performance issue (imap spool on san)

Sebastian Hagedorn Hagedorn at
Thu Jul 27 07:02:38 EDT 2006

--On 27. Juli 2006 02:58:15 -0700 Nikola Milutinovic <alokin1 at> 

> Say you have a GUI IMAP client XxX. Say you start it up and click on the
> INBOX. What would you desire/expect XxX to do?

That depends on the situation.

> I would expect to see all mail headers in my inbox.

Really? Even if there are 20,000 messages and you are connected via modem?

> So, how do you do that in XxX, other then fetching all mail headers? How
> do you do that in Pine and Mutt?

Being console-based, they have it easy: they only load those headers that 
they are currently displaying. Mulberry lets *you* decide what to do, with 
separate values for "initial download" and "increment". You can specify 
limits of headers to get if you want to. When you scroll through the 
mailbox, it may need to load additional headers. So maybe you have to wait 
at that point, but the *initial* wait is much shorter.

> Now, fetching it EVERY time, well, that would make me switch to another
> client. So, caching comes in.

Caching sucks. It's bad on public computers, e.g. in pools, because of 
privacy issues. In general it's flaky if you work on more than one 
computer. Mulberry doesn't cache anything and still it's very fast.

 What is your "modus operandi" in Mutt or Pine for this? If I understand
> correctly, you just make IMAP queries to the server and display what you
> desire. Hmm, call me lazy, but I would mark such a feature in TB
> unwelcome. When I click on the INBOX, I expect to see it's contents. That
> is the semantics I'm used to, when I "click on a folder". Is this
> semantic somehow confronted to the root philosophy of IMAP client/server?

It's tailored to exactly *one* use scenario: high-speed connection to a 
fast server. Good luck when that assumption isn't valid!

> Furthermore, if TB is implementing those semantics in IMAP protocol in an
> undesirable fashion, what should it do to become desirable again?

     .:.Sebastian Hagedorn - RZKR-R1 (Gebäude 52), Zimmer 18.:.
Zentrum für angewandte Informatik - Universitätsweiter Service RRZK
.:.Universität zu Köln / Cologne University - Tel. +49-221-478-5587.:.
                   .:.:.:.Skype: shagedorn.:.:.:.
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