[kdepim-users] KMail problem or configuration problem?

brian brian at meadows.pair.com
Sun Sep 14 16:19:55 BST 2008

All right, we have a solution to this problem of S-L-O-W KMail
responses, if not an explanation. 

The bottom line is that it seems that KMail *IS* somehow concerning
itself with the number of (sub-)folders that have been created. I
didn't realise I had anything like as many, but I'd tried importing
some mail archives from other mailers, and one of the import processes
must have gone wrong big time - I had one tree with an ENORMOUS number
of subfolders in it. Not having expanded that tree, I had no idea of
their existence. 

And no, I didn't count them, but a guesstimate must be in excess of
2,500. I deleted that whole sub-tree, and all of a sudden, KMail's
response time is back to what you would expect for popping up a
context menu. 

As I said (and Ingo agreed, more importantly!) below, it is very
difficult to see WHY KMail should concern itself with the size of the
folder structure when all it's being asked to do is to bring up a
context menu, but the evidence seems fairly convincing that that's
exactly what it does. Give yourself an enormous number of folders, and
the performance will go through the floor. 

As a final check, I switched back to my original KMail data, now
copied to another drive. Yep, go back to that mail structure with the
enormous sub-tree, and the response times went right through the floor
again. It HAS to be something to do with the size of the folder tree. 


On Tue, 09 Sep 2008 19:59:08 +0200, you wrote:

>On Tuesday 09 September 2008, brian wrote:
>> On Sat, 06 Sep 2008 21:26:18 +0200, you wrote:
>> Hi Ingo,
>> Sorry for the length of time it's taken for me to try these
>> suggestions. One of the things I've been busy doing is converting
>> everything from mbox to maildir to see whether that made any
>> difference (it didn't).
>> >On Saturday 06 September 2008, brian wrote:
>> >> On Fri, 05 Sep 2008 21:03:40 +0200, you wrote:
>> >> >On Friday 05 September 2008, brian wrote:
>> >> >> Thanks. There's obviously something amiss, but I'm at a loss to
>> >> >> guess what. Other KDE applications that I use react OK, but I
>> >> >> can't see anything in KMail's configuration which could be
>> >> >> responsible. I'm not currently using KMail to collect mail, so
>> >> >> I don't have Bogofilter or SpamAssassin configured, I'm just
>> >> >> trying to replicate my Agent folder structure and my filters in
>> >> >> KMail preparatory to switching over.
>> >> >
>> >> >Please rename ~/.kde/share/config/kmailrc to something else (so
>> >> > that a new configuration is created) and try again. That's to
>> >> > check whether it's a problem with your KMail configuration.
>> >> >
>> >> >Does this problem occur with all context menus in KMail or just
>> >> > with a specific one?
>> >>
>> >> All of them that I've tried (folder pane, message list and message
>> >> pane).
>> >
>> >I'm out of ideas. Is KMail busy (i.e. does it use lots of CPU) while
>> > you wait for the context menu to appear? Or is KMail idle?
>> It's using the majority of the CPU.
>> >> And creating the new configuration made no apparent
>> >> difference. I had imported the old Thunderbird message base, and
>> >> there are a couple of big folders in there. I can't see how the
>> >> size of the message base should affect displaying a context menu,
>> >> though.
>> >
>> >Me neither.
>> >
>> >One last try: Please check whether the problem also occurs with a
>> > newly created user.
>> No, performance is (I assume) normal with a newly created user.
>Okay. So the problem is somehow related to your configuration or your 
>mail store.
>> As far as I can see, the likely conclusion is that KMail *is* doing
>> something which depends on the number of folders and sub-folders
>> which I have? As you've said before, why it should do this when all
>> I'm asking it to do is to display a menu seems unclear.
>Yeah, same here. :-/
>> However, I do 
>> have a whole bunch of imported folders from Thunderbird - probably
>> somewhere around 250 in total.
>Hmm, I have around 5.2 GB of mail in 400 local folders (a mix of maildir 
>and mbox).
>> I was going to move KMail's data over to my main data drive and set
>> up a symbolic link, maybe the next move is for me to do that, but
>> copy it instead of move it. Once it's all copied over, I can delete
>> back some of the folder trees in the original location, and see
>> whether that sorts the problem, then set the symbolic link to return
>> to the current configuration. Doing the copy won't be that quick,
>> though. Unless you have other things you'd like me to try,
>Nope. No more ideas.
>> I'll be back when it's all completed and let you know the results.
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