[Alpine-info] message not marked "A" after I responded to it
mrc at Washington.EDU
Sun Feb 10 09:57:48 PST 2008
In order to mark a message as answered even when the reply is postponed
and then resumed, it is necessary for the postponed message to have a
handle to the message being replied-to.
There was no good way to do this in the original IMAP2 (there were ways,
just not good ways). IMAP4rev1, deployed in the latter 1990s, introduced
a concept called "unique identifiers" (UIDs) which give a permanent handle
to identify the message even as other messages in the mailbox are added or
Hence, your memory of older Pine behavior is from the IMAP2 days.
The problem with this architecture is that it is completely dependent upon
the quality of the underlying IMAP server (and, in the case of UW imapd,
upon the format used by the mailbox disk files -- not all formats
supported by UW imapd permit UIDs).
To use an analogy, in order to hear stereo music from a radio:
 the radio broadcasting system must offer stereo.
 the transmitter must be capable of generating a stereo signal.
 the receiver must be capable of decoding and playing stereo.
 the source material (record, tape, etc.) must be recorded in stereo.
If any one of these is not the case, you won't hear stereo.
Translating this analogy to whether UIDs are implemented correctly, IMAP
is , the IMAP server is , Alpine is , and the mailbox format is
. Even the best radio equipment in the world won't give you stereo if
the source recording isn't stereo; and not even UW imapd can give you
reliable UIDs if the mailbox format does not support it.
That was what Eduardo focused on; but I think that your problem is more
basic: your server is Domino. That server has a history of numerous
problems. Supposedly newer versions are better; older versions did not
work with Pine at all.
On Sun, 10 Feb 2008, Jacob Wegelin wrote:
> On Sat, 9 Feb 2008, Eduardo Chappa wrote:
>> On Thu, 7 Feb 2008, Jacob Wegelin wrote:
>> :) Sporadically (sometimes) when I reply to a message, I go back to INBOX
>> :) and find that the message that I just replied to has not automatically
>> :) been marked "A".
>> Dear Jacob,
>> This problem indicates that you are storing your mail in a format that
>> does not support UIDs. The problem is triggered by postponing the
>> messages. If you do not postpone the message you are composing you will
>> not see that problem. Do you know in which format is your INBOX?
> Dear Eduardo:
> Thank you for your reply. No, I do not know what format my INBOX is in.
> How could I discover that? The server here at my employer is IBM Domino.
> I confirmed just now that the behavior is sporadic. I just now replied
> to an email by repeatedly postponing and re-opening my reply. I
> postponed the email, quit alpine, re-launched alpine, opened the
> postponed email again and sent it. After all this, the message to which
> I replied was marked "A." (I had sent myself the email from my UW
> I thought that one of the upgrades of Pine had changed its behavior
> regarding postponed messages. Earlier in my Pine usage (I started
> in 1995) I learned that as soon as I postponed the reply message,
> the message to which I replied would not get its label changed to
> "A" when I sent the reply message. But at some point after 1995, I
> noticed that Pine had started tracking the reply even if I had postponed
> the reply before sending it.
> Was I mistaken about this? Was it not a function of a Pine improvement
> but rather of changes in the incoming mail servers of my various
> And why would the behavior be sporadic?
> Thanks for any info
> Jacob A. Wegelin
> Assistant Professor
> Department of Biostatistics
> Virginia Commonwealth University
> 730 East Broad Street Room 3006
> P. O. Box 980032
> Richmond VA 23298-0032
> U.S.A. http://www.people.vcu.edu/~jwegelin
> jwegelin at vcu dot edu
> Alpine-info mailing list
> Alpine-info at u.washington.edu
-- Mark --
Democracy is two wolves and a sheep deciding what to eat for lunch.
Liberty is a well-armed sheep contesting the vote.
More information about the Alpine-info