Vincent Canfield's Blog

My E-mail Setup


Category: E-mail

It shouldn't come at any surprise that I'm an avid user of E-mail. Indeed, over the last year I've sent and received 26,014 e-mails, not including mailing list E-mails or spam. It's my third most-used application next to my browser and terminal emulator, so I've spent a lot of time over the years getting my setup just right, and I feel I'm pretty much there. So here's a quick overview of what I use and how I use it.


My normal E-mail client is Thunderbird. On my cell phone, I use K-9 Mail. For manually opening Maildir stores I use mutt. Simple, yeah?


Here are the add-ons I use for Thunderbird:

  • Enigmail — an absolute must-have. Provides incredibly easy and full-featured PGP support. I still do anything not E-mail related via the terminal, but for anything E-mail related you just can't beat Enigmail.
  • Awesome Auto Archive — This shady fucking Chinese add-on automatically archives any E-mail older than 3 days. It looks like shit, but it's great peace-of-mind.
  • ImportExportTools — If you do any manual importing or exporting of mail stores, this is a good one to have. When was raided, this was the add-on I recommended people use to back up and restore their mail.
  • Lightning — Calendars!
  • Inverse SOGo Connector — A ridiculous name for an add-on. Provides CalDAV and CardDAV support, allowing me to synchronize my contacts and calendars via CalDAV/CardDAV providers (like NextCloud)
  • Manually sort folders — Does what it says on the tin. Thunderbird surprisingly doesn't allow you to sort accounts or folders manually, so this adds that functionality.
  • Enhanced Desktop Notifications — Sends notifications using the notify-send library. I use dunst for notifications.


I have hundreds of thousands of E-mails going back the last 10 years. I keep every single E-mail that ever hits my inbox, and I loathe every gap in those 10 years where I've lost E-mails. Every time I've ever lost a set of mail, it's come back to haunt me, so I solved this problem by using Duplicity to manage encrypted, incremental backups.

Did I miss something? I'm always looking for ways to improve the way I interface with E-mail, if you do something cool with your mail let me know in the comments.