Strange mail problem

John J. Boyer john.boyer at
Wed Dec 14 18:48:53 UTC 2016

Hi Yoshio,

This looks helpful. All I'm really interested in is why only the first ten messages are delivered immediately and the 
rest sit in the mail queue for what seems like half an hour.


On Tue, Dec 13, 2016 at 10:15:21PM -0800, yoshio wrote:
> Hi John,
> I have this in my .fetchmailrc
>    mda "/usr/bin/procmail -d %T"
> so fetchmail calls procmail directly, without going through a local smtp
> server.
> On a debian system you can look at /usr/share/doc/msmtp/examples -
> in the msmtpq directory, you can find the msmtp-queue command, the -r
> option is "run (flush) mail queue - all mail in queue" - I'm guessing
> this would be helpful (I don't run msmtp myself).
> While I have mutt open, and then run fetchmail, sometimes new mail doesn't
> appear until I hit the down arrow on the last message in a mailbox, then
> suddenly the new mail appears.
> suggests adding:
>    set timeout=30
> to your ~/.muttrc
> typing "man muttrc" on debian system shows the timeout default is 600 seconds
> (10 minutes).
> >From
> How to make mutt check for new mail more often? What's the difference between $timeout and $mail_check?
> After every keyboard input mutt updates the status of all folders. To receive "New mail in ..." notifications even without needing to press a key, set $timeout == time to wait for idle mutt (no key pressed) before the status is updated again as if a key were pressed. To avoid too frequent folder access (bad connections via NFS or IMAP), set $mail_check == minium time between 2 scans for new mail (external changes to folders) in case of high keyboard activity.
>     $mail_check < $timeout : scan on next update $timeout < $mail_check : update before scan
> This means $mail_check < $timeout is more useful, because by the time mutt will update, it will also scan for external changes to incorporate them in the update.
> How to get informed about new mail?
> When new mail arrives, an automatic (no key pressed) "New mail in ..." notification is shown at the screen bottom. This happens only in the index menu. For manual checking, you can use the buffy-list function which works in the pager, index and folder browser. It prints a list of folders with new mail. However, it will display an up-to-date list only when the index menu is focused. Additionally, you can invoke check-new in the folder browser which updates the display ('N' flag for folders with new mail) and also buffy-lists folder list. 
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