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Email client solutions?
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Dec 26, 2011, 10:03 PM
 
I've been using Mailsmith for years, mostly because it has great email filters. But it's limitations are now working against me, and so I'm looking for another email client. I'm desperately seeking advice about a new Mac email client (or a solution w/ using Mail and plugging) that will do the following:

-Work with my iPhone - in terms of replicating read and replied emails, as well as folders (or mailboxes). It's getting increasingly confusing to work with a division of different message status, and and replies on that appear in Mailsmith but not in Mail on the iPhone.

-Have a flexible system filtering and mailboxes that will enable me to automatically sort message, and will allow for some sort of replication of emails so that I can see the same message in an Inbox as well as in a designated mailbox (if such a feature is possible). It would also be great to have replicant emails existing in two different location, where an email sending can belong to two or more different projects. I would happily consider another suggested system…

-Have variable search options that will enable me to both cast my net wide, and narrow my search with greater specificity.

-Save drafts as one writes emails (to prevent against losing your work during a crash) in the way that the Gmail client functions.

-Set up specific alerts / sounds for individual mailboxes.

-Set up my system so that a specific addresses can routed to particular folders (regardless of whether one sends them to my gmail v. earthlink accounts).

Because I have thousands of emails in my current client, and it will be very tricky to set up a whole new email client (w/ all of the mailbox folders and filters), I want to ensure that I chose the best possible solution. I would event consider using Mac Mail with recommendable plugging that would enable the features that I've listed. What do you guys suggest?

Thanks very much for your help!
     
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Dec 27, 2011, 12:09 AM
 
Originally Posted by jprint714 View Post
I've been using Mailsmith for years, mostly because it has great email filters. But it's limitations are now working against me, and so I'm looking for another email client. I'm desperately seeking advice about a new Mac email client (or a solution w/ using Mail and plugging) that will do the following:

-Work with my iPhone - in terms of replicating read and replied emails, as well as folders (or mailboxes). It's getting increasingly confusing to work with a division of different message status, and and replies on that appear in Mailsmith but not in Mail on the iPhone.
I assume you are not using IMAP? I'm not exactly sure what you are getting at here with the whole "division of different message status" thing?

-Have a flexible system filtering and mailboxes that will enable me to automatically sort message, and will allow for some sort of replication of emails so that I can see the same message in an Inbox as well as in a designated mailbox (if such a feature is possible). It would also be great to have replicant emails existing in two different location, where an email sending can belong to two or more different projects. I would happily consider another suggested system…
Postbox, probably Thunderbird, and OS X have pretty good smart folder type features that show you messages based on criteria. It sounds like this might cover your "replicant emails" need (although I'm not sure I understand that either).

-Have variable search options that will enable me to both cast my net wide, and narrow my search with greater specificity.
Check out Postbox and Thunderbird.

-Save drafts as one writes emails (to prevent against losing your work during a crash) in the way that the Gmail client functions.
I think all IMAP clients do this.

-Set up specific alerts / sounds for individual mailboxes.
Any IMAP client should do this too via rules.

-Set up my system so that a specific addresses can routed to particular folders (regardless of whether one sends them to my gmail v. earthlink accounts).
Server or client side rules should do this.

Because I have thousands of emails in my current client, and it will be very tricky to set up a whole new email client (w/ all of the mailbox folders and filters), I want to ensure that I chose the best possible solution. I would event consider using Mac Mail with recommendable plugging that would enable the features that I've listed. What do you guys suggest?

Thanks very much for your help!

You really, really, really, really need to ditch your POP account and switch to IMAP. With an IMAP account you wouldn't have to worry about any of this stuff. Trying a new email client would just be a matter of entering your settings and going - no need to import old mail, recreate your folders, etc.

POP is ancient and sucky.
     
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Dec 27, 2011, 02:36 AM
 
assume you are not using IMAP? I'm not exactly sure what you are getting at here with the whole "division of different message status" thing?
Well, I'm trying to see if I can transition some of my email accounts into IMAP. I currently use Earthlink, and I can't abandon that email address, so I might just forward directly into a Gmail account so that: (1) it can function like a Gmail account, and (2) so that I won't have to worry about space overload, as I do w/ my Earthlink account... That is, unless you've got another suggestion...?

Postbox, probably Thunderbird, and OS X have pretty good smart folder type features that show you messages based on criteria. It sounds like this might cover your "replicant emails" need (although I'm not sure I understand that either).
Regarding replication... In other words, is it possible to have email filed into more than one folder in at the same time (e.g., in the Inbox and in a designated folder)?

What aren't you suggesting Mail instead of these other apps? Just curious...

Check out Postbox and Thunderbird.
I have checked them out, but I'm trying to get a sense of which one is a better, more recommendable app -- and seems best suited for the purposes that I've described. As I said, I'm planning to make a huge transition from my Mailsmith client to another one, so I'm hoping to get a client that will serve me the best (esp. since the transition is going to be tough and tedious).

-Save drafts as one writes emails (to prevent against losing your work during a crash) in the way that the Gmail client functions.
I think all IMAP clients do this.
Really!? The clients have auto-save features like those on the web-based Gmail? I thought it was just the web-based Gmail system that could do this, but not desktop clients.

-Set up specific alerts / sounds for individual mailboxes.
Any IMAP client should do this too via rules.
Again, I'm surprised... In Mailsmith, I've got individual mailboxes (folders) sounding off an individual alarm so that I know when a personal email is coming in vs. a work email (and even know which project it falls into). There are other clients out there that can do this...?

You really, really, really, really need to ditch your POP account and switch to IMAP. With an IMAP account you wouldn't have to worry about any of this stuff. Trying a new email client would just be a matter of entering your settings and going - no need to import old mail, recreate your folders, etc.

POP is ancient and sucky.
No argument. Though I've heard that IMAP email security is inferior to POP...though maybe that's no longer the case. As I said, if I'm able to forward my POP email accounts (like Earthlink) in IMAP accounts, then I think I can make the transition. But I want to also ensure that it'll choosing the right email client in the process! Thanks for all of your help...
     
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Dec 27, 2011, 05:17 AM
 
Regarding POP vs. IMAP, the answer is simple: IMAP. It's the only sensible way to keep your mail in sync. The needs you describe can easily be handled by Apple's Mail and IMAP.

However, since you are very conscious about security, I would not use gmail if I were you.
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Dec 27, 2011, 06:16 AM
 
Originally Posted by jprint714 View Post
Well, I'm trying to see if I can transition some of my email accounts into IMAP. I currently use Earthlink, and I can't abandon that email address, so I might just forward directly into a Gmail account so that: (1) it can function like a Gmail account, and (2) so that I won't have to worry about space overload, as I do w/ my Earthlink account... That is, unless you've got another suggestion...?
I'd aim to retire all email addresses that are only available via POP.

Regarding replication... In other words, is it possible to have email filed into more than one folder in at the same time (e.g., in the Inbox and in a designated folder)?
You could have a copy of your email filed into a separate folder via a mail rule, and you could have smart folders that show you duplicate messages depending on their rule set.

