iTop Extensions

Mail to ticket automation

Mail to ticket automation
Scan several mailboxes to create or update tickets.
Ticket Creation from eMails
iTop Hub
PHP 8.1


This extension runs in the background to scan the defined mail inbox(es) and either create or update tickets based on the content of the incoming emails.

  • On Ticket creation, it fills the description of the ticket with the content of the email, set the caller, the customer, copy attachments, add contacts and many other fields…
  • On Ticket update, it extracts as best as possible, the last reply part of the email to update the Public Log of the ticket, copy attachment, change the status of the ticket and add contacts
From version 3.6.0 of this extension:
  • OAuth 2 authentication is supported
  • iTop minimum version raised to 2.7.7 or 3.0.2.


  • Determine if the sender is an existing Person (found by its email), then based on configuration it can reject the email in error or create a new Person.
  • Determines whether a Ticket must be created or updated based either on the custom headers added by iTop in the eMail (in case of replies) or based on a configurable pattern in the title
  • Connect to any mailbox using either the POP3 or IMAP protocol
  • Interactive configuration of the mail inboxes
  • Processes the incoming eMails in both HTML or plain text format
  • Support both Incidents and User Request tickets
  • Ticket's attachments are automatically turned into attachments of the Ticket (“dangerous” types of attachments can be excluded)
  • Automatic detection of duplicate attachments (like signature images)
  • Keeps the messages in the mailbox until the corresponding Ticket is either closed or deleted
  • Manual retry in case an error occurs when processing an eMail
  • Images embedded inside an HTML mail are displayed inline in iTop as well.
  • Images “too small” (below configurable dimensions) are not imported as attachments (to exclude signatures)
  • Images bigger than configurable dimensions can be resized automatically before uploading into iTop
  • “Inline images” are displayed at a reduced (configurable) size and can be “zoomed-in” by clicking on them.
  • Automatically reject “Autoreply” emails, based on a set of configurable patterns to be tested against the subject of the email
  • Add the other recipients of the email (To: and CC:) as additional contacts on the ticket (configurable). The contact must already exist with that exact email, it won't be created, just linked to the Ticket..
  • Apply a stimulus (configurable, depending on the state of the ticket) to change the state of the ticket upon reception of an email.
  • Add a new type of Trigger: Trigger (when updated by mail) which allow to notify when a Ticket is updated through a received email.
  • New in 3.4.1: Add 2 delegation profiles: Mail Inbox Manager to manage mailboxes and Mail Messages Manager to manage the messages
If you want to trigger a Notification '(on object creation)' limited to Ticket created by email, use origin='email' in the OQL.

