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Design Specs


For the latest UX specifications, please visit:

Gaia/Email/UX/Decisions - Notable UX Decisions and rationales



The e-mail app consists of a back-end which is developed in and a front-end which is developed as part of Gaia at The intent of separating the library from the UI is to make the back-end reusable. The primary motivation is to allow a keyboard-friendly desktop UI to be developed against the library without trying to have a single UI trying to meet two radically different use cases.

To re-cap, check out these projects / repositories:


See Gaia/Email/Features for a partial list of things we currently support or don't support.


The following pages are an attempt to describe how the e-mail implementation works without requiring you to read the block comments in the source code in order to understand. The goal is to provide context of the e-mail problem domain and our approach to dealing with it. We are not going to go into low-level details because those can change frequently, but we will try to strike a balance by linking to the source code and its block comments.

Standardization Efforts

QA / Filing Bugs

Bugs should be filed in under the "Boot2Gecko" product and "E-Mail" component. When filing a bug, be sure to provide the details requested in Gaia/Email/RequiredBugInfo. It's preferred if you do a search within the component first to look for any bugs that might already be filed on the problem. Unfortunately, there are still a lot of known bugs :(

Resources on how to provide information for bugs:

  • Gaia/Email/RequiredBugInfo: What we need to be able to properly investigate a bug.
  • Gaia/Email/ProvidingEmailsForDebugging: How to provide problematic e-mails so developers can directly reproduce problems. You can either attach the e-mails as attachments to the bug or e-mail them directly to the developers working on the bug if you are somewhat concerned about the world seeing any of the information in the e-mail (but not concerned enough that you have a problem providing it to a developer.)
  • Gaia/Email/DebuggingTricks: Trying to help reproduce a problem? Here are some tricks you can use to make your life easier.


  • Front-End Tests
    • live in the gaia repo
    • Tests by default run against
  • Back-End Tests
    • live in the gaia-email-libs-and-more repo (aka GELAM). For info on the tests in general, see: Gaia/Email/LoggestTestFramework
    • run against JS implemented fake-servers by default, but can be run against real servers as well.
    • contain a mixture of test types:
      • unit tests. examples: test_intl_unit.js (simple), test_folder_storage.js (complex)
      • higher level tests. ex: test_imap_general.js
      • end-to-end-ish tests. ex: test_compose.js (creates a message with an attachment, sends mail to itself, checks the messages and the attachment, sends a reply, etc.)


(or rather, dependencies with wiki pages that tell you stuff)

Sprint Demos

Coming soon.


Security Review

The security review of this app can be found here.