Recommendation for $HOME

Thomas Güttler hv at
Wed Dec 6 17:18:59 EET 2006

Am Dienstag, 5. Dezember 2006 17:17 schrieb Brian J. Tarricone:
> Thomas Güttler wrote:
> > If email is stored under $HOME the path to the
> > inbox directory should be $HOME/Maildir/Inbox/.
> This breaks the Maildir standard.  

I don't see why this breaks the Maildir standard. 
The directory Maildir/Inbox/ contains cur, new and tmp. 
Maildir/cur should not exist.

> We also can't know if the user is
> using mbox or Maildir or MH-Maildir for their mail files, so it'll have
> a different on-disk format and a different folder/naming structure.

Yes, you are right. We could use ~/Mail/Inbox as the default location.
Now Inbox could be maildir, mbox or something else. But the case
sensitive pathname should be like this.

> > Background: I tried some MUAs, and now the maildir base directory
> > contains a lot of index files. That's annoying if you use e.g. mutt,
> > which displays all the index files, too.
> Then mutt is broken, or misconfigured.

Mutt just displays all nondot files inside the directory. The index
files where created by (I think it was) evolution. This app of course
does not display its own index files.

> Look at the XDG Basedir spec (on  It defines
> ~/.config/ and ~/.cache/, among other things.  Unfortunately, few apps
> actually implement this standard with regard to storing config files in
> $HOME.

Thank you for this hint. I will implement XDG_CONFIG_HOME in my app.


Thomas Güttler, 
Bernsdorfer Str. 210-212, 09126 Chemnitz, Tel.: 0371/5347-917

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