Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, I am using Ubuntu 16.04.6 LTS and Ispconfig3. I have just re-installed the software on my client PC. I now run Linux Mint 19.3. Wu-wu ! Due to I must be some kind of a masochist, I am still using ximian evolution as a mail client. (I probably should go to Thunderbird). Anyways, after I re-installed everything on my client PC, I re-installed evolution, and re-imported all of the mail messages back into the same location in the file system, re-started evolution and (By a miracle), all my zillions of (fairly useless) e-mail messages , virtual folders etc are all still there. All well and good, you are thinking. But, when I tried to download new messages, the MTA seems to "start from zero" as it where, and tries to download over 200,000 incoming e-mails from my server. Which, I suppose are all the e-mails that have ever been received on the server for that mail account. So, my simple problem is: How do I delete all these old messages from the server ? Apart from anything else, they are occupying quite some space I suppose, and having all this old cr** on my server is simply not useful. I had a look for docs, but there is nothing. So, I have proceeded as follows:- -My server is using postfix and dovecot and (apparently) vmail, whatever that is. After some futile googling and then some blundering about in the file system of the server, I have determined that all the e-mail messages for the account user(at)website.com will be in the following directory:- /var/vmail/website.com/user/Maildir Unt, the directory structure is like ziss: drwx------ 2 vmail vmail 3350528 Jan 8 09:27 cur -rw------- 1 vmail vmail 724544 Jan 7 18:21 dovecot.index -rw------- 1 vmail vmail 28064076 Jan 8 11:39 dovecot.index.cache -rw------- 1 vmail vmail 13796 Jan 8 11:39 dovecot.index.log -rw------- 1 vmail vmail 32828 Jan 7 05:59 dovecot.index.log.2 -rw------- 1 vmail vmail 2105000 Jan 8 11:39 dovecot-uidlist -rw------- 1 vmail vmail 8 Sep 6 2016 dovecot-uidvalidity -r--r--r-- 1 vmail vmail 0 Sep 6 2016 dovecot-uidvalidity.57ce936a drwx------ 2 vmail vmail 36864 Jan 8 11:53 new -rwxr--r-- 1 vmail vmail 23 Sep 23 13:11 subscriptions drwx------ 2 vmail vmail 4096 Jan 8 11:39 tmp I had a look in the files and the directory "cur" is just a list of all the e-mail messages, all stored in separate files with weird looking names (Due to they have to be unique names ....apparently) So, I "just" deleted all of this directory and contents doing the following command:- rm -vR cur Then, I made the directory again like wot is was before:- mkdir cur chmod 0700 cur chown vmail.vmail cur And, I rebooted the server, and tried to download my mail again and the problem has been pretty much resolved. NB there does seem to be a bit of weird behaviour on my local client MTA (Like it says I have 20,000 new messages when I don't. But, who cares as long as mail is working is what I say ). However, I have some tricky questions such as:- 1. There are a bunch of other files in the Maildir, such as dovecot.index.cache This file, for example, seems to be a list of all the messages that were in the directory cur before i deleted all of them. Should i delete these files and re-create them again with the right permissions to clear everything out ? (NB: I am keen not to f**k up my mail server, if at all possible.). I read something about how dovcot is really clever and it re-creates all the files wot you need all by itself. So, what with being faint hearted , I was kind of hoping I didn't need to change anything else in the file system and , after a bit, the software would just clean up all the mis-matches between the files and the contents of the directory cur by itself ??? Thanks to everyone in advance for their helpful input.