My message-directory is ~/.emacs.d/mail, this is where Gnus stores all my mail. Suppose I have a directory misc that contains some email in nnml format. I create a Group mail.misc, move directory misc under ~/.emacs.d/mail/misc. But Gnus doesn't see my mail automatically, even though the files, corresponding to articles, exist.

How to make Gnus see my email under the corresponding Group? I think it has to do with .overview file.

  • Gnus expects to have full control over email in nnml-format, so you should expect problems when you move files around behinds Gnus' back.
    – asjo
    Commented Feb 7, 2016 at 14:21

1 Answer 1


If Gnus doesn't see some or all mail in your mail directory, even though the files are there, it may be for 2 reasons.

  1. You miss or have corrupted an .overview file. An .overview file is called a NOV database, Gnus uses this file to track your mail.

    Call nnml-generate-nov-databases-directory, enter directory containing your mail. Or, call nnml-generate-nov-databases to update all mail directories. See Section “Mail Spool” of Gnus manual.

  2. Some of your articles are hidden.

    First try T S (gnus-summary-show-all-threads). If that doesn't work, show all dormant articles with / D (gnus-summary-limit-include-dormant). Remove dormant status with M c (gnus-summary-clear-mark-forward).

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