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Work with email by IMAP

Project description

High level lib for work with email by IMAP:

  • Basic message operations: fetch, uids, numbers

  • Parsed email message attributes

  • Query builder for search criteria

  • Actions with emails: copy, delete, flag, move, append

  • Actions with folders: list, set, get, create, exists, rename, subscribe, delete, status

  • IDLE commands: start, poll, stop, wait

  • Exceptions on failed IMAP operations

  • No external dependencies, tested

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Python version

3.5+

License

Apache-2.0

PyPI

https://pypi.python.org/pypi/imap_tools/

RFC

IMAP4.1, EMAIL, IMAP related RFCs

Installation

$ pip install imap-tools

Guide

Basic

Info about lib are at: this page, docstrings, issues, pull requests, examples, source, stackoverflow.com

from imap_tools import MailBox, AND

# Get date, subject and body len of all emails from INBOX folder
with MailBox('imap.mail.com').login('test@mail.com', 'pwd') as mailbox:
    for msg in mailbox.fetch():
        print(msg.date, msg.subject, len(msg.text or msg.html))

Description of this^ example.

MailBox, MailBoxTls, MailBoxUnencrypted - for create mailbox client. TLS example.

BaseMailBox.login, BaseMailBox.login_utf8, MailBox.xoauth2, BaseMailBox.logout - authentication functions, they support context manager.

BaseMailBox.fetch - first searches email nums by criteria in current folder, then fetch and yields MailMessage:

  • criteria = ‘ALL’, message search criteria, query builder

  • charset = ‘US-ASCII’, indicates charset of the strings that appear in the search criteria. See rfc2978

  • limit = None, limit on the number of read emails, useful for actions with a large number of messages, like “move”

  • miss_no_uid = True, miss emails without uid

  • mark_seen = True, mark emails as seen on fetch

  • reverse = False, in order from the larger date to the smaller

  • headers_only = False, get only email headers (without text, html, attachments)

  • bulk = False, False - fetch each message separately per N commands - low memory consumption, slow; True - fetch all messages per 1 command - high memory consumption, fast

BaseMailBox.uids - search mailbox for matching message uids in current folder, returns [str | None]

  • criteria = ‘ALL’, message search criteria, query builder

  • charset = ‘US-ASCII’, indicates charset of the strings that appear in the search criteria. See rfc2978

  • miss_no_uid = True, not add None values to result when uid item not matched to pattern

BaseMailBox.<action> - copy, move, delete, flag, append

BaseMailBox.folder - folder manager

BaseMailBox.idle - idle manager

BaseMailBox.numbers - search mailbox for matching message numbers in current folder, returns [str]

BaseMailBox.client - imaplib.IMAP4/IMAP4_SSL client instance.

Email attributes

MailMessage and MailAttachment public attributes are cached by functools.lru_cache

for msg in mailbox.fetch():  # generator: imap_tools.MailMessage
    msg.uid          # str | None: '123'
    msg.subject      # str: 'some subject 你 привет'
    msg.from_        # str: 'Bartölke@ya.ru'
    msg.to           # tuple: ('iam@goo.ru', 'friend@ya.ru', )
    msg.cc           # tuple: ('cc@mail.ru', )
    msg.bcc          # tuple: ('bcc@mail.ru', )
    msg.reply_to     # tuple: ('reply_to@mail.ru', )
    msg.date         # datetime.datetime: 1900-1-1 for unparsed, may be naive or with tzinfo
    msg.date_str     # str: original date - 'Tue, 03 Jan 2017 22:26:59 +0500'
    msg.text         # str: 'Hello 你 Привет'
    msg.html         # str: '<b>Hello 你 Привет</b>'
    msg.flags        # tuple: ('\\Seen', '\\Flagged', 'ENCRYPTED')
    msg.headers      # dict: {'received': ('from 1.m.ru', 'from 2.m.ru'), 'anti-virus': ('Clean',)}
    msg.size_rfc822  # int: 20664 bytes - size info from server (*useful with headers_only arg)
    msg.size         # int: 20377 bytes - size of received message

    for att in msg.attachments:  # list: imap_tools.MailAttachment
        att.filename             # str: 'cat.jpg'
        att.payload              # bytes: b'\xff\xd8\xff\xe0\'
        att.content_id           # str: 'part45.06020801.00060008@mail.ru'
        att.content_type         # str: 'image/jpeg'
        att.content_disposition  # str: 'inline'
        att.part                 # email.message.Message: original object
        att.size                 # int: 17361 bytes

    msg.obj              # email.message.Message: original object
    msg.from_values      # imap_tools.EmailAddress | None
    msg.to_values        # tuple: (imap_tools.EmailAddress,)
    msg.cc_values        # tuple: (imap_tools.EmailAddress,)
    msg.bcc_values       # tuple: (imap_tools.EmailAddress,)
    msg.reply_to_values  # tuple: (imap_tools.EmailAddress,)
    # EmailAddress(name='Ya', email='im@ya.ru')  # "full" property = 'Ya <im@ya.ru>'

