Open WebMail Logo


Open WebMail is a webmail system based on the Neomail version 1.14 from Ernie Miller. Open WebMail is designed to manage very large mail folder files in a memory efficient way. It also provides a range of features to help users migrate smoothly from Microsoft Outlook to Open WebMail.


Links   Readme | Changes | Files | Faq | Copyright | Help | Screenshots | Icons | Download
Master Site (Taiwan)
Mirror 1 (US)
Mirror 2 (US)
Mirror 3 (Taiwan)
Mirror 4 (Spain)
Mirror 5 (HongKong)
Mirror 6 (Portuguese)
Mirror 7 (Bratislava, Slovakia)
Mirror 8 (Malaysia)
Mirror 9 (Austria/Europe)
Mirror 10 (Romania/Europe)
Mirror 11 (Brasov, Romania)
Mirror 12 (Luxambourg)
Mirror 13 (US)
Mirror 14 (German)
SourceForge Forums
Quick Installer
Online Demo


Multiple Languages/Multiple Charsets

Open WebMail current supports more than 30 languages. It is also quite easy to add new language to Open WebMail if yours is still not supported. Open WebMail also has well support for language with more than one charsets. First, a default charset for the language is assumed. If a message is written with charset other than the default one, Open WebMail will convert the message to the default charset automatically.

Fast Folder Access

Folder access performance is greatly improved through the use of dbm (a simple database provided by perl). When a mail folder is selected in the folder view, Open WebMail will parse the mail folder file and cache the parsed result to a dbm. This dbm is reused whenever the user wants to access the folder. The dbm cache eliminates the scan of an entire folder for every access, a significant benefit when dealing with a large folders. The dbm is automatically synchronized with any changes to the folder itself; the dbm update is incremental if the folder modification is done by the Open WebMail application itself. The dbm will however be recreated when a folder is found to have been changed by an external program.

Efficient Message Movement

The size of a message will be slightly increased after it is read at the first time because of status change. A large movement of messages may be introduced due to the size change. Also, the user may want to move a group of messages between two folders. The routines for message update and movement have been totally rewritten so that minimal movement occurs, with correspondingly minimal memory utilization.

Smaller Memory Footprint

Much effort has been put into optimizing Open WebMail's memory utilization. The memory footprint of Open WebMail is much smaller than its predecessors when dealing with messages with large attachments (e.g. a 20MB document), as a result of which the application now runs smoothly on a medium sized machine, (e.g. a Celeron 300 with 128MB RAM).

Convenient Folder/Message Operation

Open WebMail supports 'create', 'rename', 'delete', and 'download' operations on folders, and 'move', 'copy', 'delete' and 'download' operations on messages.

Graceful File Lock

Since a mail folder may be used by multiple programs simultaneously, it is necessary to lock the file before accessing the folder. Open WebMail uses a blocking lock with a timeout limit of 60 seconds. It gives the lock a better chance of success than a nonblocking lock, which returns an error if the lock can not be acquired immediately. Open WebMail also supports locking by dotlock file to ensure that the file locking operates correctly on platforms operating with an incomplete implementation of NFS lockd.

Remote SMTP Relaying

With the help of Net::SMTP module, openwebamil can talk SMTP to SMTP daemons on either localhost or remote machine. This gives openwebmail the better compatibility with various smtp daemons. The system administrator also has more flexibility when designing the mail service system.

Virtual Hosting

You can have as many virtual domains as you want on same server with only one copy of openwebmail installed. Open Webmail supports per domain config file. Each domain can have its own set of configuration options, including domainname, authentication module, quota limit, mailspooldir ...

You can even setup mail accounts for users without creating real unix accounts for them. Please refer to Kevin Ellis's webpage: "How to setup virtual users on Open WebMail using Postfix & vm-pop3d"

User Alias

Open Webmail can use the sendmail virtusertable for user alias mapping. The loginname typed by user may be pure name or name@somedomain. And this loginname can be mapped to another pure name or name@otherdomain in the virtusertable. This gives you the great flexibility in account management. For example, you may have john for different domains by actually mapping them to different real user ids.	john1	john2	john3

Per User Capability Configuration

While options in system config file(openwebmail.conf) are applied to all users, you may find it useful to set the options on per user basis sometimes. For example, you may want to limit the client ip access for some users or limit the domain which the user can sent to. This could be easily done with the per user config file support in Open Webmail.

Various Authentication Modules

Various authentication modules are directly available for openwebmail, including,,, and With these modules, openwebmail can be integrated with other systems easily.

