Unread counter for (collapsed) nested folder

eM-Client does not show, if or how many unread messages are hidden in a collapsed tree of nested folders.

Official answer was “unfortunately, this is by design, as it’s not discernable what the number should exactly show.”

This is not a satisfying answer since other email-Clients know how to handle this.
Please, just copy their behavior.


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eM Client is not a copy of any other email client. By design they have chosen to accurately display the message count for EACH folder, individually.

If you have a sub-folder of Inbox that has 10 unread, and it is collapsed, your other email client is incorrectly showing 10 unread in the Inbox. But the messages are not in the Inbox, are they?

eM Client does provide an Unread Smart Folder, so at any time you can find unread messages regardless of whether folders are collapsed or not.

It´s not incorrect since the counter refers to the whole folder-structure/tree - not just to the top-most folder.
Its simply bad usability to NOT show the counter.

Just think of a complex folder/sub-folder - structure and rules that automatically move new messages to subfolders. You will never know that there are new messages waiting in a sub-sub-sub-Folder of a collapsed folder-tree since there is no counter or other indicator.

If you don´t know what I mean with “complex folder-structure” you may perhaps never have worked in User-Support at a large enterprise-environment…

In the eM Client implementation, the count only refers to that folder, so it is correct. Each sub-folder will have it’s own count.

Take as an example, you have 5 unread in Inbox, and 10 unread in Inbox/f1.

If you get an unread count of 15 for Inbox, because F1 is collapsed, that is not an accurate count. You will spend all day scrolling up and down the Inbox and not find the 10 unread messages.

eM Client has their system by design. You quoted that already, and that is the way they want to do it. It is unlikely they would change. But if you prefer to do it another way, there are other email clients that might offer the system you prefer.

“by design” is either

  • stupid design against usability because it makes usage unnecessarily complicated or
  • stupid Database-Design which makes it hard to implement this basic feature.
    (BTW: is the Mail-DB finally encrypted?? or can still any SQLite sniffing tool extract the data?)

I already explained: the counter should show the number of unread messages of the whole sub-structure.
The same way as folder-properties on the Windows-Desktop show the summed up amount of ALL containing data recursively - and not just the sum of the top-level files.

Do you really think its good design, if a rule moves a message to a subfolder, the user has to search manually through all folders and subfolders to find that message?

You will spend all day scrolling up and down the Inbox and not find the 10 unread messages.
No, I will not. why should I? As soon as I expand the top-folder, I will see the unread-counters at the subfolders and so on.

Perhaps the misunderstanding caused by the fact that I did not tell that my top-folder does not contain any messages because the Content clearly belongs to any of the sub-categories.

Marketing (always empty! ) — when collapsed shows (38)
___general (7)
___North (10)
___East (5)
___West (1)
___South (0)
___new_Projects (always empty!)) – when collapsed shows (15)
______Product_A (1)
______Product_B (3)
______Product_C (11)

BTW: I do not create subfolders to the inbox, of course.
Perhaps you know that this conflicts with most data-retention-policies of larger enterprises which auto-delete contents from folders… (e.g. Inbox and deleted items: 30 days, folders and calendar: 15 months)

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Please take this up with eM Client.

Never heard of that before now.

I also never heard of a 30 day retention policy on a business account Inbox. I wonder what they do with Gsuite accounts that don’t have an actual Inbox folder. That provider stores all messages in a single folder; All Mail. What you see as the Inbox or Product_C folder is simply a filter applied on a label. The actual messages are just all together in a single folder on the server.

But whatever the case, that is besides the point. eM Client has chosen by design to have each folder display it’s own unread count individually. Makes no difference if they are sub-folders of the Inbox, or another folder, the design is the same.

@Charlie6 @Gary
Retention policy: was eMail-Policy at a former employer of mine (big US-Enterprise).
Attempt to stop users from creating huge eMail-Files
(Outlook can not handle big Mail-DBs as properly as Lotus Notes once did…)
AND to get rid of old eMails: usually an e-Mail-message is outdated within days.
If a message was long-termin business-important, the user had to export these to a special storage-location.

@F_H, I actually think it is quite a clever idea. It promotes good regular housekeeping.

Lucky that they did not know about eM Client not having any issues with large databases. :grin:

I vote for this functionality - unread email count in collapsed folders.

If you enable “All Inboxes” / Unread folder under Favorites you can see how many unread emails there are in total from the (sub folders) under each account as in my Gmail folder example below which shows 2 unread emails in each sub folder and then the total 4 unread at the top under favorites.