LISTSERV Command Reference

LISTSERV® System Reference Library, release 1.8c
Copyright © L-Soft international, 1986-1996
Last update: 13 Aug 1996

Commands are listed in alphabetical order, with the minimum acceptable abbreviation in capital letters. Angle brackets are used to indicate optional parameters. All commands which return a file accept an optional 'F=fformat' keyword (without the quotes) that lets you select the format in which you want the file sent; the default format is normally appropriate in all cases. Some esoteric, historical or seldom-used commands and options have been omitted.

List subscription commands (from most to least important)

SUBscribe listname <full_name> Subscribe to a list, or change your name if already subscribed
ANONYMOUS -> Subscribe anonymously

SIGNOFF Remove yourself: listname - From the specified list
* - From all lists on that server
* (NETWIDE - From all lists in the network

SET listname options Alter your subscription options:

ACK/NOACK/MSGack -> Acknowledgements for postings
CONCEAL/NOCONCEAL -> Hide yourself from REVIEW
Mail/NOMail -> Toggle receipt of mail
MIME/NOMIME -> Prefer/avoid MIME format (especially MIME digests)
DIGests/INDex/NODIGests/NOINDex -> Ask for digests or message indexes rather than getting messages as they are posted
REPro/NOREPro -> Copy of your own postings?
TOPICS: ALL -> Select topics you are
<+/->topicname subscribed to (add/remove one or replace entire list)

Options for mail headers of incoming postings (choose one):

FULLhdr or FULL822 -> "Full" (normal) mail headers
IETFhdr -> Internet-style headers
SHORThdr or SHORT822 -> Short headers
DUALhdr -> Dual headers, useful with PC or Mac mail programs
SUBJecthdr -> Normal header with list name in subject line

CONFIRM listname1 <listname2 <...>> Confirm your subscription (when LISTSERV requests it)

Other list-related commands:

GETPOST listname ref1 <ref2 <...>> Order individual messages from list archives
INDex listname Sends a directory of available archive files for the list, if postings are archived
Lists <option> Send a list of lists as follow:

(no option) -> Local lists only, one line per list
Detailed -> Local lists, full information returned in a file
Global /xyz -> All known lists whose name or title contains 'xyz'
SUMmary <host> -> Membership summary for all lists on specified host
SUMmary ALL -> For all hosts (long output, send request via mail!)
SUMmary TOTAL -> Just the total for all hosts

Query listname Query your subscription options for a particular list (use the SET command to change them)
* -> Query all lists you are subscribed to on that server

REGister full_name Tell your name to LISTSERV, so that you don't have to specify it on subsequent SUBSCRIBE's
OFF Make LISTSERV forget your name

REView listname <(options> Get information about a list
BY sort_field -> Sort list in a certain order:
Country by country of origin
Name by name (last, then first)
NODEid by hostname/nodeid
Userid by userid
BY (field1 field2) -> You can specify more than one sort field if enclosed in parentheses: BY (NODE NAME)
Countries -> Synonym of BY COUNTRY
LOCal -> Don't forward request to peers
Msg -> Send reply via interactive messages (BITNET users only)
NOHeader -> Don't send list header
Short -> Don't list subscribers

SCAN listname text Scan a list's membership for a name or address

SEArch listname word1 <word2 <...>> Search list archives or: word1 <word2 <...>> IN listname
FROM date1 -> From this date
TODAY -> From today
TODAY-7 -> In the last 7 days
TO date2 -> To this date
SUBJECT CONTAINS xxxx -> Only this subject
SENDER CONTAINS xxxx -> Only this author
Complex boolean operations are supported, see database guide

STats listname <(options> Get statistics about a list (VM)
LOCal -> Don't forward to peers

Informational commands

Help Obtain a list of commands

INFO <topic> Order a LISTSERV manual, or get <listname> a list of available ones (if no topic was specified); or get information about a list

Query File fn ft <filelist> <(options> Get date/time of last update of a file, and GET/PUT file access code
FLags -> Get additional technical data (useful when reporting problems to experts)

RELEASE Find out who maintains the server and the version of the software and network data files

SHOW <function> Display information as follows:

