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eMail Storage

Discussion of features in Mozilla Thunderbird
Aqua.

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Post Posted April 2nd, 2003, 9:14 pm

Local eMail should be stored as separate <b>text</b> files, not as one huge compressed file.

The reasons behind this are as follows:

* <b>LEGACY</b> - As technology advances, formats are discarded, plain text is the only one that will stick around. Thus, this method will allow eMails to be read in the distant future without trouble.
* Easy storage and transfer of individual emails.
* Easy management of eMail files from a file manager (especially valuable for archiving purposes)
* Ability for multiple eMail clients to easily manage the same emails without worrying about file format problems.

There are of course many other individual reasons, but they boil down to two main themes.

1) Legacy issues
2) Archival issues

On current single compressed files:

The benefits of large single compressed files are smaller filespace and faster message searching. However, the filespace issue is moot considering modern storage capabilities in common use. The fast message searching could alternatively be done by a separate indexed file referencing separate email files. Thus, I do not see any big advantage in storing mail in a single compressed file.

Aqua.

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Post Posted April 2nd, 2003, 9:21 pm

Addendum:

In addition to just storing the eMail in individual text files, they should also be stored in actual folders that mirror the folder structure inside the eMail client.

Aqua.

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Post Posted April 2nd, 2003, 9:22 pm

This entire thread may have been irrelevant, the program may already use invidually stored eMails.

I admit I did not check before posting this thread. This thread was based on practices common to many eMail client programs.

Alex Bishop
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Post Posted April 2nd, 2003, 9:25 pm

Mozilla/Minotaur/Thunderbird uses the mbox format. This standard format uses a plain text file for each folder that contains all the email messages in that folder.
Alex

Aqua.

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Post Posted April 2nd, 2003, 10:14 pm

That sounds like a good compromise, but would it be possible for there to be an option or extension to save each email as an individual file?

whiprush

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Post Posted April 2nd, 2003, 10:37 pm

I'm assuming you mean for local folders, <a href="http://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=58308">bug 58308</a> is for maildir support.

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