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Since I got an external program (imapfilter) modifying my imap folder, thunderbird keeps loosing track of new messages. Messages are moved upon arrival in sub-folders, making Thunderbird unable keep tracking them - therefore I have no clue which folders to look for new messages, and newly created folders (even I subscribe them after creation) does not show up until I restart the mail client.

Is there any extension or setting for Thunderbird which I could use to trigger re-scanning my folder tree?

Please don't waste time on advices like

  • restarting Thunderbird: takes a great amount of time, or
  • "use Evolution (or any other mail client)", or
  • use internal mail filters: they are not sophisticated enough or
  • procmail/fetchmail: I'm arranging a remote imap server for good


    even folders can be created in the background, without Thunderbird would know it has been created.

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    up vote 7 down vote accepted

    I had a very similar problem when I started using server-side filters to deliver mail directly into folders rather than into my inbox.

    The solution I found was to tell Thunderbird to explicitly check each folder for mail. To do this right-click on the folder, go to "properties", then under the "General Information" tab check the bottom checkbox labled "Check this folder for new messages".

    This is slightly laborious in that you have to do it to each folder, but you only have to do it once.

    Hope that helps,


    share|improve this answer
    as the folders are created "in the background", without Thunderbird knowing it, I wouldn't see the folder itself... so changing folder props are not applicable. But a good answer, I admit. (+1) – asdmin Sep 8 '09 at 15:34
    as apparently there's no better way to do this, I accept this answer thanks – asdmin Oct 19 '09 at 22:57

    what about mail.check_all_imap_folders_for_new? (question-marked because i've just ran into this and will start testing this switch now)

    this whole check many-imap-folders thing could still be a bit iffy no matter how you do it, as this ancient is still kept in a state of NEW.

    share|improve this answer

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