name of mailbox of implicit keep (was Re: Sieve extension for testing for mailbox)

Jon Kristensen info at
Mon May 16 19:39:31 UTC 2016

Stephan Bosch <stephan at> writes:

> Op 5/11/2016 om 8:34 PM schreef Jon Kristensen:
>> Steffen Kaiser <skdovecot at> writes:
>>> On Tue, 10 May 2016, Jon Kristensen wrote:
>>>> Which Pigeonhole Sieve extension should I use to process/test 
>>>> a
>>>> message depending on whether the message is in a particular 
>>>> mailbox?
>>>> (Is it the mboxmetadata extension by any chance? If so, I 
>>>> would
>>>> appreciate if someone could tell me what the reason is for it 
>>>> not
>>>> being enabled by default.)
>>>> The reason I want to perform this test is that I have 
>>>> configured my
>>>> MTA to deliver "outgoing" e-mails to my "Sent" IMAP folder, 
>>>> and
>>>> these messages arrive unread. I would like to mark them as 
>>>> read
>>>> using Sieve.
>>> er, I guess, "message is in a particular mailbox" is meaning 
>>> it to be
>>> spooled, or something like that, right?
>>> Do you use subaddressing (aka +addressing, +detail 
>>> addressing)? Then
>>> look here:
>>> If you want to resolve the question in the second paragraphe, 
>>> search
>>> the mailing list archive about how to get the name of the 
>>> mailbox,
>>> the implicit keep stores the message in. I'm pretty sure, that 
>>> there
>>> was such question lately.
>>> If you actually want to resolve the question in the first 
>>> paragraphe,
>>> to check whether or not the same message has been spooled in a 
>>> folder
>>> already (aka duplicate check), check out the duplicate 
>>> extension with
>>> ":handle" argument. But you probably need to know the target 
>>> mailbox,
>>> too.
>> I apologize for not expressing my problem in clear enough 
>> terms.
>> My e-mail server will put sent e-mail to the ~/.Maildir/.Sent 
>> (which
>> is also a Maildir directory); naturally, the e-mail is first 
>> written
>> into ~/.Maildir/.Sent/tmp, and then it's moved to 
>> ~/.Maildir/.Sent/new.
>> After this has happened, I would like Dovecot to run a Sieve 
>> program
>> that will discover that the e-mail is in the "Sent" folder, and 
>> mark
>> it as seen.
>> To explain what I'm imagining with code:
>> if folder :is "Sent" {
>>    setflag "\\Seen";
>> }
>> So I don't use subaddressing. I always know the target mailbox, 
>> but
>> it's always "Sent" (this is configured in the MTA).
>> I guess knowing the name of the mailbox that implicit keep 
>> stores the
>> message in would solve my problem.
>> I'm assuming you are referring to this:
>> And in particular this:
>>   "vnd.dovecot.default-mailbox"
>>         The default mailbox that is used by the (implicit) keep
>>         action.
>>         Normally, this will always yield "INBOX", unless this 
>>         is
>>         changed in the configuration.
>> It says that this normally will yield "INBOX". Do you, given my
>> explanation above, think that it would yield "Sent" in my case? 
>> If
>> not, how would I be able to use this?
> Your explanation suggests the MTA is directly delivering 
> messages to the
> Sent folder. In that case Sieve is never involved. Sieve is run 
> only at
> delivery when said delivery is performed using Dovecot's LDA or 
> LMTP agents.
> If you're using dovecot-lda, the target (default) mailbox can be
> specified using the -m option. LMTP is less flexible and can 
> only use
> what's after the `recipient_delimiter' in the local part of the 
> address
> as target mailbox when `lmtp_save_to_detail_mailbox=yes'.
> Sieve will be able to see the configured default mailbox in the
> environment extension you mentioned above. You can define an
> administrator script for marking messages as seen using the 
> sieve_before
> setting. This script can also prevent the normal user script 
> from being
> executed by canceling the implicit keep.
> Regards,
> Stephan.

Thanks for your clarifications!

Just to confirm: Since my MTA is delivering my messages to 
~/Mailbox/.Sent directly, neither Sieve or Dovecot's LDA or LMTP 
facilities can/will be involved, and I can't really solve my 
original problem (having messages in the Sent folder being marked 
automatically as read, on the server) using any of these 
utilities? Or can perhaps dovecot-lda/lmtp be used to process 
these "Sent" messages?

Any suggestions on elegant approaches that would solve that 
particular problem would be very welcome.

Jon Kristensen (jonkri)
PGP fingerprint: 0377 F488 8908 0237 A2AE C484 387E C31D DA60 1350

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