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Based on kernel version 4.9. Page generated on 2016-12-21 14:33 EST.

1	.. _email_clients:
2	
3	Email clients info for Linux
4	============================
5	
6	Git
7	---
8	
9	These days most developers use ``git send-email`` instead of regular
10	email clients.  The man page for this is quite good.  On the receiving
11	end, maintainers use ``git am`` to apply the patches.
12	
13	If you are new to ``git`` then send your first patch to yourself.  Save it
14	as raw text including all the headers.  Run ``git am raw_email.txt`` and
15	then review the changelog with ``git log``.  When that works then send
16	the patch to the appropriate mailing list(s).
17	
18	General Preferences
19	-------------------
20	
21	Patches for the Linux kernel are submitted via email, preferably as
22	inline text in the body of the email.  Some maintainers accept
23	attachments, but then the attachments should have content-type
24	``text/plain``.  However, attachments are generally frowned upon because
25	it makes quoting portions of the patch more difficult in the patch
26	review process.
27	
28	Email clients that are used for Linux kernel patches should send the
29	patch text untouched.  For example, they should not modify or delete tabs
30	or spaces, even at the beginning or end of lines.
31	
32	Don't send patches with ``format=flowed``.  This can cause unexpected
33	and unwanted line breaks.
34	
35	Don't let your email client do automatic word wrapping for you.
36	This can also corrupt your patch.
37	
38	Email clients should not modify the character set encoding of the text.
39	Emailed patches should be in ASCII or UTF-8 encoding only.
40	If you configure your email client to send emails with UTF-8 encoding,
41	you avoid some possible charset problems.
42	
43	Email clients should generate and maintain References: or In-Reply-To:
44	headers so that mail threading is not broken.
45	
46	Copy-and-paste (or cut-and-paste) usually does not work for patches
47	because tabs are converted to spaces.  Using xclipboard, xclip, and/or
48	xcutsel may work, but it's best to test this for yourself or just avoid
49	copy-and-paste.
50	
51	Don't use PGP/GPG signatures in mail that contains patches.
52	This breaks many scripts that read and apply the patches.
53	(This should be fixable.)
54	
55	It's a good idea to send a patch to yourself, save the received message,
56	and successfully apply it with 'patch' before sending patches to Linux
57	mailing lists.
58	
59	
60	Some email client (MUA) hints
61	-----------------------------
62	
63	Here are some specific MUA configuration hints for editing and sending
64	patches for the Linux kernel.  These are not meant to be complete
65	software package configuration summaries.
66	
67	
68	Legend:
69	
70	- TUI = text-based user interface
71	- GUI = graphical user interface
72	
73	Alpine (TUI)
74	************
75	
76	Config options:
77	
78	In the :menuselection:`Sending Preferences` section:
79	
80	- :menuselection:`Do Not Send Flowed Text` must be ``enabled``
81	- :menuselection:`Strip Whitespace Before Sending` must be ``disabled``
82	
83	When composing the message, the cursor should be placed where the patch
84	should appear, and then pressing :kbd:`CTRL-R` let you specify the patch file
85	to insert into the message.
86	
87	Claws Mail (GUI)
88	****************
89	
90	Works. Some people use this successfully for patches.
91	
92	To insert a patch use :menuselection:`Message-->Insert` File (:kbd:`CTRL-I`)
93	or an external editor.
94	
95	If the inserted patch has to be edited in the Claws composition window
96	"Auto wrapping" in
97	:menuselection:`Configuration-->Preferences-->Compose-->Wrapping` should be
98	disabled.
99	
100	Evolution (GUI)
101	***************
102	
103	Some people use this successfully for patches.
104	
105	When composing mail select: Preformat
106	  from :menuselection:`Format-->Paragraph Style-->Preformatted` (:kbd:`CTRL-7`)
107	  or the toolbar
108	
109	Then use:
110	:menuselection:`Insert-->Text File...` (:kbd:`ALT-N x`)
111	to insert the patch.
