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GNU nano -- a simple editor, inspired by Pico
The nano project was started because of a few "problems" with the
wonderfully easy-to-use and friendly Pico text editor.
First and foremost was its license: the Pine suite does not use
the GPL, and (before using the Apache License) it had unclear
restrictions on redistribution. Because of this, Pine and Pico
were not included in many GNU/Linux distributions. Furthermore,
some features (like go-to-line-number or search-and-replace) were
unavailable for a long time or require a command-line flag. Yuck.
Nano aimed to solve these problems by: 1) being truly free software
by using the GPL, 2) emulating the functionality of Pico as closely
as is reasonable, and 3) including extra functionality by default.
Nowadays, nano wants to be a generally useful editor with sensible
defaults (linewise scrolling, no automatic line breaking).
The nano editor is an official GNU package. For more information on
GNU and the Free Software Foundation, please see https://www.gnu.org/.
How to compile and install nano
Download the latest nano source tarball, and then:
tar -xvf nano-x.y.tar.gz
You will need the header files of ncurses installed for ./configure
to succeed -- get them from libncurses-dev (Debian) or ncurses-devel
(Fedora) or a similarly named package. Use --prefix with ./configure
to override the default installation directory of /usr/local.
After installation you may want to copy the doc/sample.nanorc file
to your home directory, rename it to ".nanorc", and then edit it
according to your taste.
There are three nano-related mailing-lists.
+ email@example.com is a very low traffic list used to announce
new nano versions or other important info about the project.
+ firstname.lastname@example.org is for those seeking to get help without
wanting to hear about the technical details of its development.
+ email@example.com is the list used by the people that make nano
and a general development discussion list, with moderate traffic.
To subscribe, send email to <name>-firstname.lastname@example.org with a subject
of "subscribe", where <name> is the list you want to subscribe to.
The archives of the development and help mailing lists are here:
If you find a bug, please file a detailed description of the problem
on nano's bug tracker: https://savannah.gnu.org/bugs/?group=nano.
When in any file of this package a copyright notice mentions a
year range (such as 1999-2011), it is a shorthand for a list of
all the years in that interval.