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BIFF(1) General Commands Manual BIFF(1)

be notified if mail arrives and who it is from

biff [
n | y

biff informs the system whether you want to be notified when mail arrives during the current terminal session.
The options are as follows:
Disables notification.
Enables notification.
When mail notification is enabled, the header and first few lines of the message will be printed on your screen whenever mail arrives. A “biff y” command is often included in the file .login or .profile to be executed at each login.
biff operates asynchronously. For synchronous notification use the MAIL variable of sh(1) or the mail variable of csh(1).

The biff utility exits with one of the following values:
Notification was enabled at the time of invocation.
Notification was disabled at the time of invocation.
An error occurred.

csh(1), mail(1), sh(1), comsat(8)

The biff command appeared in 4.0BSD. “Biff” was Heidi Stettner's dog. He died in August 1993, at 15.
August 12, 2013 OpenBSD-5.8