PAM support

Openwebmail can also use other sources for authentication through the PAM (pluggable authentication module). Ex: NIS+, NIS, LDAP, Radius.... Solaris 2.6, Linux and FreeBSD 3.1 are known to support PAM. For more information about PAM, please see

Full Content Search

Full content search with regular expression support is provided. When a user enters a keyword in the search box, the scope of the mail folder is limited to the keyword related messages. This means the user can use the sort or static functions on the search result. The scope limit is released when the user selects another folder or refreshes the current folder.

Strong MIME Message Capability

Most webmail packages present MIME messages poorly compared to traditional POP clients. Open Webmail presents MIME messages in an attractive format comparable to that presented by Microsoft Outlook. It does this through supporting unlimited levels of attachments and cid object cross-reference inside attachments. Open WebMail also supports uuencoded block inside messages, and displays those uuencoded blocks as if they were normal attachments.

Draft Folder Support

This feature enables the user to write a message in a number of stages, even over several days. The user can save an unfinished message into the draft folder and continue editing at any time.

Reply with Stationery

Serveral stationeries could be defined. It enables the user to quickly reply mail with the same answer.

Spelling Check Support

The spelling check in Open WebMail is very user-friendly and powerful: It makes suggestions for mis-spelled words, and the user can correct the errors very easily by selecting one of the suggestions from a drop-down menu.

Calendar with Reminder/Notification Support

The user can keep track of their appointments, meetings, birthdays, whatever, with the build-in calendar in Open WebMail. This calendar provides serveral views, including year view, month view, week view and day view, so the user can browse their scheduled events very esaily. There is also reminder support for scheduled events, user can specify the days that the reminder shoud look ahead and the first 5 upcoming events will be displayed in the top of mail folder view. If the user want the event reminder to be available outside the webmail system, he can also specify a notification email address, eg: the one used by mobile phone, for each scheduled event, so he can get notification of these events on his mobile phone.

POP3 Support

Multiple POP3 accounts can be defined, allowing a single user to fetch mails from a number of mail servers. All messages fetched will be stored in the INBOX folder. Should the fetch operation exceed 10 seconds (due to a slow link or large message for example), the operation will be put into background to avoid an http timeout.

Mail Filter Support

Multiple filter rules can be set to move or copy incoming mails to different folders automatically or even delete them directly. The user can categorize mails from a specific person or spammer, and identify mails containing viruses very easily by defining rules of sender, receiver, SMTP relay, subject, body or filename of attachments.

In addition to the static filter rules, openwebmail has build-in three smart filters: faked smtp filter, faked from filter and faked exe contenttype filter. Faked SMTP filter is useful in filtering messages from spammer, faked from filter and faked exe contenttype filter are useful in filtering messages generated from virus.

Since mail filtering is activated only in Open WebMail, messages will stay in the INBOX until the user reads their mail with Open WebMail. 'finger' or other mail status check utilities may report new mail incorrectly, since they are not aware of filters: A command tool '' is provided for use as finger replacement, which performs mail filtering before reporting mail status.

Message Count Preview

When the user pulls down the folderlist menu to select a folder, the counts of new messages and total messages of each mail folder are displayed after the folder name to assist the user in finding unread messages.

Confirm Reading Support

The user can request a 'confirm-reading receipt' for each message sent. When the message is read by the recipient, a receipt will be sent back to this user.

There are too many other small enhancements to mention. You may choose to find them by yourself...


Open Webmail has the following modules to support different types of authentication:

Name Description Maintainer authenticate user with LDAP Ivan Cerrato
Kelson Vibber authenticate user with MySQL (through DBD::MySQL interface) Alan Sung authenticate user with MySQL under vmail (through DBD::MySQL interface) Zoltan Kovacs authenticate user with PAM openwebmail authenticate user with PAM on cobalt server Taco Scargo authenticate user with PostgreSQL (through DBD::Pg interface)) Oliver Smith authenticate user with PostgreSQL (through native interface) Veselin Slavov authenticate user through pop3 server openwebmail authenticate user with unix passwd openwebmail authenticate user with unix passwd on cobalt server Trevor Paquett


Open Webmail is available for the following languages:

