Notes on Using the Chebucto Community Net with the Lynx Browser

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A communications program, such as ZTerm for the Macintosh or Telix for the PC, is used to handle the connection through your modem, receipt of information from your keyboard, and the display of data on your screen. After completion of the sign on procedure the data displayed on the screen is generated by the Lynx browser at CCN.

Each registered user of CCN is assigned a Chebucto Home Directory for the storage of files. The Lynx browser allows you to use commands to generate files for storage in your Chebucto Home Directory, to view these files, to edit them, to delete them, and to attach them to e-mail messages. The files in your Chebucto Home Directory are stored at CCN and not in your own computer.

Each file that you view by use of the Lynx browser, whether the file is stored at CCN or at a site accessible from CCN, may be copied into your Chebucto Home Directory by use of Lynx commands.

There are Lynx download commands that allow files in your Chebucto Home Directory to be copied and stored on your own computer system. There are also Lynx upload commands that allow files on your own computer system to be copied and stored in your Chebucto Home Directory. When you choose a download or upload command the Lynx browser transfers control to your communications program, which performs the download or upload and then transfers control back to the Lynx browser. When your communications program is in control then any dialog boxes or menus that it displays are not generated by the Lynx browser and will vary according to the communications program that you use.

The Lynx browser has a Print command. When you choose this command the Lynx browser sends a message to your communications program but most communication programs, with the exception of BlackKnight for the Macintosh, will not handle the printing. Therefore if you wish to print a file displayed by the Lynx browser you should copy it to your Chebucto Home Directory, download it to your own computer system, and then print the downloaded file.

To view a file at another site on the Internet

Each file displayed on the Internet has an address called a Universal Resource Locator (URL). To request the Lynx browser to display such a file, type g followed by the URL. For example, to view the inland weather forecast for Nova Scotia, type:


To view the China Home Page, which is maintained in China and has various links to other Chinese sites on the Internet, type:


The URL must be typed correctly with preservation of upper and lower case, correct inclusion of periods, no additional spaces, etc. It is important to distinguish between ell (as in html) and one (as in FPCN11).

To view your Chebucto Home Directory

Type: g files

To create and edit a file in your Chebucto Home Directory

To copy a file from CCN, or another site, to your Chebucto Home Directory

The file may be either a file at the CCN site or a file at some other site accessible from CCN.

Note 1: Using a 14.4 modem, and downloading at a rate of 1 K bytes/sec, requires 16 minutes to download a file of size 1 MB. Remember that CCN requires you to log off after 60 minutes.

Note 2: If the Lynx browser assigns the copied file a name that begins with the characters http:- then the file is displayed with its text formatted in Hypertext Markup Language (HTML). When viewed (by highlighting its name and pressing Return) it will be seen to contain a number of HTML formatting tags such as <BR>, <P>, etc. If downloaded to your own computer it may be viewed by an Internet browser such as Netscape or Internet Explorer. These browsers do not display the tags but use them to control the formatting in order to show underlined or bold text and other features.

To download a file from your Chebucto Home Directory

Your communications program may display a window to report progress as the file is downloaded to your own computer. The file will be stored in a folder determined by settings in your communications program.

To upload a file to your Chebucto Home Directory

A window is displayed to report progress as the file is uploaded.

Note: If the uploaded file is a text file it may be viewed by highlighting its name in the Chebucto Home Directory and pressing Return.

Using links contained in a file stored in your Chebucto Home Directory

If a file stored in your Chebucto Home Directory was copied from CCN or another Internet site, and was not assigned a default name beginning with the characters http:- then it might contain links to other files. Links to files on other sites will contain the full URL, but links to files on the same site may be relative links that contain only part of the complete URL. Choosing a link that contains the full URL will direct the Lynx browser to access the corresponding site, but if you choose a relative link then the Lynx browser will report that the link cannot be followed.

For example, suppose you type g
You will be told to follow a link,which is actually to the risknet site:
which contains a large number of links to financial and economic information, journals, etc:
If you highlight the link and type d then all the information in the file, including the links, is downloaded and may be stored in your Chebucto Home Directory. Subsequently you may display the Directory and follow whatever links you are interested in without accessing the remote sites finweb or risknet.

About e-mail

The Lynx command g mail launches the Pine program which handles e-mail. It displays a list of the names of incoming messages that are stored in an e-mail folder named INBOX. To quit the Pine program type m.

After launching Pine, to view a list of all e-mail folders type l (ell, not one). Then:

When viewing the names of the messages in an e-mail folder:

Your Chebucto Home Directory contains a sub-directory named mail/ which has files whose names are those of your e-mail folders. Highlighting the names of any of these files and pressing Return displays the contents of all the e-mail messages contained in the folder. Any of these files may be downloaded to your own computer. You may therefore save all your e-mail on your own computer and delete it from the files at CCN.

Further information about Pine is provided by the University of Washington's Pine Information Centre at

To download an e-mail message from CCN

To insert text for transmission in an e-mail message

The text is inserted into the e-mail message at the position of the cursor.

About mail attachments

An e-mail message is transmitted as a sequence of textual characters. Data that is not in the form of text may be placed in a file attached to an e-mail message and transmitted in association with the message. The receiver will receive the e-mail message and also the attached file.

Spreadsheets, filemaker documents, graphics files and applications are examples of files that may be sent as e-mail attachments. A textual document may also be sent as an e-mail attachment, and must be sent as an attachment if you wish to preserve formatting such as bold, underlining, italics, tables or coloured text.

Before a Macintosh file is used as an attachment it must be converted into a form that can be handled by Unix and IBM computers. The conversion may be effected by use of the program HQXer which transforms the file into a BinHex4.0 file whose name ends with the extension .hqx. Each BinHex4.0 file begins with the textual message "This file must be converted with BinHex4.0". The message is followed by the transformed data preceded and followed by a colon.

If a Macintosh file is sent as an attachment from another site on the Internet by use of the program Eudora with a setting of BinHex then the conversion is performed by Eudora before the attachment is transmitted. Similarly if an attachment in BinHex4.0 is received at another site by Eudora then Eudora converts the attachment from BinHex4.0 to Macintosh format.

However, the e-mail handler at CCN does not perform such conversions and so the program HQXer on your local Macintosh must be used before a file in Macintosh format is uploaded to your Home Directory at CCN and after a BinHex4.0 attachment is downloaded from your Chebucto Home Directory.

To send e-mail from CCN with an attachment

To save, view or download an e-mail attachment

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(Updated December 15, 1996 by