What aren't you suggesting Mail instead of these other apps? Just curious...
There are a lot of Mail fans here, but I'm not one of them, I think the app kind of sucks where it matters to me, and last I checked its searching features were not all that robust.

I have checked them out, but I'm trying to get a sense of which one is a better, more recommendable app -- and seems best suited for the purposes that I've described. As I said, I'm planning to make a huge transition from my Mailsmith client to another one, so I'm hoping to get a client that will serve me the best (esp. since the transition is going to be tough and tedious).
I'd say Postbox is better, that's what I use, but the downside is that the non-Lite version costs money.

Really!? The clients have auto-save features like those on the web-based Gmail? I thought it was just the web-based Gmail system that could do this, but not desktop clients.
Nope, I'm not aware of an IMAP client that doesn't save drafts. Many will even let you decide whether your drafts folder resides on the server or on your Mac.

Again, I'm surprised... In Mailsmith, I've got individual mailboxes (folders) sounding off an individual alarm so that I know when a personal email is coming in vs. a work email (and even know which project it falls into). There are other clients out there that can do this...?
All IMAP clients that support playing a certain sound as an action when criteria are met.

No argument. Though I've heard that IMAP email security is inferior to POP...though maybe that's no longer the case. As I said, if I'm able to forward my POP email accounts (like Earthlink) in IMAP accounts, then I think I can make the transition. But I want to also ensure that it'll choosing the right email client in the process! Thanks for all of your help...
It was never the case. Really, the only way that one protocol could be more secure than the other is if you aren't using encrypted passwords (i.e. SSL) with one but not the other. I'm not aware of any ISPs or email providers that even allow plain old IMAP rather than IMAP over SSL/TLS, or plain old POP rather than POP over SSL.
     
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Dec 27, 2011, 06:17 AM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
However, since you are very conscious about security, I would not use gmail if I were you.

For reasons that involve privacy and not wanting your email data mined though, not protocol level stuff.
     
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Dec 27, 2011, 09:56 AM
 
Originally Posted by jprint714 View Post
Though I've heard that IMAP email security is inferior to POP...though maybe that's no longer the case.
You misunderstood or were misinformed in that respect then. Perhaps you were made to think that because IMAP leaves messages on the server whereas POP is usually configured to delete messages after they're fetched. As a result, if someone got into your account under IMAP they could see messages on the server, while with POP there would be nothing assuming your client recently checked for mail. But that's not real security. Real security is strong passwords and (if you're going to do it right) encryption.

Btw, if your Earthlink address supports web mail access, it supports IMAP.

"The natural progress of things is for liberty to yield and government to gain ground." TJ
     
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Dec 27, 2011, 01:39 PM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
Regarding POP vs. IMAP, the answer is simple: IMAP. It's the only sensible way to keep your mail in sync. The needs you describe can easily be handled by Apple's Mail and IMAP.

However, since you are very conscious about security, I would not use gmail if I were you.
Are you saying you wouldn't you Gmail at all or just the Gmail client?

If I don't use Gmail to forward to / from my Earthlink account, what would you suggest I use?
As I said, I've been seeking a solution for my Earthlink address, since I cannot discard it. And I'd like it function like a Gmail account, and so that I won't have to worry about space overload (as I do w/ my Earthlink account), and so I can take advantage of IMAP functionality. I'd love to find a Gmail like solution, but with the added security protection.

Any ideas?
     
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Dec 27, 2011, 02:12 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
I'd aim to retire all email addresses that are only available via POP.
I appreciate what you're saying, but I simply cannot retire that address. It has to remain permanent for a number of reasons. I am therefore trying to find another solution, as I've just outlined to "OreoCookie." I'd appreciate any other suggestions you might have...

You could have a copy of your email filed into a separate folder via a mail rule, and you could have smart folders that show you duplicate messages depending on their rule set.
Gotcha. But is there a way to have replicants instead of duplicates? To clarify, duplicates are two copies of the same file (in this case, an email message), whereas replicants are files that are in more than one place in the database (or email client) at the same time. In other words, a replicated document / file exists only once in the database but it appears in multiple places.

There are a lot of Mail fans here, but I'm not one of them, I think the app kind of sucks where it matters to me, and last I checked its searching features were not all that robust.
Understood. But...I'm just playing devil's advocate here, why not just use Mail with some of the plugins like MailTags and Mail Act-On to give Mail the robust functionality that we're seeking? It seems like a way to have the kind of advanced features and functionality while at the same time having a native Mac application - and therein have app that plays better w/ other apps, is (perhaps) a bit more stable, and maintain access to Mac support (when needed)?

I'd say Postbox is better, that's what I use, but the downside is that the non-Lite version costs money.
I've looked at Postbox, and it does look slick. I've tried contacting their customer support for sometime, but they're hopelessly inaccessible (already a big strike against them). Some of the customer reviewers are very unfavorable (a bit worrisome), such as Download Postbox for Mac - Powerful and flexible email client. MacUpdate.com and MacUpdate: Member Profile

As far as I know, Postbox only costs $30. And does Postbox have most or many of the features that I outlined?

Nope, I'm not aware of an IMAP client that doesn't save drafts. Many will even let you decide whether your drafts folder resides on the server or on your Mac.
Ok, thanks. Is there an email client that has better auto-saving features? I hate composing long emails, only to loose them in crash (as I've done many, many times in Mailsmith!).

All IMAP clients that support playing a certain sound as an action when criteria are met.
Huh. I'll have to figure out where to find that feature on whichever email client I transfer to... Thanks for letting me know.

[/QUOTE]It was never the case. Really, the only way that one protocol could be more secure than the other is if you aren't using encrypted passwords (i.e. SSL) with one but not the other. I'm not aware of any ISPs or email providers that even allow plain old IMAP rather than IMAP over SSL/TLS, or plain old POP rather than POP over SSL.[/QUOTE]

Well, is there some way to improve email security for IMAP accounts (or in general) apart from using PGP / GPG (which few people on the receiving end, or in general, seem to use)? Thanks!
     
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Dec 27, 2011, 02:35 PM
 
Originally Posted by jprint714 View Post
Are you saying you wouldn't you Gmail at all or just the Gmail client?
I wouldn't use Gmail period. And that's why: Gmail scans and analyzes all your mail. You have absolutely zero control over that.
Originally Posted by jprint714 View Post
If I don't use Gmail to forward to / from my Earthlink account, what would you suggest I use?
Many e-mail services allow you to forward mails from other accounts.
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Dec 27, 2011, 02:42 PM
 
Originally Posted by jprint714 View Post
I appreciate what you're saying, but I simply cannot retire that address. It has to remain permanent for a number of reasons. I am therefore trying to find another solution, as I've just outlined to "OreoCookie." I'd appreciate any other suggestions you might have...
Nothing comes to mind right now, sorry!

Gotcha. But is there a way to have replicants instead of duplicates? To clarify, duplicates are two copies of the same file (in this case, an email message), whereas replicants are files that are in more than one place in the database (or email client) at the same time. In other words, a replicated document / file exists only once in the database but it appears in multiple places.
Smart folders are all that comes to mind.

