Refiltering Mail

Spamassassin daemon on my server had apparently shutdown, and I hadn’t noticed until I logged in to check email and found thousands of emails in my inbox, instead of having been properly filtered for spam. I cleaned up about 100 messages by hand, but I quickly realized I didn’t want to do this anymore. I found a tip at the Unix StackExchange suggesting that procmail could be run again on each message file as it sits in the Maildir, and each would be processed through spamassassin normally and redelivered to the correct mailbox.

To be safe, I moved all the new mail files (~/Maildir/new/\*) to /tmp/mail, fired up mutt to see them all gone, and then piped each file into procmail again:

for x in /tmp/mail/\*; do echo $x; procmail < $x; done

Back in mutt, I could see mail starting to appear again in my inbox and in my spam folders.

When the loop was done, and I was sure my inbox looked good, I removed /tmp/mail, and I was back in business.

Filed Under: Linux