Revision History

Release Date Version Comments
2023-09-19 3.7.4 * N°6735 - Notifications are not sent when a mail is in error
2023-09-12 3.7.3 * N°5934 - email with a “message”_id too
* N°6372 - Reconcile email in conversation
2023-07-13 3.7.2 * N°2144 - POP3 not supported with iTop 3.1+
* N°6422 - Improve french dictionary
* Updated german translations by Lars Kaltefleiter
2023-04-21 3.7.1 * N°6221 - Attachments not added when emails from thunderbird
* N°4170 - Fix encoding issue for long subjects (and other MIME UTF8 encoded data on multiple lines)
* N°5388 - Fix dynamic properties that were actually just case-sensitive typos
* N°5982 - PHP 8.2: Fix class properties created dynamically
* N°2638 - Fix Attachments without Content should be processed
2022-12-14 3.7.0 * N°5310 - Add compatibility with iTop 3.1
* N°5416 - Add compatibility with PHP 8.0
* N°5216 - Fix invalid message-id when sending notification using cron on system with a specific locale set
* N°5624 - Fix “CMDB Change cleaner” module displayed during setup
* N°544 - Fix Kerberos error message when reading mails
* N°5633 Fix Mail to Ticket crash when cannot decode message on IMAP + OAuth
* N°5654 Implement `use_message_id_as_uid` option on IMAP + OAuth
2022-10-05 3.6.1 * Update German translations
* Allow multiple mailboxes on the same OAuth token
2022-07-11 3.6.0 * Add OAuth 2.0 connection feature
* Add log on error when opening mailbox content
* Log replica OQL query when opening mailbox content
* MailInboxesEmailProcessor::ListEmailSources: New log header to increase readability
* EmailBackgroundProcess: New log when quitting due to time limit exceeded
* Handle MOVE_MESSAGE code in debug log
* iTop min raised to 2.7.7+ and 3.0.2+
2022-03-22 3.5.2 * Remove deprecated function
* Fix “Mail inbox standard” class not being available in CSV import anymore
* Ticket's description is truncated silently - Add a log to ease debugging the cut-off
2021-12-21 3.5.1 Change CMDBChange cleaner default scheduling to hourly
2021-12-17 3.5.0 * iTop 3.0.0 compatibility
* iTop 3.0 display in details page
* Delegate admin rights limitation on mailboxes
* CMDBChange related to the extension (object creation/modification) now have “email-processing” as origin instead of “custom-extension”
* CMDBChange cleaner won't remove changes created an hour ago or less
2021-12-17 3.3.2 * Fix CMDBChange origin to 'email-processing' for the mail to ticket automation
* Update german translations thanks to Martin Raeker from @itomig-de !
* CMDBChangeCleaner : change default parameters values
* CMDBChangeCleaner : don't clean CMDBChange that were created an hour ago or less
2021-06-18 3.3.1 * Add german translation
2020-05-31 3.3.0 * Move email to another folder with IMAP protocol
* Fix mail body not included in target object
* Prevent the mysql password to appear on misconfigured servers
* Add a new parameter “retention_period”, in order to keep replica some days before deleting the email.
2021-02-10 3.2.1 * Bug fix: prevent creation of many orphan CMDBChange records
* Periodic or scheduled cleaning of such orphan CMDBChange
* dedicated CLI script to perform such cleanup at will
2020-10-27 3.2.0 * Better error handling when processing email
* Fix PHP Notice “Undefined variable: index”
* Add confirmation on action buttons in mailbox content tab
* New CMDBChange for each message processed
* Fix history generation on iTop >= 2.7.0
* Fix undefined $index variable
* Update DE translations
2019-11-22 3.1.1 * Compatibility with iTop 2.7
* Fix bad encoded non breaking space by outlook
* Update DE translations
* ID for incoming email are checked from reference
2019-05-21 3.1.0 * Contacts in To/cc with the same email as current mailbox are not added to the ticket anymore
* Handle signed emails with an “enveloped format”
* Store eml for all the messages
2019-03-19 3.0.17 Dictionnaries internal updates
2019-03-13 3.0.16 * Store eml for message in error
* Error log attached to the corresponding message
2018-12-19 3.0.15 * Update spanish translations (Thanks to Miguel Turrubiates)
* JQuery compatibility (JQuery 3 since iTop 2.6)
* Fix OQL used to set caller_id (thanks Jeffrey ! SF#1628)
* Fix invalid ES dictionary (“UTF-8 Characters Malformed” error)
* Fix unnecessary trace 'invalid line in the “stimuli” configuration' when no stimulus is configured
2018-06-27 3.0.14 Add DE translation
2018-03-01 3.0.13 Fix corrupted (binary) attachments on some emails (none UTF8 emails and wrong content-transfer-encoding format).
2018-02-21 3.0.12 Enable 2.5.0 menu overriding capabilities.
2018-02-06 3.0.11 Fix attachments stored as inline images when content-disposition was not specified correctly.
2018-02-05 3.0.10 Fix PHP 5.3 compatibility broken in revision 3.0.8
2018-01-29 3.0.9 Allow trigger to filter with an OQL
2018-01-25 3.0.8 SPAM messages flagged as 'undesired' and deleted after a delay. An generic email reply can be sent in case of 'Unknown caller'. Update Russian translation
2017-08-28 3.0.7 Duplicated dictionary entries collision during CSV import (attributes behavior and error_behavior from MailInboxStandard class).
2017-03-31 3.0.6 EmailReplica error message would throw a fatal error if it could not be persisted to DB (eg. With 4 bytes unicode characters). We now save a default error message when it is not possible to persist it, and we dump the original message in the IssueLog.
2016-11-10 3.0.5 Now supports several MailInbox scanning a single email address mailbox, as long as they have distinct folders (Mailbox (for IMAP) property). Also, fixed a regression introduced in 3.0.x, use_message_id_as_uid configuration parameter was not working anymore.
2016-10-05 3.0.4 Support of inline images in messages issued by Lotus Notes.
2016-08-26 3.0.3 Fixed regressions introduced in 3.0.x: Apply stimulus not working. CRON interrupted by a fatal error when the sender is unknown (in case of a ticket update). Empty description if the target field is in plain text. Losing CR in the case log if the email is in plain text (email created with thunderbird, and no rich text formatting)
2016-08-09 3.0.2 Make sure that the setup does not crash if some of the prerequisites (PEAR or IMAP) are not installed.
2016-07-26 3.0.1 Support of adding more contacts (To: and CC:) to the ticket. Ability to apply a stimulus (to change the state of a ticket) when receiving an update by email.
2016-06-07 2.6.12 Security: only administrators can see the password of mail inboxes. Regression: properly import all attachments (not only the last one if it's not an image). Enhancement: preserve hyperlinks when converting from HTML to plain text.
2016-02-02 2.6.11 Developers only: fixed a compatibility issue with alternatives to the module itop-standard-email-synchro. The regression has been introduced in 2.6.6 and does not impact the behavior of the component unless you have developped your own alternative to itop-standard-email-synchro.
2015-10-28 2.6.10 Automatically reject “Autoreply” emails (cf undesired-subject-patterns below). Support of emails with no subject.
2015-09-29 2.6.9 Properly initialize ENUM values (#1102), prevent updating tickets of a different class than the one configured in the mail inbox.
2015-03-09 2.6.8 Fixed the processing of the images_maximum_size parameter to prevent errors when the images are not to be resized. Fixed the pattern for detecting blockquote tags inside HTML replies.
2015-03-05 2.6.7 Suppressed a warning when ignoring small images. Change the default value for “body_parts_order”.
2015-01-21 2.6.6 Support of inline images, filtering of “too small” images and resizing of “big” images.
2014-08-01 2.6.5 New configuration parameter to workaround a problem with Gmail/IMAP.
2014-07-21 2.6.4 Enhancement: allow to delete the emails from the server immediately after processing them. French translation of the “TriggerOnMailUpdate” and make the trigger importable.
2014-06-04 2.6.3 Enhancement: support the creation of Change and Problem tickets.
2014-04-09 2.6.2 Bug fix in order to support mailboxes containing a backslash in their name (likely to happen using IMAP).
2014-04-08 2.6.1 Addition of the German localization (though it's not 100% translated).
2014-03-05 2.6.0 Improved error processing (e.g. keeping the errors in the mailbox, manual retry) and better decoding of the “new part” of the message when it is a reply. Enhanced HTML to text conversion, fixed the processing of “Outlook's forwarded messages” as attachments.
n/a 2.5 Support of several mail inboxes. Interactive configuration of the mail inboxes via the iTop user interface. Various improvements for the parsing/decoding of the eMails
2013-07-22 2.2 “Legacy” version supporting only one mailbox (configured from the iTop configuration file).


