Eric S. Raymond (of The Cathedral and the Bazaar fame) originally wrote fetchmail, a program that can retrieve mail from almost anywhere. fetchmail has a very impressive feature list and normally does its thing quietly in the background. I’ve been using fetchmail for a long time, and have also used it on special occasions. getmail by Charles Cazabon is a similar program that offers a number of interesting features not found in fetchmail. These include a simpler configuration syntax (IMHO), support for message filtering and classification, and message delivery to multiple destinations. The documentation is good and contains many interesting samples that should get the user running within a very short time. The configuration for one of my accounts is

verbose = 2
delete = true
delivered_to = false
received = true
message_log = ~/.getmail/log

type = SimplePOP3SSLRetriever
server =
username = myusername
password = mypassword

type = Filter_external
path = /usr/bin/spamc

type = Filter_classifier
path = /usr/bin/clamscan
arguments = ("--stdout", "--no-summary", "--log=/home/jpm/.getmail/clam.log",
     "--infected", "--move=/home/jpm/.getmail/clam.infected", "-")
exitcodes_drop = (1,)

type = MultiDestination
destinations = (

type = Maildir
path = ~jpm/mailbackup/

type = MDA_external
path = /usr/bin/procmail
arguments = ('-f', '%(sender)')
user = jpm

I moved from fetchmail to getmail because I needed the multiple destinations, and I haven’t as yet regretted the change.

Mail, Linux, IMAP, and CLI :: 22 May 2007 :: e-mail