GNOME Bugzilla – Bug 312106
Evolution should not grab emails during startup
Last modified: 2010-10-24 11:18:13 UTC
I've compiled Evolution from CVS today 30/07/2005 and figured out that it
grabbed my emails during startup. Unfortunately this wasn't wanted and caused
loss of data to me since I was on a test system doing some experiments rather
than on my normal system. I lost around 251 emails or so that should have stayed
on my pop3 account. After some deeper investigations I figured out that there
was no option to disable this feature and thus I am not sure whether this is a
BUG from CVS or intended. If so then please allow me to let you know that I
don't want Evolution to automatically GRAB my emails without me giving explicit
instructions (e.g. pressing the sent/receive button). Now I lost all the emails
because I was not able to control the application. Therefore please disable this
stuff or add an option to disable this feature.
To add an option would be a good idea, yeah
Changing component to Mailer.
it already only checks if you have setup the account to 'auto-check after X
I do have a different understanding for
"auto-check after X minutes" vs. "check on startup"
For me these are two different things (and it was so before). If I start
Evolution then I don't necessarily want to check for new emails but write some
and the check after X minutes also has an usability meaning to me.
For example I am using an free mailer one of the biggest here in germany is
web.de. Unfortunately as free account it only allows me to pop my emails all 15
mins. Now imagine I want to write 2-3 emails and start up Evolution 2-3 times
within the 15 mins, it then always tries to pop my email accounts on web.de and
it always comes up with an requester telling me a warning that I am in the
middle of the 15 mins wait process and that I should check back later again.
So assuming that other free mailers do similar things it will become quite a
pain to use (probably something the Evolution team hasn't thought about ?).
So my usage of Evolution is like this:
a) I like to have it startup without checking my pop3 boxes because I could
still be in the 15 mins waiting loop.
b) But still being able to write emails without getting these NAG requesters
telling me that I am in the 15 mins waiting loop (which I have to close).
c) Still being able to have a "auto-check after X minutes" in my case (30mins)
when I am out for a walk, shopping, eating or whatever.
The 15 mins waiting loop from web.de for example is just a time window. If you
haven't pop'ed emails for 15 mins or even better say 1 hour then it doesn't
matter since it pops the emails and then starts counting 15 mins. But it's quite
annoying if you need to write a bunch of emails and had pop'ed a couple of times.
Also another issue is if you use applets such as mail-notification which also
accesses your pop3 account which also activates the timer or if you telnet into
your pop3 account from shell to delete some spam manually.
Maybe this stuff should be discussed with the usability people first before
closing this bug as NOTABUG without knowing all facts ? Let me add some
usability flags to this bugreport.
Created attachment 50554 [details]
Would you like getting such a dialog everytime you startup Evolution because
your email provider has a timer set on your account ?
*shrug I suppose you are right. We proabably need to have a configuration option
of "Check Mail at start up" which is enabled by default as most people would
otherwise crib that their new mail is not being picked up at startup. Thats my
two cents worth of wisdom anyway.
Retargetting for 2.5.
We surely will have a dig at this later. Thanks
I also making this as an enhancement. *Although* strictly it may not be but i am
under the line of thought that the current working is right but there should be
a way to turn it off.
Make it optional then, but get the option in.
The function of an email app is to check email, and I'd rather not wait several
minutes to see if I've got new mail.
Manual checking is unneeded user interaction which bugs the hell out of me.
Hi H.C. Brugmans, the problem here is that Evolution is not just an email app
which checks emails. It's a whole PIM that does pretty much more. Personally I
want the extra interaction so I can confirm and control what I am actually
doing. Or do you want a format program start formating your entire harddisk
because you entered the command by mistake without being asked ?
Your reasons might be of personal choice and preference but my reasons are based
upon ISP's and ESP's who have a timeout set on their free service so whenever
you start Evolution you get that annoying requester at the start because it
doesn't allow you to pop the mails because you are in the counter.
Personally I find this annoying and I felt more than one time pissed off for
Evolution popping my mails without me giving further feedback to it. What's not
annoying for you is annoying the hell out for others (me for example). Since
this has been put into Evolution I started playing with the idea to drop
Evolution for something else like balsa or sylpheed. And together with this
I am really close in doing so. But I am quite sure there was no intend to scare
away people from using Evolution so I'd expect a sane solution for this.
I'd say this behavior is fine with "automatic check" enabled. See bug #214884
for more about this. Sure, this behavior actually /changed/ in 2.4, but new
features are to be expected in new versions. Running tests with live accounts
is... well, careless.
FWIW, fetched mails even by accident are *not* lost (see comment #1). The are
fetched. Nothing more. Just import those mails to your live Evo. I don't see at
all how this can cause data *loss*.
Although I do believe, "automatically check every N minutes" should trigger a
check on startup, a separate option (checkbox) next to this one probably is the
best solution and a nice feature to have.
