slrn(1) User Manuals slrn(1)
slrn - An easy to use NNTP / spool based newsreader.
slrn [-aCdknmw] [-C-] [-Dname] [-f newsrc-file] [-i config-file] [-k0] [--create] [-cre-
ate] [--debug file] [--help] [--inews] [--kill-log file] [--nntp [-h server] [-p port]]
slrn is an easy to use but powerful NNTP / spool based newsreader.
It is highly customizable, supports scoring, free key bindings and can be extended using
the s-lang macro language.
To use slrn, you either need to set the NNTPSERVER environment variable to the server you
want to read news from or specify a server on the command line. A newsrc file is needed,
too. In case you do not yet have one, you can create it using ``slrn -f ~/.jnewsrc --cre-
Inside slrn, online help is available via the '?' key.
The following options can be used when calling slrn from the command line. They override
both environment variables and settings in private and global configuration files.
-a Read active file when checking for new news.
-C Use colors without checking if the terminal supports it.
-C- Don't use colors, even if the terminal supports it.
-d Get group descriptions (taglines) from the news server. Please note that this may
cause a download of several hundred kilobytes and thus can take a long time. The
output is saved to a local file, so you only need to do this once. May not be
specified in combination with --create.
-Dname Add name to the list of predefined preprocessing tokens, which can be used in your
slrnrc file to have conditionally interpreted lines. See the slrn reference manual
Use file as the newsrc file for this session. This is permanently set via the
server configuration command.
Connect to the NNTP server on host, overriding the $NNTPSERVER environment vari-
able. If no port is given, the default NNTP port (119) will be used. This option
is only accepted after --nntp or when NNTP is the default mode.
Read file as the initialization (slrnrc) file. The default is to use .slrnrc (or
slrn.rc on VMS, OS/2 and Windows) in your home directory.
-k Don't read the score file.
-k0 Read the score file, but inhibit expensive scoring. A scoring rule is expensive if
it contains header lines that are not included in the server's overview files.
This makes applying them slow.
-m Force mouse support (without checking if it works on the current terminal).
-n Do not check for new groups (usually resulting in a faster startup).
-p N Use port N to connect to the NNTP server.
-w Wait for a key before switching to full screen mode, allowing the user to read
Read the active file (the list of all groups) from the news server to create an
initial newsrc file.
Obsolete version of --create.
Write debugging output to file.
--help Show help for command line switches.
Use an external inews program to post articles.
Keep a log of all articles that were killed by the scorefile in file.
--nntp Use builtin NNTP support for reading and posting (an external program is used to
post if slrn was compiled with --enable-force-inews).
--pull Spool outgoing articles locally for slrnpull to send.
Read directly from spool.
Print version and some compile time settings.
slrn uses the following list of environment variables. Note: environment variables can be
overridden by configuration files or command line switches.
If this variable is set, slrn will assume that your terminal supports ANSI color
sequences. It also enables a workaround for a problem with the mouse reporting
when running slrn inside of an rxvt.
If set, slrn assumes that X11 is running.
EDITOR See $SLRN_EDITOR.
HOME See $SLRNHOME.
If no hostname is given, the value of this environment variable is used.
NAME Set it to your realname, if slrn can't determine it otherwise.
You can use this variable to tell slrn which NNTP server to connect to. It can be
overridden by the command line option -h.
The name of your organization.
On unix systems, slrn pipes the current article to ``lpr -P $PRINTER'' to print it.
PWD This variable is only used on unix systems that don't support getcwd(3). In these
cases, it should be set to the current directory at the time slrn is invoked. This
is usually done by the shell and nothing the user has to worry about.
The value of this variable is used as the default if you do not set replyto in your
You can set this variable to a file slrn should read its online help from. This is
only needed when the default key bindings have been changed and you want the help
function to reflect this. If unset, slrn looks for help.txt in the configuration
When interpreting filenames as relative to your home directory, slrn uses this
variable to find out what your home directory is. If $SLRNHOME is unset, $HOME is
The editor to start for editing articles. If this variable is unset, slrn subse-
quently looks at $SLANG_EDITOR, $EDITOR and $VISUAL.
TMP Indicates the directory in which slrn should save temporary files.
TMPDIR See $TMP.
USER Your username, if slrn can't get it from the system by other means.
VISUAL See $SLRN_EDITOR.
User-specific configuration file.
System-wide configuration file. config_dir is set at compile time (/usr/local/etc
default newsrc file for slrn.
Per user newsgroups descriptions.
Global newsgroup descriptions. share_dir is set at compile time
(/usr/local/share/slrn by default).
The documentation that comes with slrn, especially manual.txt, FAQ, score.txt and
SCORE_FAQ. If you consider writing s-lang macros, also look at README.macros and slrn-
Recent versions of the slrn manual and the FAQ as well as additional information can also
be found on slrn's official home page: http://slrn.sourceforge.net/
Questions about slrn that are not covered by existing documentation may be posted to the
newsgroup news.software.readers where they will be answered by knowledgeable users or the
author of the program. In addition, announcements of new versions of slrn are posted
The latest version of slrn is available from http://prdownloads.sourceforge.net/slrn/
John E. Davis <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Please send any bug reports to the current maintainer, Thomas Schultz <email@example.com>
Unix September 2001 slrn(1)