examiner (g ex)     Classifieds (g cla)     Environment (g env)
Earthstewards (g ear)   Eating (g eat)          Fun (g fun)
Free U (g free)         Calendar (g cal)        Gay (g gay)
Curious ?'s (g que)     Video (g vid)           Travel (g tra)
Stock Market (g stock)  Liberty (g liberty)     One Person Business (g one)
Library (g lib)         Management (g mana)     Philosophy (g phi)
On The Air (g on)       Space (g spa)           Languages (g lang)
Mind (g mind)           Sports (g spo)          Magazine Publishing (g mag)
Parenting (g par)       Psychology (g psy)      Whole Earth Symposium (g wes)
Electronics (g ele)     Outdoors (g out)        The Future (g fut)
Success (g suc)         Aging (g age)           Technical Writers (g tec)
Grateful Dead (g gd)    Home Repair (g rep)     Art Directions (g art
Fine Arts (g fine)
--------------------------  Computers  -------------------------------- 
IBM PC (g ibm)          Amiga (g amiga)         Atari (g ata)
Commodore (g com)       Spreadsheets (g spr)    Telecommunications (g tel)
Macintosh (g mac)       Databasics (g dat)      Fido (g fido)
Laptop (g lap)          Programming (g prog)    Hackers/Homebrew (g home)
CP/M (g cpm)            Unix (g unix)           BMUGSIG (g bmug)
Apple & Dtack (g app)   Programmers Net (g net) Currents in the Well (g cw)
MicroPro (g mic)        AI (g ai)               Packet Radio (g pac)
Kaypro (g kay)          Learning (g ed)         Whole Earth Symposium (g wes)
Power Users (g pow)     Microtimes (g microx)   Computer Books (g cbook)
Forth (g for)           Enable (g ena)          Framework (g fra)
-----------------------  The WELL Itself  -----------------------------
System news (g news)    Help (g help)           Hosts (g hosts)
Design (g des)          Manual (g manual)       Entry (g ent)


Each conference has one or two hosts who have the responsibility of 
looking after the conference.  A host's primary job is to keep people 
on track by encouraging useful responses and at the same time 
encouraging less useful discussions to move to other more appropriate 
conferences.  A host can also kill topics, and maintain the 
greeting and farewell messages you see. 

If you have a question about the conference, contact its host.  
Type       display fw      at the conference prompt (Ok:) to see 
the name of the host(s). ("fw" stands for "fair-witness", which 
was an earlier term for hosts.)


At the Ok: prompt, type     go conferencename

Example:    go movie  (or simply   go mov) 

   Note:  You can also type      menu      to use The WELL's 
          menu system.  Menus are a slower way to use The WELL, 
          but are often easier for new users.  Take your choice.  
          This manual deals only with the command system, which 
          does not use menus.

If it's your first time at the conference you'll see a prompt 
something like this: 

       You are not a member of /well/confs/movie_reviews  
       Do you wish to: 

       Join, quit or help?

Type    j    so you become a member of the conference, and can 
read and respond to all messages.  If you type    q   you return 
back to the Ok: prompt. If you type   h    you'll see information 
on the options available to you. 

After you type    j  you'll see a prompt that looks something 
like this: 

     Welcome to the Movie Review Conference
     1 brandnew topic
     First topic 1, last 108
     Your name is John Fellows in this conference.

     Ok (? for help) :

The Ok: prompt is the prompt for all conferences.  You can now 
give any conference command. To see a list of the commands 
available at the Ok: prompt, type      help      To see a list of 
commands available throughout The WELL, type      sum


Sometimes it's easy to forget which conference you're in.  To find 
out, type     g    at the Ok: prompt.  You'll see the name of the 

For more information, type    display conference     You'll see the 
conference name, your participation file in that conference, how many 
topics are currently in the conference, and various other information.


A conference is a series of numbered topics, all related to 
the general subject of the conference.  Each topic has a 
series of numbered responses.  These are people's comments about 
the topic.  Any member of the conference can start a new topic or 
respond to existing topics. 

At the conference prompt (Ok:), you can type     help     to see a 
list of commands (instructions you give to The WELL) available at this 

                      TOPICS AND RESPONSES


To see only the topic headers, type    b  (for browse)   to see 
all topic headers or     b n   (for browse new) to see all new
topic headers in the conference.  

A topic header includes the topic number, the date entered, the 
author, and the subject of the topic.  Browse does not show the entire 
topic.  Use the See command to look at the entire topic.

To see the header for a specific topic (or topics), 
type     b topic#     (Example:  b 12) (or  b 1-5)


At Ok: type    b      You'll see a list of topics under 
discussion in this conference.  It will look something like this:

item nresp header    (means= Topic #  Number of Responses  Header)
  1 12 Holy Mountain on Fri Mar 29 16:25:40 1985 
  2  7 They Might Be Giants on Fri Mar 29 18:32:12 1985 
  3  8 The Escape Artist on Sat Mar 30 21:15:00 1985
  4 22 Mary Poppins on Mon Apr 1 00:30:22 1985 


To search for a particular word or phrase in the topic headers, type 
    b "string"      (quotes are needed). String is whatever 
you're looking for in the header of a topic.  For example, to look for 
all headers containing the word "music", type      b "music"

The WELL ignores case (upper or lower) when it searches. You cannot 
search for author names.


To search for a particular word, phrase, or string (sequence) of 

Type  f (for find)  <range> "string"    

Example:  To search for the word "duck" throughout an entire 
conference, type     f "duck"     To search for the word "duck" in 
only the first five topics, type    f 1-5 "duck"    You'll see 
each line that contains the word "duck", and the item number, 
response number, and line number where the word occurs.


