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You can page people directly from the Unix command line with page. The web paging system is actually just a wrapper around this command. The basic syntax is:
page pagerid message
The pagerid is a username from the pager list or a pager number from the pager list. Upper- and lowercase letters are considered equivalent.
If the message is omitted, then page prompts for a one-line text message, in which no quoting or other special care is required. Be aware that pagers have limited message length. page can also be used in a command pipeline, reading the first line of input.
If the message is given as part of the command line, it should usually be given enclosed in single-quotes, to keep the command interpreter from doing $-substition or the like to the text.
The option -list list you get a list of all pager identifiers. Deferred pages would appear on the output of at -l for the invoking user. Sadly, this makes deferred-via-web pages unlistable, since at(1) can only show you queued jobs for your own id, and the web server runs under a different one.
Sending messages to other people:
When sending messages to people, include a way for them to contact you.
kate-(~)-101% page anorthkeys message: Help! Trapped in a maze of twisty little corriders -jayers@x738 success: queuing page to ANORTHKEYS at 8672637 type D.
Sending messages to yourself:
You can make the computer tell you when a job completes, or send yourself a page just to have a note on hand. The at command lets you defer a page (or some other command) until later. Typically, you'll get email message from cron when the page is about to activate.
copper-(~)-102% CC=gcc make World ; page jgrills 'build complete' studio-(~)-103% at 12:15 tomorrow page tobrien 'Stop work, play Command & Conquer for an hour, resume work' (type a Control-D here. `At' will warn you it doesn't use the C shell) warning: commands will be executed using /bin/sh job 815850840.a at Wed Nov 8 11:14:00 1995
Sending messages from programs to people:
You can pipe the first line of a program's output to your pager. Suppose you decide during lunch that at 5 pm you want be informed of the CPU load on Magrathea, so you can decide if you want to run a render there:
matrix-(~)-104% at 17:00 rsh magrathea uptime | page gjohnson (type a Control-D here) warning: commands will be executed using /bin/sh job 815854920.a at Wed Nov 8 12:22:00 1995
The following is obtained by running page without options.
Syntax: one of the following forms: page [-dir <pgrdir>] [ -list | -q | -format ] <user>[/<id>] page [-dir <pgrdir>] [<2way-opts>] <user>[/<id>] [<message>] Arguments: <pgrdir> is a directory of pager config files, and <user> is a valid, pagable user account name, and <id> is a pager name, if not the default <message> is the (possibly multiarg) message to send. <2way-opts>: [-ra <addr> [-rm <type>]] [-r <txt>]... -r <txt> - the text of an additional reply -ra <addr> - reply address, paired with -rm option -rm <type> - reply method, 'email' & 'page' supported defaults depending on @ in -ra optarg Options: -list - lists cfg files with PUBLIC keyword in a pager dir -l - shortcut for -list -q - displays a complete config file -format - details pager display format as listed in cfg file -debug - disable transmission of page and enable debugging If no <message> is given, stdin is read.