Cyrus::IMAP::Shell - Perl version of cyradm


$ cyradm [--user authid] [--authz authzid] [--[no]rc] [--systemrc file] [--userrc file] \
> [--port n] [--auth mechanism] [--server] server

but possibly

$ perl -MCyrus::IMAP::Shell -e 'run("myscript")'

or even (not recommended)

use Cyrus::IMAP::Admin::Shell;



This module implements cyradm in Perl. It is a shell around Cyrus::IMAP::Admin. Commands are provided in both Tcl-compatible forms and GNU-style long option forms.

The ``cyradm`` utility is a simple command line for performing common administrative tasks on a Cyrus IMAP server, written in Perl.

The cyradm utility can either be executed from a client where it has been installed and connect to the server via IMAP or it can be executed locally via a shell on the server.

cyradm understands /bin/sh-style redirection: any command can have its standard or error output redirected, with all sh-style redirections (except <>) supported. It does not currently understand pipes or backgrounding.

If the Term::Readline::Perl or Term::Readline::GNU modules are available, cyradm will use it.


  • --u, --user user

Authenticate with the specified username.

  • --authz user

Authorize the connection as being the specified username.

  • --norc, --rc

(Do not) load the configuration files.

  • --systemrc file

Use the system configuration file specified.

  • --userrc file

Use the user configuration file specified.

  • --port port

Connect to the *server* specified on the port specified.

  • --auth mechanism

Use the mechanism specified to authenticate. One of PLAIN, LOGIN, DIGEST-MD5, etc.

  • --help

Show a help message about these command-line options.

  • --version

Display the version of Cyrus IMAP the current ``cyradm`` command is a part of.

  • --server server

The server address to connect to.



authenticate [--minssf N] [--maxssf N] [--mechanisms list] [--service name] [--tlskey keyfile] [--notls] [--cafile cacertfile] [--capath cacertdir] user

Authenticate to server. You must already be connected to a server and Cyrus imapd will refuse to allow you to re-authenticate once you have authenticated once.

aliases: auth, login


chdir directory

Change directory. A pwd builtin is not provided, but the default command action will run pwd from a shell if invoked.

aliases: cd


createmailbox [--partition partition] [--specialuse specialuse] mailbox

createmailbox [--specialuse specialuse] mailbox partition

Create a mailbox on the default or a specified partition. Both old-style and getopt-style usages are accepted (combining them will produce an error). Optionally assign a special use to the mailbox.

New mailboxes inherit the ACL permissions of their parent mailbox, except for top-level mailboxes such as the user's INBOX. Mailboxes that are the user's INBOX are assigned all to the corresponding user.

  • Example Usage

localhost> :command:`cm user.john`
localhost> :command:`lm`
user.john (\HasNoChildren)
localhost> :command:`lam user.john`
john lrswipkxtecda

Note that in the above example, the unixhierarchysep setting in imapd.conf is set to 0. When using the UNIX hierarchy separator, the / (forward slash) character would be used as the hierarchy separator, and the example would look as follows:

  • Example Usage with unixhierarchysep: 1

localhost> :command:`cm user/john`
localhost> :command:`lm`
user/john (\HasNoChildren)
localhost> :command:`lam user/john`
john lrswipkxtecda
  • Note

The above examples use the unqualified, shorthand user identifier john as the mailbox name.

With the use of virtual domains, controlled through the virtdomains setting in imapd.conf(5).

aliases: cm, create


deleteaclmailbox mailbox id [...]

Remove ACLs from the specified mailbox.

aliases: delteacl, dam


deletemailbox mailbox

Delete the specified mailbox.

Administrators do not have implicit delete rights on mailboxes. Use the setaclmailbox command to grant the x permission to your principal if you need to delete a mailbox you do not own.

aliases: delete, dm



Disconnect from the current server. The prompt will revert to cyradm>. This does not quit cyradm.

aliases: disc


exit [number]

Exit cyradm, optionally with a specific exit status; the exit status of the last command will be used if one is not specified.

aliases: quit


help [command]

Show help for command or all commands.

aliases: ?


getmetadata [mailbox]

Display mailbox/server metadata

aliases: getmd


info [mailbox]

Display the mailbox/server annotations.


listaclmailbox mailbox

List ACLs on the specified mailbox.

aliases: lam, listacl


listmailbox [--subscribed] [--specialuse] [pattern [reference]]

List all, or all subscribed or special-use, mailboxes matching the specified pattern. The pattern may have embedded wildcards '\*' or '%', which match anything or anything except the separator character, respectively.

Mailboxes returned will be relative to the specified reference if one is specified. This allows a mailbox list to be limited to a particular hierarchy.

In some cases when the '%' wildcard is used to end a pattern, it may match an entry which is not a mailbox but which contains other mailboxes. In this case, the entry will be parenthesized to indicate that it is a root for other mailboxes, as opposed to a mailbox itself.

aliases: list, lm


listquota root

List quotas on specified root. If the specified mailbox path does not have a quota assigned, an error will be raised; see listquotaroot for a way to find the quota root for a mailbox.

aliases: lq


listquotaroot mailbox

Show quota roots and quotas for mailbox

aliases: lqm, lqr


mboxconfig [--private] mailbox attribute value

Set mailbox metadata, optionally set the private instead of the shared version of the metadata. A value of "none" will remove the attribute.

The currently supported attributes are:

  • comment description

Sets a comment or description associated with the mailbox.

  • expire days

Sets the number of days after which messages will be expired from the mailbox.

  • news2mail address

Sets an email address to which messages injected into the server via NNTP will be sent.

  • pop3showafter time

Sets a time (in RFC3501 format, for example "6-Jan-2011 11:45:32 +1100") which specifies a cutoff date such that POP3 fetching of the folder does not see messages whose internaldate is before or equal to the date.