To see all topics and responses, type      s a  (for see all)
(Note:  This could show you thousands of topics and responses)
To see all new topics and new responses ("new" means all topics and 
responses which have been entered since you were last in the 

type      s

To see a specific topic only, type     s topic#  
(Example:  see 7).

To see a series of topics, type     s topic# - topic#  
(Example:  s 1 - 5)

Note:  When you go to a conference for the very first time, only 
the single most recent topic is presented as new.  You can then 
browse the conference to see past topics.


Type     s 3     and you'll see:

Topic    3:  The Escape Artist
by: Mick Winter (mick) on Sat, Mar 30, '85 
        3 responses so far

Next you'll see the text of the topic and then its responses, 
like this:

#1 username:
 [a response]

#2 another username:
 [another response]

#3 another username:
 [another response]


If a topic doesn't interest you, and you don't want to see future 
responses to the topic, type    forget   at the Respond 
or pass? prompt or    forget topic#   at the Ok: prompt.  
     (Example:  forget 4)

From now on the topic and its responses will be passed over when you 
give    b (browse) or    s (see)    commands.  

You can always "remember" the topic again later by typing    
remember topic#   at the Ok: prompt.  Example:  remember 4     
You can also see a "forgotten" topic by requesting it 
specifically.  Example:    s 4

To remember all forgotten topics in a conference, you can use an 
asterisk as a "wild card".  Example:    remember *


When you see a topic, you'll automatically see its responses.

NOTE:     To get to the end of the responses for a topic without 
          seeing them all, press     Control-C      (hold down 
          the control key and press C).

You'll see a Respond or pass? prompt, where you have these options:

Type    <cr>     to pass and see the next topic
        r        to respond to the topic or its responses
        q        to go to the Ok: prompt
        again    to see the previous text displayed again
        forget   to skip this topic in the future unless you
                 specifically request it by number, or you
                 use the "remember" command to bring it back
                 into the normal flow of read and browse
        new      to make anything you just saw new again
        postpone to leave the topic new and go to the next topic

        response#   to see that response (Example:  5)
        l           to see the last response
        +           to see the next response
        -           to see the previous response
       -2           to move back two responses
       +3           to move forward three responses
       since -32    to see all responses in the past 32 days
        0           to see the initial text of the topic
    only response#  to see a specific response only

Note:  To go from the Ok: prompt to the end of the last response 
of a topic, type    s topic# nor (for "no response"). Example:    
   s 4 nor

To see all new items in a conference without the program stopping 
at the Respond or pass? prompt, type    s n pass


You can see all responses which have been made over a particular 
period of time.  For example, if you'd like to see responses 
entered over the past 15 days, do the following at the Ok: 

1.  Type    seen <cr>

    This makes the WELL think you've read all responses.

2.  Type    see all since -15 <cr>

    To see all responses entered on the entire conference over 
    the past 15 days.

OR  Type    see 3 since -15 <cr>

    To see all responses entered in topic 3 over the past 15 

OR  Type    see since 5/15/86 <cr>

    To see all responses entered in the conference since 5/15/86


To respond to a topic, at the Respond or pass? prompt, type    r
You'll see:

   Use "." or ^D to end.

Type your text.  

There is no word wrap on The WELL, so you have to end each line 
with <cr>.  It's generally best if each line is no longer than 70 

When you're finished typing your text, type a period by itself at 
the beginning of a line and press <cr>, or just press Control-D.

You'll then see:

   Edit command (? for help):

Type    s    (for send).  Your response is then entered into the 


To enter a new topic which can be read and responded to by everyone in 
the conference, at the Ok: or Respond or pass? prompt, type    e 
(for enter) 

You'll see:

   Use "." or ^D to end.

Now follow the procedure previously shown for Responding to 
Topics.  After you've typed   s   for  send, you'll see:

   Enter a one line header or ":" to edit

Type up to 70 characters which summarize your topic.  Do not use all 
upper case.  (It's hard to read.)  When users browse topics, 
they'll see only this heading, so make sure it tells them what 
the topic's about.  When you're finished, press <cr>.  You'll 

   OK to enter this item?

Type   y <cr>    You'll see:

   Saving as topic 24...saved.


Most of us feel a little uneasy at first about entering topics or 
responses, particularly if we're unfamiliar with the procedure for 
doing this.  That's the purpose of the Test Conference.

If you want a place to practice where nobody will care how sloppy your 
message looks, type     go test     at any Ok: prompt.  Once you're in 
the Test Conference, you can practice writing topics, and responses, 
and editing those items.  


To use a name other than your own as the author of the response, type
   pseudo      (for "pseudonym") at the Respond or pass? prompt.  

You'll see:    What's your handle?

Type the pseudonym you want to use and press <cr>. You'll then see the 
standard prompt for beginning a response.  

Note:  Even when you use a pseudonym, your real userid still appears 
in the response. 


To exchange private messages with other people using The WELL.


You'll be told if you have any mail each time you log on to The WELL 
or join a conference ("You have mail"), or if new mail arrives while 
you are on ("You have more mail").  


If there is a message that you have mail, type     mail   at the Ok: 
or Respond or pass? prompts.  You'll see information about your mail 
including who it is from and when it was mailed.

