BATCHER(8)BATCHER(8)NAMEbatcher - article batching backend for InterNetNews
SYNOPSISbatcher [ -a arts ] [ -A total_arts ] [ -b size ] [ -B total_size ] [
-i string ] [ -N num_batches ] [ -p process ] [ -r ] [ -s separator ] [
-S alt_spool ] [ -v ] host [ input ]
Batcher reads uses a list of files to prepare news batches for the
specified host. It is normally invoked by a script run out of cron(8)
that uses shlock(1) to lock the host name, followed by a ctlinnd(8)
command to flush the batchfile.
Batcher reads the named input file, or standard input if no file is
given. Relative pathnames are interpreted from the
/var/spool/news/out.going directory. The input is taken as a set of
lines. Blank lines and lines starting with a number sign (``#'') are
ignored. All other lines should consist of one or two fields separated
by a single space. The first field is the name of a file holding an
article; if it is not an an absolute pathname it is taken relative to
the news spool directory, /var/spool/news/spool. The second field, if
present, specifies the size of the article in bytes.
The ``-S'' flag may be used to specify an alternate spool directory to
use if the article is not found; this would normally be an NFS-mounted
spool directory of a master server with longer expiration times.
By default, the program sets its standard error to
/var/spool/news/data/errlog. To suppress this redirection, use the
``-r'' flag. Upon exit, batcher reports statistics via syslog(3). If
the ``-v'' flag is used, they will also be printed on the standard out‐
Batcher collects the text of the named articles into batches. To limit
the size of each batch, use the ``-b'' flag. The default size is 60
kilobytes. Using ``-b0'' allows unlimited batch sizes. To limit the
number of articles in each batch, use the ``-a'' flag. The default is
no limit. A new batch will be started when either the byte count or
number of articles written exceeds the specified limits.
To limit the total number of bytes written for all batches, use the
``-B'' flag. To limit the total number of articles that can be batched
use the ``-A'' flag. To limit the total number of batches that should
be created use the ``-N'' flag. In all three cases, the default is
zero, which is taken to mean no limit.
A batch starts with an identifying line to specify the unpacking method
to be used on the receiving end. When the ``-i'' flag is used, the
initial string, string, followed by a newline, will be output at the
start of every batch. The default is to have no initial string.
Each article starts with a separator line to indicate the size of the
article. To specify the separator use the ``-s'' flag. This is a
sprintf(3) format string which can have a single ``%ld'' parameter
which will be given the size of the article. If the separator is not
empty, then the string and a newline will be output before every arti‐
cle. The default separator is ``#! rnews %ld''.
By default, batches are written to standard output, which is not useful
when more than one output batch is created. Use the ``-p'' flag to
specify the shell command that should be created (via popen(3)) when‐
ever a new batch is started. The process is a sprintf format string
which can have a single ``%s'' parameter which will be given the host
name. A common value is:
( echo '#! cunbatch' ; exec compress ) | uux - -r -z %s!rnews
If the input is exhausted, batcher will exit with a zero status. If
any of the limits specified with the ``-B,'' ``-A,'' or ``-N'' flags is
reached, or if there is an error writing the batch, then batcher will
try to spool the input, copying it to a file. If there was no input
filename, the standard input will be copied to
/var/spool/news/out.going/host and the program will exit. If an input
filename was given, a temporary file named input.bch (if input is an
absolute pathname) or /var/spool/news/out.going/input.bch (if the file‐
name does not begin with a slash) is created. Once the input is
copied, batcher will try to rename this temporary file to be the name
of the input file, and then exit.
Upon receipt of an interrupt or termination signal, batcher will finish
sending the current article, close the batch, and then rewrite the
batchfile according as described in the previous paragraph.
Written by Rich $alz <firstname.lastname@example.org> for InterNetNews. This is
revision 1.13, dated 1992/09/14.
SEE ALSOctlinnd(8), newsfeeds(5), shlock(1).