notmuch-new - Man Page

incorporate new mail into the notmuch database


notmuch new [options]


Find and import any new messages to the database.

The new command scans all sub-directories of the database, performing full-text indexing on new messages that are found. Each new message will automatically be tagged with both the inbox and unread tags.

You should run notmuch new once after first running notmuch to create the initial database. The first run may take a long time if you have a significant amount of mail (several hundred thousand messages or more). Subsequently, you should run notmuch new whenever new mail is delivered and you wish to incorporate it into the database.  These subsequent runs will be much quicker than the initial run.

Invoking notmuch with no command argument will run new if notmuch has previously been completed, but notmuch new has not previously been run.

notmuch new updates tags according to maildir flag changes if the maildir.synchronize_flags configuration option is enabled. See notmuch-config for details.

The new command supports hooks. See notmuch-hooks for more details on hooks.

Supported options for new include


Prevents hooks from being run.


Do not print progress or results.


Print file names being processed. Ignored when combined with --quiet.


If true, when encountering an encrypted message, try to decrypt it while indexing, and stash any discovered session keys. If auto, try to use any session key already known to belong to this message, but do not attempt to use the user's secret keys. If decryption is successful, index the cleartext of the message.

Be aware that the index is likely sufficient (and the session key is certainly sufficient) to reconstruct the cleartext of the message itself, so please ensure that the notmuch message index is adequately protected.  DO NOT USE --decrypt=true or --decrypt=nostash without considering the security of your index.

See also index.decrypt in notmuch-config.


By default notmuch-new uses directory modification times (mtimes) to optimize the scanning of directories for new mail. This option turns that optimization off.


Indexing is influenced by the configuration options index.decrypt, index.header.<prefix> and new.ignore.  Tagging is controlled by new.tags and maildir.synchronize_flags.  See notmuch-config for details.

Exit Status

This command supports the following special exit status code


A temporary failure occurred; the user is invited to retry.

See Also

notmuch, notmuch-config, notmuch-count, notmuch-dump, notmuch-hooks, notmuch-insert, notmuch-reply, notmuch-restore, notmuch-search, notmuch-search-terms, notmuch-show, notmuch-tag


Carl Worth and many others


Apr 16, 2024 0.38.3 notmuch