Next, at the & prompt, 

type       ? for help information

           p (for print) x  (where x is the number of the message 
                            you want to see)  (Example:  p 3  
                or          prints message number 3)
           t (for type)  x
           <cr>   to see the first message
           help   to see a list of mail options

After you've seen the message, you can type any of the following:

           q      Quit - messages are filed as read and you 
                    return to the conference prompt
           x      Exit - all messages are considered unread
           p      Print the same message again
           s [file]  save (Example:  s george   saves the 
                  message you just read to a file named george.
           w [file]  save (without header)
           -      Print previous (scroll backward one message)
           d      Delete current message
           u      Undelete a message you just deleted
           h      lists the messages in your mailbox by number
           +      Next (scroll forward one message without deleting)
           n      Show next message
           m userid  begin a message to userid
           !cmd   Execute command while remaining in mail
           f      Print headers of all messages
           r      To reply to the message with a copy of your 
                  reply going to every person who received the 
                  original message
           pre    To have the message kept in your list of 
                  unread mail
           <cr>   Your message will be kept in your mailbox
           top #  Prints the first few lines of the message 
                  number given

Note:  The simplest thing to do after typing mail is to answer each 
prompt with a <cr>.  You'll see all your messages in order, and 
they'll all be saved in your "mailbox" for future viewing.

When you see the message    At EOF   (End Of File) you'll know 
there are no more messages for you to read.

If mail you receive was sent to more than one addressee, replying 
with     r    sends your response to all addressees.  If you 
reply with    R    your response goes to only the original 


To respond to a letter, type   r    at the & prompt.  Type your 
letter, then close with a Control-D on a line by itself.


After you've read a message, you'll still be at the & prompt. Type   
    d <cr>     The message you just read will be deleted.

(To have the message automatically saved in your mailbox, just go 
on to the next letter or type    q (for quit) if there are no 
more letters).

To delete more than one message, type    d 1 2 3 or     d 1-3

To delete all messages, type   d*

After deleting messages, press    q     (for quit).  If you press "x" 
(for exit) instead of "q", the messages are not deleted.  They remain 
in the mailbox and reappear at the next mail check.

Note:  If you'd like to empty your entire mailbox, at the Ok: 
prompt type    !rm mbox    All messages that were in the mailbox are 
then gone for good.


To send mail, type     mail userid <cr>     at the OK: or Respond or 
pass? prompts.  Example:  mail mrc <cr>   

You'll see:

   Use "." or ^D to end.

The number and colon (1:) is the prompt for you to write a line of 
text.  Type no more than 70 characters to a line and finish each line 
with a <cr> just as you would with a typewriter. When you've finished 
typing your mail, press Control-D, or type a period by itself at the 
beginning of a line and press <cr>.  You'll see:

   Edit command (? for help): 

Type     s      for send.

You'll see:

   Mail sent.
   Another recipient (or <return>)?

If you want to send the same mail to another recipient, enter 
their userid here and press <cr>.

Suggestion:    If you want to make sure The WELL delivered the 
               message, send the message to your own userid as well.  
               (The WELL's mail system cannot tell you if the 
               recipient has read the mail you sent.)


You can send mail with subject (Subject:) or copy (Cc:) headers, 
or even "blind" copies.

To do this, at any line number prompt while you're writing your 
letter, do the following:

     o    To type a subject header, type    ~s    

          (The "~" is the tilde character).

          Then, on the same line, type the subject of the letter.  
          Press <cr> and begin (or continue) the text of the 
          letter on the next line.

     o    To send a "carbon" copy, type     ~c

          Then, on the same line, type the userid of the person 
          you want to receive a copy.  All other recipients will 
          see that the person received a copy.

     o    To send a "blind" copy, type      ~b

          Then, on the same line, type the userid of the person 
          you want to receive a blind copy.  No other recipients 
          will know the person received a copy.


You must use a person's exact userid when sending mail. To find 
out an individual's userid, type     !finger <lastname>     or   
!finger <firstname>    at any Ok: prompt.

Examples:   !finger sullivan   or   !finger aaron


If you mail a message to a non-existent userid, you'll see:

   Ok:<baduserid>...User unknown
   You have more mail

Type:  mail

You'll see information something like this:

      >N 1 MAILER-DAEMON [date] "Returned mail: User unknown"

Type:   d          to delete the mail
To mail a returned letter to the correct address (or to forward 
any letter you've just read), type     m correctuserid.  Then, at 
the line number prompt, type    ~f <cr>    You can then continue 
writing or end your letter in the usual way.


When you read mail and don't delete it, that mail is stored in your 
mailbox (called "mbox" in your personal directory).  To see 
stored mail, type    !mail -f    

You can then read the mail in the normal way by requesting specific 
message numbers (Example: p 3) or by simply pressing <cr> to see the 
next message.


When you first join The WELL, your private mailbox (a file called 
"mbox") is open to anyone on The WELL.  To make it private so 
that only you and the system operator have access to it (and the 
system operator has other things to do), at the Ok: prompt
type     !chmod go-rwx mbox


You can upload prepared text into a letter.  You'll need to know 
the uploading procedure for your particular communications 

1.   First, after using the    mail userid   command, write your 
     introductory message, if any.  Then, on a line by itself, press     

2.   At the edit prompt, type    u <cr>    (u is for upload)

3.   You'll now be in edit mode without line numbers.  Upload 
     your file according to your software instructions. When 
     the file is finished uploading, press ^D.

4. At the edit prompt, type   s <cr>   as you normally would to 
   send mail. 

Remember that different word processors use different control 
characters for formatting.  Before you upload your text, make sure 
you've printed it to disk or used a "strip" program to remove all 
control characters and limited it to ASCII characters.  

For more information on ASCII characters and other esoterica, see your 
communications software manual.

NOTE:  To read a file from your WELL directory into a message, 
at the beginning of a line, type    ~r <filename> <cr>
     Example:   ~r resume


This is just like "mail" but no one can read the messages except the 
intended recipient.

To use secret mail:

Type     !enroll    at the Ok: prompt.  You'll see instructions 
"Gimme key".  This asks for a password (key) that you must 
subsequently quote in order to receive secret mail.

