Roundcube fetchmail plugin is a Roundcube plugin, which allows users to download their mail from external mailboxes.

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Type: roundcube-plugin

1.0.10 2020-02-16 11:14 UTC


Roundcube fetchmail plugin is a Roundcube plugin, which allows users to download their mail from external mailboxes.




  1. Roundcube
  2. Database (PostgreSQL or MySQL)
  3. fetchmail itself
  4. Postfix Admin provides convenient script


Please follow these steps and adapt them to your distribution if necessary

  1. First you need to install fetchmail itself. For Debian you can do so by apt install fetchmail
  2. Next you should extract Roundcube fetchmail plugin archive into your Roundcube plugins folder creating "fetchmail" folder there.
  • You can do so either by using composer for which there is composer.json, still you need to follow further installation steps since those could not be accomplished with composer
  • Alternatively you can download needed release from Releases page unpacking it accordingly
  1. After that you need to enable newly installed plugin by adding it to Roundcube plugin list. For Debian related config file is /etc/roundcube/ and relevant setting is

    $rcmail_config ['plugins'] = array();

Appending , 'fetchmail' to the list of plugins will suffice.

  1. Unless default settings are suitable for you, you need to configure the plugin. See the settings section for more information.

  2. You need to create additional table in your database using one of the supplied .initial.sql files and update it with all the dated .sql files accordingly. Another possibility is to use Postfix Admin table if you have it installed. If using PostgreSQL you may use schemas to share fetchmail table between Roundcube and Postfix Admin. Namely creating it in public schema, whereas every other table in it's appropriate schema, like roundcube and postfixadmin. Please refer to the documentation for more information. If you do so and use composer, however, you probably need to set the database version of this plugin in roundcube database to 9999999900 so that composer will not try updating it.

  3. You will need script from Postfix Admin distribution. If you don't have Postfix Admin installed, you can obtain required script from their repo postfixadmin / ADDITIONS / But be sure to get at least revision 8bad929, at which proper handling of active field introduced. Place it to where apropriate. For example, where your mailboxes are, e.g. /var/mail.

  4. Next adapt to your config. Most likely you want to change these settings:

    # database backend - uncomment one of these
    our $db_type = 'Pg';
    #my $db_type = 'mysql';
    # host name
    our $db_host="";
    # database name
    our $db_name="postfix";
    # database username
    our $db_username="mail";
    # database password
    our $db_password="CHANGE_ME!";

    Instead of changing this script, you may put your settings into /etc/mail/postfixadmin/fetchmail.conf

  5. Next step is to configure cron for regular mail checking with crontab -u mail -e. For example for 5 minute intervals add this: */5 * * * * /var/mail/ >/dev/null. Worth noting that even if you configure cron for a 5 minutes interval, fetchmail will still abide user configured checking interval. As a result setting bigger intervals here manifests them as intervals available to fetchmail, that is setting 0 * * * * here overrides any user setting wich is less then hour

  6. You might also need to install liblockfile-simple-perl and either libsys-syslog-perl or libunix-syslog-perl on Debian-based systems.

  7. Lastly there might be need to do mkdir /var/run/fetchmail; chown mail:mail /var/run/fetchmail

Please note that some commands might require superuser permissions


In case you need to edit default-set settings, you may copy to and edit setings as desired in the latter file, which will override defaults.

  • $rcmail_config ['fetchmail_limit'] limits the number of external mailboxes per user allowed. Default is 10.
  • $rcmail_config ['fetchmail_folder'] whether to allow users to specify IMAP folder they wish to download mail from. Default is false.
  • $rcmail_config ['fetchmail_mda'] allows you to specify mda field for fetchmail. This could be useful in case you want to deliver downloaded mail via MDA or LDA directly, rather than forwarding via SMTP or LMTP. For more information please refer to fetchmail manual and script. Default is '', i.e. not used.


This software distributed under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation

Further details on the GPL license can be found at

By contributing to Roundcube fetchmail plugin, authors release their contributed work under this license


Original author

Arthur Mayer,

List of contributors

For a complete list of contributors, refer to Github project contributors page

Currently maintained by