  • sharedseen true|false

Enables the use of a shared Seen flag on messages rather than a per-user Seen flag. The 's' right in the mailbox ACL still controls whether a user can set the shared Seen flag.

  • sieve scriptname

Indicates the name of the global sieve script that should be run when a message is delivered to the shared mailbox (not used for personal mailboxes).

  • squat true|false

Indicates that the mailbox should have a squat index created for it.

aliases: mboxcfg


reconstruct [-r] mailbox

Reconstruct the specified mailbox, optionally recursing and reconstructing child mailboxes if the -r flag is given.

For more information see reconstruct(8).


renamemailbox [--partition partition] oldname newname

renamemailbox oldname newname [partition]

Rename the specified mailbox, optionally moving it to a different partition. Both old-style and getopt-style usages are accepted; combining them will produce an error.

aliases: rename, renm



server [--noauthenticate] [server]

With no arguments, show the current server. With an argument, connect to that server. It will prompt for automatic login unless the --noauthenticateoption is specified. (This may change; in particular, either automatic authentication will be removed or all authenticate options will be added.)

When connected to a server, cyradm's prompt changes from cyradm> to servername>, where servername is the fully qualified domain name of the connected server.

aliases: connect, servername


setaclmailbox mailbox id rights [id rights ...]

Set ACLs on a mailbox. The ACL may be one of the special strings none, read (lrs), post (lrsp), append (lrsip), write(lrswipkxte), delete (lrxte), or all (lrswipkxte), or any combinations of the ACL codes:

  • l

Lookup (mailbox is visible to LIST/LSUB, SUBSCRIBE mailbox)

  • r

Read (SELECT/EXAMINE the mailbox, perform STATUS)

  • s

Seen (set/clear SEEN flag via STORE, also set SEEN flag during APPEND/COPY/FETCH BODY[...])

  • w

Write flags other than SEEN and DELETED

  • i

Insert (APPEND, COPY destination)

  • p

Post (send mail to mailbox)

  • k

Create mailbox (CREATE new sub-mailboxes, parent for new mailbox in RENAME)

  • x

Delete mailbox (DELETE mailbox, old mailbox name in RENAME)

  • t

Delete messages (set/clear DELETED flag via STORE, also set DELETED flag during APPEND/COPY)

  • e

Perform EXPUNGE and expunge as part of CLOSE

  • a


aliases: setacl, sam


setinfo attribute value

Set server metadata. A value of "none" will remove the attribute. The currently supported attributes are:

  • motd message

Sets a "message of the day". The message gets displayed as an ALERT upon connection.

  • comment note

Sets a comment or description associated with the server.

  • admin address

Sets the administrator email address for the server.

  • shutdown message

Sets a shutdown message. The message gets displayed as an ALERT and all users are disconnected from the server (subsequent logins are disallowed).

  • expire days

Sets the number of days after which messages will be expired from the server (unless overridden by a mailbox annotation).

  • squat true|false

Indicates that all mailboxes should have a squat indexes created for them (unless overridden by a mailbox annotation).


setmetadata [--private] mailbox [annotation] value

Set metadata on mailbox, where annotation is one of [comment|expire|news2mail|pop3showafter|sharedseen|sieve|specialuse| squat|/<explicit annotation>].

Note that value with a leading backslash must be escaped with an additional backslash. For example:

setmetadata --private Spam specialuse "\\Junk"

Note, too, that "private" annotations are private to the user currently authenticated as, not necessarily the owner of the mailbox. To set annotations for another user you must authorize as that user.

In addition to the use of optional flag --private, one may use a more explicit syntax, prefixing the annotation with '/shared/' or '/private/' as in this example:

setmetadata Spam /private/specialuse "\\Junk"

aliases: setmd


setquota root resource value [resource value ...]

Set a quota on the specified root, which may or may not be an actual mailbox. The resources understood by Cyrus are STORAGE, MESSAGE, X-NUM-FOLDERS and X-ANNOTATION-STORAGE. The storage units are, as defined in RFC 2087, groups of 1024 octets (i.e. Kilobytes). The value may be the special string none which will remove the quota.

aliases: sq


subscribe mailbox

Subscribe to the given mailbox.


unsubscribe mailbox

Unsubscribe to the given mailbox.



Display the version info of the current server.

aliases: ver


xfermailbox [--partition partition] mailbox server

xfermailbox mailbox server [partition]

Transfer (relocate) the specified mailbox to a different server. Both old-style and getopt-style usages are accepted; combining them will produce an error.

aliases: xfer


GNU-style long options must be given in their entirety; Tcl-style options may be abbreviated.

Tcl-style options are provided as a compatibility feature. They will probably go away in the future.

Multiple commands can be given on a line, separated by ';' characters.

All commands set an exit status, which at present is not useful.

Unknown commands are passed to a subshell for execution.

The Tcl version of cyradm is used for scripting as well as interactively. While this is possible to a limited extent by use of the run method, scripting would normally be done with Cyrus::IMAP::Admin, which is far more flexible than either interactive cyradm or the Tcl scripting mechanism for Cyrus.

cyradm understands /bin/sh-style redirection: any command can have its standard or error output redirected, with all sh-style redirections (except <>) supported. It does not currently understand pipes or backgrounding.

If the Term::Readline::Perl or Term::Readline::GNU modules are available, cyradm will use it.

An alias facility is implemented internally, but no access is currently provided to it. This will change, if only to allow some of the predefined aliases to be removed if they conflict with useful shell commands.


Brandon S. Allbery,


Cyrus::IMAP::Admin, Term::ReadLine, sh(1), perl(1), imapd(8), imapd.conf(5), reconstruct(8)

imapd(8), imapd.conf(5), reconstruct(8).