[ ] Check mails on startup
Fully agree to comment #6.
Adjusting the Summary -- this is in no way limited to CVS versions. ;)
Any words by the usability team?
Doh! Correcttion to my comment #10: "comment #1" actually should be *original
Sorry for the SPAM...
could be a WONTFIX. and the web.de issue... well, you can always start in
Starting in offline mode is not the correct way a user should be forced to use
Evolution. I recall the last time when I by mistake clicked the offline button
and wasn't able to pop my messages from my eMail service provider. It took me
quite some time to figure out that it was the offline mode button that I
pressed. I also don't understand the priorities set inside Evolution. My
reasoning with web.de is a valid one and very well explained too. It's not too
much to ask for a setting that disallows popping emails during start (only when
requested by the user) this was the default behavior for Evolution since ever
and this is the default on 100% all the MUA's and PIM's I know for Open Source.
You people didn't had those long politics conversation when adding HAL
dependency to Evolution + iPod support (for something that hardly 4% of the
people inside the Open Source world have) but we still keep debatting here how
to use Evolution "the correct way". Sorry but this is plain wrong.
FWIW, I'm with Ali on this one... I consider "Check at startup" (enabled by default, but possible to turn off
while creating a new account) and "check every x minutes" as two different and occasionally-useful-to-
change things, and I'm used to having them both in other email clients.
Ubuntu comment on https://launchpad.net/distros/ubuntu/+source/evolution/+bug/13973
"Mails are automatically checkd (sic) on startup, if and only if "automatically check every N minutes" is set."
If you ask me, I don't think it is user friendly that the option for checking at startup is "hidden" in the option for checking for mail every X minute. How ironical that Evolution is fixing bugs in a way that is user unfriendly while Evolution is a PIM app for a DE that aims to be easy to use.
Common sense, if I'd want to enable the option to check for e-mail at startup, I'd search for an option which goes by that name, I would NOT enable the option to check for mail every X minute, because that is a completely different option. Do you guys think the average user will be able to get their mail checked at startup if they can't find the option for that in the Preferences (instead they need to have innate knowledge that the option to check for mail at startup is in fact included in the option to check for mail evey X minute)?
So if you ask me this bug is NOT fixed. But whatever, Ubuntu can't help it, that's probably the way the Evolution dev's consider bugs "fixed". They can't even get some of the most trivial functionality in Evolution working the right way, I'm a bit disappointed."
Mail guys, can we get some focus on this bug on the trunk?
Created attachment 96212 [details] [review]
For EDS - EAccount
Created attachment 96213 [details] [review]
need suggestion on the string used in account editor :-)
This was never implemented because we didn't want to endup like http://www.codinghorror.com/blog/archives/000734.html
There will never be a single solution that will satisfy everyone and adding ui options for each and every thing just bloats. See bug #214884
May be we can just live with a env. variable for those who dont want to fetch mails at startup yet want to check mails periodically then on.
OK, the wait and amount of justification not to add this feature is quite frankly getting ridiculous.
No one is asking for an "option for everything", we (the reporters on this bug) are asking for an option to fix a behavior that goes completely contrary to the expectations set by Evolution's own interface. The option plainly states that it sets the periodic time to check email, *not* whether to fetch email upon startup.
Evolution gets it wrong - this is why this is a bug in the truest sense. Not because the option doesn't exist (that's a wish, and IMNHO a reasonable one), but because the wrong option controls the wrong thing.
An environment variable is not the solution. Worse, would it just further obfuscate the reason behind this behavior ("well, with the same settings it worked on my friend's computer, why not mine?").
Other email apps offer this, and in comment #15, Calum - who regularly works with user interface - event states his favor for adding this option. I would hope that the developers would listen to not only this request, but the justifications behind it.
(In reply to comment #20)
> This was never implemented because we didn't want to endup like
> There will never be a single solution that will satisfy everyone and adding ui
> options for each and every thing just bloats. See bug #214884
Sankar, no option for what everyone need is also equally bad. I would like to go ahead with this bug and get the patch in (ofcourse after a review ;-)
(In reply to comment #21)
> OK, the wait and amount of justification not to add this feature is quite
> frankly getting ridiculous.
> No one is asking for an "option for everything", we (the reporters on this bug)
> are asking for an option to fix a behavior that goes completely contrary to the
> expectations set by Evolution's own interface. The option plainly states that
> it sets the periodic time to check email, *not* whether to fetch email upon
So will it be enough if we add a decent description to this option ?
> Evolution gets it wrong - this is why this is a bug in the truest sense. Not
> because the option doesn't exist (that's a wish, and IMNHO a reasonable one),
> but because the wrong option controls the wrong thing.
I will suggest you to look at #214884 atleast the first line.
What you think as "Evolution gets it wrong" is what an user expects it to do.