Search criteria

You can use 3 types for “criteria” argument of MailBox methods: fetch, uids, numbers:

from imap_tools import AND

mailbox.fetch(AND(subject='weather'))  # query, the str-like object
mailbox.fetch('TEXT "hello"')          # str
mailbox.fetch(b'TEXT "\xd1\x8f"')      # bytes, *charset arg is ignored

Use “charset” argument for encode criteria to the desired encoding. If “criteria” is bytes - encoding will be ignored.

mailbox.uids(A(subject='жёлтый'), charset='utf8')

Query builder implements all search logic described in rfc3501. It uses this classes:

Class

Alias

Description

Arguments

AND

A

Combine conditions by logical “AND”

Search keys (see table below) | str

OR

O

Combine conditions by logical “OR”

Search keys (see table below) | str

NOT

N

Invert the result of a logical expression

AND/OR instances | str

Header

H

Header value for search by header key

name: str, value: str

UidRange

U

UID range value for search by uid key

start: str, end: str

See query examples. A few examples:

from imap_tools import A, AND, OR, NOT
# AND
A(text='hello', new=True)  # '(TEXT "hello" NEW)'
# OR
OR(text='hello', date=datetime.date(2000, 3, 15))  # '(OR TEXT "hello" ON 15-Mar-2000)'
# NOT
NOT(text='hello', new=True)  # 'NOT (TEXT "hello" NEW)'
# complex
A(OR(from_='from@ya.ru', text='"the text"'), NOT(OR(A(answered=False), A(new=True))), to='to@ya.ru')
# python note: you can't do: A(text='two', NOT(subject='one'))
A(NOT(subject='one'), text='two')  # use kwargs after logic classes (args)

Search key table. Key types marked with * can accepts a sequence of values like list, tuple, set or generator.

Key

Types

Results

Description

answered

bool

ANSWERED/UNANSWERED

with/without the Answered flag

seen

bool

SEEN/UNSEEN

with/without the Seen flag

flagged

bool

FLAGGED/UNFLAGGED

with/without the Flagged flag

draft

bool

DRAFT/UNDRAFT

with/without the Draft flag

deleted

bool

DELETED/UNDELETED

with/without the Deleted flag

keyword

str*

KEYWORD KEY

with the specified keyword flag

no_keyword

str*

UNKEYWORD KEY

without the specified keyword flag

from_

str*

FROM “from@ya.ru”

contain specified str in envelope struct’s FROM field

to

str*

TO “to@ya.ru”

contain specified str in envelope struct’s TO field

subject

str*

SUBJECT “hello”

contain specified str in envelope struct’s SUBJECT field

body

str*

BODY “some_key”

contain specified str in body of the message

text

str*

TEXT “some_key”

contain specified str in header or body of the message

bcc

str*

BCC “bcc@ya.ru”

contain specified str in envelope struct’s BCC field

cc

str*

CC “cc@ya.ru”

contain specified str in envelope struct’s CC field

date

datetime.date*

ON 15-Mar-2000

internal date is within specified date

date_gte

datetime.date*

SINCE 15-Mar-2000

internal date is within or later than the specified date

date_lt

datetime.date*

BEFORE 15-Mar-2000

internal date is earlier than the specified date

sent_date

datetime.date*

SENTON 15-Mar-2000

rfc2822 Date: header is within the specified date

sent_date_gte

datetime.date*

SENTSINCE 15-Mar-2000

rfc2822 Date: header is within or later than the specified date

sent_date_lt

datetime.date*

SENTBEFORE 1-Mar-2000

rfc2822 Date: header is earlier than the specified date

size_gt

int >= 0

LARGER 1024

rfc2822 size larger than specified number of octets

size_lt

int >= 0

SMALLER 512

rfc2822 size smaller than specified number of octets

new

True

NEW

have the Recent flag set but not the Seen flag

old

True

OLD

do not have the Recent flag set

recent

True

RECENT

have the Recent flag set

all

True

ALL

all, criteria by default

uid

iter(str)/str/U

UID 1,2,17

corresponding to the specified unique identifier set

header

H(str, str)*

HEADER “A-Spam” “5.8”

have a header that contains the specified str in the text

gmail_label

str*

X-GM-LABELS “label1”

have this gmail label.

Server side search notes:

  • For string search keys a message matches if the string is a substring of the field. The matching is case-insensitive.

  • When searching by dates - email’s time and timezone are disregarding.

Actions with emails

First of all read about uid at rfc3501.

Action’s uid_list arg may takes:

  • str, that is comma separated uids

  • Sequence, that contains str uids

To get uids, use the maibox methods: uids, fetch.

