Table of Contents

Mu4e layer

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1 Description

This layer adds support for the Mu4e email client.

1.1 Features:

  • Search, read, reply, move, and delete email.
  • Search-based: no folders, only queries.
  • UI optimized for speed: quick keystrokes for common actions.
  • Very extendable and costumizable.
  • Integration with Helm.
  • Maildir summary using mu4e-mailidrs-extension
  • Notifications using mu4e-alert

2 Install

In order to use this layer you must install mu and mu4e separately. Typically mu4e will be bundled with mu (this is the case on many Linux distributions).

If you’re on OS X and install mu using Homebrew, you must specify the location of your Emacs binary at install time using the EMACS environment variable, as well as passing the --with-emacs option:

brew install mu --with-emacs

If the installation directory of mu4e is not in Emacs’ load path, you can set the layer variable mu4e-installation-path, for example:

(setq-default dotspacemacs-configuration-layers
              '((mu4e :variables
                      mu4e-installation-path "/usr/share/emacs/site-lisp")))

Then add this layer to your ~/.spacemacs. You will need to add mu4e to the existing dotspacemacs-configuration-layers list in this file.

3 Commands

3.1 Global bindings

Key binding Command
SPC a M Start mu4e
SPC m S or SPC m / Search emails (requires helm)
SPC m C Search contacts (requires helm)
C-x m Compose new message

3.2 Headers mode

Key binding Command
J Go to next unread thread marking other mail read on the way
C-j Next header
C-k Previous header

3.3 View mode

Key binding Command
J Go to next unread thread marking other mail read on the way
C-j Next header
C-k Previous header

4 Configuration

Configuration varies too much to give precise instructions. What follows is one example configuration. Refer to mu4e’s manual for more detailed configuration instructions.

4.1 Maildirs extension

The maildirs extension adds a list of all your maildirs to the main mu4e view that by default shows the unread and total mail counts for all your mail under your base mail directory.

The maildirs extension is not enabled by default. To activate it, change the variable mu4e-use-maildirs-extension to a non-nil value:

(setq-default dotspacemacs-configuration-layers
              '((mu4e :variables
                      mu4e-use-maildirs-extension t)))

4.2 Multiple Accounts

With `mu 0.9.16`, mu4e comes with a native contexts feature for managing multiple accounts.

The following example is taken from the manual:

(setq mu4e-contexts
  `( ,(make-mu4e-context
  :name "Private"
  :enter-func (lambda () (mu4e-message "Switch to the Private context"))
  ;; leave-func not defined
  :match-func (lambda (msg)
    (when msg
      (mu4e-message-contact-field-matches msg
        :to "aliced@home.example.com")))
  :vars '(  ( user-mail-address      . "aliced@home.example.com"  )
     ( user-full-name     . "Alice Derleth" )
     ( mu4e-compose-signature .
       (concat
         "Alice Derleth\n"
         "Lauttasaari, Finland\n"))))
     ,(make-mu4e-context
  :name "Work"
  :enter-func (lambda () (mu4e-message "Switch to the Work context"))
  ;; leave-fun not defined
  :match-func (lambda (msg)
    (when msg
      (mu4e-message-contact-field-matches msg
        :to "aderleth@miskatonic.example.com")))
  :vars '(  ( user-mail-address      . "aderleth@miskatonic.example.com" )
     ( user-full-name     . "Alice Derleth" )
     ( mu4e-compose-signature .
       (concat
         "Prof. Alice Derleth\n"
         "Miskatonic University, Dept. of Occult Sciences\n"))))))

;; set `mu4e-context-policy` and `mu4e-compose-policy` to tweak when mu4e should
;; guess or ask the correct context, e.g.

;; start with the first (default) context;
;; default is to ask-if-none (ask when there's no context yet, and none match)
;; (setq mu4e-context-policy 'pick-first)

;; compose with the current context is no context matches;
;; default is to ask
;; '(setq mu4e-compose-context-policy nil)

Note: We used to have a hack to support multiple accounts with older version of `mu` but we removed it to encourage people to update their version and use the new contexts feature.