Understood. But...I'm just playing devil's advocate here, why not just use Mail with some of the plugins like MailTags and Mail Act-On to give Mail the robust functionality that we're seeking? It seems like a way to have the kind of advanced features and functionality while at the same time having a native Mac application - and therein have app that plays better w/ other apps, is (perhaps) a bit more stable, and maintain access to Mac support (when needed)?
Because mail add-ons are unsupported hacks that break as Apple releases new versions of Mail, just as the old pre-extension Safari hacks did. It is easy to grow tired of this sort of cat-and-mouse game, and these hacks can also cause instability to the app.

I've looked at Postbox, and it does look slick. I've tried contacting their customer support for sometime, but they're hopelessly inaccessible (already a big strike against them). Some of the customer reviewers are very unfavorable (a bit worrisome), such as Download Postbox for Mac - Powerful and flexible email client. MacUpdate.com and MacUpdate: Member Profile
I believe they are a small team, they could be vacationing right now.

As far as I know, Postbox only costs $30. And does Postbox have most or many of the features that I outlined?
Yes. Why not download the free 30 day trial or free version and try it out with a copy of your POP mail you intend to import?

Ok, thanks. Is there an email client that has better auto-saving features? I hate composing long emails, only to loose them in crash (as I've done many, many times in Mailsmith!).
I think they are all about the same. Some might save drafts more frequently, I don't know.

Well, is there some way to improve email security for IMAP accounts (or in general) apart from using PGP / GPG (which few people on the receiving end, or in general, seem to use)? Thanks!
What aspect of security are you hoping to improve? How about we start with this question...

Postbox/Thunderbird do support a cool extension called Enigmail that provides PGP support via the free/open source GnuPG if you're interested in signing and/or encrypting message contents, but your recipients will need your public key to decrypt messages and to verify your signature. You can automatically upload your public key to a public key server within Enigmail, but most likely this is going to be beyond 99% of the people you write to who will mostly be confused as to why they are getting these PGP signatures in your emails.

PGP is just one security practice involving email. There is also SSL certs, TLS at the protocol level, and other techniques, but like I said, let's start with what you are wanting to improve so we can clear up any further misconceptions where they might exist. PGP is generally for pretty hardcore stuff like emailing sensitive information without losing sleep about it, or providing legally binding authenticity to the emails you write.
( Last edited by besson3c; Dec 27, 2011 at 02:48 PM. )
     
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Dec 27, 2011, 02:45 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
For reasons that involve privacy and not wanting your email data mined though, not protocol level stuff.
Yes, exactly. Right protocol, wrong attitude towards privacy.
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Dec 27, 2011, 02:55 PM
 
I wouldn't use Gmail period. And that's why: Gmail scans and analyzes all your mail. You have absolutely zero control over that.
Good to know...thanks! I've read about ti before...how depressing. Maybe I should shut down my gmail address on top of everything else!

Many e-mail services allow you to forward mails from other accounts.
Right. But I'm wondering if there's one that's particularly recommendable that would provide lots of space and added security (and any other features that you might regard as esp. important). Thanks!
     
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Dec 27, 2011, 03:15 PM
 
Nothing comes to mind right now, sorry!
No worries. I'll keep fishing around until I find something...

Smart folders are all that comes to mind.
Right, but I thought they only dealt with duplicate and not replicants?

Because mail add-ons are unsupported hacks that break as Apple releases new versions of Mail, just as the old pre-extension Safari hacks did. It is easy to grow tired of this sort of cat-and-mouse game, and these hacks can also cause instability to the app.
I see. That makes sense. So, what about using Postbox with an iPhone? That's one of the reasons why I was considering the move from Mailsmith to Mac Mail - that is, that email status, replies, and folders would be replicated on the iPhone. I'm assuming that you feel that an IMAP system would take care of that (except for the folders), correct?

And have you had problems with interfacing w/ other Mac applications? I've just stated using OmniFocus, so it's essential that my email client would seamlessly interface with it and DevonThink Pro.

By the way, another big criticism I've read about the Postbox is that they're not great when it comes to handling large quantities of mail. I have thousands of message, and just find it easier to use my email client to archive my messages. I realize this might be a mistake, but so far it seems easier than using an email archiver. Anyway, have you had problems using large quantities of email w/ Postbox? Even Postbox seems to acknowledge that it can be a problem for their functionality...

I believe they are a small team, they could be vacationing right now.
I get that, though I've tried contacting them before the holidays. And I've tried to reach them in the past, but they've been unavailable. It's a problem that others have cited in their criticisms of Postbox.

Yes. Why not download the free 30 day trial or free version and try it out with a copy of your POP mail you intend to import?
I have tinkered around with it, but wanted to get a sense of how others reacted to it before I jumped in with two feet. Like I said, the transition from Mailsmith to Postbox (or any other client) will be a massive undertaking). I'll have to convert all of my email so that I can import it, and figure out the easiest way to transfer the filters... I fear that might involve a massive amount of copying and pasting...ugh.

I think they are all about the same. Some might save drafts more frequently, I don't know.
Hmmm...I wonder if anyone else might have ideas about this...

What aspect of security are you hoping to improve? How about we start with this question...

Postbox/Thunderbird do support a cool extension called Enigmail that provides PGP support via the free/open source GnuPG if you're interested in signing and/or encrypting message contents, but your recipients will need your public key to decrypt messages and to verify your signature. You can automatically upload your public key to a public key server within Enigmail, but most likely this is going to be beyond 99% of the people you write to who will mostly be confused as to why they are getting these PGP signatures in your emails.

PGP is just one security practice involving email. There is also SSL certs, TLS at the protocol level, and other techniques, but like I said, let's start with what you are wanting to improve so we can clear up any further misconceptions where they might exist. PGP is generally for pretty hardcore stuff like emailing sensitive information without losing sleep about it, or providing legally binding authenticity to the emails you write.
I once dabbled with PGP for a while, but found that it seemed like a successful solution because it relied on another party to use the key as well. There are times that I'd really need to use that kind of encryption, and could go through the trouble of setting it up. I just wish it wasn't so clunky so that computer novices could use it more easily. Anyway, in answer to your question, in a general sense I'm definitely interested in using whatever kind of set up would help better protect my email transmissions. It's hard to give you a clear answer about what I would ideally like, since I don't have a strong sense of the options that are available... Still, I welcome any suggestions you might have. Thanks!
     
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Dec 27, 2011, 03:49 PM
 
Originally Posted by jprint714 View Post
Right, but I thought they only dealt with duplicate and not replicants?
No, they just show you stuff without making copies or changing any indexing... Smart folders are saved searches.

I see. That makes sense. So, what about using Postbox with an iPhone? That's one of the reasons why I was considering the move from Mailsmith to Mac Mail - that is, that email status, replies, and folders would be replicated on the iPhone. I'm assuming that you feel that an IMAP system would take care of that (except for the folders), correct?
Including the folders. With IMAP all of your folders and messages can be put on the server.

And have you had problems with interfacing w/ other Mac applications? I've just stated using OmniFocus, so it's essential that my email client would seamlessly interface with it and DevonThink Pro.
You'll need to set your default mail program in the OS X Mail preferences (awkward place for this setting, I know), but other than that it seems like this would really be up to the developers to support OS X's default email client setting. I don't use any applications other than iCal that email stuff though.