  • PHP 7.1 is required for accessing a Google Gmail or Microsoft Azure mailbox. In addition, you will need to create an OAuth client.
  • PHP 5.2.1+ with the IMAP extension enabled if you want to connect to an IMAP server,
  • A connection to a IMAP server with a valid mailbox.
  • cron.php must be running to enable the processing of incoming eMails.
  • For the debug trace, PHP MBString must be installed.
  • For resizing big images, PHP GD must be installed.
Support of POP3 by iTop will ends in 2023!
If you still want to connect to a POP3 server, install PEAR::NetSocket (iTop comes with its own copy of PEAR::POP3)



  • Each mail inbox configured corresponds to one type of Ticket (i.e. User Requests or Incidents, but not both).
  • Connecting to a POP3 mailbox via the php IMAP extension does not work. You must use the POP3 configuration via PEAR::NetSocket for such a case.
  • There is no validation that the target class of the Mail Inbox is an existing class in iTop. (i.e. don't try to create incidents if the Incident Management module is not installed).
  • The support of inline images works only if the preferred order for email parts is configured as “text/html,text/plain” (i.e. HTML first), which is now the default for all new installations.
When processing an email considered as an update to a ticket, the extensions tries to extract the “new part” of the message (excluding the content from previous messages). However, depending on the format of the reply (which itself depends on the email client software used) it may not be possible to extract this information in a reliable manner. In such a case the whole text of the email will be used. Unfortunately, the widely used MS Outlook is an example of such client software where the replies cannot reliably be identified. Refer to the configuration parameter html-tags-to-remove for explanations about how to adjust this behavior.

Installation & upgrade

Use the Standard installation process for this extension.


Data Mapping

When creating a new ticket from an incoming email message, the application automatically fills the following fields of the ticket:

  • Title = subject of the mail
  • Description = body of the mail
  • Caller (caller_id) = sender of the mail (identified by her/his email address)
  • Organization (org_id) = organization of the caller
  • Origin (if this field exists on the ticket) = 'mail'

Default (i.e. constant) values must be supplied, via the “Ticket Default Values” setting, for any other mandatory field of the Ticket, otherwise the creation of the Ticket will fail.

When updating an existing Ticket, the application add an entry into the public_log field (configurable, see below), with the “new part” of the message. See below for more explanation about how the “new part” is extracted from the message.

Specifying default values

The syntax for specifying default values is the following:

  • One field per line, with the syntax:
  • field_code:default_value

If the field to initialize is a key to another object (for the fields like org_id, service_id, etc…) you can specify either the numeric identifier of the target object (e.g. service_id:153) or its name (e.g. org_id:Demo), provided that the name is unique.

The default values are applied after the standard data mapping described above. Therefore it is possible to override the default data mapping with some constant values.
If the incoming email has no subject, you can specify the default title to be set for the Ticket via the field “Default Title (if subject is empty)”. This is different from the default values listed above, since this value will be used only if the email has no subject. If the “Default Title (if subject is empty)” the system will supply a default value (“No Subject”) since the title is mandatory to create the Ticket.


The behavior for each mailbox (which messages to process and whether to create or update a Ticket) is managed via the menu “Incoming eMail Inboxes” in the “Admin tools” section:

Click, “Create a new Mail Inbox” to create a new configuration for a mail inbox. This displays the following form:

New mail inboxNew mail inbox 3.0

From iTop 2.7.7, you get another type of Mailbox to connect to Gmail and Azure using OAuth2

Polling mailbox using OAuth2, takes 50% more time than without it

Mailbox Configuration

The “Mailbox configuration” defines how the application connects to the mail inbox:

Field Meaning Sample Value
Mail Server The IP address or fully qualified hostname of the mail server or
Login The name of the mail account used for connecting to the mailbox
OAuth client
Provide the password or the Oauth client for the above Login
Protocol From iTop 3.1, only IMAP protocol is supported to connect to the mail server. POP3 is kept for backward compatibility.
If you need to use IMAP with SSL or TLS, refer to the imap_options configuration parameter below.
Port The TCP port to connect to the server. The standard values are 110 (secured: 995) for POP3 and 143 (secured: 993) for IMAP 110
Mailbox (for IMAP) The IMAP mailbox (folder) to scan for incoming messages. If omitted the default (root) mailbox will be scanned. This option is ignored when using the POP3 protocol. INBOX.Folder.Subfolder or INBOX/Folder/Subfolder
Active If set to “Yes”, the inbox will be polled. Otherwise no. Yes
Debug trace Use this setting for tracing all the background operations related to this inbox for debugging and troubleshooting purposes. It is not recommended to activate this option for long periods on production since it tends to generate a lot of output which slows down the server No

Emails in Error

This section defines the behavior when an incoming email cannot be processed properly. The email can be either kept in the mailbox (and remembered as an “Error” and no longer processed) or deleted immediately from the mailbox. Furthermore the original message can be forwarded to an administrator (as an attachment) along with some explanation about the cause of the error.

