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My specific use case concerns the "All Mail" folder exposed by Gmail over IMAP. I keep the folder permanently visible so I can search it when I need to, but I'm tired of pressing c (gnus-group-catchup-current) every time it gets new mail.

I looked for a relevant group parameter in the manual, but couldn't find it.

I can write an appropriate function and either add it to gnus-group-update-group-hook or set the gnus-group-update-group-function, but first I thought I'd ask.

Is there a more idiomatic way?

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One approach could be to "read" the mail before it enters Gnus. Personally I use Mu4e and am interested in sorting mail, not marking it as read, but you could easily adapt the following to your needs.

The idea is to use a separate tool to make modifications on the server using the imap protocol. I am using imapfilter and have added the following to my init file:

(add-hook 'mu4e-update-pre-hook 'local/mu4e-run-imapfilter)
(defun local/mu4e-run-imapfilter ()
  (message "Running imapfilter...")
  (with-current-buffer (get-buffer-create " *imapfilter*")
    (goto-char (point-max))
    (insert "---\n")
    (call-process "imapfilter" nil (current-buffer) nil "-v"))
  (message "Running imapfilter...done"))

You'll have to add something similar to the appropriate Gnus hook and learn enough about imapfilter to hack an appropriate ~/.imapfilter/config.lua.

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