By the way, another big criticism I've read about the Postbox is that they're not great when it comes to handling large quantities of mail. I have thousands of message, and just find it easier to use my email client to archive my messages. I realize this might be a mistake, but so far it seems easier than using an email archiver. Anyway, have you had problems using large quantities of email w/ Postbox? Even Postbox seems to acknowledge that it can be a problem for their functionality...
Postbox and Thunderbird are hands down the best email clients I've seen for handling large amounts of email, actually. They are the both the best behaved IMAP clients I'm aware of, other than Pine. I have over 200,000 messages in Postbox.

I get that, though I've tried contacting them before the holidays. And I've tried to reach them in the past, but they've been unavailable. It's a problem that others have cited in their criticisms of Postbox.
Could be so!

I have tinkered around with it, but wanted to get a sense of how others reacted to it before I jumped in with two feet. Like I said, the transition from Mailsmith to Postbox (or any other client) will be a massive undertaking). I'll have to convert all of my email so that I can import it, and figure out the easiest way to transfer the filters... I fear that might involve a massive amount of copying and pasting...ugh.
I feel for you, but again, I want to stress that it is not normal for something like this to be a massive undertaking once you have made the jump to IMAP. With IMAP trying a different email app should be about as tough as trying a different web browser.

If I were you, this is what I'd do:

I'd get yourself an IMAP account somewhere and drag and drop all of your messages to your IMAP account to clone your email environment in IMAP. I'd skip looking for some sort of importer to import POP mail and hope for the best, this approach allows you to be in control of your destiny.

Once you have reproduced your setup in IMAP, there are actually apps that allow you to clone entire IMAP accounts with a single command should you want to move all your stuff to a totally different provider or address. I can't speak to your Earthlink situation, but do yourself a favor and make the jump to IMAP so that you never have to worry along these lines again

I once dabbled with PGP for a while, but found that it seemed like a successful solution because it relied on another party to use the key as well. There are times that I'd really need to use that kind of encryption, and could go through the trouble of setting it up. I just wish it wasn't so clunky so that computer novices could use it more easily. Anyway, in answer to your question, in a general sense I'm definitely interested in using whatever kind of set up would help better protect my email transmissions. It's hard to give you a clear answer about what I would ideally like, since I don't have a strong sense of the options that are available... Still, I welcome any suggestions you might have. Thanks!
Is it absolutely imperative that you send sensitive information via email? In general this is a bad idea unless you have knowledgeable people on both ends. It is too easy for somebody to send sensitive information in the clear (i.e. unencrypted) unintentionally via email, or have their machine compromised including local caches of their email, get a virus of some sort that installs a keystroke logger, etc.

I'm not saying that this is common, it isn't, but good security starts with good practices and some basic knowledge. It is dangerous to just install some strange piece of software you don't fully understand and think incorrectly "okay, all secure now! Now I can email my social security number and credit card numbers without having to worry about anything!"

There are a myriad of better methods for exchanging private information, if this is necessary.
     
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Dec 27, 2011, 04:54 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
No, they just show you stuff without making copies or changing any indexing... Smart folders are saved searches.
Is that all that they do...? I thought they had greater functionality than that!

Including the folders. With IMAP all of your folders and messages can be put on the server.
I see. Thanks.

You'll need to set your default mail program in the OS X Mail preferences (awkward place for this setting, I know), but other than that it seems like this would really be up to the developers to support OS X's default email client setting. I don't use any applications other than iCal that email stuff though.
Right. I've already done for Mailsmith. My concern is that I'll be able to seamlessly use an app like Postbox w/ other Mac apps that I regularly use and rely on (such as OmniFocus and DevonThink). Seems like I have to do all this due diligence just to make sure a new (major!) app will properly play with other apps!

Postbox and Thunderbird are hands down the best email clients I've seen for handling large amounts of email, actually. They are the both the best behaved IMAP clients I'm aware of, other than Pine. I have over 200,000 messages in Postbox.
Good to know. Thanks for that...

I feel for you, but again, I want to stress that it is not normal for something like this to be a massive undertaking once you have made the jump to IMAP. With IMAP trying a different email app should be about as tough as trying a different web browser.
I hear you. So, it seems that first priority is figuring out which IMAP account to use for the Earthlink account. Once I figure that out, then I'll be able to start this massive migration of folders and mail - to an IMAP account, and then into an email client. Correct?

I'm still hoping to get recommendations on a highly regarded account that would provide lots of space and added security (and any other features that others might regard as esp. important). Thanks!

If I were you, this is what I'd do:

I'd get yourself an IMAP account somewhere and drag and drop all of your messages to your IMAP account to clone your email environment in IMAP. I'd skip looking for some sort of importer to import POP mail and hope for the best, this approach allows you to be in control of your destiny.

Once you have reproduced your setup in IMAP, there are actually apps that allow you to clone entire IMAP accounts with a single command should you want to move all your stuff to a totally different provider or address. I can't speak to your Earthlink situation, but do yourself a favor and make the jump to IMAP so that you never have to worry along these lines again
I'm not sure I can do this because some of my emails aren't on my POP server any more - many (maybe most) exist in my Mailsmith. I'm not sure how I could forward all of the emails from my Earthlink web account into a new IMAP account. It sounds like you're saying it wouldn't be too difficult to do this. But the most tedious and time consuming part of this will involve copying all of the individual email addresses that correspond with the folders that I'm using - so that I can reproduce the same functions in my new email client. Ugh... If only there were a migration client for that!

Just so I'm clear...are you saying that you'd recommend that I create the folders and set up within the web-based IMAP environment - and then have it cloned onto a email client? Why then even use an email client then? It seems like that's what one should be using the client for in the first place, no? Maybe there's some way in which one could set up the mailboxes and folder in an email client, and then clone it in the web-based account. Is that possible?

Is it absolutely imperative that you send sensitive information via email? In general this is a bad idea unless you have knowledgeable people on both ends. It is too easy for somebody to send sensitive information in the clear (i.e. unencrypted) unintentionally via email, or have their machine compromised including local caches of their email, get a virus of some sort that installs a keystroke logger, etc.

I'm not saying that this is common, it isn't, but good security starts with good practices and some basic knowledge. It is dangerous to just install some strange piece of software you don't fully understand and think incorrectly "okay, all secure now! Now I can email my social security number and credit card numbers without having to worry about anything!"

There are a myriad of better methods for exchanging private information, if this is necessary.
I hear you, and agree. In short, I don't need to send every sensitive piece of info via email. Sometimes it's necessary, because that's all that my sender / receiver has on the other end. And so, it would be helpful to buttress my email with added security to make this work. In other circumstances, I'd be happy to use approach. I'd welcome any suggestions you'd have for either. Thanks again!
     
