(auto magically) Deleting old Spam emails

If you followed My Qmail installation guide, or are using some kind of webmail or IMAP client that puts “SPAM” marked emails in some special folder, you can provide auto delete of old spam emails.

The popular Roundcube webmail has the movespam plugin (actually it’s broken, but is an easy fix) that moves spam to …/user/Maildir/.Junk folder. And this makes very easy to have a cron invoked script that deletes old spam emails.

So (in PHP), and with a threshold of 30 days (older are deleted):

$threshold = time() - (60*60*24*30); // 30 days

$junk_folders = shell_exec('find /home/vpopmail/domains/ -name .Junk -type d');
$junk_folders = explode("\n", $junk_folders);
$junk_folders = array_filter($junk_folders);

foreach ($junk_folders as $junk_folder) {
  foreach (array('new','cur') as $subfolder) {
    $d = dir($junk_folder.'/'.$subfolder);
    while (false !== ($entry = $d->read())) {
      if ($entry != '.' && $entry != '..' && is_file($d->path.'/'.$entry)) {
        if (filemtime($d->path.'/'.$entry) < $threshold)

When we are deleting emails directly like this, you are screwing the user quota so probably it’s not a bad idea to rebuild quotas after running the old spam delete script.