Field Meaning Sample Value
Behavior Whether or not the emails processed with an error should be kept in the mailbox. If so, the message will be flagged as “Error” and no longer processed, but still available for reading from the mailbox. Keep the message in the mailbox
Forward eMails to The email address to which to forward the email when an error occurs. The forwarded message contains some explanation about the error and the original email as an attachment. If this address is left empty, the incoming emails which cannot be processed will simply be deleted from the inbox without further notice.
(From) The IP address to be used as the “sender” of the error notification. For security reasons, many mail servers do not relay messages if the sender address is not a known address.

Behavior on Incoming eMails

This section defines the behavior of the application when processing incoming emails.

Field Meaning Sample Value
Behavior The behavior when a new message arrives in the inbox. The possible values are:
Create or Update: create a new Ticket or Update an existing one if a matching Ticket is found
Create new ticket: each new message creates a new Ticket
Update existing tickets: all incoming messages which do not match an existing Ticket are treated as errors.
Create or Update
After processing the eMail The action to be taken after successfully processing an incoming eMail: either keep the eMail on the mail server (until the associated ticket is closed or deleted), delete the eMail immediately or move it to another folder (on IMAP server only). Keep the eMail on the mail server
Target folder Is mandatory in case of move after processing the mail. Define the target folder. INBOX.Folder.Subfolder or INBOX/Folder/Subfolder
Ticket Class The class of Tickets to create or update when receiving an email. Make sure that you select a valid class for your iTop configuration. User Request
Ticket default Values The syntax for “Ticket Default Values” and “New Person's Default Values” are:
- one field to initialize per line
- <field_code>:<constant_value>
Known limitation: service_id=Service Médical ⇒ is not recognized, use service_id=Service Medical
Default Title (if subject is empty) The value to be used as the title of the Ticket, if the subject of the incoming email is empty. If this field is left empty the system will supply a default value (“No Subject”) Empty subject
Title pattern Each notification sent by the application contains a reference to the “source” Ticket in the MessageID field of the email. Email client applications generally store this identifier in the “in-reply-to” or “references” header of the reply email. This is the primary mean of identifying that an email message is related to a ticket. If this header is not present in the incoming message, the application can parse the “subject” field to look for a given match. This pattern determines how to parse the subject. The pattern specified here must follow the PCRE syntax. /R-([0-9]{6})/
Stimuli to apply A list of state_code:stimulus_code (one per line) to define the stimulus to apply (after updating a ticket), for the given state of the ticket. This is useful for example to automatically reassign a ticket which is in the state “pending”. pending:ev_assign

Unknown Callers

This section determines the behavior of the application when the sender of an email (From:) does not correspond to a known email address in the application. There are two possibilites:

  • Reject the eMail: the incoming email is treated as an error and thus either forwarded to an administrator or deleted.
  • Create a new person: a new Person will be created based on the email of the sender and constant values defined below.
Field Meaning Sample Value
Behavior in case of Unknown Caller What to do when the sender of the incoming email message does not correspond to any Person recorded in the application Create a new person
Unknown Caller rejection reply Optional reply to sender when the unknown caller behavior is set to “Reject the eMail” (no message is sent when left empty) empty
New Person's Default Values Default values for initializing the new Person. The application automatically fills the email field with the email address of the sender of the message. All other mandatory fields must be initialized with constant values provided here, otherwise the creation of the new Person will fail. first_name:Unknown

Behavior for Additional Contacts

This section determines the behavior of the application regarding the additional recipients of the incoming email (persons in To: and CC: of the message). It is possible to specify if/when the email addresses which correspond to a valid contact in iTop are added to the ticket (via the Contacts tab). Email addresses which do not correspond to a valid contact in iTop are always ignored.

Field Meaning Sample Value
Add more contacts (To, CC) Whether or not to add the To: and CC: email addresses as additional contacts to the ticket. The possible values are:
* Never: no additional contact will be added
* Always: additional contacts will be added when creating and updating a ticket
* When creating a ticket: additional contacts will be added only when creating a new ticket
* When updating a ticket: additional contacts will be added only when updating an existing ticket

Other configuration parameters

In addition to the configuration performed by creating a Mail Inbox object using the user interface of the application, a few parameters are available in the configuration file to fine tune the behavior of the application.