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Dec 27, 2011, 05:15 PM
 
Originally Posted by jprint714 View Post
Is that all that they do...? I thought they had greater functionality than that!
Well, in Postbox you can also assign topics to messages (which is a way of tagging them as you like), and your smart folders can display messages assigned to these topics. So, you could just get yourself in the habit of sorting your mail by assigning topics to incoming stuff. You could even setup rules so that messages from certain addresses automatically get assigned into topics. Would this work?

Right. I've already done for Mailsmith. My concern is that I'll be able to seamlessly use an app like Postbox w/ other Mac apps that I regularly use and rely on (such as OmniFocus and DevonThink). Seems like I have to do all this due diligence just to make sure a new (major!) app will properly play with other apps!
I guess it depends on the app, but if you've set your default to Mailsmith then I don't see why your apps wouldn't work the same way, just using your different default setting.

Good to know. Thanks for that...
No problem!

I hear you. So, it seems that first priority is figuring out which IMAP account to use for the Earthlink account. Once I figure that out, then I'll be able to start this massive migration of folders and mail - to an IMAP account, and then into an email client. Correct?
Yup!

If this email is related to a business it might be smart to register your own domain name and have a hosting provider host you@yourdomain.com addresses for you. As long as you kept paying for hosting and domain renewals you'd have a permanent IMAP account you can access, if you don't want to use a free IMAP account which will always have strings attached (ads, data mining, etc.)

I'm not sure I can do this because some of my emails aren't on my POP server any more - many (maybe most) exist in my Mailsmith. I'm not sure how I could forward all of the emails from my Earthlink web account into a new IMAP account. It sounds like you're saying it wouldn't be too difficult to do this. But the most tedious and time consuming part of this will involve copying all of the individual email addresses that correspond with the folders that I'm using - so that I can reproduce the same functions in my new email client. Ugh... If only there were a migration client for that!

Just so I'm clear...are you saying that you'd recommend that I create the folders and set up within the web-based IMAP environment - and then have it cloned onto a email client? Why then even use an email client then? It seems like that's what one should be using the client for in the first place, no? Maybe there's some way in which one could set up the mailboxes and folder in an email client, and then clone it in the web-based account. Is that possible?
Let me be more specific.... In Mailsmith:

1) Setup access to your new IMAP account

2) Within Mailsmith drag the messages/folders you want to keep to your IMAP account Inbox or folders within your IMAP account... This would be done the same way you would file messages into a folder via drag and drop, only you are dragging to a folder belonging to a separate account. If the default action is that dragging messages to a new folder moves them and you want to leave a copy behind, look for a "copy to" command of some sort. Copy and paste might even work.

I hear you, and agree. In short, I don't need to send every sensitive piece of info via email. Sometimes it's necessary, because that's all that my sender / receiver has on the other end. And so, it would be helpful to buttress my email with added security to make this work. In other circumstances, I'd be happy to use approach. I'd welcome any suggestions you'd have for either. Thanks again!
Okay, so your objective is to send sensitive info via email? Your only option is sending PGP encrypted messages unless you wanted to get into emailing encrypted disk images containing files or something. The best PGP + email solution I've seen is Thunderbird/Postbox + the free Enigmail plugin. You can install a free open source PGP solution on your Mac called GnuPG using either Macports or Homebrew.

You can use PGP to not only encrypt message contents, but sign them too, which provides legally binding authenticity. Another way to verify authenticity of email is with SSL certificates, but this solution isn't as good, IMHO.

Make sure that your password is encrypted in transmission too, as it will be with pretty much any IMAP system you'll be able to find that requires SSL/TLS. I'd be shocked if you were able to find an IMAP provider that supported non-secure port 143 IMAP though (i.e. didn't require SSL/TLS), so I wouldn't worry about this.

Other than PGP, signing of messages with SSL certs, and a server that requires TLS/SSL, your other security mechanisms will fall into the category of smart practices rather than technological choices.

Make sense?
     
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Dec 28, 2011, 04:32 AM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
Well, in Postbox you can also assign topics to messages (which is a way of tagging them as you like), and your smart folders can display messages assigned to these topics. So, you could just get yourself in the habit of sorting your mail by assigning topics to incoming stuff. You could even setup rules so that messages from certain addresses automatically get assigned into topics. Would this work?
Well...hopefully! The tagging sounds like a very helpful feature. I've tried to figure out how they work on Postbox's site, but haven't found anything like a manual or tutorial. (Their site and general communication is very poor.) When you say that I "could even setup rules so that messages from certain addresses automatically get assigned into topics," I believe I already do this in a way through setting up filters and folders in Mailsmith. But maybe the setup is different in Postbox...

I guess it depends on the app, but if you've set your default to Mailsmith then I don't see why your apps wouldn't work the same way, just using your different default setting.
Man, I hope so... I know that Postbox will work w/ OmniFocus, but I'm not sure about DevonThink. Like I said, I heavily rely on both apps, so it's really important that they play nice together!

If this email is related to a business it might be smart to register your own domain name and have a hosting provider host you@yourdomain.com addresses for you. As long as you kept paying for hosting and domain renewals you'd have a permanent IMAP account you can access, if you don't want to use a free IMAP account which will always have strings attached (ads, data mining, etc.)
Let me clarify a bit more... I already have an earthlink email address that cannot change. I can't use earthlink anymore because it's functionality is limited, and I'm running out of space. So...I thought it best to just set up my Earthlink account so it forwards to an IMAP account (that will provide more space and flexibility, and maybe even functionality), and set up the IMAP account so that all messages that I reply to are being "sent from" the same Earthlink email address. Does this make sense?

I don't mind using a free IMAP account to do this - in fact I'd prefer it! But I just don't want to have any of my IMAP account, or any other accounts, be subject to data mining or any other security breech. Hence my question about: Which IMAP account is highly regarded that would provide lots of space and added security (and any other features that others might regard as esp. important)? If Gmail isn't recommended because of its security breeches, are there any other particular recommendations? Thanks!

Let me be more specific.... In Mailsmith:

1) Setup access to your new IMAP account

2) Within Mailsmith drag the messages/folders you want to keep to your IMAP account Inbox or folders within your IMAP account... This would be done the same way you would file messages into a folder via drag and drop, only you are dragging to a folder belonging to a separate account. If the default action is that dragging messages to a new folder moves them and you want to leave a copy behind, look for a "copy to" command of some sort. Copy and paste might even work.
I truly appreciate you help with this...but I'm afraid you've totally lost me... I understand what you mean about setting up a new IMAP account. But I'm confused about the other part. Are you saying that I could then drag and drop my existing file structure and system from my old Earthlink / Gmail / Network Solutions accounts into a single, unified IMAP account -- which would therein absorb and reproduce everything? Part of the problem is that my Earthlink account was the central repository for my massive folder / filter system, and small system exists in the Network Solutions accounts - BUT there's is some overlap between the two in terms of some Earthlink messages end up in the Network Solutions' folder system (and vice versa). So I'm not sure such a maneuver would succeed in untangling this folder system. (Although maybe it needs an overhaul, as evidenced by this.)

Anyway, I'm also wondering that even if this works on some level, would it also preserve and reproduce my filter system that ensures that my messages successfully filter into their designated folder? That's the part that I'm very worried about... Thanks so much again for your help with all of this!


