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Courier IMAP Mail & Directories

Discussion in 'E-mail Discussions' started by kdarray, May 15, 2006.

  1. kdarray

    kdarray Well-Known Member

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    I have the Courier IMAP mail running on a server and have a big issue with the directory structure it creates in Horde mail for example and it shows up in Squirrel too.

    Every individual mail message is stored in it's own separate folder with an add in subject line. The problem is I and my clients want an inbox with 18 messages, not an inbox with 18 file folders containing those 18 messages. When you have several mailboxes and a great deal of incoming email, this whole thing seems ludicrious.

    I have looked everywhere but see no references to this specific directory structure (cur, new, etc) and how to work around or replace it.

    Has anyone experienced this and how are you dealing with it.
     
  2. jackie46

    jackie46 BANNED

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    Im sorry but i dont see this directory sturcture on our boxes.
     
  3. webignition

    webignition Well-Known Member

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    If you're talking about users' mail being in:

    /home/cpaneluser/mail/example.com/mailuser/cur/
    /home/cpaneluser/mail/example.com/mailuser/new/
    /home/cpaneluser/mail/example.com/mailuser/tmp/

    then you're describing the MailDir format. You should see that each message is stored in it's own file, not it's own directory.

    The other common mailbox format is Mbox where each IMAP folder, and the main inbox, is actually a file and not a directory and all messages are stored within the same text file. This format is less effective as when a given message is accessed the file containing potentially many messages has to be opened and locked so as to prevent changes occurring whilst the file is read or modified. This can cause mailboxes to be inaccessible to POP as once a mail file is locked no other process can access it.

    MailDir is definitely the superior format.
     
  4. kdarray

    kdarray Well-Known Member

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    yes that's it

    Yes Jackie, for this one server we have the directory structure that webignition describes. I have read up on the new format and realize it is the way of the future. It is just the way messages are laid out now is very inconvenient compared to mbox. Clients are having a hard time getting used to this new structure for maildir. I guess that is just how maildir handles messages and there is nothing I can do to alter that format but go back to mbox.

    I thank both of you for your replies and affirming this new format is here to stay.
     
  5. webignition

    webignition Well-Known Member

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    I don't quite understand why this should be the case. Clients, as in end-users, will be accessing mail via a mail client. The mail client will handle everything for them.

    End-users just see email messages and, potentially, folders with or without messages in them. They don't need to concern themselves with the format in which data is actually stored server-side.

    The mailbox format is only of interest or concern to the POP and IMAP servers!
     
  6. kdarray

    kdarray Well-Known Member

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    No

    Webignition, many of my clients access their site email directly from cpanel. It is not like they are grabbing their messages in MS Outlook or anything. So they open Horde for example and instead of seeing 18 messages in their in box, they see 18 folders in "cur" and have to open each one to see what is there. That is the major inconvenience and just a stupid way to have to read your email in Cpanel. So i can't see at a glance what is in my inbox, instead I have to open a bunch of folders to see the individual messages. That is the issue I am talking about.

    If everyone just got their email in POP3 it would not be bad at all. But that is not the case.
     
  7. webignition

    webignition Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the explanation. Now I understand.

    That certainly shouldn't be the case. Ever since I switched to the maildir format, both Horde and SquirrelMail display messages as you would expect and not as you describe.

    What OS and version of WHM/cPanel are you running?
     
  8. kdarray

    kdarray Well-Known Member

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    Here you go

    Running STABLE tree, Fedora Core 4

    WHM 10.8.0 cPanel 10.8.1-S114
    Fedora i686 - WHM X v3.1.0

    Exim is 4.5.2

    Because a cur, tmp, new folder is created for each mailbox in /home/domain/mail I am getting this folders issue instead of mail in Horde or Squirrel. Neomail is no longer available but I'm sure it would be the same way.

    So how do i remove this directory structure so that people accessing their mailboxes via CPanel get a regular old looking mailbox that you would expect: inbox 18 messages, support 14 messages and so on? I have lost all partiality over this :)
     
  9. webignition

    webignition Well-Known Member

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    The webmail interfaces merely accept data from whatever IMAP server is running, therefore it would be fair to conclude that it is the IMAP server that is at fault. This is assuming that the chances of both Horde and SquirrelMail having an identical fault is rather small.

    Therefore it is possible that the IMAP server you're running isn't the correct one. In other words, and for whatever reason, Courier IMAP isn't actually running and some other IMAP server is running instead and that the one that is running does not understand the maildir format.

    I'd recommend giving /scripts/courierup --force a go. This will ensure that Courier IMAP is installed correctly and that it is running.

    Give the script a go and check carefully for errors. The install should go fine, however if there is another IMAP server running you might spot errors towards the end of the output of /scripts/courierup --force when it tries and fails to start Courier IMAP.
     
  10. kdarray

    kdarray Well-Known Member

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    did that

    webignition, that is how i installed courier imap /scripts/courierup --force. i just uninstalled it and have spent two days copying the emails that were in individual folders back into one inbox like normal. i hesitate to go there again and get stuck with a bunch of sites who can't really read their mail. i had moved existing sites to this server some with hundreds of emails and thus hundreds of folders.

    i can copy two test sites here. both have mail. should i reinstall courier imap first, move them, then run convert2maildir? of copy them first then reinstall courier imap. either way i'm praying not to get the email folders i described above.
     
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