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#+TITLE:mu <img src=" title="" /> <a href=" title="" /> <img src=" title="" /> <img src=" title="" /> <img src=" title="" /> <img src=" title="" /> <img src=" title="" />
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Welcome to mu!

Note: you are looking at the development branch, which is where new code is being developed and tested, and which may occasionally break.

Distribution and non-adventurous users are instead recommended to use the 1.8 Release Branch or to pick up one of the 1.8 Releases.

Given the enormous amounts of e-mail many people gather and the importance of e-mail message in our work-flows, it's essential to quickly deal with all that mail - in particular, to instantly find that one important e-mail you need right now, and quickly file away message for later use.

mu is a tool for dealing with e-mail messages stored in the Maildir-format. mu's purpose in life is to help you to quickly find the messages you need; in addition, it allows you to view messages, extract attachments, create new maildirs, and so on. mu is fully documented.

After indexing your messages into a Xapian-database, you can search them using a custom query language. You can use various message fields or words in the body text to find the right messages.

Built on top of mu are some extensions (included in this package):

  • mu4e: a full-featured e-mail client that runs inside emacs
  • mu-guile: bindings for the Guile/Scheme programming language (version 3.0 and later)

mu is written in C and C++; mu4e is written in elisp and mu-guile in a mix of C++ and Scheme.

Note, mu is available in Linux distributions (e.g. Debian/Ubuntu and Fedora) under the name maildir-utils; apparently because they don't like short names. All of the code is distributed under the terms of the GNU General Public License version 3 (or higher).


Note: building from source is an advanced subject; esp. if something goes wrong. The below simple examples are a start, but all tools involved have many options; there are differences between systems, versions etc. So if this is all a bit daunting we recommend to wait for someone else to build it for you, such as a Linux distribution. Many have packages available.


To be able to build mu, ensure you have:

  • a C++17 compiler (gcc or clang are known to work)
  • development packages for Xapian and GMime and GLib (see for the versions)
  • basic tools such as make, sed, grep
  • meson

For mu4e, you also need emacs.

Note, the MSYS2 support for Windows is experimental, that is, it works for some people, but we can't really support it due to lack of the specific expertise. Help is welcome!


$ git clone git://
$ cd mu

mu uses meson for building, so you can use that directly, and all the usual commands apply. You can also use it indirectly through the provided Makefile, which provides a number of useful targets.

For instance, using the Makefile, you could install mu using:

$ ./ && make
$ sudo make install

Alternatively, you can run meson directly:

$ meson build && ninja -C build
$ ninja -C build install

This allows for passing various meson options, such as --prefix. Consult the meson documentation for details.