No (usenet) news is good news

I have mused in the past on the subject of my mail setup. I hav enow pretty much come to a decision: I’ll be using IMAP, with a GUI mail client at the console and SquirrelMail remotely. Yes, I know I hate SquirrelMail. I still will hate it; webmail is a lame interface. However, the benefits of using a decent GUI mail client are not lost on me. I can still use mutt with IMAP if I want, it’s just that it’s very slow. So I will have to make do with SqMail, although I may just VNC to my home desktop from work and use the GUI client.
I’ll also be reading my mailing lists in the GUI client, too. Whither Usenet in this scenario? Well, nowhere. I don’t actually read any newsgroups at all at the moment, and I haven’t done so for a year or so. The hell with it. I haven’t really got time anyway.
So, I need to decide on a GUI mail client and an IMAP server. I’m open to suggestions on these points: I posted to the Wolves LUG mailing list with a list of criteria, reproduced below so my other set of readers may make suggestions if they like.

It must fulfil the following:

  • Fast to start up and sleek in usage (no Evolution!)
  • Gtk-based (yeah, yeah, I don’t care. It has to be Gtk. No arguments.)
  • Does IMAP

And the following are nice-to-haves, so as many as possible:

  • Virtual folders (folders populated by a search query, not by explicit filing of mails)
  • Running an external program for signatures
  • Changeable keybindings
  • Filters that can run an external script to do something with the mail you’re looking at
  • Filters that can move a message to a different folder
  • Filters that can do both, one after the other
  • One-keypress add-this-person-to-my-addressbook-with-a-specified-alias
  • The ability to bind a key to “save this mail into the folder I have allocated for mail from this address“. Bonus points if the first time I do this on a mail from an address for which I haven’t allocated a folder, it comes up with a sensible default name and location for that folder.
  • Alternatively, if virtual folders work, an easy way to say “create a new virtual folder showing mail from this address only“. Bonus points if it’s easy to add this address to a previously existing virtual folder.
  • Scriptable in some way (if the above are doable by me writing scripts, rather than by default in the client, that’s fine, as long as the scripting language isn’t Lisp or something)
  • Scriptable in Python
  • Good drag-and-drop (so I can drag a file from the Filer onto a mail and it attaches that file)
  • Handles mailing lists well, threading the messages

I’m also not sure which IMAP server to use. Is there any reason why I should care about the distinctions between them? I’ll likely be using Exim as the MTA, since it’s the Debian default, and I don’t understand any MTAs at all. If there’s a very simple MTA then I’m happy to switch to it.

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