Notmuch 0.5 (2010-11-11)

New, general features

Maildir-flag synchronization

Notmuch now knows how to synchronize flags in maildir filenames with tags in the notmuch database. The following flag/tag mappings are supported:

    Flag <-> Tag
    ----     -----
    'D'      draft
    'F'      flagged
    'P'      passed
    'R'      replied
    'S'      unread (added when 'S' flag is not present)

The synchronization occurs in both directions, (for example, adding the 'S' flag to a file will cause the "unread" tag to be added, and adding the "replied" tag to a message will cause the file to be renamed with an 'R' flag).

This synchronization is enabled by default for users of the command-line interface, (though only files in directories named "cur" or "new" will be renamed). It can be disabled by setting the new maildir.synchronize_flags option in the configuration file. For example:

    notmuch config set maildir.synchronize_flags false

Users upgrading may also want to run "notmuch setup" once (just accept the existing configuration) to get a new, nicely-commented [maildir] section added to the configuration file.

For users of the notmuch library, the new synchronization functionality is available with the following two new functions:


It is anticipated that future improvements to this support will allow for safe synchronization of the 'T' flag with the "deleted" tag, as well as support for custom flag/tag mappings.

New library features

Support for querying multiple filenames for a single message

It is common for the mailstore to contain multiple files with the same message ID. Previously, notmuch would always hide these duplicate files, (returning a single, arbitrary filename with notmuch_message_get_filename).

With this release, library users can access all filenames for a message with the new function:


Together with notmuch_filenames_valid, notmuch_filenames_get, and notmuch_filenames_move_to_next it is now possible to iterate over all available filenames for a given message.

New command-line features

New "notmuch show --format=raw" for getting at original email contents

This new feature allows for a fully-functional email client to be built on top of the notmuch command-line without needing any direct access to the mail store itself.

For example, it's now possible to run "emacs -f notmuch" on a local machine with only ssh access to the mail store/notmuch database. To do this, simply set the notmuch-command variable in emacs to the name of a script containing:

    ssh user@host notmuch "$@"

If the ssh client has enabled connection sharing (ControlMaster option in OpenSSH), the emacs interface can be quite responsive this way.

General bug fixes

Fix "notmuch search" to print nothing when nothing matches

The 0.4 release had a bug in which:

    notmuch search <expression-with-no-matches>

would produce a single blank line of output, (where previous versions would produce no output. This fix also causes a change in the --format=json output, (which would previously produce "[]" and now produces nothing).

Emacs interface improvements

Fix to allow pipe ('|') command to work when using notmuch over ssh

Fix count of lines in hidden signatures

Omit repeated subject lines in (collapsed) thread display

Display current thread subject in a header line

Provide a "c i" binding to copy a thread ID from the search view

Allow for notmuch-fcc-dirs to have a value of nil

Also, the more complex form of notmuch-fcc-dirs now has a slightly different format. It no longer has a special first-element, fallback string. Instead it's now a list of cons cells where the car of each cell is a regular expression to be matched against the sender address, and the cdr is the name of a folder to use for an FCC. So the old fallback behavior can be achieved by including a final cell of (".*" . "default-fcc-folder").

Vim interface improvements

Felipe Contreras provided a number of updates for the vim interface

These include optimizations, support for newer versions of vim, fixed support for sending mail on modern systems, new commands, and various cleanups.

New bindings

Added initial ruby bindings in bindings/ruby