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Evolution backup recovery

Filed under: Open Source — Thomas @ 3:36 pm

2012-4-1
3:36 pm

I pretty much never drink and hack, and last Friday’s evening is a good reason why. I was having a rare beer and managed to spill part of it on my keyboard and desk. So I turned the keyboard around, started cleaning it as fast as I could, forgetting to actually unplug it. I called it a night because nothing good was going to come from that night anymore.

And on Saturday morning I noticed that my INBOX was gone. Hm, is it really gone? Yep, gone from my laptop too. Crap, must have deleted it on the server by accident while cleaning my keyboard…

And because my NAS is a little full lately, I haven’t been as diligent with backups as I normally have been. Hm, and the modest cache on my N900 isn’t very useful either…

Luckily, evolution on my work machine was shut down for some reason, so yay, it has a reasonably fresh cache of my INBOX!

Except that it’s not all that straightforward to actually get this cache back into Evolution. Just copying its contents to an existing or new folder doesn’t do anything. The files themselves are split up versions of the actual email, assumingly because the evo guys thought it would be faster to search header and body by splitting them off from the attachments and saving them separately, inventing their own caching format. Which is fine, but makes it impossible to actually restore a backup with…

After lots of Googling, I stumbled upon this tool that did the trick for me. A lot of hours wasted over a bunch of emails… But what would happen if I really lost my IMAP server mail ? Run this script by hand on all the folders ? Shudder…

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