4.3 Async mode

mu4e can send mails in async mode, which speeds up sending as you do not have to wait for the email to be sent. This is off by default but you can enable it by setting the mu4e-enable-async-operations variable when including the layer.

(setq-default dotspacemacs-configuration-layers
              '((mu4e :variables
                      mu4e-enable-async-operations t)))

4.4 Attachment directory

By default mu4e will save attachment files to $HOME, but this layer changes that to $HOME/Downloads if it exists. You can override this in your user-config:

(setq mu4e-attachment-dir "~/files")

4.5 Example configuration

;;; Set up some common mu4e variables
(setq mu4e-maildir "~/.mail"
      mu4e-trash-folder "/Trash"
      mu4e-refile-folder "/Archive"
      mu4e-get-mail-command "mbsync -a"
      mu4e-update-interval nil
      mu4e-compose-signature-auto-include nil
      mu4e-view-show-images t
      mu4e-view-show-addresses t)

;;; Mail directory shortcuts
(setq mu4e-maildir-shortcuts
      '(("/gmail/INBOX" . ?g)
        ("/college/INBOX" . ?c)))

;;; Bookmarks
(setq mu4e-bookmarks
      `(("flag:unread AND NOT flag:trashed" "Unread messages" ?u)
        ("date:today..now" "Today's messages" ?t)
        ("date:7d..now" "Last 7 days" ?w)
        ("mime:image/*" "Messages with images" ?p)
        (,(mapconcat 'identity
                     (mapcar
                      (lambda (maildir)
                        (concat "maildir:" (car maildir)))
                      mu4e-maildir-shortcuts) " OR ")
         "All inboxes" ?i)))

4.6 Notifications

mu4e-alert is an extension that provides desktop notifications and adds the count of unread messages to the modeline.

mu4e-alert-in-action.png

For an extended documentation of the available customizations please refer to mu4e-alert’s documentation

4.6.1 OS notifications

To enable notifications about new messages, add the following line to your dotspacemacs/user-config:

(setq mu4e-enable-notifications t)

or use layer variables when you add the layer to dotspacemacs-configuration-layers:

(mu4e :variables mu4e-enable-notifications t)

By default, notifications will be shown in the *Messages* buffer. To enable desktop notifications about new messages, add the following lines to your dotspacemacs/user-config, according to your operating system and the installed libraries:

(with-eval-after-load 'mu4e-alert
  ;; Enable Desktop notifications
  (mu4e-alert-set-default-style 'notifications)) ; For linux
  ;; (mu4e-alert-set-default-style 'libnotify))  ; Alternative for linux
  ;; (mu4e-alert-set-default-style 'notifier))   ; For Mac OSX (through the
                                                 ; terminal notifier app)
  ;; (mu4e-alert-set-default-style 'growl))      ; Alternative for Mac OSX

4.6.2 Mode-line notifications

To enable mode-line display about new messages, add the following line to your dotspacemacs/user-config:

(setq mu4e-enable-mode-line t)

or use layer variables when you add the layer to dotspacemacs-configuration-layers:

(mu4e :variables mu4e-enable-mode-line t)

4.7 Spacemacs layout integration

A Spacemacs custom layout is defined by the layer. The name and the key binding for it can be customized with the following layer variables:

  • mu4e-spacemacs-layout-name for the layout name,
  • mu4e-spacemacs-layout-binding for the key binding.
  • mu4e-spacemacs-kill-layout-on-exit for automatically removing layout when quitting mu4e.

By default the values are:

(setq-default dotspacemacs-configuration-layers
              '((mu4e :variables mu4e-spacemacs-layout-name "@Mu4e"
                      mu4e-spacemacs-layout-binding "m"
                      mu4e-spacemacs-kill-layout-on-exit t)))

5 See also

Refer to the official mu and mu4e documentation for additional info.

Author: Travis CI User

Created: 2019-01-22 Tue 20:42

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