Make Claws Mail aware when you need top or bottom posting

Jack Wallen
Jul 21, 2009
Updated • Dec 28, 2012

A: Because it messes up the order in which people normally read text.

Q: Why is top-posting such a bad ting?

A: Top posting.

Q: What is the most annoying thing in e-mail?

I belong to a lot of mailing lists who's members demand no top postingbe allowed in the list. I do follow this rule but it is made sometimes a bit annoying since most everyone else I email get absolutely lost when trying to read a bottom-posted reply. Because many of these people are family (my father being one of them) I am not about to insist they learn how to read and reply using bottom posting. So with a normal email client I would configure one or the other and try to remember to re-place my cursor when having to reply using the opposite method.

But along comes my favorite new piece of software, Claws Mail, which allows me to set up both, making life much more efficient. Now this set up isn't difficult, but it's not as simple as clicking an option. With that said, let's set about to make Claws Mail aware of when you need top or bottom posting.

Directing to folders

The first thing to do is to create a folder where you will direct all of your email from a mailing list. I get a lot of email from both the Fedora Users mailing list and the Ubuntu Users mailing list. I create a folder for each of these (Fedora and Ubuntu respectively). To create the folders right click on the top-most folder (most likely called Mailbox) and select Create New Folder. Create however many folders you need for your mailing lists.

Filter the messages

The next step is to create a filter for each mailing list that will direct all email to the correct folder. To create the filter right-click an email from one of the mailing lists and then select Create Filter Rule and then select the "By To" entry. When you create the filter make sure you set it up so that all mail that match this rule is moved to the folder you created for the list.

Once you have created all the rules you need to make sure your mailing list email is automatically moved to the correct folder you can have Claws Mail move all of the email already in your inbox by going to the Tools menu and selecting "Filter all messages in folder". This will move everything to the right folder. If you need more information on creating a filter check out my article "Create message filters in Claws Mail."

Create a template

Now if you right click on the folder you created for the mailing list select the Properties entry. Within this window you will see the Templates section. Click on this and then on the Reply tab. You can now create a reply template specific to this folder (see my "Customize your replies with Claws Mail templates" article for more information on creating a template.) For the mailing list replies you will want to place the cursor at the bottom of the post (after the quoted text).

Now when you reply to an email within that folder it will follow the setup of the template. And if you have your regular preference templates set up so the cursor is placed prior to the quoted text your email life will have been made easier.


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  1. marisol gutierrez said on January 22, 2010 at 6:47 pm

    hey what are you doing today.

  2. tefionili said on November 11, 2009 at 11:38 pm


    I’m new to this forum and just wanted to introduce myself and say “wuzup”.

    For once a stable forum with font that I can follow – which is refreshing!

    I am here to learn @ get involved. How could I best get involved?


    PS: – I am attempting to find a lost step-brother by the name of Rhett Aderholt, Where could I find him?

  3. Flutsoptist said on November 9, 2009 at 10:16 am

    What’s up everyone, I’m new to the forum and just wanted to say hey. Hopefully I posted this in the right section!

  4. voyance said on November 4, 2009 at 5:01 pm

    i really wanted tell you that your forum is awesome

    thank you so much

  5. Addiskmok said on November 4, 2009 at 7:40 am

    Good Day Ya’ll!

    I just thought that it would be a good idea if I would introduce myself to everyone & say “hi”.


    PS: – Anyone else here from Central America?

  6. Alippedia said on October 21, 2009 at 4:22 pm

    Hey there everybody im a newbie here and thought id hopl in and make my first post about a stunning fucking motion picture coming out shortly called “The Brazillian Job”

    For everybody that liked The Italian Job this is for us! Check out this trailer that has just been released here.
    Right now the trailer is on this gay site where you have to fill out a survey to watch the trailer but if anyone could figure out how to download the video and upload it on youtube or something it would be greatly appreciated!

  7. DuelaSaurry said on August 13, 2009 at 7:28 pm

    What’s up, is there anybody else here?
    If there’s anyone else here, let me know.
    Oh, and yes I’m a real person LOL.


  8. Paul said on July 23, 2009 at 7:29 am

    DanTe: Claws Mail has a feature known as quote-folding. That could, perhaps, quell your annoyance!

  9. benfrank said on July 22, 2009 at 6:31 am

    “Whose”, not “who’s”. Nice series, I have enjoyed it a lot.

    Top post, bottom -post- what drives me around the bend is mixed-posting. I guess the concepty of following whatever pattern already established in a message is too complex… :)

  10. Jack Wallen said on July 22, 2009 at 4:10 am

    DanTe: I think this is one of those “vi” vs. “emacs” battles. And you get the reference, you understand what “top posting vs. bottom posting” can imply.

    Personally – I top post, unless I am posting to mailing lists who’s members will not reply if top posts are made.

  11. DanTe said on July 22, 2009 at 3:29 am

    Me and my friends feels the opposite. We have already read or wrote the prior missive. Why do we need to read it again first, or be forced to scroll through it prior to reading the reply?

    We always “top post”. We usually dump anyone who are so autistic or anal-retentive that they need to put everything in a “proper” order that forces folks to wade through all the old stuff first before getting to the point. It’s an annoying waste of time.

  12. Jack Wallen said on July 22, 2009 at 1:20 am

    Martin: hehehehe – that’s actually one of those quotes that is often thrown out when the ol’ “top posting vs bottom posting argument comes up in mailing lists. It’s meant to show why bottom posting is more superior than top posting.

  13. Martin said on July 22, 2009 at 12:34 am

    Did you really put the answer in front of the question? Is that another Us-thingy like the date :)

  14. ph said on July 21, 2009 at 10:32 pm

    While I currently have no need to switch between bottom and top posting, I do highly enjoy your current Claws Mail series. I even switched my secondary imap account from Thunderbird (resource hog…) to Claws Mail and thus I’m really looking forward to more Claws-related input here on ghacks.

    The only thing that bothers me right now is that the Windows version for Claws Mail is at times a bit buggy, especially when it comes to plugin functionality (for instance my notification/systrayicon-plugin config won’t save). I guess the next months will be pretty exciting, perhaps the Claws devteam can improve windows compatibility – or perhaps thunderbird3 will take over again :)

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