112	
113	You can also ``diff -Nru old.c new.c | xclip``, select
114	:menuselection:`Preformat`, then paste with the middle button.
115	
116	Kmail (GUI)
117	***********
118	
119	Some people use Kmail successfully for patches.
120	
121	The default setting of not composing in HTML is appropriate; do not
122	enable it.
123	
124	When composing an email, under options, uncheck "word wrap". The only
125	disadvantage is any text you type in the email will not be word-wrapped
126	so you will have to manually word wrap text before the patch. The easiest
127	way around this is to compose your email with word wrap enabled, then save
128	it as a draft. Once you pull it up again from your drafts it is now hard
129	word-wrapped and you can uncheck "word wrap" without losing the existing
130	wrapping.
131	
132	At the bottom of your email, put the commonly-used patch delimiter before
133	inserting your patch:  three hyphens (``---``).
134	
135	Then from the :menuselection:`Message` menu item, select insert file and
136	choose your patch.
137	As an added bonus you can customise the message creation toolbar menu
138	and put the :menuselection:`insert file` icon there.
139	
140	Make the composer window wide enough so that no lines wrap. As of
141	KMail 1.13.5 (KDE 4.5.4), KMail will apply word wrapping when sending
142	the email if the lines wrap in the composer window. Having word wrapping
143	disabled in the Options menu isn't enough. Thus, if your patch has very
144	long lines, you must make the composer window very wide before sending
145	the email. See: https://bugs.kde.org/show_bug.cgi?id=174034
146	
147	You can safely GPG sign attachments, but inlined text is preferred for
148	patches so do not GPG sign them.  Signing patches that have been inserted
149	as inlined text will make them tricky to extract from their 7-bit encoding.
150	
151	If you absolutely must send patches as attachments instead of inlining
152	them as text, right click on the attachment and select properties, and
153	highlight :menuselection:`Suggest automatic display` to make the attachment
154	inlined to make it more viewable.
155	
156	When saving patches that are sent as inlined text, select the email that
157	contains the patch from the message list pane, right click and select
158	:menuselection:`save as`.  You can use the whole email unmodified as a patch
159	if it was properly composed.  There is no option currently to save the email
160	when you are actually viewing it in its own window -- there has been a request
161	filed at kmail's bugzilla and hopefully this will be addressed.  Emails are
162	saved as read-write for user only so you will have to chmod them to make them
163	group and world readable if you copy them elsewhere.
164	
165	Lotus Notes (GUI)
166	*****************
167	
168	Run away from it.
169	
170	Mutt (TUI)
171	**********
172	
173	Plenty of Linux developers use ``mutt``, so it must work pretty well.
174	
175	Mutt doesn't come with an editor, so whatever editor you use should be
176	used in a way that there are no automatic linebreaks.  Most editors have
177	an :menuselection:`insert file` option that inserts the contents of a file
178	unaltered.
179	
180	To use ``vim`` with mutt::
181	
182	  set editor="vi"
183	
184	If using xclip, type the command::
185	
186	  :set paste
187	
188	before middle button or shift-insert or use::
189	
190	  :r filename
191	
192	if you want to include the patch inline.
193	(a)ttach works fine without ``set paste``.
194	
195	You can also generate patches with ``git format-patch`` and then use Mutt
196	to send them::