Language Abbreviation Translation Maintainer Cool3D Iconset Creator
Bulgarian bg Veselin Slavov Veselin Slavov
Catalan ca Jordi Vidal Jordi Vidal
Czech cs Michal Drapak,
Jan Bilik
Jan Bilik
Chinese (Simplified) zh_CN.GB2312 Wang Jun Compass Studio WebMail System
Chinese (Traditional) zh_TW.Big5 openwebmail HoYuan
Danish da Frank Kenneth Nielsen
Dutch nl Jeroen Visser,
Michiel van Slobbe,
Christian Boer
Jan Houtsma
English en openwebmail Emir Litric
Finnish fi Jouni Kivilahti,
Helja Laitinen
Kari Paivarinta,
Ville Alatalo
French fr Nabil SEFRIOUI
Cyril Sabatier
German de Andreas Roedl,
Christian Schoepplein
Ralf Becker
Hellenic/Greek el Dimitris sehh Michelinakis Dimitris sehh Michelinakis
Hungarian hu Nagy Endre,
Posz Marton
Indonesian id Hu-Wei Liang  
Italian it Benedet Marvi Andrea Partinico
Japanese (ShiftJIS) ja_JP.Shift_JIS Captain James and Interactive Artists, LLC  
Japanese (eucJP) ja_JP.eucJP converted from ja_JP.Shift_JIS  
Korean kr Moonsang Kwon Matthewyi
Lithuanian lt Alvydas Sinkunas  
Norwegian no Are Tysland Are Tysland
Polish pl Pawel Jablonski,
michal talecki,
Grzegorz Nosek
Grzegorz Nosek
Portuguese pt Jos Ferradeira  
Portuguese Brazil pt_BR Edison Figueira Junior,
Rui - iG
Jordi S. Bunster
Romanian ro Vladimir Hrusca Vladimir Hrusca
Russian ru Denis Mysenko  
Slovak sk Lubos Klokner,
Peter Sedivy
Lubos Klokner
Spanish es Javier Smaldone Javier Smaldone
Swedish sv Goran Jartin  
Thai th Atsawin Chaowanakritsanakul  
Turkish tr Erdinc Guler Erdinc Guler
Ukrainian uk Volodymyr M. Lisivka  

Some Language Charset Resources are available at

IANA: Official Names for Character Sets
W3C: Charsets supported by some popular HTML applications
W3C: Languages, countries and the charsets typically used
Mirosoft: Character Set Recognition