Okay, so your objective is to send sensitive info via email?
My objectives are: (1) to improve the overall security of my email transmissions because sometimes that's the only means by which people can send me sensitive info (and because I generally want to improve my email security!), and (2) to find out how else I can easily and securely send encrypted data / message -- even through a non-email means. I welcome you suggestions on either!

Your only option is sending PGP encrypted messages unless you wanted to get into emailing encrypted disk images containing files or something. The best PGP + email solution I've seen is Thunderbird/Postbox + the free Enigmail plugin. You can install a free open source PGP solution on your Mac called GnuPG using either Macports or Homebrew.

You can use PGP to not only encrypt message contents, but sign them too, which provides legally binding authenticity. Another way to verify authenticity of email is with SSL certificates, but this solution isn't as good, IMHO.

Make sure that your password is encrypted in transmission too, as it will be with pretty much any IMAP system you'll be able to find that requires SSL/TLS. I'd be shocked if you were able to find an IMAP provider that supported non-secure port 143 IMAP though (i.e. didn't require SSL/TLS), so I wouldn't worry about this.
Fantastic! Thank you so much... I might follow up on this later, after I nail down my queries w/ this email clients and transfer stuff first...

Other than PGP, signing of messages with SSL certs, and a server that requires TLS/SSL, your other security mechanisms will fall into the category of smart practices rather than technological choices.

Make sense?
Well, I'm not familiar w/ how to do this, so I'm certainly interested in learning more about it - either from for or any advisable articles / instructions you could recommend! Thanks!

As I said, I'm also interested in using other non-email means by which I can send and receive sensitive data, files, and messages... Thank you so much again...
     
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Dec 28, 2011, 10:44 PM
 
I just did a bit more reviewing about Postbox, and heard the following critique:

"[Postbox has...]

- no global rules. In PB they're called filters and you can only create filters at the account level. To me, that's just insanely stupid. I have 10 email accounts. You're seriously asking me to create the same rule 10 different times and manage it that way? If I want to make a change to a rule I now have to change it 10 times? Ridiculous.

- no tags. My workflow has evolved to where tags are not a nicety, they are a necessity. If your app doesn't have them, I can't use it."

And another blog reads:

"Postbox is awesome and probably the one I'd go for except you can't see your activity status and they keep on pressuring users to pay for upgrades (which should be free via the App Store)."

Is any of this true...?

I have about 5 different email accounts, and I need an email client that will support them AND work w/ the complex system of folder and filters that I've set up. That essential.

I don't need social media integration at all. But I will likely (heavily) rely on tags and global rules. I'm actually very surprised to hear that Postbox doesn't support them, since I was given the opposite impression from their posts. I also thought it offered robust search options. I'm very surprised, and deeply disappointed to hear, that Postbox doesn't have those features...

Now what!? Ugh...
     
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Dec 28, 2011, 11:46 PM
 
Originally Posted by jprint714 View Post
I just did a bit more reviewing about Postbox, and heard the following critique:

"[Postbox has...]

- no global rules. In PB they're called filters and you can only create filters at the account level. To me, that's just insanely stupid. I have 10 email accounts. You're seriously asking me to create the same rule 10 different times and manage it that way? If I want to make a change to a rule I now have to change it 10 times? Ridiculous.
Are you using the trial for the commercial version? It does have rules that apply to all accounts in Tools -> Message Filters.

- no tags. My workflow has evolved to where tags are not a nicety, they are a necessity. If your app doesn't have them, I can't use it."
The equivalent is topics which are basically the same.

And another blog reads:

"Postbox is awesome and probably the one I'd go for except you can't see your activity status and they keep on pressuring users to pay for upgrades (which should be free via the App Store)."

Is any of this true...?
Your Activity Status appears in the footer of the app. It's not all that verbose, but it is there. I paid once for Postbox 1.x and got all the updates to 1.x, and once for 2.x and have been getting all the updates since. As an owner of 1.x I was also eligible for a discount. 1.x was out for so long that I didn't mind shelling out the $20 or whatever it was for the update. YMMV, but I don't think that their policies here is overreaching.

I don't need social media integration at all. But I will likely (heavily) rely on tags and global rules. I'm actually very surprised to hear that Postbox doesn't support them, since I was given the opposite impression from their posts. I also thought it offered robust search options. I'm very surprised, and deeply disappointed to hear, that Postbox doesn't have those features...

Now what!? Ugh...
What version have you been trying?
     
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Dec 29, 2011, 03:21 AM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
Are you using the trial for the commercial version? It does have rules that apply to all accounts in Tools -> Message Filters.
Oh! Well...that's great! When I heard that was the case, I was ready to drop Postbox right away...

The equivalent is topics which are basically the same.
What a relief! I was misinformed - again. But you said that topics are "basically the same" as tags. What's the functional difference between topics and tags? I guess part of what confuses me here is your description of how folders, smart folders, and topics serve different functions (though I understand the functional difference between folders and topics) and interface with each other...

I suppose I still wonder if the combination of the MailTags and MailActOn plugins do offer more flexibility than what's offered in Postbox. That's certainly the sense that I get from reading blogs about this stuff...

Your Activity Status appears in the footer of the app. It's not all that verbose, but it is there.
Ok, great. I wonder what the folks at AsianEffeciency were talking about? They're usually very reliable with these matters...

I paid once for Postbox 1.x and got all the updates to 1.x, and once for 2.x and have been getting all the updates since. As an owner of 1.x I was also eligible for a discount. 1.x was out for so long that I didn't mind shelling out the $20 or whatever it was for the update. YMMV, but I don't think that their policies here is overreaching.
I hear you, and agree (if Postbox is half as good as you say it is!).

You've been incredibly generous with your replies, and I greatly appreciate it! I'm wondering if you might be able to reply to some of the questions I raised in my previous post, namely:

-A clearer explanation about the transfer from POP to IMAP that you suggested - i.e., in a way that by dragging and dropping my existing file structure and system from my old Earthlink / Gmail / Network Solutions accounts into a single, unified IMAP account I would absorb and reproduce everything in the new IMAP account (if I was understanding you correctly). And would this transfer also preserve and reproduce my filter system (for my mailboxes) that ensures that my messages successfully filter into their designated folder?

-Any other recommendable ways to improve the overall security of my email transmissions because sometimes that's the only means by which people can send me sensitive info, and...

-Any recommendations about how else I can easily and securely send encrypted data / message -- even through a non-email means.

-Which IMAP account is highly regarded that would provide lots of space and added security (and any other features that others might regard as esp. important)? If Gmail isn't recommended because of its security breeches, are there any other particular recommendations?

Like I said...I already have an Earthlink email address that cannot change. I can't use earthlink anymore because it's functionality is limited, and I'm running out of space. So...I thought it best to just set up my Earthlink account so it forwards to an IMAP account (that will provide more space and flexibility, and maybe even functionality), and set up the IMAP account so that all messages that I reply to are being "sent from" the same Earthlink email address.

I don't mind using a free IMAP account to do this - in fact I'd prefer it! But I just don't want to have any of my IMAP account, or any other accounts, be subject to data mining or any other security breech.

