[Imap-protocol] Namespace separators

Timo Sirainen tss at iki.fi
Wed Jun 27 07:13:38 PDT 2007


On Mon, 2007-06-25 at 09:45 -0700, Mark Crispin wrote:

> On Mon, 25 Jun 2007, Timo Sirainen wrote:

> > I find this # thing also a bit weird. The client can't know about those

> > namespaces without NAMESPACE command, and if it does then there's really

> > no need for # because it can find out the exact prefixes anyway. So why

> > should the client do anything differently if there's #?

>

> Without a breakout mechanism such as #, then you have the ambiguity

> problem that you reported in your earlier message. How do you know that a

> name is in one namespace as opposed to some other one?

>

> More importantly, what happens if the different namespaces have different

> hierarchy semantics; different delimiters, different ways of expressing

> root, etc.? Maybe a particular namespace doesn't have hierarchy at all.


NAMESPACE reply returns the prefixes and you can compare those to the
mailbox name. How is a "foo/" prefix any more ambiguous than "#foo/"
prefix?


> > I've understood that many commonly used clients ignore namespaces and

> > only show what is visible with LIST "" *, so I'd want to keep it

> > possible to list contents of all namespaces with it.

>

> Does your server list all other users' mailboxes with that command (since

> after all a user may have a public access mailbox)? Why not?


I was actually going to make it do that, once support for shared
mailboxes is finished.


> Does your server do an "ls -R /" for that command? Why not?


If user's mailbox root directory is set to /, then yes..


> Assuming that the user has a stupid client that does LIST "" * (a very bad

> thing to do),


The "*" wasn't really my point. Let's try again:

I've understood that many commonly used clients ignore namespaces and
only show what is visible with LIST "" %, so I'd want to keep it
possible to list contents of all namespaces with it.

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