Running the mail conversion utility to enable a mail file for IMAP

After you run Fixup on the mail file, run the mail conversion utility (the Convert task) to enable IMAP-specific features in the mail file. The conversion utility sets an option bit in the database indicating that the database is IMAP enabled. After you enable a mail file for which the format preference is set to MIME, the Router automatically adds special IMAP attributes to new messages delivered to the database. These attributes provide IMAP clients with summary information which enables them to download message headers more efficiently.

About this task

To ensure the best performance, after the initial conversion completes run the conversion utility a second time, using the -h option to add these attributes to messages that were already in the mail file at the time of the initial conversion.

For users with multiple mail file replicas -- for example, users with mail files on clustered servers -- you must independently enable each replica for IMAP access. Because Domino® does not replicate IMAP database items between databases, by default, when you create a new replica of an IMAP-enabled mail file, it is not enabled for IMAP use.

After the conversion utility enables a mail file for IMAP, theInformation tab of the mail file's Database Properties dialog box displays the following information:

Database is IMAP enabled
Note: If you used the Domino® registration process to add a user account, and set the user's mail system type to IMAP, Domino® automatically enables the mail file for IMAP use.

Deciding whether to convert mail files manually or automatically

About this task

By default, when a user connects to the IMAP service, the service checks whether the user's mail file is currently enabled for IMAP. If the mail file is not already enabled, the IMAP service automatically launches the conversion utility to format it for use with IMAP. To prevent conversions from occurring during login, change the default configuration by disabling automatic conversion.

Although the IMAP service can automatically convert mail files, consider manually converting them before users first log in to the IMAP server to ensure that mail files are properly converted. By performing conversions ahead of time, you can ensure that users are not confronted with conversion errors that they are unable to recover from. For example, because the conversion utility requires that a mail file be at least at ODS version 41, for mail files that use an earlier ODS version you must run Compact before converting the mail file; using automatic conversion would fail. Similarly, in databases where some type of internal corruption has occurred (for example, an invalid note, or corrupt meta data), you must run Fixup against the mail file before running the conversion utility.

Finally, you must run conversions manually to enable mail files in the other users' and public folders namespaces. Automatic mail file conversion can occur only for the personal mail file of the currently authenticated user.

Note: The Convert task was created specifically for converting mail files to a new design. As such, it does some mail-specific things, like converting categories to folders. It is also a server task that can be run against many databases at once. Replace Design is a menu selection from the client, used to replace the design of any database. It simply replaces the current design elements with the ones from whatever template you select. It does not do any mail-specific actions, such as Convert.

To manually convert mail files for use with IMAP

About this task

You can run the mail conversion utility on a single mail file or on all mail files in a directory.


  1. At the server console of the Domino® server on which you want to enable mail files, shut down the Router by entering:
    tell router quit

    This prevents Domino® from routing mail to the mail files while they are being converted. Mail is stored in MAIL.BOX while you upgrade the mail files. After you have converted the mail files and loaded the Router task again, the Router processes and delivers the mail in MAIL.BOX.

  2. Load the mail conversion utility by entering the following command:
    load convert -e maildirectory\mailfilename

    where maildirectory names the path to the mail subdirectory that contains the user's mail file and mailfilename is the filename of the user's mail file. The maildirectory path describes the path relative to the server's Domino® data directory. For example, to convert the mail database USER.NSF in the \mail subdirectory of the Domino® data directory enter:

    load convert -e mail\user.nsf
    Note: On UNIX systems, use a forward slash (/) as the hierarchy separator, rather than a backslash (\). For example, enter:
    load convert -e mail/user.nsf

    To specify all files in a directory, make sure the directory contains only mail files and that they are the mail files you want to convert. For example, to enable IMAP for all mail files in the \mail subdirectory, enter:

    load convert -e mail\*.nsf
  3. After you finish enabling mail files for IMAP on this server, load the Router by entering:
    load router
  4. Configure IMAP client software.