Thanks again for all of your amazing help...

-
     
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Dec 29, 2011, 04:54 AM
 
Originally Posted by jprint714 View Post
What a relief! I was misinformed - again. But you said that topics are "basically the same" as tags. What's the functional difference between topics and tags? I guess part of what confuses me here is your description of how folders, smart folders, and topics serve different functions (though I understand the functional difference between folders and topics) and interface with each other...
I think topics and tags are pretty much identical, although Postbox will display topics in a threaded manner, grouping them together and stuff.

I suppose I still wonder if the combination of the MailTags and MailActOn plugins do offer more flexibility than what's offered in Postbox. That's certainly the sense that I get from reading blogs about this stuff...
I don't know, but keep in mind all/most of the third party Thunderbird extensions will work in Postbox too, should you want to explore that.

Ok, great. I wonder what the folks at AsianEffeciency were talking about? They're usually very reliable with these matters...
Never heard of them. What is the date of the page? Maybe they were commenting on the lite version, or an older commercial version?

You've been incredibly generous with your replies, and I greatly appreciate it! I'm wondering if you might be able to reply to some of the questions I raised in my previous post, namely:
Sure!

-A clearer explanation about the transfer from POP to IMAP that you suggested - i.e., in a way that by dragging and dropping my existing file structure and system from my old Earthlink / Gmail / Network Solutions accounts into a single, unified IMAP account I would absorb and reproduce everything in the new IMAP account (if I was understanding you correctly). And would this transfer also preserve and reproduce my filter system (for my mailboxes) that ensures that my messages successfully filter into their designated folder?
I think you are over-complicating this.

You know how you can drag a message into a folder to move or copy it? What I'm talking about is the same thing, except the folder you are dragging to will be setup in your IMAP account so that it goes from a folder in your POP account to the folder in your IMAP account. You'll have to create these folders in the IMAP account beforehand.

This may not be the most ideal way of handling this migration depending on how many folders you have, and it's not the only option, but it's a simple option and something you can try without any reprecussions - it doesn't do anything destructive to your POP account or anything that can't be easily reversed on your IMAP account.

-Any other recommendable ways to improve the overall security of my email transmissions because sometimes that's the only means by which people can send me sensitive info, and...
I've answered this, I really don't have anything more to add. Was there something unclear about what I've said?

-Any recommendations about how else I can easily and securely send encrypted data / message -- even through a non-email means.
Non-email means, off the top of my head:

- Dropbox (although this counts on your recipient's computer not being compromised)
- An internet based host that allows you to connect via SSH (probably the industry standard when this sort of thing is available and the people are geeky enough to be comfortable with this)
- SFTP
- phone call
- PGP encrypt or encrypted disk image + regular FTP, WebDAV, Appleshare/Netatalk, instant message file transfer, whatever else

-Which IMAP account is highly regarded that would provide lots of space and added security (and any other features that others might regard as esp. important)? If Gmail isn't recommended because of its security breeches, are there any other particular recommendations?
You are conflating security with privacy, they are totally different matters.

GMail and any other free email provider do not offer you privacy, that is the tradeoff you have to accept when using a free service that costs a company to provide to you. You do not own your data with a free service, they can do whatever they want with it: sell it to whomever, search through it, whatever. Google is not interested in picking out sensitive bits for fun though, they are interested in monetizing this by profiling you and your demographic to sell to advertisers. This is the same sort of deal with Hotmail, Yahoo, and any other free email provider.

As far as security goes all IMAP providers are identical. You'd be hard pressed to find one that didn't require SSL encryption for sending your password. All other stuff (PGP, signing messages, etc.) is up to you.

Thanks again for all of your amazing help...
You're welcome!
     
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Dec 29, 2011, 12:25 PM
 
See reply below...
( Last edited by jprint714; Dec 29, 2011 at 01:11 PM. )
     
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Dec 29, 2011, 12:27 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
I think topics and tags are pretty much identical, although Postbox will display topics in a threaded manner, grouping them together and stuff.
Ok...I got more info from another forum about tags and global rules. Please believe me: I'm really not trying to initiate a fight - I just want to get clarity on what Postbox and Mail (w/ the plugins) actually do, how they work differently and therein serve my needs. This is the response I got from anther former Postbox user...

"Postbox does NOT have rules that apply to all accounts. Whoever told you this is wrong. Here is a quote directly from an email i received from Postbox support:
"Postbox doesn't support Global Filters. Filters must be setup for each account, and once this is done, you can then go to the Tools menu and then select "Run Filters on Folder" or "Run Filters on Message."
"and yes, you can use Topics as Tags, but this is a non-industry compliant way to get there. For many, no big deal. for me, it doesn't work because once i archive my emails into Mail Steward (once a year i archive the emails from 2 years ago so i only retain the last year's emails in Mail itself, to keep size down), i'll lose those Topic designations and will no longer be able to search by them. With MailTags, they are actual tags and are imported and handled as such and i can search my archived emails for them."

I suppose I could get by with Postbox's topics since I don't use Mail Steward, but if it would be pretty problematic if Postbox really lacks global rules. (Sometime I think I ought to use Mail Steward for managing all of my archived email...though for now I prefer to keep it in own place in my client... Is that a bad idea? Do you use Mail Steward?)

Thoughts...?

Again, I'm really not trying to stir up a fight - I just want to get clarity on what really works, the real difference between he features, and what would work best for me.

I don't know, but keep in mind all/most of the third party Thunderbird extensions will work in Postbox too, should you want to explore that.
I'm trying to avoid doing too much exploring! I'm happy to test drive these clients a bit, but after a while I need to settle on the best client out there for my purposes - esp. since the migration will likely be really onerous.

Never heard of them. What is the date of the page? Maybe they were commenting on the lite version, or an older commercial version?
It's
great
site - I highly recommend them. The post went up a few days ago, so it's very recent. Here's the page: The Simple Guide To Managing Your Email More Effectively

I think you are over-complicating this.

You know how you can drag a message into a folder to move or copy it? What I'm talking about is the same thing, except the folder you are dragging to will be setup in your IMAP account so that it goes from a folder in your POP account to the folder in your IMAP account. You'll have to create these folders in the IMAP account beforehand.
Ok,
now
I understand! I thought you were suggesting a step that would enable me to magically avoid transferring the setup from my Mailsmith folders & filters into a new IMAP system. You're saying that after I transfer the setup from my Mailsmith folders & filters, I can drag and drop my messages into the IMAP system, correct?

Actually...if that's the route you're suggesting, I'm not sure that's true, though, since Mailsmith is really get up for POP and not IMAP, and so I'm not sure it would transfer...(unless there's another step you were suggesting that would make it work). Sorry if I seem a bit dense here. I just want to be sure I fully understand it so I don't foul up the transfer. Thanks for you help, and patience!

This may not be the most ideal way of handling this migration depending on how many folders you have, and it's not the only option, but it's a simple option and something you can try without any reprecussions - it doesn't do anything destructive to your POP account or anything that can't be easily reversed on your IMAP account.
That's exactly what I'm aiming for...hence all of the questions...

