configure mutt for screen readers

Linux for blind general discussion blinux-list at
Sat May 25 00:34:05 UTC 2019

Tim here.  It might depend on your screen-reader, but the two
settings that jump to mind are:

  set arrow_cursor
  set braille_friendly

which keep the cursor closer to the point of action on the screen
rather than redrawing menu text or homing the cursor to some corner
of the screen.

Additionally, it might help to

  set ascii_chars

so that visual trees are made with ASCII characters rather than with
the extended line-drawing characters.  Additionally, if you're using
neomutt (or mutt with the sidebar patch), it might be worth disabling

  unset sidebar_visible

since it can be a bit confusing if you're reading top-to-bottom,
getting a piece of the sidebar, then a piece of the message list,
then the next row's slice of sidebar and slice of message list, etc.

If you're already an experienced mutt/neomutt user, you might also

  unset help
  set status_format=""

which cleans some of the help-text at the top and the status-bar at
the bottom.  Alternatively, there's a whole host of options for
things you might find useful in the status-bar, so I'll leave that up
to your taste.

Hopefully this helps,


On May 24, 2019, Linux for blind general discussion wrote:
> Any advice on what should be in a muttrc file for screen readers
> and also what should not be in a muttrc file for screen readers to
> work well with mutt?

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