To send secret mail type:    !xsend    followed by a userid in the 
same manner as the ordinary mail command. (You can send secret mail to 
only one userid).  Example:    !xsend mrc

To receive secret mail:

If there is secret mail for you, you'll see a message that you 
have mail.  When you ask to see the mail, you'll be told it's 
secret. Type          !xget      Give your password when asked, 
and you'll then see your secret mail.


For online information about mail, type     help mail   
or   !man mail

Enter your selection or [return] to display menu;
control-d to exit.
: 3


Chat lets you talk with another person who is logged on to the 
system at the same time you are.  

To find out who is currently logged on to The WELL, type     !u     
at the Ok: prompt.  You'll see a list of all currently logged 

To chat with another user, type     chat userid   at the Ok: prompt.  
Example:      chat mrc

If the person has not blocked the chat command (by previously typing    
set nochat     at the Ok: prompt), they'll hear a beep and see a 
message that you're contacting them, and you'll be put into the chat 
mode.  Every line you type is then sent to that person's terminal.  

When you want to stop chatting, press Control-D.


If you get a message like;

    Message from <who><where>.... 

along with a beep, and you want to chat with the person, type a 
Control-C to stop what you're doing.  Then, at the Ok: or Respond 
or pass? prompts, type    chat <who>         <who> is the userid 
of the person who wants to chat with you.

If you don't want to chat with other people, type     set nochat    at 
the Ok: prompt.  Other people will then see "Permission denied" when 
they try to chat with you.


Some people consider "chat" a little abrupt.  Another way of 
immediately contacting someone is with the "!send" command.  

Type  !send userid <cr>     then write the message you want to send 
them as you would with mail.  The addressee will receive the full 
message immediately rather than just notification that you want 
to talk to them.  They can reply at their convenience.


When you're chatting, at the end of each remark, type     o    by 
itself on a new line and press <cr>.  This corresponds to "over" (as 
in radio talk) and the other person will know it is their turn to make 
a remark.

At the end of your last remark in a conversation, type     oo     by 
itself on a new line, as in "over and out", and press <cr>.  Then 
press Control-D and you'll leave "chat mode" and return to the 


For online information about chat, type      help chat     at the 
Ok: prompt.


Group Chat lets you chat with more than one person at a time.  To 
see who is already holding a group chat, type    !gcwho    at the 
Ok: prompt.  If you want to join them, type    !gchat

When you're ready to send a message to other chatters, press    s    
(or the spacebar).  You'll then see this prompt:  >

Type your message.  Do not press <cr> at the end of each line.  
Text wordwraps here.  Wait until you've finished typing your 
message, then type  <cr>.  The other chatters will then see your 
message, just as you see theirs on your screen.

For a list of available commands while you're in group chat, type    ?

To invite someone into your group chat, type    p  (for page).  
You'll see a list of userid's currently logged onto The WELL and 
their "job numbers".  Type the number of the person you want and 
that person will be paged and invited to the group chat.  Their 
invitation includes instructions on how to join the group chat.

To leave group chat, type    q     You'll return to the 
conference prompt.

                      WELL USER INFORMATION


At the Ok: prompt, type      dir       After a minute or so, you'll 
begin to see a list of all members of The WELL in alphabetical 
order by last name.


At the Ok: prompt for the conference, type     p    (for participants)
You'll see a list of all participants, their user id's, and the date 
and time of their most recent visit to the conference. (Note:  
This can take a while!).  


To see the last time a person visited the conference, type    
   p userid

To see all recent times, type    !last userid


At Ok:, type   !finger userid   

Note:  You can also type     who -m userid


To change your "finger file" that anyone can read to find 
information about you, type      makeplan  at any prompt.  You'll 
see The WELL editor answer back with this:

   Edit command (? for help): 

Type    p <cr>   to see your file

This file was created for you when you registered with The WELL. You 
can edit it to make any changes you want.  You have up to 15 lines of 
screen to type whatever you want other users to know about you (it can 
be longer if you don't care if the information doesn't fit on one 
screen).  When you're finished, type a period on a line by itself and 
<cr>, or Control-D. You'll see:

Edit command (? for help): 

Type     s     for send.  You now have a biographical file which 
others can see by typing    !f <youruserid>  


The following procedure shows how to edit on The WELL.  We'll use 
the example of creating and editing a new file, but the procedure 
works also with mail, and entering and responding to topics.


At the Ok: prompt, type     ed newfile

You'll see:

   Use "." or ^D to end.

This tells you that you can stop writing text at any time by typing a 
period on a line by itself and pressing <cr>, or simply by pressing 
Control-D.  It also shows that you are ready to enter text on line 
number 1 of the file you are creating.

Write several lines of text remembering to press <cr> every 70 
characters or so. Your screen will look something like this:

    Use "." or ^D to end.
    This is my first line of text.  It is going to say things like 
    this or rather like this.  On the other hand, it could also say
    something more like this.

Press <cr> to start a new line, then press Control-D.  You'll see 

    Edit command  (? for help):

Type    ?    and you'll see something like this:
        Options at Edit command (? for help): prompt

TO DO:                                                  TYPE:

Continue entering text at next line                       c
Abandon the text you've written and quit                  a (or q)
Send the text you've written and quit                     s (or w)
Delete line                                               d
Edit line                                                 e
Insert new line                                           i
List all text with line numbers                           l
   (from line 6 only)                                     l6
Print all text without line numbers                       p
   (from line 4 only)                                     p4
See this help information                                 ?
Upload text without seeing prompts                        u
 (you won't see every line number)
Read an existing WELL file                                r
Find a particular word or phrase                          f

Shortcut:  Enter several commands at one time separated by semicolons.  
Example:  e12;can't;won't     gives the command to edit line 12 and 
replace "can't" with "won't".


To change a line of text, type    e    at the edit command prompt.

