13.2 Modeline

One of the most visible ways in which mu4e integrates with Emacs is through the modeline See (emacs)Mode Line. The mu4e support for that is handled through a minor-mode mu4e-modeline-mode, which is enabled by default when mu4e is running.

To completely turn off the modeline support, set mu4e-modeline-support to nil before starting mu4e.

mu4e shares information on the modeline in two ways:

The global indicators can be disabled by setting mu4e-modeline-show-global to nil.

All of the bookmark items provide more details in their help-echo, i.e., their tooltip.

13.2.1 Query parameters bookmark item

The query parameters in the modeline start with the various query flags (such as some representation of mu4e-search-threads, mu4e-search-full; the help-echo (tool-tip) has the details.

The query parameters are followed by the query-string use for the headers-view. By default, if the query string matches some bookmark, the name of that bookmark is shown instead of the query it specifies. This can be changed by setting mu4e-modeline-prefer-bookmark-name to nil.

13.2.2 Favorite bookmark modeline item

The global modeline contains the results of some specific “favorite” bookmark query from mu4e-bookmarks. By default, the first one in chosen, but you may want to change that by using the :favorite property for a particular query, e.g., as part of your mu4e-bookmarks:

 ;; Monitor the inbox folder in the modeline
 (:query "maildir:/inbox" :name "Inbox" :key ?i :favorite t)

The results of this query (the last time it was updated) is shown as some character or emoji (depending on mu4e-use-fancy-chars) and 2 or 3 numbers, just like what we saw in See Bookmarks and Maildirs, e.g.,


this means there are 10 unread messages, with 5 new messages since the baseline, and 15 messages in total matching the query.

You can customize the icon; see mu4e-modeline-all-clear, mu4e-modeline-all-read, mu4e-modeline-unread-items and mu4e-modeline-new-items.

Due to the way queries work, the modeline is not immediately updated when you read messages; but going back to the main view (with M-x mu4e resets the counts to latest known ones. When in the main-view, you can use revert-buffer (g) to reset the counters explicitly.