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Re: tutorial for rmail and IMAP


From: Robert Thorpe
Subject: Re: tutorial for rmail and IMAP
Date: Sat, 26 Apr 2014 17:06:54 +0100

Sam Halliday <address@hidden> writes:

...
> I don't think this will be a problem for me, as I don't get that much mail 
> (although the archive is large and will take some time on first use).

If you have other devices that access a lot you may hit them.  If you
have to download your entire inbox a few times to get things working you
may hit them.

> I gave up trying to use movemail for IMAP access as it just doesn't seem to 
> work at all for me, even on the command line. Instead, I'm investigating 
> using offlineimap which has created me a bunch of Maildir folders under 
> ~/Mail. 
>
> This setup means that I can send mail, and I can use M-x google-contacts to 
> look up my contact list (I've not yet integrated it with M-x m).
>
> However, I still can't get rmail to see the Maildir folders.

Rmail isn't compatible with the maildir format, as far as I know.


> Incidentally, from reading the documentation it would appear that rmail 
> doesn't really support mail folders or browsing of email. Is that correct? If 
> so, I don't think it's going to work for me.

Not really, you can file email and browse it.

In Thunderbird or Outlook you have "folders".  Whether these are
implemented using actually directories is a different thing.  Mostly
they're not.

In Emacs it's common to talk about things more directly.  MH-E and
Maildir are systems for storing email.  A directory structure is used
and each email is put in a separate file.  Several types of mailer can
use these formats, but not Rmail.

In Rmail you have mboxes rather than directories.  A user can file
emails by subject into separate mboxes.  That's what the
"rmail-output-file-alist" stuff I mentioned before does.  You search and
browse other mboxes in the same way as the inbox.  To the user this
isn't much different to the mailers that use actual directories.  There
are a few pros and cons which you can read about online.

> I'm really looking for a simple mail client that allows me to search mail, 
> browse folders, and "tag" or "untag" messages (which is how gmail moves mails 
> between folders). Much as how this person does things: 
> http://chrisdone.com/posts/emacs-mail

You can label messages in rmail too.  There are inbuilt labels and you
can create your own.  Seperate mbox files and labels are different
things though.

> I'm going to experiment with the notmuch client and I might give gnus another 
> try.
>
>
> Thanks all so far, I've not given up on rmail but I'd really like to know if 
> it is worth pursuing or if notmuch is a better fit for my needs.

Since movemail doesn't seem to work with gmail pursuing other options is
a good idea.



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