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IMAP Message search only supports "contains/doesn't contain" for standard headers



MailNews Core
12 years ago
9 years ago


(Reporter: Eric Moore, Unassigned)


Windows 2000

Firefox Tracking Flags

(Not tracked)




12 years ago
User-Agent:       Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-US; rv:1.8) Gecko/20051111 Firefox/1.5
Build Identifier: version 1.5 (20051201)

With Thunderbird v1.5RC2 searching for a message (edit -> find -> search messages) using a POP account based on the senders address (From) supports: contains, doesn't contain, is, isn't, begins with, ends with, is in my address book, isn't in my address book as matching criteria.

However, if I do that for a IMAP account it only supports: contains, doesn't contain

As I walk through the rest of the leftmost list box I notice that under IMAP it seems to always be limited to just two conditions (usually contains or doesn't contain) while for POP accounts it has a much richer set of conditions. I don't know if this also occured for v1.5RC1 but it didn't occur with v1.0.7.

The message filters for IMAP accounts don't seem to have a similar problem. In recent releases, I noticed the same matching criteria was available for message filters and searching for messages. Thats no longer true for IMAP accounts.

I'm using XP Pro SP2 on a 3000+ Athlon64 with 1GB of memory. I tested using a Cyrus v2.3-alpha IMAP server from www.fastmail.fm, a Cyrus v2.2.10 IMAP server from www.bluebottle.com, and a POP3 server from gmail. Neither IMAP server has changed its version number from when I used to use Thunderbird v1.0.7. I get the same results if I run Thunderbird in safe mode (any added extensions/themes temporarily disabled). 

Fastmail's IMAP server returns the following capability string 


Bluebottles returns:


Reproducible: Always

Steps to Reproduce:
1. Select the inbox for a IMAP account.
2. Edit -> find -> search messages
3. Goto the leftmost list box and select a entry. For example, "From".
4. Look at what matching criteria are available in the middle listbox.
5. Repeat for all of the entries (headers) in the leftmost list box.
6. Do the same thing for a POP account.
7. Compare the choices available in the middle listbox for each header when using a IMAP and a POP account.

Comment 1

12 years ago
(In reply to comment #0)
> As I walk through the rest of the leftmost list box I notice that under IMAP
> it seems to always be limited to just two conditions (usually contains or
> doesn't contain) 

All of the standard text-based fields show "contains" and "doesn't contain" -- Subject, From, To, CC, To or CC, and Body.

> I don't know if this also occured for v1.5RC1
> but it didn't occur with v1.0.7.

Really?  I just ran 1.0.7 to check, and I see the same symptoms there; also 
with Moz 1.7.12.  My IMAP account is also on fastmail.

I can't find a dupe, so confirming; but I find it hard to believe this hasn't been reported before.  xref bug 242550.
Ever confirmed: true
OS: Windows XP → Windows 2000
Version: unspecified → Trunk

Comment 2

11 years ago
This limitation still exists with and version 2 beta 1 (20061023) under XP Pro SP2.  

I changed the version from trunk to 1.5 and the OS from win2000 to XP in the list boxs. I had reported it for XP, no idea how it got changed.
OS: Windows 2000 → Windows XP
Version: Trunk → 1.5

Comment 3

11 years ago
Don't change the fields back.  "1.5" would imply that the error only occurs in 1.5, which it does not.  "Windows 2000" implies "This version of windows and all later."  The problem probably exists on all platforms and OSes, but I can't test that.

Also: do not comment in this or any bug to say "the problem still exists."  Of course it still exists -- nobody's marked this fixed yet.

Resummarizing to something more descriptive.
OS: Windows XP → Windows 2000
Summary: searching for messages within IMAP accounts crippled → IMAP Message search only supports "contains/doesn't contain" for standard headers
Version: 1.5 → Trunk


11 years ago
Assignee: mscott → nobody
Component: Mail Window Front End → MailNews: Search
Product: Thunderbird → Core
QA Contact: search


11 years ago
Duplicate of this bug: 358631

Comment 5

11 years ago
As noted at the dupe, the "From" field in particular should have "is/isn't in my address book".  So should the recipient fields, but those are lacking this criterion everywhere -- bug 187768.

Comment 6

10 years ago
This bug still occurs in both and the version 3.0a1pre (2008031203) nightly trunk build. I'm mentioning this mainly so that the bug doesn't get automatically closed for inactivity. 
To Eric Moore(bug opener):

Have you read RFC 3501?
> http://www.faqs.org/rfcs/rfc3501.html
> 6.4.4.  SEARCH Command
IMAP SEARCH Command doesn't support "begin with","end with" etc.
I believe this is the reason why no "begin with"/"end with" when IMAP.

Possible(but perhaps partial) workaround of inconvenience.
 - utilize Search Folder(Saved Search Folder, Virtual Folder)
   ("subject begins with ..." worked well with Seamonkey 1.1.8/Gmail IMAP)
Virtual Folder is not suitable for quick search, but is better tool when search with multiple conditions and/or search for multiple folders.
Note: At least next bugs currenltly exist when customized header.
   Bug 184490 (IMAP only)
   Bug 404489 (IMAP & POP3 & Local mail folder)


9 years ago
Product: Core → MailNews Core
based on comment 7, => ENH
Severity: major → enhancement
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