You'll see:

    Line to edit?

Type the line number, for example 3.  You'll see:

   Line to edit: 3
   Line 3:
    something more like this.
   String to replace:

Type the text you want to replace, for example     this   You'll see:

   String to replace:  this
   New string:

Type the new replacement text, for example     that    You'll see:

   String to replace:  this
   New string:  that
   New line 3:
    something more like that.

   Edit command (? for help):

Type    s    for send and the new text will permanently replace the 
old text.


To see your entire file, type    p    at the Edit command prompt.
To see your entire file line number by line number, type    l
To see a particular line, type     llinenumber    (ex:  l4)
To delete a line, type     d     You'll be asked which line you want 
 to delete.

Note:  To abandon any text you've typed or changes you've made, 
type    a     at the Edit command prompt.  You'll be asked if you 
want to Abandon text.  Type Y if you still do, and you'll return 
to the previous prompt.


XModem is an error-checking procedure for transmitting files to 
and from The WELL.  It can be used for binary file transfer as 
well as text files.  

NOTE:  It's easiest to download files from a conference that is 
using the "lib" function (such as Amiga, Kaypro, Atari, Computer 
Books, etc.)  You can also download text files by having The WELL 
display them on your screen while you have a session or capture 
file going.

CP/M NOTE:  The xmodem function of The WELL does checksum, not 
CRC, file transfers.  You may have to check your modem software 
to see if it can handle checksum (the older of the two 

The command to transfer a file using xmodem looks like this:

     !xm [rRsS] filename

"filename" is the full pathname of the file.  You use this and 
one of the [rRsS] commands.

Lowercase r or s refers to text files

Uppercase r or s refers to program (binary) files

r or R stands for receive (The WELL receives a file from you)

s or S stands for send (The WELL sends a file to you)

     NOTE:  You can learn more about this function by typing  
     !man xm   at the Ok: prompt.


          To download a file named zzz.bin which has been stored 
          in the directory of public domain Commodore 64 files, 
          type the following:    

            !xm S /well/publicdomain/c64/zzz.bin 

          To upload a text file named "reviews.txt" into the same 
          directory, type:   
            !xm r /well/publicdomain/c64/bforth/reviews.txt

                         OTHER NETWORKS

USENET (Users' Network) is a bulletin board shared among many 
computer systems around the world.  These systems exchange 
messages on a regular basis about a variety of subjects.  The 
best way to learn to use USENET is to go to the Entry Conference 
on The WELL (type   go entry   at any Ok: prompt).

At the Ok: prompt in the Entry conference, type    s 19

You'll then see information on how to use USENET.


UUCP (UNIX-to-UNIX Communication Protocol) is a network of UNIX-based 
computers in the United States and other countries.  The WELL's VAX 
computer is in regular contact with other members of the network so 
that messages can be sent literally throughout the world.

To send a message to someone on the UUCP network, you first need 
to know their particular network and userid.  You'll have to find 
that out from them.

To find the "path" from The WELL to their network, at the Ok: 
prompt, type   !look theirnetworkname /well/news/lib/paths <cr>

Suppose your friend's userid is "uriel" and the network your 
friend is on at work is "westlabs".  To find the path, type
    !look westlabs /well/news/lib/paths <cr>

You might see something like this:
    westlabs  sun!meta!westlabs!%s

So to send a message to your friend, at the Ok: prompt you type, 

    !mail sun\!meta\!westlabs\!uriel    

NOTE: Make sure you include the backslashes.  It won't work 
without them.

                       QUICK COMMAND CARDS


To see this list, type   help    at the Ok: prompt.

See a list of all conferences        ?conf
Go to a conference                   g
Browse conference topic headings     b
See specific topic/responses         s # (Example: s 4)
See all new responses and topics     s  (with no topic number)
Enter a new topic                    e
See who belongs to conference        p
See who's on line now                !w
Leave The WELL                       exit
Display the WELL manual              manual 
See a full list of commands          help commands

To stop reading a topic or responses
and go to Respond or pass? prompt    Ctrl-C

Receive mail                         mail  
Mail an electronic letter            mail <userid>  (Example:  mail trob)
Talk with someone on line            chat <userid>  (Example:  chat tims)
Join a group chat                    !gchat

Stop whatever you're doing, 
including mail, chat, or
entering topic or response           Ctrl-D

OPTIONS AT Respond or pass? PROMPT

To see this list, type    help  at the Respond or pass? prompt

Go to next topic                     pass (p)   or   <cr>
Make a comment                       respond (r)
Display last response                last (l)
Read specific response               #  (Example:  5)
Repeat topic text                    0
Make what you just read "new"        new (n)
Skip this topic in future            forget (f)
Enter a new topic                    enter (e)
Go to Ok: prompt                     quit (q)
See a full list of commands          help commands

Receive mail                         mail  
Mail an electronic letter            mail <userid>  (Example:  mail lila)
Talk with someone on line            chat <userid>  (Example:  chat mojo)

                       QUESTIONS & ANSWERS


1.   What's the WELL's phone number?

     (415) 332-6106  (To find your local UNINET number, call 
     UNINET at (800) 821-5340.

2.   How do I log off The WELL?

     Type    exit    at the Ok: prompt.

3.   How do I change my password:

     Type    set passwd   at the Ok: prompt.

4.   How do I check how much space I'm using on The WELL?

     Type    ls -l  at the Ok: prompt.  You'll see the answer in 

5.   How do I remove a file I don't want anymore?

     Type    !rm filename    at the Ok: prompt.

6.   How do I check my current WELL bill?

     To see your charges from the beginning of the month, type  
        bill    at the Ok: prompt.


7.   How do I know what I can enter at a prompt? 

     To see a list of available commands at a prompt, 
     type   help    at the prompt.