The parameters listed below apply to all the Mail Inboxes
The recommended value for the configuration parameter body_parts_order is text/html,text/plain. Indeed in order to properly import the images embedded inside an HTML email, the HTML version of the email must be processed instead of the plain text version.
Configuration file
   'combodo-email-synchro' => array (
      'debug' => false,
      'periodicity' => 30,
      'body_parts_order' => 'text/html,text/plain',
      'pop3_auth_option' => 'USER',
      'imap_options' => array (
            0 => 'imap',
            1 => 'ssl',     // Mandatory for OAuth2
      'imap_open_options' => array(),
      'exclude_attachment_types' => array (
            0 => 'application/exe',
      'maximum_email_size' => '10M',
      'recommended_max_allowed_packet' => 10485760,
      'introductory-patterns' => array (
            0 => '/^le .+ a écrit :$/i',
            1 => '/^on .+ wrote:$/i',
            2 => '|^[0-9]{4}/[0-9]{1,2}/[0-9]{1,2} .+:$|',
      'multiline-delimiter-patterns' => array (
            0 => '/\\RFrom: .+\\RSent: .+\\R/m',
            1 => '/\\R_+\\R/m',
            2 => '/\\RDe : .+\\R\\R?Envoyé : /m',
            3 => '/\\RDe : .+\\RDate d\'envoi : .+\\R/m',
            4 => '/\\R-----Message d\'origine-----\\R/m',
            5 => '/\\RExpéditeur: .+\\RDate:/m',
            6 => '/\\RDe : .+\\RDate : /m',
            7 => '/\\TO:.+\\RCC:/m',
      'delimiter-patterns' => array (
            '/^>.*$/' => false,  // "false" remove only the line, "true" remove the rest of the message
      'big_files_dir' => '',
      'use_message_id_as_uid' => false, // Don't change this unless you know what you are doing!
      'images_minimum_size' => '100x20',
      'images_maximum_size' => '',
      'undesired-subject-patterns' => array (
            0 => '/^Out Of Office/i',
            1 => '/^Automatic answer$/i',
            2 => '/^Réponse automatique:/',
      'undesired-purge-delay' => 7,
      'html-tags-to-remove' => array(
           'blockquote' => array(), 
           // No class specified, remove any blockquote tag
           'div' => array('gmail_quote', 'moz-cite-prefix'),
           'pre' => array('moz-signature'),
      'retention_period' => 1, // number of hours we keep the replicas
Parameter Meaning Default Value
debug Set to true to turn on debug output false
periodicity Interval (in seconds) at which to check for incoming messages 30
body_parts_order Comma separated, ordered, list of MIME types, determining the preferred part of the message to retrieve for populating the description or public_log of the Ticket. In order to import as inline images the images embedded in HTML, the HTML part of the email must be processed in priority over the text part. Therefore the recommended configuration is text/html,text/plain. text/html,text/plain
pop3_auth_options POP3 authentication options. Possible values are: 'CRAM-MD5', 'APOP' , 'PLAIN' , 'LOGIN', 'USER' USER
imap_options Additional IMAP options. Possible values are listed here: IMAP flags.
For example to use SSL you could specify : array(0 ⇒ 'imap', 2 ⇒ 'ssl')
Warning: Do NOT use the pop3 flag to connect to a POP3 mailbox using the PHP IMAP extension. Due to a limitation of the IMAP extension this will not work! If you want to connect to a POP3 server, use the POP3 protocol instead.
imap_open_options Optional imap_open() array of options. Use array('DISABLE_AUTHENTICATOR' => 'GSSAPI') if you have PHP notices due to Kerberos array()
eml_attachment_mime_type New in 3.7.4 The MIME type to use when attaching the original .EML file to an email notifying of an error. Some servers may reject emails when using text/plain, some others when using message/rfc822. You can try to change this value if you are not receiving the emails sent in case of an error. application/octet-stream
exclude_attachment_types Array of MIME types to exclude when retrieving attachments array('application/attachment')
html-tags-to-remove new in 3.0.0 Used for computing the “new part” of HTML messages by removing the specified tags. The syntax is an array of tag_name => array of CSS class names. see above
maximum_email_size If an incoming email is bigger than the specified size, the message will saved to the big_files_dir if it is configured and deleted from the inbox. A notification message will be sent to the administrator as for other “errors” happening when processing the mail inbox. The size can be specified using the 'short' notation: 100K, 3M, 2G… If set to zero, no limit will be enforced… with the risk of a PHP crash if there is not enough memory to decode an incoming email. 10M
introductory-patterns only for plain text emails When computing the “new part” of a message, lines matching this pattern and preceding what looks like an “old part” of the message, are removed. Adapt this list to your localization… and favorite email client dialect. The pattern specified here must follow the PCRE syntax. see above
multiline-delimiter-patterns only for plain text emails and only for mail for ticket update Multi-line regular expression patterns used for computing the “new part” of a message. each of theses patterns determine the beginning of the “old part” of a message, when a message is a “Reply” to another message. Everything that matches this pattern (and all the text that follows this match) will be removed for the “new part”. All patterns are tested successively. The pattern that provides a match closer to the beginning of the text will be used. Adapt this list to your localization and to the dialect of your favorite email clients… Patterns must follow the PCRE syntax. see above
delimiter-patterns only for plain text emails and only for mail for ticket update this regular expression patterns are used for detecting the lines beginning “old part” of a message, in case none of the multiline-delimiter-patterns did match. Patterns must follow the PCRE syntax. see above
big_files_dir The path to a directory where to store emails bigger than maximum_email_size. If this directory is not configured, the emails are simply deleted before notifying the administrator.
use_message_id_as_uid Boolean. For IMAP connections only. Whether or not to use the identifier from the message (MessageID) instead of the Mailbox' unique identifier (UID) to uniquely identify the already processed messages. This can be useful to workaround problems when the UID of the messages on the server changes between sessions (like with Gmail). If you toggle this value, make sure that you first empty the mailbox (and stop the cron job), since all messages present in the mailbox when the setting is changed will be considered as new and processed again. false
images_minimum_size Minimum dimensions for importing images. Images smaller than the given dimensions will be ignored and not imported as attachments. The dimensions are expressed as a string widthxheight (where width and height are integer numbers, in pixels). 100×20
images_maximum_size Images bigger than these dimensions (for example 1000×1000) will be resized to fit in the given dimensions. The dimensions are expressed as a string widthxheight (where width and height are integer numbers, in pixels). Note this feature is available only if PHP GD is installed. If no dimensions are given, the images are never resized.
undesired-subject-patterns An array of regular expression patterns (as PHP text strings) that will be used to test the subject of the incoming email. If any of these pattern matches, the email will be considered as “undesirable” and rejected (the same processing as for any other error case will then be applied). The patterns specified here must follow the PCRE syntax. array()
undesired-purge-delay Delay in days to remove automatically the undesired messages (0 means that the messages are removed immediately) 7
recommended_max_allowed_packet Display a warning on the 'Mailbox Content' screen if the database parameter 'max_allowed_packet' is less than the one configured 10*1024*1024
retention_period Define the number of hours we keep the replicas after the desappear of the source message. This parameter can protect replicas when connection with source is lost. 1
When specifying PCRE patterns inside the configuration file, make sure that you double the backslash characters, since backslashes must be escaped inside PHP litteral text strings.
        'itop-standard-email-synchro' => array (
                'ticket_log' => array (
                          'UserRequest' => 'public_log',
                          'Incident' => 'public_log',
                 'aggregate_replies' => true // same as field not present       
Parameter Meaning Default Value
ticket_log An associative array (hash) defining, for each class of Ticket, the code of the attribute to set when updating a ticket from an incoming message. You don't need to change this value unless you modified the Data Model. see above
aggregate_replies If someone 'Reply to All' to an email that generated a ticket in your iTop, it will update the related ticket. By putting this option to false, you can choose to create another ticket instead. true


