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Folders: Organizing your Mail

Normally, all your mail arrives in a folder called INBOX, where it remains until you either delete it or move it elsewhere.

To avoid having all your mail staying forever in your INBOX, it's a good idea to move read messages into folders, where you can group them together according to your organizational whim.

  • To create a new folder in Thunderbird, select “New Folder” from the File menu.
  • To move messages from INBOX to a folder, select the messages you want to move, then drag them to the destination folder.

It's possible to create Thunderbird folders which are stored either on the mail server (as a subfolder of “Inbox”), or on the local computer (inside “Local Folders”). The first (server) option is usually a better choice, as the folders will be accessible from any location, and will be backed up, etc.

Special folders

You can also set the mail program to save sent messages and drafts on the server, rather than locally.

  • In Thunderbird, this is set in “Mail and Newsgroups Account Settings”, under “Copies and Folders”.
  • In Mac OS Mail (v10.2 and higher), click the folder you'd like to use as your saved mail or drafts folder, then from the Mailbox menu, choose “Use Selected Mailbox For” and the appropriate assignment from the submenu.

Trash folder

This is where messages get moved when you delete them (depending on how your mail program is set up). Messages moved into Trash are deleted automatically after 30 days.

Automatic Filtering

You can set up automatic filtering of messages, so that (for example), messages with a certain word in the subject get placed into a particular folder at delivery time. This feature is set up though the Physics webmail system. An example is given on our spam help page.

Importing folders

A pair of scripts is available to import mbox-format folders from your unix account into the IMAP server.

First, generate a folder import list using this script:

/local/site/scripts/mail/getmailboxes-user.sh -s src [-d IMAP folder] > folders.txt

This generates a file containing a list of mbox folders with their destination names on the imap server. src is the name of the directory containing the folders you want to import. IMAP folder is an optional folder if you want to import the folders into a subfolder on the imap server. You can then edit the folders.txt file if you wish to change the list of folders to import.

/local/site/scripts/mail/mbox2cyrus-user folders.txt

imports the folder list into the IMAP server. It will prompt for your username and password on the imap server.

Exporting folders

The easiest way to export folders from your Physics IMAP account is using our webmail system.

  • Use “Archive Settings” on the Options page to choose what type of file to export to (the default is zip).
  • Open the folder you want to export.
  • Click “Show All”
  • Click “Toggle All”
  • Click the “Archive button”
computing/accounts/email/folders.txt · Last modified: 2015/07/16 01:17 by allan