Phil Sung : Emacs resources : BBDB configuration

13 Sep 2008

I use BBDB (the Insidious Big Brother Database) in conjunction with VM for managing my contact lists.

After this simple setup procedure, BBDB completes email addresses in VM composition buffers after M-TAB, and, when you are reading mail, pops up a little window at the bottom of the message displaying the sender's name, email address, and other information.

(and (fboundp 'bbdb-insinuate-vm)

The pop-up is invaluable because I can make annotations on a contact and they show up every time I receive an email from that person.

Here are some of the default settings I decided to change:

By default, BBDB creates a new address book entry for everyone it sees. This can make your address book really spammy. The follow change makes BBDB only create new entries when you explicitly ask for them (e.g. press : to create an entry for the sender of the message you are reading).

(setq bbdb/mail-auto-create-p nil)

Only attempt to complete on a person's name or first email address. This cuts down on extraneous completions when a person has many email addresses.

(setq bbdb-completion-type 'primary-or-name)

This simply tells BBDB what email addresses correspond to me.

(setq bbdb-user-mail-names "psung@(alum\.)mit\.edu")