Checking the connection

Once the Mail Inbox object has been created, you can use the tab “Mailbox Content” in the details of the object to check that the application can properly connect to the mail server and retrieve messages from it.

Mailbox Content tabMailbox Content tab 300

To deeply inspect the content of the mailbox it is always better to use a real mail client application. The view provided in this tab is just use to help troubleshooting connection problems.

This view also allows to perform two different kind of actions on a set of messages:

  • “Reset Status”: for messages which are either flagged as “Error” or “Already processed”, this status will be reset and the email will considered again as “New” and thus candidate for processing the next time cron.php runs.
  • “Delete eMail”: deletes the message(s) from the mailbox. No confirmation will be asked !!
  • “Ignore eMail”: mark new messages as “ignored” to avoid processing them.


New in 3.0.15: Access to the eml used and to the message specific logs without activating the debug mode for every processed message.

Since the processing of the incoming emails occurs in the background, it is not always easy to understand what happens when a ticket is not processed as expected. In order to trace the execution of this background task, several levels of tracing are available:

  • by setting the “Debug trace” field to “Yes”, more trace will be generated when processing the mailbox. This trace goes to the output of the cron job, and is also captured (limited to 256 KB) in the database. This captured trace is visible in the “Debug Trace” tab of the Mail Inbox object.
  • the configuration setting debug for the module combodo-email-synchro can be set to true in the configuration file. This activates even more traces for all the configured mail inboxes. This additional trace appears only in the output of the cron job.
  • the cron job can be passed the optional parameter --verbose=1 to activate some debug trace for all the background tasks. This additional trace also goes into the output of the cron job.

If the cron job is not already running in the background it is convenient to run it manually from the command line, to see what's happening:

  php cron.php --auth_user=<user> --auth_pwd=<pwd> --verbose=1

Debug trace tab

Known issue until 3.0.17 included: When activating debug trace, logging trace may truncate an UTF8 character which breaks MySQL insertion and stop current email processing. Because of this, don't use this mode as a permanent mode, but only for temporary debug.

Question: Mails are no more processed?

  1. It might be due to a email message with a too big attachment, which can end-up crashing the database. In that case, to quickly process the following emails, open the Mail Inbox in iTop, tab: Mailbox Content; identify the faulty email, probably the oldest “new” message and check it and press the Ignore button.
  2. To limit the above situation, check coherence between allowed_max_packet, recommended_max_allowed_packet and maximum_email_size parameters.
  3. It might be due to the cron.php not running

Question: a particular mail is in error, why?
Answer: There can be multiple reasons, which leads to flagging a mail in error. When browsing the Mailbox Content tab on the Incoming eMail Inboxes the error message should explain you the reason. Attachment too big, mail in an unkown format (encrypted for eg.),…

Question: Change log entries are sometimes empty, also the email replies had valid information, why?
Answer: When using Thunderbird or Gmail, if the user does not enter his reply where the cursor was, but move it first, maybe just one line below, then the text entered is tagged by the mail editor as if it was part of the initial message, embedded in a div tag with a class specific to Gmail or Mozilla

<!-- Example for Thunderbird -->
<div class="moz-cite-prefix">My reply entered after moving the cursor in Thunderbird</div>
<!-- Example for Gmail-->
<div class="gmail_quote">My reply after entered moving the cursor in Gmail</div>

To fix this, modify the module configuration and put this parameter

   'combodo-email-synchro' => array (
      'html-tags-to-remove' => array(
           'blockquote' => array(), 
           'pre' => array('moz-signature'),
      // Keep the rest ...