     To find information on a specific command or topic,
     type     help command    or    help topic

        Example:   help mail    or     help browse

     For *very* detailed information, type    !man command  

        Example:   !man mail

8.   How do I get information about a conference?

     First, browse the conference and look at the topic headers.  
     Frequently Topic #1 will have general information about the 
     conference.  If you still need more information, ask the 
     host.  Type    display fw   at the conference's OK: prompt 
     to find out the userid of the host.  Then send mail to the 
     host with any questions you might have.

9.   How do I ask questions about using The WELL?

     Go to the Help conference (go help).  Browse through the 
     topics to see if someone has already asked the question.  If 
     not, enter a new topic with your question or problem.  
     Someone is sure to come to your rescue.

10.  How can I practice using The WELL without bothering anybody?

     Go to the Test conference (go test).  You can enter topics 
     and responses there to your heart's content.  The conference 
     is designed for experimentation so it doesn't matter how 
     many mistakes you make.


11.  How do I find someone's userid?

     Type     !f lastname    at the Ok: prompt. 

12.  How do I find if someone is a member of The WELL?

     Type    !f lastname    at the Ok: prompt. 

13.  How do I find biographical information on a WELL member?

     Type    !finger userid    or     who -m userid    at the Ok: prompt.


14.  How do I find out what conferences are available?

     Type     ? conf   at the Ok: prompt.

15.  How do I find the name of a conference's host?

     At the conference's Ok: prompt, type    display fw
     You'll see the host's userid. 

16.  How do I find a particular topic in a conference?

     Type    b   at the conference's Ok: prompt.

     (You can do a more detailed search with   b "searchword"

          Example:     b "modem"

17.  How do I find all the new topics I haven't read in a conference?

     Type   b n      at the Ok: prompt.

18.  How do I seYou have mail
e a specific topic?

     Type    s topic#    at the Ok: prompt.

19.  How do I find a certain word in a conference?

     Type    find "searchword"    at the conference's Ok: prompt.  
     You'll see a list of every place that word appears in the 

20.  How do I avoid seeing a particular topic in the future?

     At the topic's Respond or pass? prompt, type    forget 

     If you later change your mind, type    remember topic#


21.  How do I find my mail messages?

     Type    mail    at the Ok: prompt.

22.  How do I find a particular mail message?

     Type    mail   at the Ok: prompt, then type    h    to see 
     the first few lines of each message.   

23.  How do I find a piece of previously seen mail?

     Type    !mail -f    You'll then see how many messages have 
     been stored in your mailbox.  See the Mail section of this 
     manual for your options at this point.

24.  How do I put a subject header in my mail?

     Type   ~s   at the beginning of a line.  What follows on 
     that line will be the subject header.

25.  How do I make my mailbox private?

     Type    !chmod go-r mbox    at the Ok: prompt.


26.  How do I start a chat with someone?

     Type    chat userid    at the Ok: prompt.

27.  How do I find out who is currently on The WELL?

     Type    !u    at the Ok: prompt.

28.  How do I find my place after a chat interrupt?

     Type     r this nor     at the Ok: prompt.

29.  How do I keep from getting interrupted by chat?

     Type    set nochat    at the Ok: prompt. 

     When you're ready to receive chat invitations again, 
     type   set chat

30.  How do I see who's already in a group chat?

     Type   !gcwho   at the Ok: prompt.  
     To join them, type    !gchat


31.  How do I stop in the middle of writing mail, a topic, or a 

     Press Control-C and everything will go away.  

32.  How do I see a list of editing commands while I'm editing a 

     At the line number prompt, type  Control-D.   At the edit 
     prompt, type   ?    You'll see a list of the available 
     edit commands.

Enter your selection or [return] to display menu;
control-d to exit.
: 4

                        ADVANCED FEATURES

Warning:  Information in the following section is not presented 
          in as much detail as the previous area of the manual.  
          You do not need to know or use any of the Advanced 
          Features to use The WELL.

          We assume that if you're interested in the Advanced 
          Features, you're probably an experienced enough 
          computer user to be able to figure out how they work.  
          If not, the Help Conference is an excellent place to ask 
          questions about this or any other material concerning 
          The WELL.


When you have a .cflist, each time you visit The WELL you're 
automatically led, in the order you indicate, through the 
conferences you list in the file.

To create this file, type      listadd  at the Ok: prompt.  

You'll see:

     Which conference would you like to add to your list?

Type the name of the conference you want to add to the list, and press 

You can also remove a name from your conference list by typing

To add or move a name to the top of the list, type    listtop

Each time you change the list, you end up back at the Ok: prompt.  
Next time you log in you'll be shown those conferences in that order.  
When you finish with each conference, type     n      (for "next" at 
the Ok: prompt).  You'll automatically move to the next conference on 
your list.

To see this list at any time, at the Ok: prompt type   
      cat .cflist

Once you've created your .cflist file, to see a list of all the 
conferences you specified in your file which have new topics, type      
       check    at the Ok: prompt.

An asterisk indicates which conference you entered first, and an arrow 
indicates which conference you're currently in.

Note:  You can also put check in the .cfonce file in your directory 
(see separate listing in this manual) and have it execute every time 
you log on.  Do not put check in your .cfrc file (another one 
discussed elsewhere in this manual) or you'll get a listing every time 
you move to another conference.

USING A .profile FILE

The .profile file performs certain useful functions for you every time 
you log on to the WELL.  It was created for you by the WELL system 
administration when you first got your userid.  

You may want to add things to this file for specific purposes, 
such as automatically controlling text scrolling, but you should 
be careful not to remove this file, or change anything that was 
put there by the system administrator (unless you're absolutely 
sure you know what you're doing). 