I should have clearly mentioned that whatever expressed in comment #20 are in my personal opinion. Let the maintainers and the usability experts decide if we need this new option or a better description. Let that decision be final. We will never come to a agreeable conclusion when there are multiple right and wrong answers.
however, I will be very much interested to know how many people will disable "Check on startup" and still have "automatically check" enabled.
(In reply to comment #23)
> (In reply to comment #21)
> > OK, the wait and amount of justification not to add this feature is quite
> > frankly getting ridiculous.
> > No one is asking for an "option for everything", we (the reporters on this bug)
> > are asking for an option to fix a behavior that goes completely contrary to the
> > expectations set by Evolution's own interface. The option plainly states that
> > it sets the periodic time to check email, *not* whether to fetch email upon
> > startup.
> So will it be enough if we add a decent description to this option ?
Well, a decent description to both options. :-)
> > Evolution gets it wrong - this is why this is a bug in the truest sense. Not
> > because the option doesn't exist (that's a wish, and IMNHO a reasonable one),
> > but because the wrong option controls the wrong thing.
> I will suggest you to look at #214884 atleast the first line.
In fact, I followed that bug too back when it was open. And I most definitely agree that a user should be able to have his email automatically at startup instead of waiting for the delay (especially when the delay is long, like once per 30 minutes). I'm just against tying these options together.
> What you think as "Evolution gets it wrong" is what an user expects it to do.
I (and I think others) feel that it too tightly ties the two options. Especially when there are so often two options in other clients.
> I should have clearly mentioned that whatever expressed in comment #20 are in
> my personal opinion. Let the maintainers and the usability experts decide if we
> need this new option or a better description. Let that decision be final. We
> will never come to a agreeable conclusion when there are multiple right and
> wrong answers.
Agreed that the usability experts should have the weight. With your novell.com address, it seemed like you were weighing in as a developer rather than giving a personal opinion.
> however, I will be very much interested to know how many people will disable
> "Check on startup" and still have "automatically check" enabled.
Actually, it's more the opposite (that I at least was thinking of): check at startup, but not automatically. But Ali in comment #4 has a good example use case. There are still many parts of the world that have metered access.
Having good defaults doesn't preclude all configurability. While I very much believe that options need to be kept to a reasonable minimum, there are times where options can't or shouldn't be combined.
IMHO, "Check for mail every X minutes" is doing exactly as described. Why /wouldn't/ you want it to start fetching mail on startup?
Ali says because he might only want to compose a message? Is he going to somehow compose this message in under the X minutes specified? Well, depends on what that value is I suppose, but no matter what it's set to, it'd be a "race condition" between the user's typing speed, the amount of text he wants to write, and the expiration set on the timeout. Oh, and the time it takes to actually queue/send the message.
My point is that in all likelihood, mail will be fetched before one is able to actually send a message, especially if you aren't conscious of trying to "race against the clock".
The reason check-on-startup was first implemented was because that's what people expected (and it worked that way for imap). It didn't work that way originally because we had just hooked up a gtk_timeout w/o bothering to check mail first.
IMHO, the users were right that we should be consistent across pop/imap.
anyways, that's just my opinion...
Can I ask what other mail clients do? Do they check at startup or no? We should probably just do whatever they do.
AFAIK, none of them have 2 options for auto-checking mail like this bug is requesting.
fwiw, I just checked thunderbird and they have an option "check for new mail at startup" in their pop account settings. *shrug*
KMail has a global option to check mail on startup, per-account intervals for checking thereafter.
OS X's Mail.app has a global option for checking interval, per-account setting to be included in this automatic check.
You (Jeff) already mentioned Thunderbird in comment #27.
Outlook Express has the dual option. Not sure about normal Outlook, but I can check if wanted.
If this were truly about simplicity in options, then I would personally prefer OS X's Mail.app behavior: one global automatic interval, and then choosing whether to include an account or not. I hate having to set intervals for every account (I have many) if I change my mind. But that's obviously a break with past Evo settings, would require migration, etc.
(Pre-emptively: it doesn't address the corner case where a user has different priorities for checking accounts or metered servers, if that exists. But that's where I agree that it's not possible to satisfy 100% of people.)
(In reply to comment #28)
> KMail has a global option to check mail on startup, per-account intervals for
> checking thereafter.
I think that's the way to go, but please no more General Mail Preferences until we get that tab cleaned up! I anticipate the "New Mail Notification" section will move to the "New Mail Notification" plugin during this development cycle so that should make some room.
Johnny, I feel that this is fine. Just have a global option. It should be fine. I know that you are already on kicking the prefs ui. Just add this there.
*** Bug 478066 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
Johnny, are you on track to close this before 2.22 UI Freeze.
This bug can be closed.
Wait a minute, why can this be closed? I’ve just taken a look at the Account Editor for one of my mail accounts in Evolution 2.30.3 and I still don’t see an option to check for e-mail at startup. It seems to me that the problem is still present?