The default behavior when that parameter is not present in the Configuration is the same as putting this:

      'html-tags-to-remove' => array(
           'blockquote' => array(),  // No class specified, remove any blockquote tag
           'div' => array('gmail_quote', 'moz-cite-prefix'),
           'pre' => array('moz-signature'),


Question: I can't access the mailbox content, I get an error: Reason: cannot read - connection closed?
Answer: If you are trying to access a Mailbox with OAuth2, this message occurs when you have not specified ssl in the imap_options

'combodo-email-synchro' => array (
    'imap_options' => array (
         0 => 'imap',
         1 => 'ssl',

Orphan CMDBChange records

A bug in version 3.2.0 of Mail to Ticket automation was creating many useless CMDBChange records (in the database table priv_change). This huge amount of records (up to several hundreds of thousands per day) adversly affects the size and performance of the database. The version 3.2.1 addresses the problem and no longer creates useless records.

In order to recover from the faulty behavior, the version 3.2.1 contains 3 mechanisms to cleanup the useless records in priv_change

  1. A periodic cleanup, designed to run in the background during normal day-to-day operations, to cleanup the database step by step,
  2. A scheduled cleanup (disabled by default), designed to perform much more massive cleanups during off-hours,
  3. A command line script, to be launched by the system administrator, that can count the orphan records and also cleanup a specifed number of records in one shot.

Configuration of the periodic and scheduled cleanups

These background processes are executed by the usual background tasks of iTop. They are configured inside the iTop main configuration file, under the section $MyModuleSettings, for the module named combodo-cmdbchange-cleaner.

Parameter Meaning Default Value
periodic_cleaning_bulk_size Number of records to delete (in one query) for the periodic cleanup. 0 means disabled. 5000
cleaning_periodicity Periodicity (in seconds) of the periodic cleanup task. 3600
scheduled_cleaning_time Time of day for the scheduled massive cleanup. '00:00'
scheduled_cleaning_bulk_size Number of records to delete (in one query) for the scheduled massive cleanup. 0 means disabled. 0
scheduled_cleaning_week_days Days of the week, for the scheduled massive cleanup. Empty means everyday. empty
debug Generate logs in iTop error.log when true. false

Example 1: periodic cleanup (only) of up to 1000 records every 2 minutes:

'combodo-cmdbchange-cleaner' => array (
                'scheduled_cleaning_bulk_size' => 0, /* massive cleanup disabled */
                'periodic_cleaning_bulk_size' => 1000,
                'cleaning_periodicity' => 120,

Example 2: scheduled massive cleanup (only) of up to 100,000 records every Saturday at 3:00 PM:

'combodo-cmdbchange-cleaner' => array (
                'scheduled_cleaning_time' => '15:00',
                'scheduled_cleaning_bulk_size' => 100000,
                'periodic_cleaning_bulk_size' => 0, /* periodic cleanup disabled */
                'scheduled_cleaning_week_days' => 'saturday',

You can see some information about the cleanup tasks in error.log, for example:

2021-02-10 15:30:33 | Info    | [CMDBChangeScheduledCleaner] Get CMDBChange 10000 ID(s) to remove : executed in 0.160 s | IssueLog
2021-02-10 15:30:33 | Info    | [CMDBChangeScheduledCleaner] Bulk deletion query of 10000 row(s) : executed in 1.603 s | IssueLog
2021-02-10 15:30:33 | Info    | 10000 CMDBChange row(s) deleted. | IssueLog

Using the command line script to cleanup orphan records

The script is named change.bulkcleaner.php and if you have the 2.3.1 version of this extension is located in the folder combodo-cmdbchange-cleaner, otherwise you may have received that script alone, in that case we suggest you to put it on the /data directory located under your iTop main directory.

php change.bulkcleaner.php --auth_user=user --auth_pwd=pwd --bulk_size=1000

This produces the following output:

1000 CMDBChange row(s) deleted.

Command line options

Option Description Default value
auth_user Mandatory: The admin user account used to connect to iTop. none
auth_pwd Mandatory: The password for the admin user account. none
bulk_size Mandatory: The maximum number of records to delete. Pass 0 to delete nothing. none
debug Optional: debug logs are generated in the output of the script when this option is activated (true). by default logging is not in verbose mode. false
count_lines_limit Optional: Pass a non-zero value to compute if there are at least this number of orphan records. 0 desactivates the computations. -1 computes the actual number without any limitation WARNING this can be very time consuming, use -1 at your own risks. 0

Questions & Answers

For questions related to troubleshooting, check the corresponding section above

Changing behaviors

Question: We are missing e-mails from users that reply to tickets that have already been closed, what can we do?
Answer: There are different strategies to this issue

  1. One solution is to re-open the closed Ticket and reassign it (not nice if the answer just contains a simple “thank you”)
  2. Another solution is to activate a notification to the agent on closed tickets with the content of the last log entry, so they can decide what to do with it: ignore or open manually a new ticket. That last action could be facilitate with a User action Configuration entry, which could create a new ticket from the closed one, reusing the last log entry as the description of the new ticket, and copying all other pertinent fields.

