Re: [bug?] emacs interface - some mark read tag changes may have failed

Subject: Re: [bug?] emacs interface - some mark read tag changes may have failed

Date: Mon, 06 Jun 2022 15:18:22 +0200

To: David Bremner,


From: Giovanni Biscuolo

Hello David,

thank you for your help!

I found a pettern in how the problems affects me

The message is S/MIME signed:

  Content-Type: multipart/signed; protocol="application/pkcs7-signature"; micalg=sha-256; boundary="------------ms060701080209070400040907"

I searched all messages having mimetype application/pkcs7-signature and
found that I can read almost every one of them /except/ some of them
have the very same behaviour

Some of the S/MIME signed messages do display correctly /but/ after some
delay, others display immediatly, some never display and I have to
interrupt (CTRL-g)

There is also an old signed message (2019-07-23) from the same sender
I'm /sure/ I was able to read at the time, but now I'm not able to open
it anymore (in Emacs)

David Bremner <> writes:

> Giovanni Biscuolo <> writes:
>> after I press CTRL-g I get this text in the buffer:
>>   [some mark read tag changes may have failed]
> This is essentially notmuch-emacs complaining that it was interrupted,
> so not really telling us about the underlying issue.

OK, I understand now

>> I launched emacs with:
>>   emacs -Q --eval "(require 'notmuch)"
> To be honest, I'm a bit surprised this works. How does emacs find
> notmuch.el in this case? Or did you maybe mean emacs -q?

I'm using Guix to install Emacs and all related packages, AFAIU Guix
loads all the needed libraries anyway; to be sure startes Emacs in an
isolated container [1] with only emacs and emacs-notmuch as available
packages, exposing (i.e. maiking it read-only in the container) my
maildir to be able to read messages and notmuch database; this is what I

  guix shell --container --network --expose=/var/mail/giovanni=/var/mail/giovanni emacs emacs-notmuch --preserve='^DISPLAY$' -- emacs -Q --eval "(require 'notmuch)"

...and opening it this way I was finally able to open the message!

The visible difference I find between the two instances of emacs - my
default one and the one started in a container - is that in my default
one Emacs is verifying signatures ("Good signature by" in many S/MIME
signed messages, not all) but the one in the container is not doing the
signature verification, I can see it comparing how the same message is
displayed in both instances

>> how can I debug this kind of errors?
> I suggest using M-x toggle-debug-on-quit, so that you get a traceback.
> It may help to specify versions of notmuch and emacs when reporting
> problems.

Thanks, I'll try to debug-on-quit as soon as I find some time to stop my
daemon and testing this issue.

>> is there a way i can reply to the affected email dumping the raw message in
>> a text file and using it with emacs as if it's a "normal message"?
> If you can get the text you want, then you can copy and paste it into a
> message composition buffer (e.g. from C-x m). notmuch show --format=text
> may offer your best bet of recovering message text.

Oh yes, you are right... but now I've seen I can start Emacs that way
(isolated container) I have a better workaround :-)

Thank you very much!  Gio'


Giovanni Biscuolo

Xelera IT Infrastructures
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