[Users] Importing kmails complete mail corpus to claws

Steve Litt slitt at troubleshooters.com
Sun May 26 17:54:52 CEST 2013

On Sun, 26 May 2013 11:08:01 +0200
Andrej Kacian <andrej at kacian.sk> wrote:

> On Thu, 23 May 2013 16:30:31 -0400
> Steve Litt <slitt at troubleshooters.com> wrote:
> > I prefer procmail filters because they're independent of any email 
> > client, they are in a plain text file that gets backed up and never 
> > replaced, and you can make new filters with copy and paste in your 
> > favorite text editor.
> Just a small observation here. I too have been using almost identical
> setup for years, but then threw out procmail, because if you wrote a
> new recipe and it was syntactically incorrect, it tended to throw
> incoming e-mails away. I replaced it with dovecot's sieve filtering,
> which simply logs a syntax error and delivers e-mails to default
> inbox.

Oh yeah, I should have mentioned that. Take what Andrej says
very, very seriously: it can happen.

At the *very* bottom of my .procmailrc I have a test recipe that takes
messages with a specific test subject and places them in a special test
folder. Immediately after making a change to .procmailrc, I send a test
email, with that test subject, to myself. If it arrives in the test
folder, I know all is well. If not, then some "gobble em all up" recipe
above it either grabbed it or threw it to /dev/null. If that happens, I
can put back the last working .procmailrc, or perhaps eyeball my last
change to see what I did wrong.

Consider this seemingly harmless recipe:

* ^Subject.*[Dovecot]

Seems clear enough -- it puts email with [Dovecot] in the subject into
the dovecot folder. Bzzzzzzt, wrong!!! What it does is put any email
containing d, o, v, e, c or t into the Dovecot directory. If you have
something like that sending it to /dev/null, you never get it back. The
way to test on bracketed names in the subject is to escape the brackets
with backslashes, like the following:

* ^Subject.*\[Dovecot\]

The moral of the story is when changing your .procmailrc, be careful,
and immediately test with a test recipe at the very bottom. If you
don't, then, as Andrej says, you can lose email for a long, long time.

Good catch, Andrej!


Steve Litt                *  http://www.troubleshooters.com/
Troubleshooting Training  *  Human Performance

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