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Esteemed Colleagues, When we create user email accounts, we create Sent, Trash, and Drafts folders on the server by default. We run Dovecot as our IMAP server, and our faculty and staff connect via IMAP. (Students can connect via IMAP as well, but it seems most either use only our Webmail access to the server, or else forward their campus mail to an existing external email account.) When Apple's on Macs or iPhones/Pads/Pods first connects to our server on a given device, it does not use our existing "Sent" or "Trash" folders, but instead creates new folders, "Sent Messages" and "Deleted Messages" for these purposes. Confusingly, then displays these new folders via the larger "Sent" and "Trash" icons at the top of the mailbox lists. To make the Apple Mail clients use the same folders as our webmail and other mail clients do, the user needs to manually select e.g. the "Sent" folder from the list of folders on the server, and then (on a Mac) use the menu command "Mailbox > Use this mailbox for > Sent" command; and similarly for Trash. On iOS devices, this setting is buried in Settings > Mail > (their college account name) > Advanced. Our on-line instructions for configuring Apple Mail include these steps, but most users don't actually do this setting. Or, they might get it on one Apple device, but not all of them; or they might sometimes use webmail, or Thunderbird on a Windows box, so they so they wind up with some messages in both versions of the "Sent" folder. This is easy enough to resolve when they notice the issue, but it is annoying. I'm wondering if this behavior is some quirk of our IMAP server settings, or if it is a typical issue with Apple's Mail. Apple does address this briefly in a tech note: which says, "When Mail stores messages on the server, it looks for specific mailboxes, by name, in which to put the messages. If Mail doesn’t find those mailboxes on the server, it tries to create them on the server or, failing that, on your Mac." However, this note does not provide the list of folder names that it tries to match. From our experience here, I'd guess that it looks _only_ for "Sent Messages", but I'm hoping there is some way to get it to cooperate better with our IMAP server, and find and use "Sent" and "Trash" without requiring any user interaction. Have you seen this issue with Apple's Mail and your IMAP accounts? If so, have you found a workaround besides manually specifying the server's folder names in each instance of Apple's Mail client? Thanks for any light you can shed. Steve Bohrer Network Admin Bard College at Simon's Rock 413-528-7645 ********** Participation and subscription information for this EDUCAUSE Constituent Group discussion list can be found at


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Steve, I've left my office for today so I can't do much research, however, there should be a few albeit strange ways to address this. You might be able to look in ~/Library/Mail and find the mailbox names it uses by default. I have a feeling though that it wraps the into the $accountname.mbox file making it tricky to separate. Another option is making a file to distribute. This would essentially be a script that could prompt for username only, then it could create the file with all of your chosen imap settings. That script would do a "defaults write (settings you specify)". At the first launch of mail for the new account it would then ask password. Essentially you'd preload all your mail settings including sent folder specification into the plist with no user steps aside from running the script. This isn't ideal but without a Mac in front of me I can't think of a simple way to do it automatically. As far as iPhones...maybe with a configuration profile for that mail account. I'd have to do some digging for the best way to make one. Matt Sarte Unit Computing Specialist Rutgers University Sent from my iPhone