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Messages not being deleted from POP3 server
My wife has accumulated over 40,000 messages in one of her Earthlink email accounts over ten years or so, filling her allotted server space. I downloaded Thunderbird v.102.1.1 to her computer and configured it to use POP3 with "leave messages on server" checked and "For at most" checked and set to 365 days, with "Until I delete them" left unchecked. I downloaded all the messages, expecting most of them to be deleted from the server, but none were. The server is still full. Compacting the Thunderbird inbox doesn't help, nor do repeated clicks on "Get Messages."
It would be nice if the ambiguous wording of the server settings were clarified. I have these questions:
1. Does "For at most" for a POP3 account mean that today's date is being compared with the creation date of the message or to the date on which it was first downloaded to Thunderbird? If the latter, how can I make it behave like the former? My wife can't wait a year to delete messages from her server inbox, but she doesn't want to lose the recent messages there because she is used to using Webmail to access them. Earthlink only allows 50 messages to be deleted at a time, so it would be tedious to use Webmail to delete the downloaded messages there hundreds of times.
2. Does "Until I delete them" for a POP3 account mean delete them directly from the server using Webmail, delete them from the Thunderbird inbox, move them to a local folder in Thunderbird, and/or something else this might mean? If the "For at most" box is checked, does "Until" mean "Unless I delete them first"?
3. Any suggestions of how I can trigger Thunderbird to send its DELE messages to the server would be appreciated. Perhaps I'm missing something.
All Replies (4)
Thunderbird keeps track of when messages were downloaded, so if you just downloaded 40,000 messages, I believe the setting is 365 days from when you downloaded them. That should work going forward, but doesn't address the immediate issue. What you might do is set up a second account for her mail, using IMAP. Then, she could access the messages via Thunderbird and delete messages in larger quantities.
Thanks for answering my first question, David. Do you recommend that I create two instances of Thunderbird, adding a new one configured for IMAP, or can I have two inboxes within the same instance, one POP3 and one IMAP? Also, would you mind answering my second question?
Thanks so much.
Or with your browser goto the webmail page of your provider and delete the unwanted enails.
Yes you can have an IMAP and POP account for the same email account. On second question, it means that Thunderbird keeps track of when downloaded and Thunderbird will delete.