Don Marti

Wed 11 Feb 2009 10:20:23 AM PST

Mairix fans unite

Alex Payne covers The Problem With Email Clients. "Anyone who’s given Gmail a fair shake will quickly find conversations indispensable."

I agree with this. You often have to be able to go back in the thread, to remember where you are. Even people who aren't doing a bunch of different Gigs instead of a job still have a lot of stuff going on, and you have to review where you are.

A webmail system that treats threads as first-class citizens is one way, and of course the other is the Executive mail style—just to keep mailing the entire thread back and forth, because nobody has a mail client that deals with threads very well.

I keep track of conversations with mairix, "a program for indexing and searching email messages stored in Maildir (see the documentation section below), MH or mbox folders." Here's the manual.

And here's my .mairixrc file:


And a shell function to do a Mairix search and invoke Mutt on the results folder.

        mairix -t $*
        mutt -f =mairix

People are doing better things with Mutt/mairix integration, though. Here's a nifty idea on the mutt-users mailing list...must try that some time. In the meantime, though, just using Mairix to get all the relevant messages together is good enough.