Storing Gmail labels

chris coleman christocoleman at
Tue Oct 2 20:49:25 BST 2012

On Tue, Oct 2, 2012 at 2:33 AM, Eygene Ryabinkin <rea-fbsd at> wrote:
> Tue, Oct 02, 2012 at 10:53:11AM +0200, Rainer M Krug wrote:
>> Hash: SHA1
>> On 02/10/12 10:34, Eygene Ryabinkin wrote:
>> > Mon, Oct 01, 2012 at 09:44:46PM -0700, Zain Memon wrote:
>> >> Can I get OfflineIMAP to fetch and store my Gmail labels without having multiple copies of
>> >> the same message?
>> >
>> > If I am not terribly mistaken, current implementation of GMail
>> > folder storage does not allow for this.
>> Well - you could use the
>> api
>> (particularly
>> to get the tags for downloaded messages, if I am not completely
>> mistaken.
> I meant the implementation of GMail support in OfflineIMAP.  Sorry
> for not being clear.
> --
> Eygene Ryabinkin                                        ,,,^..^,,,
> [ Life's unfair - but root password helps!           | ]
> [ 82FE 06BC D497 C0DE 49EC  4FF0 16AF 9EAE 8152 ECFB | ]

I'm considering creating a patch for storing Gmail labels for
type=Gmail. For the Maildir format, where could I store the label data
for each message? I'm not super familiar with the Maildir format but
it seems to me that labels should be handled similarly to flags, but I
don't think it's a good idea to store labels in the filename of each
message. Does the Maildir format allow for mutable data to be stored
in the file itself?

Hi Zain,

You should get the extra info from gmail, and then store it in headers inside the message.
The headers are: X-GM-MSGID, X-GM-THRID, X-GM-LABELS, in addition to existing XLIST.
The user will need to use a mailreader (Thunderbird is one) that has an extension available to support those gmail specific message headers IN THE MESSAGE not on the gmail server.
There is some more detail / code here, but note, it's code that talks to gmail's servers to ask for the extra info "live", not code that reads to extra info from the message headers...:

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