[Dovecot] Dovecot features

Ed W lists at wildgooses.com
Wed Apr 9 14:32:01 EEST 2008

> I understand that seen messages must be moved to 'cur' folder. My 
> question is: when web mail client lists messages in front page, none 
> of them selected yet, do they become SEEN or not?
> The second question: if I disable pop3 with XMail and use dovecot for 
> pop3 service, can I see emails in 'cur' folder via pop3 connection?
> Thank you,

I am an ex-courier user now moved to dovecot.

As far as I can see Courier and dovecot behave near identically here.  
The only difference is that dovecot id files have very slightly 
different names to the courier ones - I don't know xmail, but it sounds 
broken here because with maildir it should check both new and cur dirs 
for mail?  Certainly Courier (by default) also moves mail from new to 
cur when you access a folder (which is correct behaviour)

Dovecot has an option NOT to do this though (I think?) - something in 
the POP section I believe - I think it's under the not updating indexes 
for pop users section?

I see no reason not to just switch pop and imap to dovecot though.  Just 
read the migration section to understand about migrating UIDs over so 
that POP users don't download the whole folder again if they are used to 
"leaving email on the server".  You can have multiple users access a 
single mailbox via POP + IMAP all without problems if you use dovecot

I found the simplest migration strategy was to use the "proxy" feature.  
Setup the proxy to forward users to either the old server or the new 
server itself.  Then point all users to the proxy and now you can switch 
them to either the new server or the old server one by one!  Now migrate 
across mailboxes one by one and adjust the proxy flag so that the user 
then goes to the new server.  The proxy is a complete passthrough so 
users will get all the bugs and warts of the xmail server if their 
mailbox is still on that (and imap will get passed back to the courier 
server).  You can do the migration a few users at a time then without 
disrupting things too much if you find a problem.  I found I needed to 
set the capabilities flag option on Dovecot to "lie" and claim it only 
supported the subset of features used on Courier because some imap 
clients ask for the caps before they auth (which is sensible), hence end 
up using dovecot caps but on the courier server. (easily worked around 

Additionally I setup all my machines using vservers now - makes this 
kind of change a complete doddle - just copy the vserver somewhere and 
fiddle with it, blow it away when you are finished...

Good luck

Ed W

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