Email - Inbox Tidying Question

I have a new account on dreamhost with 500gb space and all. When setting up some email accounts, I came across these settings:

Remove read messages when inbox reaches [ Max 2000 ]
Remove read messages from inbox older than [ Max 9999] Days
Even remove unread messages [ ]
Save removed messages [X] in a folder named [ archive ]
Email me when messages are removed [X]

The text above states that “
(Tidy inboxes keep mail servers happy!)”

What I get from reading these is that emails past 2000 (max) get moved to the archive folder.

Will it always save my email (in the archive folder)?

I just wanted to make ABSOLUTELY sure that my email won’t be deleted if I always leave it on the server (for access via IMAP elsewhere, including archives)

And out of curiosity, why are the limitations in place? What are the bottlenecks that choke if the email is in “inbox” but don’t if it’s in a archive folder?

If it behaves like I hope it does, I’ll certainly lower the values, I maxed them for the moment, for safety.

Thank you in advance for your responses :slight_smile:

We always get absolute answers from DH support. :wink:

I’m not sure DH will remove (archive) or delete the mails. Maybe we can do a testing on this. Set “Remove read messages when inbox reaches” to 1 and see what happen if we send two emails to the email address.

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Words like “always” and “absolutely” are really pretty meaningless when using someone else’s server :wink: . I’ve been with DreamHost for almost 9 years now, and I have never “lost” email that does not mean that it could not happen.

The reason DH encourages you to keep a “tidy” inbox, is that many email clients automatically “load” the inbox upon connection (as does DH webmail) and with thousands of message stored there (for thousands of users), doing this creates a massive, and almost always unnecessary, load on the server. If once you have processed your inbox, you move message out of the inbox into another folder, those messages are only “loaded” upon request - which is much easier on the server, and everybody benefits.

IMAP is great if your routine does not lend itself to mainaging your mail via POP3; I still prefer POP3 with different computers and clients set to either leave mail on the server or POP it to my boxes, depending upon the circumstances, but others just “trust” the server. It’s really a matter of opinion.

Mail moved to another folder, whether automagically or manually, stays there until you remove it (depending upon your settings in the panel), but I would never interpret that to mean it is completely and absolutely safe on a shared server I don’t control any more than I would assume that any data on my own computers will never be lost.

The DH Terms of Service warn you of the “as is/as available” nature of the service, and specifically disclaim responsibility for data stored on their servers for these accounts. I trust them, and I’ve never lost data…but anything I absolutely need to keep, I back up to one (actually more than one!) of my own computers. :slight_smile:


The key passage here is “Tidy inboxes keep mail servers happy!”

There’s just no good reason to keep your Inbox that loaded up. Move your read messages to some other folder. These rules only apply to the Inbox, and not any other mailbox.


Ok, thank you much for the replies. And yes, I’m aware that ‘absolutely’ is only re: the policy. Backups, Backups, Backups! :slight_smile:

As a note, if the inbox is slow with lots of messages, the archive folder probably will be too, no? Best to break it down by years (or perhaps even quarters) I would presume.

My inboxes are empty, but my trash boxes have thousands of messages (I never delete mail). Since inbox is pretty active and always showing, it’ll slow things down. Only when I look through Trash do things slow down for me.