ALIAS node1 <node2 <...>> -> BITNET nodeid to Internet hostname mapping
BITEARN (VM only) -> Statistics about the BITEARN
NODES file
DISTribute -> Statistics about DISTRIBUTE
DPATHs host1 <host2 <...>> -> DISTRIBUTE path from that server to specified host(s)
DPATHs * -> Full DISTRIBUTE path tree
FIXes (VM only) -> List of fixes installed on the server (non-VM see LICENSE)
HARDWare or HW -> Hardware information
LICense -> License/capacity information and software build date
LINKs node1 <node2 <...>> -> Network links at the BITNET node(s) in question
NADs node1 <node2 <...>> -> Addresses LISTSERV recognizes as node administrators
NETwork (VM only) -> Statistics about the NJEnetwork
NODEntry node1 <node2 <...>> -> BITEARN NODES entry for the specified node(s)
NODEntry node1 /abc*/xyz -> Just the ':xyz.' tag and all tags whose name starts with 'abc'
PATHs snode node1 <node2 <...>> -> BITNET path between 'snode' and the specified node(s)
POINTs <ALL | list1 list2...> -> Graduated license point information for planning
STATs -> Usage statistics
(default option)
VERSion -> Same as RELEASE command
(no function) -> Same as SHOW STATS

Commands related to file server functions

AFD Automatic File Distribution
ADD fn ft <filelist <prolog>> Add file or generic entry to your AFD list
DELete fn ft <filelist> Delete file(s) from your AFD list (wildcards are supported)
List Displays your AFD list

For node administrators:
FOR user ADD/DEL/LIST etc Perform requested function on behalf of a user you have control over (wildcards are supported for DEL and LIST)
FUI File Update Information: same syntax as AFD, except that FUI ADD accepts no 'prolog text'
GET fn ft <filelist> <(options> Order the specified file or package
PROLOGtext xxxx -> Specify a 'prolog text' to be inserted on top of the file
GIVE fn ft <filelist> <TO> user Sends a file to someone else
INDex <filelist> Same as GET xxxx FILELIST (default is LISTSERV FILELIST)
PW function Define/change a "personal password" for protecting AFD/FUI subcriptions, authenticating PUT commands, and so on
ADD firstpw -> Define a password for the first time
CHange newpw <PW=oldpw> -> Change password
RESET -> Reset (delete) password
SENDme Same as GET

Other (advanced) commands

DATAbase function Access LISTSERV database:

Search DD=ddname <ECHO=NO> -> Perform database search (see INFO DATABASE for more information on this)
List -> Get a list of databases available from that server
REFRESH dbname -> Refresh database index, if suitably privileged
DBase Same as DATABASE
DISTribute <type> <source> <dest> <options> Distribute a file or a mail message to a list of users (see
INFO DIST for more details on the syntax)

MAIL -> Data is a mail message, and recipients are defined by '<dest>'
FILE -> Data is not mail, recipients are defined by '<dest>'
RFC822 -> Data is mail and recipients are defined by the RFC822
'To:'/'cc:' fields
DD=ddname -> Name of DDname holding the data to distribute (default: 'DD=DATA')
<TO> user1 <user2 <...>> -> List of recipients
<TO> DD=ddname -> One recipient per line

Options for the general user:
ACK=NOne/MAIL/MSG -> Acknowledgement level (default: ACK=NONE)
CANON=YES -> 'TO' list in 'canonical' form (uid1 host1 uid2 host2...)
DEBUG=YES -> Do not actually perform the distribution; returns debug path information
INFORM=MAIL -> Send file delivery message to recipients via mail
TRACE=YES -> Same as DEBUG=YES, but file is actually distributed

Options requiring privileges:
FROM=user -> File originator FROM=DD=ddname -> One line: 'address name'
FOR user command Execute a command on behalf of another user (for node administrators)
SERVE user Restore service to a disabled user
THANKs Check the server is alive
UDD Access the User Directory
Database (there are 18 functions and many sub-functions, so the syntax is not given here)

Syntax of parameters

filelist = 1 to 8 characters from the following set: A-Z 0-9 $#@+-_:
fformat = Netdata, Card, Disk, Punch, LPunch, UUencode, XXencode, VMSdump, MIME/text, MIME/Appl, Mail
fn = same syntax as 'filelist'
ft = same syntax as 'filelist'
full_name = firstname <middle_initial> surname (*not* your e-mail address)
host = Internet hostname
listname = name of an existing list
node = BITNET nodeid or Internet hostname of a BITNET machine which has taken care of supplying a ':internet.' tag in its BITEARN NODES entry
pw = A password with characters from the set: A-Z 0-9 $#@_-?!|%
user = Any valid Internet address not longer than 80 characters; if omitted, the 'hostname' part defaults to that of the command originator

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