[Users] Synchronizing an MH directory

Ivan Krylov krylov.r00t at gmail.com
Thu Feb 14 20:59:27 CET 2019


One of my mail accounts is on a server with relatively little storage.
I have multiple computers with Claws Mail installed. I would like to
store the mail from this server on all my machines. Other files are
synchronized between them using Unison [*], so I thought I could try
adding the MH directory to the list of synchronized files.

First of all, I had to set Unison to ignore .claws_* files, because
they are frequently changed and binary, making merging very hard if not
impossible. (I might be able to set Unison to always silently prefer the
newer version of a file on conflict, but I'm not sure it wouldn't crash
Claws Mail.)

The e-mail server offers both POP and IMAP. Since removing mail on the
server would cause removing it in IMAP the client, too, I used POP

If I instruct Claws to remove the mail from the server immediately,
everything works relatively well (Claws notices new files in the MH
directory when I click on Inbox). This leaves a small window of time
between getting an e-mail and synchronizing it to the other machines
when one misbehaving computer might destroy it altogether.

Being a bit paranoid, I tried to switch the delete timeout to 14 days
(to keep one more copy on the server just in case), but that caused
duplicate e-mails to appear in the mailbox: one copy would be freshly
downloaded from another machine and the other would be downloaded from
the e-mail server. I could press Tools/Remove duplicates when that
happens or even try to set up Claws to do that every time after
checking e-mail, but I'm a bit wary of this option too.

Has anyone else tried to set up a workflow like I'm trying to? Can I
have my cake (relatively painless synchronization of MH directories)
and eat it too (keep mail on the POP server for a while)?

Best regards,

[*] https://www.cis.upenn.edu/~bcpierce/unison/

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