197	
198	    $ mutt -H 0001-some-bug-fix.patch
199	
200	Config options:
201	
202	It should work with default settings.
203	However, it's a good idea to set the ``send_charset`` to::
204	
205	  set send_charset="us-ascii:utf-8"
206	
207	Mutt is highly customizable. Here is a minimum configuration to start
208	using Mutt to send patches through Gmail::
209	
210	  # .muttrc
211	  # ================  IMAP ====================
212	  set imap_user = 'yourusername@gmail.com'
213	  set imap_pass = 'yourpassword'
214	  set spoolfile = imaps://imap.gmail.com/INBOX
215	  set folder = imaps://imap.gmail.com/
216	  set record="imaps://imap.gmail.com/[Gmail]/Sent Mail"
217	  set postponed="imaps://imap.gmail.com/[Gmail]/Drafts"
218	  set mbox="imaps://imap.gmail.com/[Gmail]/All Mail"
219	
220	  # ================  SMTP  ====================
221	  set smtp_url = "smtp://username@smtp.gmail.com:587/"
222	  set smtp_pass = $imap_pass
223	  set ssl_force_tls = yes # Require encrypted connection
224	
225	  # ================  Composition  ====================
226	  set editor = `echo \$EDITOR`
227	  set edit_headers = yes  # See the headers when editing
228	  set charset = UTF-8     # value of $LANG; also fallback for send_charset
229	  # Sender, email address, and sign-off line must match
230	  unset use_domain        # because joe@localhost is just embarrassing
231	  set realname = "YOUR NAME"
232	  set from = "username@gmail.com"
233	  set use_from = yes
234	
235	The Mutt docs have lots more information:
236	
237	    http://dev.mutt.org/trac/wiki/UseCases/Gmail
238	
239	    http://dev.mutt.org/doc/manual.html
240	
241	Pine (TUI)
242	**********
243	
244	Pine has had some whitespace truncation issues in the past, but these
245	should all be fixed now.
246	
247	Use alpine (pine's successor) if you can.
248	
249	Config options:
250	
251	- ``quell-flowed-text`` is needed for recent versions
252	- the ``no-strip-whitespace-before-send`` option is needed
253	
254	
255	Sylpheed (GUI)
256	**************
257	
258	- Works well for inlining text (or using attachments).
259	- Allows use of an external editor.
260	- Is slow on large folders.
261	- Won't do TLS SMTP auth over a non-SSL connection.
262	- Has a helpful ruler bar in the compose window.
263	- Adding addresses to address book doesn't understand the display name
264	  properly.
265	
266	Thunderbird (GUI)
267	*****************
268	
269	Thunderbird is an Outlook clone that likes to mangle text, but there are ways
270	to coerce it into behaving.
271	
272	- Allow use of an external editor:
273	  The easiest thing to do with Thunderbird and patches is to use an
274	  "external editor" extension and then just use your favorite ``$EDITOR``
275	  for reading/merging patches into the body text.  To do this, download
276	  and install the extension, then add a button for it using
277	  :menuselection:`View-->Toolbars-->Customize...` and finally just click on it
278	  when in the :menuselection:`Compose` dialog.
279	
280	  Please note that "external editor" requires that your editor must not
281	  fork, or in other words, the editor must not return before closing.
282	  You may have to pass additional flags or change the settings of your
283	  editor. Most notably if you are using gvim then you must pass the -f
284	  option to gvim by putting ``/usr/bin/gvim -f`` (if the binary is in
285	  ``/usr/bin``) to the text editor field in :menuselection:`external editor`
286	  settings. If you are using some other editor then please read its manual
287	  to find out how to do this.
288	
289	To beat some sense out of the internal editor, do this:
290	
291	- Edit your Thunderbird config settings so that it won't use ``format=flowed``.
292	  Go to :menuselection:`edit-->preferences-->advanced-->config editor` to bring up
293	  the thunderbird's registry editor.
294	
295	- Set ``mailnews.send_plaintext_flowed`` to ``false``
296	
297	- Set ``mailnews.wraplength`` from ``72`` to ``0``
298	
299	- :menuselection:`View-->Message Body As-->Plain Text`
300	
301	- :menuselection:`View-->Character Encoding-->Unicode (UTF-8)`
302	
303	TkRat (GUI)
304	***********
305	
306	Works.  Use "Insert file..." or external editor.
307	
308	Gmail (Web GUI)
309	***************
310	
311	Does not work for sending patches.
312	
313	Gmail web client converts tabs to spaces automatically.
314	
315	At the same time it wraps lines every 78 chars with CRLF style line breaks
316	although tab2space problem can be solved with external editor.
317	
318	Another problem is that Gmail will base64-encode any message that has a
319	non-ASCII character. That includes things like European names.
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