The profile file initially "belongs" to the system administrator.  To 
take control of it yourself, do the following:

Type    !cp .profile temp
        !rm -f .profile
        !mv temp .profile

which translates to: 1) make a copy of the .profile file, 2) 
remove the old one, (the -f eliminates a query from rm about the 
fact that you don't own the file), and 3) rename your temporary 
file to .profile.

USING A .cfonce FILE

A .cfonce file is an optional file you can create to execute some 
commands once The WELL boots up.  Use this for some things you 
want done only once.  If you want certain things done each time 
you enter a new conference, put those commands in your .cfrc file 
(next section).

For example, this is where you would put     check     so that as 
soon as you log on to The WELL, you can see which conferences 
have new items.


A .cfrc file is a file that executes commands every time you go to a 
new conference.  

For example, if you put "see" in your own .cfrc file, every time you 
go to a new conference, you'll automatically be shown everything new 
without having to type "see" every time.

You can also:

define your own editor
set "date" in response and topic headers on and off
define your own pager
define how topic and response headers will look to you
define how prompts will look to you
define your own Picospan and Unix command macros
automatically execute Picospan commands
set usrid on (this makes it possible to always know who is really 
              entering a pseudononymous response)
and lots of other stuff.


You have the option of changing how the Ok: prompt appears to you (and 
only to you).  

At the Ok: prompt, type       define prompt "newprompt"      (make 
sure the new prompt is in quotation marks).  You'll get that new 
prompt for the duration of the session.

Note:  To define a prompt continually, place it in your .cfonce file.

Any time you want to again use OK: as the prompt,  type     
    define prompt      (with no new prompt specified).   This returns 
to the default, which is "Ok:".


You have your own private directory on The WELL.  To see its name, at 
the Ok: prompt,  type     pwd     (for "present working directory").

To upload a file into this directory, at Ok:, 
type     cat > <filename>        

Finish uploading by pressing Control-D.  At the first > prompt, 
type      :read <filename>      to read the file you uploaded.   


At OK?  or Respond or Pass?, type      ls -al     to list all 
files in the current directory. 

The numbers you see will be the size of each file.  This is 
useful in seeing which files to remove if you don't want to be 
charged by The WELL for excess storage space.  

Type    cat filename     or      type filename    to read a text file.

Type    ed filename      to edit a file

Type    !rm filename     to remove a file


You can determine what other users can do with files that you've 
created.  To do this, use the "chmod" command.

First, to see what users are currently allowed to do with the 
file,  type      files -l <filename>      

   Example:    files -l manual

You'll see something like:

        -rw-r--r--  1 mick        84312 May  4 1986  manual


   -rw-r--r--  1 mick        84312 May  4 1986  manual

   1 is normally a hyphen for most files ("d" if a directory)
   2,3,4 are user permissions (2=read, 3=write, 4=execute)
   5,6,7 are group permissions (5=read, 6=write, 7=execute)
   8,9,x are "all others" permissions (8=read, 9=write, x=execute)

So for the file named "manual", the user (mick) can read the file 
and write to (change) the file.  Everyone else can only read the 

To have other users not be able to change a file, type    
   !chmod go -w <filename>

Note:  !chmod +w <filename> will again let all users write to the 

The full form for this is:

    !chmod who opcodepermission <filename>

who:  u    user 
      g    group
      o    all others
      a    all (default)

opcode:     +   add permission of files
            -   remove permission of files
            =   assign absolute permission for file

permissions:  r    read
              w    write
              x    execute

!chmod go-r payroll_data  

Now no one else except the user can read the file named 

For full online information on permissions, at the Ok: prompt 
type    !man chmod



"calendar" checks for a file in your directory named either for 
today or tomorrow and prints any that it finds.


At the Ok: prompt,  type     display  <command>      where <command> 
is one of the following:

forgotten       forgotten topics
retired         retired topics
new             new topic status
conference      information on this conference
user, name      your name in this conference
seen            seen topic status
time, date      the current time or date
who             who is on the system
fws, fairwitnesses   fairwitnesses to current conference
login           login message in this conference
logout          logout message in this conference
logmessages     both login and logout messages index           
index           conference index created by fairwitness
list            display current .cflist
participants    participants
definitions     definitions
chat,default,mailtext   say where the flags are on
size superuser fds    assorted random debugging info


To see a list of every topic in a conference, the number of 
responses made to each topic, and the last time you saw the topic, 
type     display seen     at the conference Ok: prompt.


!last   shows you who has called into the system recently.  It 
lists userid, port#, and date and time of last access.  To see 
the last times a particular user logged on to The WELL, type    
   !last userid   

To see a specific number of times, for example the last two times 
a user was on, type   !last -2 userid


Type:  print

This command works much like read, except it automatically bypasses 
the Respond or pass? prompt.  It also starts each new topic at the top 
of a page.  If you don't want to read an entire topic, press Control-


(As a shortcut you only need to type those letters indicated here 
in uppercase)

Type:    set [option]    where [option] is one of the following:

Example:  set nochat    or    set noch

CHat,NOCHat             allow (don't allow) other people to chat with         
                        you this session.
DATE, NODate            ask that The WELL display(or not) dates on            
                        response this session
DOT,NODOT               otherwise, will period end text mode, or just ^D      
EDalways,NOEDalways     will I go directly to the editor upon text            
                        entry (respond, enter, mail)?
MAiltext, NOMAiltext    let the send mail program collect text                
                        instead of us
MEto,NOMEto             will I see my responses as "new" after someone        
                        else responses?
NAme, USer              change your name in the current conference
NEWResponses,RELoad     reload participation file, forgetting what            
                        I've seen in this conference since the last 
NODEfault, DEFAULT      join the default conference when starting             
                        up.  Only useful in a .cfonce file
UNNumbered              number, don't number text in responses
PAssword, PAsswd        change your Unix password
RELOAD                  set reload  at the Ok: prompt works as a 
                        conference-wide "new".  

