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deleted emails stick around until expunged (IMAP)

Tracked by Jolla (In progress)

asked 2014-01-08 14:30:56 +0300

mornfall gravatar image

updated 2014-08-23 22:29:34 +0300

Seems mails flagged as deleted on IMAP are still shown in the client, until they are expunged. (To be clear, the emails were deleted from a desktop client. The problem is that Jolla's email client does not respect the deleted flags in IMAP folders.)

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How/where are you marking them as deleted ? Are those changes exported to the remote server ?

VDVsx ( 2014-01-08 17:34:13 +0300 )edit

Yes, they are flagged as deleted on the IMAP server (verified with mutt), but still present (normal behaviour with IMAP if you disable automatic expunge).

mornfall ( 2014-01-10 12:32:38 +0300 )edit

Aditionally, there seems to be no way to expunge messages from Jolla's email client, making it useless when it comes to deletions.

WhyNotHugo ( 2014-05-01 16:07:51 +0300 )edit

@hobarrera - mails are expurged when deleted from trash folder, like most clients do.

VDVsx ( 2014-05-02 10:09:41 +0300 )edit

I have this problem as well. As I see it, the problem is that the Jolla e-mail client doesn't care about the Deleted flag on messages.

In addition, the read status of e-mails in the "new e-mails list" doesn't seem to get updated when read on another client (possibly same as this problem). I saved a message server log after updating an IMAP account where I observe these two problems and sent it to mail-logs at jolla dot com.

luen ( 2014-06-29 00:56:18 +0300 )edit

2 Answers

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answered 2014-06-29 10:46:01 +0300

MacManus gravatar image

If you are using Thunderbird, you can check following option as a workaround: https://together.jolla.com/question/48885/emails-from-imap-are-saved-locally/?answer=48954#post-id-48954

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I do not want to expunge the folders, that's the entire point. The mail client should respect the deleted flag, like all other IMAP clients.

mornfall ( 2014-12-02 21:54:40 +0300 )edit

answered 2014-01-09 12:05:40 +0300

chemist gravatar image

updated 2014-01-09 13:24:03 +0300

For IMAP deleting is two steps - most clients do it in one what is actually wrong and adds unneeded traffic as you send a sync-mailbox every time you delete.

Step one: delete - Step two: update (sync-mailbox your client sends all changes to the server and receives all changes made by another client in the meantime). I actually love this behaviour in mutt (text-based client) where nothing happens to my actual mail until I press sync-mailbox.

A settings entry would be suitable to have people used to clients that do auto-sync-mailbox have the option to activate such a... feature (it is actually implementing a bug as a choosable feature but ok)

EDIT: I just checked with two servers one is a communigate one is either dovecot or the other (not my domain) - on both servers the email is deleted instantly and pushed update of inbox to all other clients connected - that is actually the best auto-sync-mailbox implementation I had so far... so WFM

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I think the feature (bug ;) ) should be enabled by default, as that is what most users expect. Powerusers could then choose to disable that in a simple way.

Mohjive ( 2014-01-09 14:01:55 +0300 )edit

Right, I know how IMAP works. But what you describe is not an IMAP feature but a UI feature: there's no "sync-mailbox" in IMAP. IMAP works online just as fine. Deletion is however a two step process in IMAP: flag as deleted and expunge, which actually removes deleted messages.

mornfall ( 2014-01-10 12:35:23 +0300 )edit

But you can't expunge from Jolla's email client (or have I missed the button?), so that IS a bug. It doesn't do so automatically when sycing either. Unless you rely on other clients for expunging, deleting email is actually impossible.

WhyNotHugo ( 2014-05-01 16:09:34 +0300 )edit

It used to be that mail client developers were actively discouraged from issuing an Expunge immediately after marking a mail as \Deleted, because Expunge can apparently impose a heavy load on the server (let's call this expunge-on-delete for brevity). It's basically saying "mark this one message as \Deleted and then remove all messages in the folder that are marked \Deleted", where the "all messages" is the problematic part. This was then solved with "UID Expunge", a feature that can be used if both client and server support it (they negotiate about it: UIDPLUS extension). "UID Expunge" expunges a single message, avoiding the load of the "all messages" part. This makes "UID Expunge" a good option for when there is a separate trash folder: the message is expunged from its original folder, but still kept in the trash folder.

One of the reasons for its existence, one of the use cases of the \Deleted flag is for mail clients that wish to have a virtual Trash bin, where deleted mail still resides in the folder it was in, until eventually thrown away. This also means that taking it out of the virtual Trash bin (undeleting it) puts it back in its proper folder, because this information is still retained.

Furthermore, I don't think IMAP has the notion of moving a message between folders (but I could be wrong). I think moving a message means duplicating it (COPY) and then marking it \Deleted at its origin. So "move to the Trash folder" leaves a \Deleted copy in the original folder as well.

Finally, my opinion about bug or feature: I'd consider expunge-on-delete on the buggy side unless it were done with UID Expunge. I think chemist means expunge-on-delete with "auto-sync-mailbox"? But that the Jolla mail app simply does not care about the \Deleted flag, depriving users of the difference between a message marked \Deleted and messages not marked as such, I really don't see how that is desirable.

Digital Brains ( 2015-08-24 14:23:10 +0300 )edit
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Asked: 2014-01-08 14:30:56 +0300

Seen: 1,546 times

Last updated: Aug 23 '14