Does anyone have any good suggestions for applications or utilities that’ll convert a folder of mail messages (all in RFC 822 format) into a single IMAP UNIX-style mailbox file? I found UniAccess today, which may do the trick; I was hoping for something that wouldn’t cost me $300 for a single-time run, though. Ideas?


I’m not sure what you mean by an IMAP UNIX-style mailbox file. IMAP is just a protocol; it doesn’t specify how messages are stored. Are you specifically referring to the UW-IMAP server? If so, I would recommend not using the UNIX-style mailbox file as your message store. It is not very efficient. (See for more information on UW-IMAP message stores.)

On the flip side, it is fairly simple to change plain RFC822 messages into a UNIX-style mailbox file. Just write a script to do the following:

for each mesasge in folder:

1) open message

2) grab simple email address from “From” header

3) grab date from “Date” header. Convert it to localtime. Format it as DAY MON DD HH:MM:SS YYYY (i.e. Wed Nov 28 18:37:55 2001)

4) append to output file:
From <email address from step 2> <date from step 3>

5) Then, append the RFC822 message to the output file. Convert any lines that begin with “From” to “>From”

— — — — —

There are probably perl scripts somewhere to do this already.

Another quick and dirty trick is to use sendmail to resend all of the messages. Then have sendmail deliver them to a UNIX-style mailbox


• Posted by: Sam Greenfield on Nov 28, 2001, 1:46 PM

If you can view the messages in Outlook, you can connect Outlook to an IMAP server and then just drag them into a folder, can’t you?

Or am I missing something?

Then you could just take the folder from the server and you’re good to go. It might be a little slow, but it would work.

• Posted by: Anil Dash on Nov 28, 2001, 4:33 PM
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