For actions with a large number of messages imap command may be too large and will cause exception at server side, use ‘limit’ argument for fetch in this case.

with MailBox('imap.mail.com').login('test@mail.com', 'pwd', initial_folder='INBOX') as mailbox:

    # COPY messages with uid in 23,27 from current folder to folder1
    mailbox.copy('23,27', 'folder1')

    # MOVE all messages from current folder to INBOX/folder2
    mailbox.move(mailbox.uids(), 'INBOX/folder2')

    # DELETE messages with 'cat' word in its html from current folder
    mailbox.delete([msg.uid for msg in mailbox.fetch() if 'cat' in msg.html])

    # FLAG unseen messages in current folder as \Seen, \Flagged and TAG1
    flags = (imap_tools.MailMessageFlags.SEEN, imap_tools.MailMessageFlags.FLAGGED, 'TAG1')
    mailbox.flag(mailbox.uids(AND(seen=False)), flags, True)

    # APPEND: add message to mailbox directly, to INBOX folder with \Seen flag and now date
    with open('/tmp/message.eml', 'rb') as f:
        msg = imap_tools.MailMessage.from_bytes(f.read())  # *or use bytes instead MailMessage
    mailbox.append(msg, 'INBOX', dt=None, flag_set=[imap_tools.MailMessageFlags.SEEN])

Actions with folders

BaseMailBox.login/xoauth2 has initial_folder arg, that is “INBOX” by default, use None for not set folder on login.

with MailBox('imap.mail.com').login('test@mail.com', 'pwd') as mailbox:

    # LIST: get all subfolders of the specified folder (root by default)
    for f in mailbox.folder.list('INBOX'):
        print(f)  # FolderInfo(name='INBOX|cats', delim='|', flags=('\\Unmarked', '\\HasChildren'))

    # SET: select folder for work
    mailbox.folder.set('INBOX')

    # GET: get selected folder
    current_folder = mailbox.folder.get()

    # CREATE: create new folder
    mailbox.folder.create('INBOX|folder1')

    # EXISTS: check is folder exists (shortcut for list)
    is_exists = mailbox.folder.exists('INBOX|folder1')

    # RENAME: set new name to folder
    mailbox.folder.rename('folder3', 'folder4')

    # SUBSCRIBE: subscribe/unsubscribe to folder
    mailbox.folder.subscribe('INBOX|папка два', True)

    # DELETE: delete folder
    mailbox.folder.delete('folder4')

    # STATUS: get folder status info
    stat = mailbox.folder.status('some_folder')
    print(stat)  # {'MESSAGES': 41, 'RECENT': 0, 'UIDNEXT': 11996, 'UIDVALIDITY': 1, 'UNSEEN': 5}

IDLE workflow

IDLE logic are in mailbox.idle manager, its methods are in the table below:

Method

Description

Arguments

start

Switch on mailbox IDLE mode

poll

Poll for IDLE responses

timeout: Optional[float]

stop

Switch off mailbox IDLE mode

wait

Switch on IDLE, poll responses, switch off IDLE on response, return responses

timeout: Optional[float]

from imap_tools import MailBox, A

# waiting for updates 60 sec, print unseen immediately if any update
with MailBox('imap.my.moon').login('acc', 'pwd', 'INBOX') as mailbox:
    responses = mailbox.idle.wait(timeout=60)
    if responses:
        for msg in mailbox.fetch(A(seen=False)):
            print(msg.date, msg.subject)
    else:
        print('no updates in 60 sec')

Read docstrings and see detailed examples.

Exceptions

Most lib server actions raises exception if result is marked as not success.

Custom lib exceptions here: errors.py.

Release notes

History of important changes: release_notes.rst

Contribute

If you found a bug or have a question, then:

  1. Look for answer at: this page, issues, pull requests, examples, source, RFCs, stackoverflow.com, internet.

  2. And only then - create merge request or issue.

Reasons

  • Excessive low level of imaplib library.

  • Other libraries contain various shortcomings or not convenient.

  • Open source projects make world better.

Thanks

Big thanks to people who helped develop this library:

shilkazx, somepad, 0xThiebaut, TpyoKnig, parchd-1, dojasoncom, RandomStrangerOnTheInternet, jonnyarnold, Mitrich3000, audemed44, mkalioby, atlas0fd00m, unqx, daitangio, upils, Foosec, frispete, PH89, amarkham09, nixCodeX, backelj, ohayak, mwherman95926, andyfensham, mike-code, aknrdureegaesr, ktulinger, SamGenTLEManKaka, devkral, tnusraddinov, thepeshka, shofstet, the7erm, c0da, dev4max, ascheucher, Borutia, nathan30, daniel55411, rcarmo, bhernacki, ilep, ThKue, repodiac, tiuub, Yannik, pete312, edkedk99, UlisseMini, Nicarex, RanjithNair1980, NickC-NZ, mweinelt, lucbouge, JacquelinCharbonnel, stumpylog

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