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On Sun, 10 Jul 1994 16:09:48 EDT Lauren Helwig said:
>Can someone please repost Donna's well researched post?  I lost it
>in the heat of things.
 
All of SCREEN-L's messages are archived. Here's how to get at 'em...
 
RETRIEVING OLD MESSAGES FROM SCREEN-L
 
The entire protocol for doing this is available in a file called LISTDB MEMO
that you may get from your local LISTSERV.  (To get the whole
file send the command INFO DATABASE to a LISTSERV address.  This command
could be sent as the first line in e-mail to, e.g., [log in to unmask])
I'll boil it down to its key elements here.
 
SCREEN-L's old messages are kept in a database at its home node here at
the University of Alabama.  This database may be accessed by sending
mail to [log in to unmask]
 
Please note:  this address is NOT the same as the one to which you
send SCREEN-L mail for distribution, which is [log in to unmask]
Sending database requests to SCREEN-L will likely result in snide
remarks being cast your direction.
 
In SCREEN-L's database are files with ALL of its messages--which you
could download, but they're large and cumbersome and you can be much
more selective.   You can select only the messages you want by first
searching the database for keywords you are interested in and then
telling the LISTSERV to send you only those messages.  Here's how it
works:
 
First:  send e-mail to [log in to unmask]  Beginning with the FIRST
LINE of that e-mail, type the following three lines exactly:
 
//MYSEARCH JOB Echo=No
Database Search DD=SEARCH CPULIM=99:00 OUTLIM=10000
//SEARCH DD *
 
Don't ask me what they mean,  but they're essential.  After these three
lines, you may type commands to the LISTSERV.  You begin by typing
the search command in the line following the first three lines above:
 
SEARCH keyword IN SCREEN-L
 
For "keyword" substitute the word you are searching for.
 
If, for example, you were interested in the messages with the word
"kinko" in them, you would type this command (the keyword is NOT case
specific; it'll search for both upper and lower case versions of the
 word):
 
SEARCH kinko IN SCREEN-L
 
If this were the only command you typed you would receive a file called
DATABASE OUTPUT that tells you how many messages contain this word (or
"string").  Each message with the word is called a "hit".  In our
example, DATABASE OUTPUT looks like this:
 
> search kinko in screen-l
--> Database SCREEN-L, 15 hits.
 
This tells you that there are 15 messages containing the word "kinko".
But that's not much help.  To actually get information about these
messages you type another command after the SEARCH command:  INDEX.
 
So, once again you start your e-mail with the above three lines and then
you follow them with these two lines:
 
SEARCH kinko IN SCREEN-L
INDEX
 
Once again you're sent a DATABASE OUTPUT file, but in addition to the
number of hits you also get a list of all the messages.  It looks
something like this:
 
Item #  Date     Time    Recs   Subject
000154  91/04/02 22:33   31     Copyright & Academics, Part 2
000160  91/04/03 17:24   18     re:  Copyright & Academics
(and so on, listing the 15 "hits")
 
This gives you basic information about the message:  the item number
(its identifying number in the database), the date/time of the posting,
the number of records of that message (its length), and the subject
heading.
 
The final command you need to know is PRINT.  This command inserts or
"prints" the actual messages into the DATABASE OUTPUT file that is sent
to you.  You may include the PRINT command right after INDEX in your
e-mail to the LISTSERV.  This, however, will insert ALL messages that
your search has turned up into DATABASE OUTPUT and that might be more
messages that you really want.  But still, that would be the simplest
way to get everything at once.
 
To do it this way, create e-mail using those opening three lines again
and follow them with:
 
SEARCH keyword IN SCREEN-L
INDEX
PRINT
 
In our "kinko" example, all 15 messages (or "hits) would be sent to you
in DATABASE OUTPUT.
 
If you only wanted one or two messages you may specify them by their
ITEM #, which you've already obtained by sending SEARCH and INDEX
commands in a previous message.   You must still preface your PRINT
command with the SEARCH command.  For example, the following e-mail
would get you a single message:
 
//MYSEARCH JOB Echo=No
Database Search DD=SEARCH CPULIM=99:00 OUTLIM=10000
//SEARCH DD *
SEARCH kinko IN SCREEN-L
INDEX
PRINT 154
 
So that's the technique, best I can figure.  Cumbersome, eh?
It ought, however, to work on all LISTSERVs that archive their
messages.
 
The University of Alabama's LISTSERV archive may also be searched
using Gopher, though this is still under development.  To try it out
gopher to UA1VM.ua.edu and follow the menu to the LISTSERV archive.
 
P.S.  After writing the above one of our computer wizs here gave
the following sample of how to search SCREEN-L for messages from
a specific time period.
 
The following commands should get you all the messages between
1 March and 15 March 1992, for example.
 
//MYSEARCH JOB Echo=No
Database Search DD=SEARCH CPULIM=99:00 OUTLIM=10000
//SEARCH DD *
search * in SCREEN-L from 01 mar 92 to 15 mar 92
index
print all
/*
 
----------
          Politeness is organized indifference.
                                       --Paul Valery
----------
 
| Jeremy Butler - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - [log in to unmask] |
| SCREEN-L Coordinator                                                   |
| Telecommunication & Film Dept * The University of Alabama * Tuscaloosa |