Question: Some e-mails update closed tickets. But we want those emails to create new Ticket. How can we do?
Answer: You can force the creation of a new Ticket. For this you must write an extension to overload the method which retrieve the email related Ticket. The idea is to ignore any closed Ticket (see code highlighted below), thus as no closed Ticket will be retrieved, a new Ticket will be created.

protected function GetRelatedTicket(EmailMessage $oEmail)
{  // First check if there is any iTop object mentioned in the headers of the eMail (done by parent class)
   $oTicket = parent::GetRelatedTicket($oEmail);
   if ($oTicket == null) {
      // No associated ticket found by parsing the headers, check
      // if the subject does not match a specific pattern
      $sPattern = $this->FixPattern($this->Get('title_pattern'));
      if(($sPattern != '') && (preg_match($sPattern, $oEmail->sSubject, $aMatches))) {
         $oFilter = DBSearch::FromOQL('SELECT Ticket WHERE ref = :ref AND operational_status != "closed"');
         foreach ($aMatches as $sMatch) {
            if (!empty($sMatch)) {
               $this->Trace("iTop Simple Email Synchro: Retrieving ticket $sMatch (match by subject pattern)...");
               $oSet = new DBObjectSet($oFilter, array(), array('ref' => $sMatch));
               $oTicket = $oSet->Fetch();
               if ($oTicket) {
   return $oTicket;

For Combodo's customers, this can be done easily with the ITSM Designer

Question: Is there a way to disable Mail to Ticket automatically deleting e-mails when closing tickets?
Answer: Not easy. A solution could be to set the Log in read-only when the Ticket is closed, as a result, when a new incoming mail related to that Ticket is processed, it fails to update the ticket, it is flagged in error and kept in the Inbox…

Question: Can I move manually into another folder emails which have been processed?
Answer: When migrating to the version which allows to move processed emails to another mail folder automatically after processing, you may want to do it for older emails. You can do it, but remember that moved emails are no more visible from iTop mailbox content, so only move the processed ones, not the new ones, and maybe not those which were in error.


Question: Can I use mailboxes imposing OAuth 2.0 authentication, such as Gmail or Azure Office 365?
Answer: This requires version 3.6.0 of this extension, as well as an iTop 2.7.7+ or iTop 3.0.2+

For this, you must configure OAuth client first. Then clone your current Mailbox (see tip below for doing this) or create from scratch a OAuth2 Mailbox using that OAuth client

Question: How to simply migrate my standard inbox into an OAuth one?
Answer: Add the objet-copier rule below in your Configuration file, then use the added menu

'itop-object-copier' => array (
  'rules' => array (
     'MailInboxStandardToMailInboxOAuth' => array(
        'source_scope' => 'SELECT MailInboxStandard WHERE finalclass = "MailInboxStandard"',
        'allowed_profiles' => 'Administrator',
        'menu_label' => 'Create OAuth 2.0 Mail Inbox...',
        'menu_label/FR FR' => 'Créer une Boite mail OAuth 2.0...',
        'form_label' => 'Create new OAuth 2.0 Mail Inbox from %1$s',
        'form_label/FR FR' => 'Nouvelle Boite mail OAuth 2.0 depuis %1$s',
        'report_label' => 'Created from %1$s',
        'report_label/FR FR' => 'Créée depuis %1$s',
        'dest_class' => 'MailInboxOAuth',
        'preset' => array(
                0 => 'clone(server, mailbox,login,port,behavior, target_class, ticket_default_values, ticket_default_title, title_pattern,unknown_caller_behavior,unknown_caller_rejection_reply,caller_default_values,error_behavior, notify_errors_to, notify_errors_from,trace,email_storage,target_folder,import_additional_contacts,stimuli )',
                1 => 'set(active,no)',
        'retrofit' => array(),

Question: My gmail messages with OAuth2 are not moved to another folder, why?
Answer: There are some configuration on gmail settings to do, for emails to be correctly moved in other folder.

That configuration might solve other problems as well, so you'd better apply this on your gmail account:

First click here: Then on “See all settings”:

Then choose tab “Forwarding and POP/IMAP”: And finally set this configuration:

Question: Parsing messages in my OAuth Mailbox is very slow, what could I do about it?
Answer: We have notice that with laminas, the new library used to poll Mailbox through OAuth2 authentication, the response time is dependent on the size of the parsed folder (Inbox in general). TO prevent this situation, we recommend to either delete the email once processed or at least to move them to another folder.

Question: I can't access the mailbox content, I get an error: Reason: cannot read - connection closed?
Answer: If you are trying to access a Mailbox with OAuth2, this message occurs when you have not specified ssl in the imap_options

'combodo-email-synchro' => array (
    'imap_options' => array (
         0 => 'imap',
         1 => 'ssl',
extensions/ticket-from-email.txt · Last modified: 2023/09/27 15:22 (external edit)
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