                        If, for example, you have viewed a number of 
                        new entries in a conference and you want to 
                        see a response again but you didn't know 
                        where it was, just set reload and everything 
                        you just saw will be new again.  

RESIGN                  zap my participation file and leave me an 
STrip,NOSTrip           The WELL will (won't) strip control 
                        characters out of text typed in
STAy, NOSTAy            should RFP stay on current topic after a 
                        response is made?
UID, NOUid              do (don't) display uids on responses


To exit from The WELL to the Unix system, 

type    unix         

You can give a Unix command from the Ok: prompt.  
Type    !unix-command    (Example:  !finger tkr)

You can use Unix to upload and download files, access C and other 
languages, access word processors, and so on.  Exit Unix with a 
Control-D or return to the conferences by typing    bbs



A macro is a shortcut -- a short command which causes a longer 
series of commands to take place.

Type  define                      display current macros
      define name                 remove name from macro table
      define name "string"        define a variable
      define name mask "string"   define a command

The form of this command is;

define <name> <mask> <list of commands>

<name> = whatever combinations of letters numbers or whatever you use 
here will be what you type at the Ok: prompt to execute the specified 

<mask> - can be one of the following;

1 - for command macros which will work at the Ok: prompt
2 - for variables
4 - for command parameters (such as topic ranges)
8 - for command macros which will work at the Respond or pass? prompt

or combinations of the above, such as;

9 - for commands that will work at both the Ok: and the Respond or 
pass? prompt  (8 + 1 = 9)

<list of commands> - this is whatever command you want executed


define haha 9 "join jokes"

when you type haha at either the Ok: or Respond or pass? prompt, the 
command join jokes is executed.  The "mask" 9 is used so the macro 
will work at both prompts.  The command "join jokes" must be in quote 

define toc 9 "browse all short"

Typing the macro name "toc" at either the Ok: or Respond or pass? 
prompt will execute the command, browse all short.

define copytext 9 "cat /usr/guest/plum/pudding"

Typing the word "copytext" at either the Ok: or Respond or pass? 
prompt will copy a file named "pudding" located in the home directory 
of /usr/guest/plum.



At Ok:, type define oldest 9 "ls -ltr .*.cf*"

Now when you type oldest, you'll see when you last visited all 
conferences on The WELL in reverse order, so that the conference 
you've been away from the longest will be at the top of the list.

To have this available at all times, define the macro in your .cfrc 

                        WELL COMMAND LIST 

Conference commands (Ok:)

Abort          get out quick from conference and The WELL
Amsuperuser    abort macros & scripts if not a fairwitness
Async          turn party topic back into a normal topic
Browse         scan headers
Cd, pwd,
cat, files,
unmask, ed     file operations
Change         change them (same as Set)
Chat           chat with other users
Check          check status of a list of conferences
Define         define variables or abbreviations
Define nopager defines nopager 
Define pager more - turns pager back on
Display        display various parameters
Echo           type short messages out
Enter          create new topics
Find           look for "string"
Fixseen        pretend you've seen everything
Forget         forget topics
Freeze         stop responses on a topic
Help           get help on topics ("help" alone shows list of all 
Join           join a new conference
Kill           kill (remove permanently) topics
Leave          leave current conference, but not The WELL
Mail           send or receive mail
Next           join the next new conference
Participants   display participants here
Quit           exit conference: also use stop, exit
Read           read topics (same as See)
Remember       remember forgotten topics
Retire         retire a topic from general circulation
See            see topics (same as Read)
Source         source PicoSpan commands from a file
Sync           make a party topic
Thaw           allow responses again on a topic
Unix           exit to Unix or execute a Unix command
Unretire       unretire a topic from general circulation
Who            who is on the system
!unixcommand   execute one Unix command underneath PicoSpan

                          UNIX COMMANDS 

!"file1".       This can be used to locate a subject in one of the 
                conferences, as well.  
!cal # year     print calendar for month (Example: cal 4 1985 
!cal year       print calendar for entire year, (ex. cal 1985
                prints the calendar for April 1985)
!cat            concatenates files and prints them out
!cat filename   type a file in your directory
!cd             go to home directory
!cd             change directory
!cp file1 file2  - makes a copy of file1 and names it file2
!date           print current time and date
!ex             text editor
!finger         user information lookup program
!grep 'string' /usr/bbs/conference/_* will display each occurrence 
  of 'string' within any topic in the named conference and show you 
  the line it's on.  It also displays the file name, which is the 
  topic number preceded by '_'.

!grep 'string' file1  - this locates a string within the file 
!grep 422 /etc/passwd tells you who uid 422 is
!grep nnn /etc/passwd tells you who the possessor of uid nnn is
!learn command    run tutorial on the command (Example: learn vi 
                  runs a tutorial teaching how to use the "vi" 
!ls               list a directory of files in your account
!mail             send and receive mail
!man -k keyword   lists commands relevant to keyword
!man command      prints out manual for a command
!mv file1 file2   change name of file1 to file2
!pwd              print working directory
!rm filename      remove a file in your directory
!sort             sorts input into alphabetical order
!spell [file]     find spelling errors
!tail             prints last 10 lines of file (has options)
!wc -w [filename] count words in a file
!who              who is on the system
!whoami           to see your login name

*                 any string of characters
>                 redirects output
>>                add to the end of
<                 take the input for a program from the 
                  following file

To see more on-line information, use the "!man" command:

Example:  To find programs about mail, type     !man -k mail

To print out mail command documentation, type   !man mail

                       -- END OF MANUAL --

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