Consistently when I have looked at Ubuntu installations, upon login, I have seen a notification like "You have new mail"

I am interested in how this works, how to both send and receive mail.

The accepted answer to this question says that it should be as easy as typing mail to read mail you have received and mail -s to send mail.

However, when I try that on 16.04 I get the message

The program 'mail' is currently not installed. To run 'mail' please ask your administrator to install the package 'mailutils'

Am I correct that I need to install mailutils to send both local (i.e. to another user) and external mail messages?

This looks like it also involves Postfix, do I need Postfix to use the local mail option?

Lastly, I asked here about programs such as cron that send a mail message to a user at certain points in time - if mailutils is not installed, is cron able to send any mail messages at all?

  • For external email have a look here: askubuntu.com/a/732782/57576 No POstfix needed... – andrew.46 Aug 17 '16 at 7:34
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    alpine is a very easy command line mail client which runs from the CLI (command line interface) like mail. The mailutils also installs postfix, which is part of a mail server. Just be aware you probably can't e-mail out without the okay from your ISP. Unless you run a VPS (virtual private server) in the cloud. Even then, spam, spam, you gotta jump through hoops. yes, install mailutils – Thufir Jan 10 '17 at 6:12

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