  • Thanks to Ernie Miller. His great work Neomail provided the solid foundation upon which Open WebMail was built. Without Neomail, there would be no Open WebMail.
  • Thanks to Emir Litric for his great works of art. He made all the great 3D icons and the many fancy styles in Open WebMail, and maintained the doc/RedHat-README.txt. He is now one of the authors of Open Webmail.
  • Thanks to Thomas Chung, who donated the domain to the Open Webmail project, setup site and maintained the RPM package for Open Webmail on RedHat 7.x platform. He also helped other users to solve problems on installing Open Webmail. Thank you, Thomas!
  • Thanks to Dattola Filippo, who wrote the advanced search module and stationery module in the openwebmail. He also wrote the patch to support mark read operation on whole folder, save message to draft if sendmail error and fixed the bug that the ' and \ chars in filterrule will be eat by javascript
  • Thanks to Norvasen for hardware, DNS and bandwidth for
    Thanks to Pentecost Inc. for their consulting expertise and operational support.
  • Thanks to Brent Epp and William Brillinger of Precision Design Co., Altona, Manitoba, Canada., who wrote the great help tutorial for openwebmail.
  • Thanks to Michael Arndt. The web calendar support in openwebmail is based on his great code in WebCal 1.12.
  • Thanks to Joshua Cantara, the web based spelling check is based on his code in WBOSS 1.5a.
  • Thanks to Nikolay Pelov, the PAM support in openwebmail is mostly from the example code in his perl Authen::PAM module.
  • Thanks to Russ Reese, the login alias/mapping is based on his patch code and idea.
  • Thanks to Nimrod Zimerman and Nimrod S. Carmi, who contributed the useraddbyweb package in contrib/. This allows users to be added to a Linux system dynamically through web signup.
    Thanks to Fr. V. Chua, S.J., who wrote the How to Install document for this useraddbyweb package.
  • Thanks to Dugal James P., who submitted the patches for PAM support, automated DST adjustment, internal msg detection on Solaris dtmail, disallowed_pop3servers option, fix for passwdfile in NIS+, fix for user homedir in sun automounter and fix to the content-type header error in attachment downloading.
  • Thanks to Raul Monferrer, who submitted the patch for multiple dictionaries support in spellcheck.
  • Thanks to James Dean Palmer, who contributed the support for new mail headers: In-Reply-To, References and X-Status. He also wrote a new sort method "by thread" for folderview, added the 'A' flag display of answered messages and made the from column more concise by cutting it off at .AT. symbol if it is a pure address.
  • Thanks to Nimal Ratnayake, who submitted the patch for .forward editing.
  • Thanks to Chen-hsiu Huang, who fixed the templates to solve the display problem on Mozilla/Netscape browser and added support for 'markasread'.
  • Thanks to , who contributed the patch of search support in addressbook.
  • Thanks to Carl Olsen, who contributed the code of using Net::SMTP module. This allows openwebmail to use other host as SMTP relay for mail sending.
  • Thanks to Brian Suttonb, who contributed the Hotmail style definition file.
  • Thanks to Ivan Cerrato, who contributed the LDAP authentication module( and script to add an user account on a LDAP server
  • Thanks to Kevin Lo, who made the OpenBSD port for openwebmail.
  • Thanks to Volodymyr M. Lisivka, who patched the to check vocabularies composed by characters other than English letters.
  • Thanks to, who has fixed a lot of bugs in so it can work correctly with server of pure virtualuser configuration. He also provided the idea and code for disable_embedded_CGI option and suggested the use of $ENV{SCRIPT_FILENAME} so *.pl can find required modules automatically
  • Thanks to Chris Heegard, who provided the information of how to use openwebmail on Mac OS X and suggested the use of to generate C wrappers for suid scripts.
  • Thanks to Yen-Ming Lee, who made the FreeBSD port for openwebmail.
  • Thanks to A.Johnson Jeba Asir, who fixed the hang problem in attachment uploading caused by a bug in encode_base64() in
  • Thanks to Kevin Ellis, who fixed the bugs related to virtualuser and option auth_withdomain so openwebmail could work smoothly with vm-pop3d. Please refer to Kevin's webpage "How to setup virtual users on Open WebMail using Postfix & vm-pop3d"
  • Thanks to Koppi, who fix the bug related to the variable localization behavior in 'foreach' statement.
  • Thanks to Taco Scargo, who made Sun Cobalt package of openwebmail for Qube 2, Qube 3, RaQ, RaQ 2, RaQ 3, RaQ 4, RaQ XTR. He also suggested the use of dbmopen_ext option and fixed a javascript bug in openwebmail.
  • Thanks to Oliver Schindler, who helped to debug the insecure dependence error due to tainted variables
  • Thanks to Veselin Slavov, who contributed the PostgreSQL authentication module (, pgsql interface) and submitted the patch to add selection menu of logindomain at login
  • Thanks to Kelson Vibber, who fixed a serious bug in, a bug in smiley code in readmessage and added %1 variable support to virtusertable
  • Thanks to Michael Karner and QETA.Net, who registered and hosted the mirror site
  • Thanks to _KhlER3L, who wrote the document Customizing the look of Open WebMail v1.65
  • Thanks to Trevor Paquette, who made fix for option domainname_override and folderusage_threshold and the auth_module for Cobalt server.
  • Thanks to Andrea Partinico, who made the and under uty/, which can be used to generate the Cool3D iconsets for different languages. The Cool3D.Large.English and Cool3D.Italian is made with these scripts.
  • Thanks to Neil Inns, who donated the openwebmail.con domainname to this project.
  • Thanks to Ralf Becker, who submitted the patch that added preliminary subdir support to mailfolder.
  • Thanks to Herr Doktor C. Lesser, who provided the online demo site for openwebmail.
  • Thanks to James Briggs, who provided the great help in testing and debugging the charset conversion for Japanese language.


If you encountered any problem with Open Webmail, please check changes.txt to see if the problem is fixed in the latest current version. If not, try the readme.txt and faq.txt.
If you want to seek help, please post your problem in the openwebmail-users discussion forum.
If you want to submit patch or bug-report, please email to
If you want to mirror this site, please use this script.

Please DO NOT email questions/problems to or the authors directly, they will be just simplely ignored. We would prefer to do the discussion on the forum thus the information could be shared by others.


The Open WebMail is brought to you by

Chung-Kie Tung 董仲愷
Nai-Jung Kuo 郭乃榮
Chao-Chiu Wang 王詔丘
Emir Litric  
Thomas Chung  
Filippo Dattola  

Distributed System Laboratory
Department of Electrical Engineering
National Cheng-Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan, R.O.C.


Small icon collections    SourceForge Logo    Sponsored by Norvasen