[Dovecot] IMAP - many folders?

alan premselaar alien at 12inch.com
Thu Nov 18 10:53:49 EET 2004

Piotr Krukowiecki wrote:
> On Thu, Nov 18, 2004 at 12:29:13PM +0900, alan premselaar wrote:
>>Piotr Krukowiecki wrote:
>>>I have following setup: new mail goes to ~/Mail/Maildir, except for
>>>mailing lists which are moved by procmail to ~/Mail/mailing_lists/name,
>>>spam which goes to ~/Mail/spam. Read mail is moved by mutt to ~/Mail/read. 
>>>Everything is in maildir format.
>>  do you want your users to see their own directory heirarchy as 
>>explained above? or to see your folders specifically?
>>if you want them to see their own folders in their home mail heirarchy, 
>>then you need to make sure your mail client is configured to access 
>>them. This is handled by subscriptions and some mail clients will 
>>auto-subscribe to all existing folders the first time it connects to a 
>>server (i.e. you setup the account) and some don't and you need to 
>>specifically tell the client to subscribe.
>>This sounds like what your problem may be.  which mail client are you using?
> Personally I'm using mutt. Some users use Mozilla, some pine, some MS
> something. I'll tell you how I "use" my mail.
> When I use mutt from the computer which holds the mail (thorough ssh), I
> usually use "c<tab>" and get a listing of ~/Mail/ directory, which looks
> e.g. like this: (cut to fit the screen)
> [...]
>  2     drwxr-xr-x  [...]     168 Nov 18 08:47 mailing_lists/
>  3     drwxr-xr-x  [...]     224 Nov 18 08:06 debian_mailing_list 
>  4     drwx------  [...]     120 Nov 17 18:36 Maildir/
> [...]
> I can see the last changed date, which allows me to see when was the last
> mail delivered.
> Then I can e.g. change to do mailing_lists dir and see directories there
> etc. untill i choose a maildir or mbox item.
> I haven't been using imap/pop at all yet, but I suppose when using it
> I'd like to be able to do the same, but from home. I.e. using mutt to
> list directories on remote imap server. I'm not sure if it can be done?
> If not, then at least I'd like to be able to access e.g. Maildir,
> mailing_lists/dovecot ;) and some others configured folders.
> The problem here is that even if I pass mailing_lists/dovecot as
> accessed folder the dovecot(?) changes "/" to ".". I've read that I'd have
> to change the slash to dot in dovecot sources - is is very hard to do?
> I think that other users will use other means of reading their mail, but
> I still belive that "/" approach is better then the "." one.

   the '.' character is used as an IMAP delimiter used by dovecot (and 
some other IMAP servers, although it's been awhile since i've used 
others so I don't remember which off the top of my head)

so, if you want sub folders to show up in your IMAP client, you'll need 
a heirarchy similar to (assuming you're using Maildir format, each of 
these directories will have 3 additional sub-directories called cur/ 
new/ and tmp/):



this will show up as:


in your IMAP client (i'm not familiar with mutt or its IMAP 
capabilities, but for example thunderbird will work this way)

hope this helps


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