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#1 2013-08-07 23:39:48

z1lt0id
Member
Registered: 2012-09-20
Posts: 168

NCurses Email Clients

So I have been currently hunting down an ncurses email client and so far I only have found three.  Mutt, Alpine and sup (which is broken in AUR).  I found Mutt highly customisable but quite slow and Alpine was okay but it was based on Nano (I'd rather vim).  What email client do you use and what would you recommend me?

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#2 2013-08-07 23:47:38

HalosGhost
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From: Twin Cities, MN
Registered: 2012-06-22
Posts: 1,486
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Re: NCurses Email Clients

Well, I don't know if you use Gmail, but if you do, there's always this.

All the best,

-HG


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#3 2013-08-07 23:58:51

WonderWoofy
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From: Los Gatos, CA
Registered: 2012-05-19
Posts: 8,412

Re: NCurses Email Clients

I use mutt... but not just mutt.  You are right that using mutt on its own is not incredibly fast.  So I use offlineimap to store all my mail locally in a maildir and then mutt just reads from the maildir.  If you have a crap load of mail and a rotational drive, it still might be a bit slow opening up folders with thousands of messages, but on my SSD it is pretty instantaneous. 

I am also a gmail user, so gmail uses "labels" in its own system, so it automatically puts your mail in the inbox as well as "all mail".  So to offlineimap, it sees it as two distinct messages, so I delete the things in my inbox as I go since I still have it in "all mail". 

I also use msmtp to send emails via SMTP, as I find it much more flexable (and scriptable) than the built in SMTP functionality.  Then to index my mails, I use notmuch. Arch actually provides a notmuch-mutt pacakge, since notmuch is its own mail client actually... but you can use its indexer for any maildir (and maybe mbox?).

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#4 2013-08-08 00:01:49

z1lt0id
Member
Registered: 2012-09-20
Posts: 168

Re: NCurses Email Clients

@HalosGhost:  Looks interesting, looks like I will have to compile it myself.  The Arch AUR is broken.

@WonderWoofy:  By any chance do you have a config without your credentials so I could look at it.  My biggest gripe with Mutt was its slowness.  But clearly you have worked around that.

Thanks guys.

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#5 2013-08-08 00:05:08

HalosGhost
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From: Twin Cities, MN
Registered: 2012-06-22
Posts: 1,486
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Re: NCurses Email Clients

z1lt0id wrote:

The Arch AUR is broken.

Wut.

All the best,

-HG


"All errors are ᴘᴇʙᴋᴀᴄ errors—It's just a matter of narrowing down which keyboard and chair." -Trilby
\ldots

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#6 2013-08-08 00:06:13

Trilby
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From: Massachusetts, USA
Registered: 2011-11-29
Posts: 13,811
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Re: NCurses Email Clients

I have a rotational drive and a crap load of mail.  But mutt with offlineimap is incredibly fast.  Without offlineimap, it is pretty miserable.

One silly thing about mutt that has had me consider writting my own maildir client is that colors are for lines.  With a few very limited exceptions, you can't color different parts of a line differently (in the index listing for example).

Last edited by Trilby (2013-08-08 00:08:52)


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#7 2013-08-08 00:19:37

WonderWoofy
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From: Los Gatos, CA
Registered: 2012-05-19
Posts: 8,412

Re: NCurses Email Clients

Trilby wrote:

One silly thing about mutt that has had me consider writting my own maildir client is that colors are for lines.  With a few very limited exceptions, you can't color different parts of a line differently (in the index listing for example).

I never even thought about this... but now that you mention it, you are right.

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#8 2013-08-08 00:27:42

2ion
Member
Registered: 2013-04-19
Posts: 71

Re: NCurses Email Clients

@WonderWoofy
@HalosGhost

I use a slightly different but very flexible configuration:

1. fetchmail as the MTA to receive mail from IMAP accounts (supports also POP, among other things);
2. procmail as the MDA to feed mails into bogofilter and deliver into a number of MBOX mailboxes;
3. mutt as the mail reader;
4. msmtp to send mail via a number of different accounts.

I especially like the procmail-way of filtering and sorting mail. The drawback here is that no IMAP state is getting synced back to the server so using the same accounts from multiple systems might turn out to be quite a hassle. fetchmail can be called to fork into the background from mutt (or be run as a daemon) so no delay at this point, and msmtp execution time depends obviously on the mail size.

Specific cases of "sluggishness" in/performance issues of mutt have long been a complaint about mutt though and have been addressed in quite a number of patches, for example here: http://blog.plenz.com/2012-01/mutt-side … ments.html. I'm not sure if these, among other patches, have made their way into upstream mutt yet. However, you should try the sidebar-performance related patches in any case, they sped things up considerably (on my unusually low-performance system at least) for me.

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#9 2013-08-08 00:30:11

cfr
Member
From: Cymru
Registered: 2011-11-27
Posts: 5,662

Re: NCurses Email Clients

If your only objection to alpine is that it uses nano, just configure it to use vim. I haven't used it for a while but unless they've removed that functionality, it is perfectly possible to do this - indeed, it is how I configured alpine when I was using it.

I haven't tried mutt but I've yet to find an email programme I like better than alpine.

Last edited by cfr (2013-08-08 00:31:03)


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#10 2013-08-08 00:59:17

jasonwryan
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From: .nz
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Re: NCurses Email Clients

mutt is slow indexing huge maildirs. Use notmuch for that and you will struggle to find a better mail setup (with offlineimap or isync, msmtp and GPG)...


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#11 2013-08-08 01:03:38

z1lt0id
Member
Registered: 2012-09-20
Posts: 168

Re: NCurses Email Clients

I'll look into mutt and notmuch smile

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#12 2013-08-15 00:16:01

GI Jack
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Registered: 2010-12-29
Posts: 85

Re: NCurses Email Clients

z1lt0id wrote:

Alpine was okay but it was based on Nano (I'd rather vim).


ehem. Other way around actually. Nano is Free Software clone of pico, which is "pine composer", a stand alone text editor based on the internel message interface from pine. pine is the predecessor to alpine(apache licensed pine).


so.... my pick is alpine, I've been using pine for decades

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#13 2013-08-15 00:36:39

z1lt0id
Member
Registered: 2012-09-20
Posts: 168

Re: NCurses Email Clients

So I ended up using Mutt with Offlineimap and Notmuch and it works amazingly fast.  Thanks for all your tips guys smile

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