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Emails not deleting from from client views

  • 7 replies
  • 1 has this problem
  • 22 views
  • Last reply by Mark Foley

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I have an email account on Linux in /var/spool/mail, mbox format. I have Thunderbird 91.4.1 on a different Linux host with POP access to the mbox. I have Thunderbird 91.5.0 on a Windows 10 host, also with access to the same mbox via POP. Both Thunderbird clients are set to "leave messages on server until I delete them." Both synchonize the inbox just fine.

The problem is deleting. If I delete an email on either the Linux or Windows Thunderbird (either DEL or SHFT-DEL), it does delete it from that Thunderbird's inbox, but it is still there on the other Thunderbird. I can even open the supposedly deleted message. Closing and restarting Thunderbird does not remove this message from the inbox. In both cases the message is deleted from the server, but persists in the inbox of the Tbird client which did not do the delete.

Cache is set to use 220MB.

Can I fix this behavior?

I have an email account on Linux in /var/spool/mail, mbox format. I have Thunderbird 91.4.1 on a different Linux host with POP access to the mbox. I have Thunderbird 91.5.0 on a Windows 10 host, also with access to the same mbox via POP. Both Thunderbird clients are set to "leave messages on server until I delete them." Both synchonize the inbox just fine. The problem is deleting. If I delete an email on either the Linux or Windows Thunderbird (either DEL or SHFT-DEL), it does delete it from that Thunderbird's inbox, but it is still there on the other Thunderbird. I can even open the supposedly deleted message. Closing and restarting Thunderbird does not remove this message from the inbox. In both cases the message is deleted from the server, but persists in the inbox of the Tbird client which did not do the delete. Cache is set to use 220MB. Can I fix this behavior?

Chosen solution

I may be confused on your situation, but POP downloads to the PC. If the message is deleted from server by another PC, this PC isn't aware of it. POP accounts do not poll the server to see if file is still there. The decision to delete is one-way, PC to server. As Matt stated, if you want the decision from one PC to be reflected on another PC, the way to go is IMAP.

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All Replies (7)

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The deletion is from the server, not some other instance of pop on another mail client. If that is what you want then you want IMAP.

Given Thunderbird 91 and later do not support mail spool files, I think that the spool is actually totally disconnected from what is happening.

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"The deletion is from the server, not some other instance of pop on another mail client. If that is what you want then you want IMAP."

The email on the server is being deleted. And it does disappear from the TBird client's inbox that did the delete. Why is the Thunderbird POP client on other hosts not showing this email as deleted, especially given that it is no longer on the host?

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Chosen Solution

I may be confused on your situation, but POP downloads to the PC. If the message is deleted from server by another PC, this PC isn't aware of it. POP accounts do not poll the server to see if file is still there. The decision to delete is one-way, PC to server. As Matt stated, if you want the decision from one PC to be reflected on another PC, the way to go is IMAP.

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Ah, a POP client knows when new emails arrive on the server, but doesn't know when they are deleted, correct? I didn't know that.

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Does your situation rely on mail spool files? "/var/spool/mail" They are no longer supported.

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Mark, Just to be clear, POP accounts don't know anything about the server; that is they don't know when new mail arrives. They check only when 'told' to. They delete from server only when so specified in setup. Otherwise, they are passive.

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Matt - yes, the POP account is using /var/spool/mail. It does seem to work fine.

David - "that is they don't know when new mail arrives." But of course, the Thunderbird client is set up to "check for new messages every 3 minutes", so I guess in that sense it's being "told to check".

Well, I guess I can live with the notion that Thunderbird as a POP client is not being informed of deletions. I'll just have to delete emails on each computer. I've used IMAP extensively before, but this is just a minor supplemental mailbox for a todo list. POP is fine and works without having to configure IMAP.

Thanks for the feedback.

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