I've answered this, I really don't have anything more to add. Was there something unclear about what I've said?
No, but I thought you might have more to add to this since it seemed like there was more to it than what you said in your original answer (which seemed like a cursory explanation). If not, just disregard...

Non-email means, off the top of my head:

- Dropbox (although this counts on your recipient's computer not being compromised)
- An internet based host that allows you to connect via SSH (probably the industry standard when this sort of thing is available and the people are geeky enough to be comfortable with this)
- SFTP
- phone call
- PGP encrypt or encrypted disk image + regular FTP, WebDAV, Appleshare/Netatalk, instant message file transfer, whatever else
Thanks! I'm not familiar with internet based hosts that allows you to connect via SSH or SFTP. I'll look for more articles about those options...

You are conflating security with privacy, they are totally different matters.

GMail and any other free email provider do not offer you privacy, that is the tradeoff you have to accept when using a free service that costs a company to provide to you. You do not own your data with a free service, they can do whatever they want with it: sell it to whomever, search through it, whatever. Google is not interested in picking out sensitive bits for fun though, they are interested in monetizing this by profiling you and your demographic to sell to advertisers. This is the same sort of deal with Hotmail, Yahoo, and any other free email provider.

As far as security goes all IMAP providers are identical. You'd be hard pressed to find one that didn't require SSL encryption for sending your password. All other stuff (PGP, signing messages, etc.) is up to you.
Thanks very much of the explanation...I hear you and appreciate what you're saying. Security is of paramount importance for me, and so I've feared that a breach in privacy would bleed over into a breach in security. Given my situation, w/ trying to use an IMAP account to bounce my data to and fro my Earthlink account (in order to get IMAP functionality, more space, etc.) and trying to buttress my security, is there any particular recommended solution you might have? Thank you...again!

You're welcome!
You're a mensch!
     
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Dec 29, 2011, 03:26 PM
 
Originally Posted by jprint714 View Post
Ok...I got more info from another forum about tags and global rules. Please believe me: I'm really not trying to initiate a fight - I just want to get clarity on what Postbox and Mail (w/ the plugins) actually do, how they work differently and therein serve my needs. This is the response I got from anther former Postbox user...

"Postbox does NOT have rules that apply to all accounts. Whoever told you this is wrong. Here is a quote directly from an email i received from Postbox support:
"Postbox doesn't support Global Filters. Filters must be setup for each account, and once this is done, you can then go to the Tools menu and then select "Run Filters on Folder" or "Run Filters on Message."
I stand corrected, I just double checked and confirmed this. You can have as many filters as you want, but they are account specific. How many rules and accounts do you have? Why would it be problematic to recreate these for each account?

Perhaps you should look into an IMAP host that supports server side filtering? This would certainly be ideal for you, as your messages would be pre-filed as you like without relying on a client to do this for you, so if you were to access your account via another client (say, a web based one), your messages would be placed in the folders you'd expect to see them in without having to establish rules within this new client - i.e. the rules would be just a part of the account itself.

"and yes, you can use Topics as Tags, but this is a non-industry compliant way to get there. For many, no big deal. for me, it doesn't work because once i archive my emails into Mail Steward (once a year i archive the emails from 2 years ago so i only retain the last year's emails in Mail itself, to keep size down), i'll lose those Topic designations and will no longer be able to search by them. With MailTags, they are actual tags and are imported and handled as such and i can search my archived emails for them."

I suppose I could get by with Postbox's topics since I don't use Mail Steward, but if it would be pretty problematic if Postbox really lacks global rules. (Sometime I think I ought to use Mail Steward for managing all of my archived email...though for now I prefer to keep it in own place in my client... Is that a bad idea? Do you use Mail Steward?)
Looking at the RFC specifications for the IMAP protocol, unless I'm missing something, there is no industry standard for tagging. There is message flags (reply, new, mark for deletion, etc.), but it seems like attaching metadata to messages by way of tags/topics is up to the client.

I'm not sure whether Postbox will attach a custom X-header to a message to indicate its topic or whether it files this internally, but if there is an X-header this header would be able to be read by some other application such as Mail Steward, in theory.

Again, I'm really not trying to stir up a fight - I just want to get clarity on what really works, the real difference between he features, and what would work best for me.

I'm trying to avoid doing too much exploring! I'm happy to test drive these clients a bit, but after a while I need to settle on the best client out there for my purposes - esp. since the migration will likely be really onerous.
I don't understand why you don't start playing around with the different clients you have researched and why you are worrying so much. This migration is really not as big a deal as you make it out to be, save importing your contacts which is probably going to be the trickiest part and a part that doesn't seem to concern you much (maybe cause you've been using the OS X address book?)

You can get an IMAP account going (any IMAP account, it doesn't matter), setup some rules, forward/redirect some messages to yourself to test your rules (in Postbox/Thunderbird there is actually a redirect command for making this easy), subscribe to a mailing list or two so that you start to receive new messages at this account, play around with stuff, experiment with migrating your mail a folder at a time, whatever.

You can kick the tires, this is not some sort of one-way ticket. If you are just thinking of this as a matter of timing, you could import what you have now, play around, and when you are comfortable with making the switch just delete all of your messages off the IMAP server and run the import again to sync up with your POP mail store. Alternatively, you could experiment with a garbage, disposable IMAP account on something like GMail that you could just stop using or delete once you are done with it, import what you have now to this temporary account, test it, and then ditch it when you are ready to switch for good.

By importing POP downloaded mail into a new client you aren't *moving* everything off of your old system, you are just copying mail to the new system.

It's site - I highly recommend them. The post went up a few days ago, so it's very recent. Here's the page: The Simple Guide To Managing Your Email More Effectively
Thanks!

Ok, I understand! I thought you were suggesting a step that would enable me to magically avoid transferring the setup from my Mailsmith folders & filters into a new IMAP system. You're saying that after I transfer the setup from my Mailsmith folders & filters, I can drag and drop my messages into the IMAP system, correct?
Yes!

Actually...if that's the route you're suggesting, I'm not sure that's true, though, since Mailsmith is really get up for POP and not IMAP, and so I'm not sure it would transfer...(unless there's another step you were suggesting that would make it work). Sorry if I seem a bit dense here. I just want to be sure I fully understand it so I don't foul up the transfer. Thanks for you help, and patience!
I didn't realize that Mailsmith was POP only, that kind of sucks. However, looking into this some more it looks like Mailsmith supports the mbox format, so you can export your messages into mbox files that Postbox/Thunderbird/OS X Mail should be able to import.

The stuff I was saying about drag and drop doesn't apply though, you're right, that's not going to work... The vast majority of email clients support both POP and IMAP, I just assumed that Mailsmith did too.

Thanks very much of the explanation...I hear you and appreciate what you're saying. Security is of paramount importance for me, and so I've feared that a breach in privacy would bleed over into a breach in security. Given my situation, w/ trying to use an IMAP account to bounce my data to and fro my Earthlink account (in order to get IMAP functionality, more space, etc.) and trying to buttress my security, is there any particular recommended solution you might have? Thank you...again!
Security-wise I'd recommend just keeping on doing what you are, and that is learning what you can. There is no magic bullet technology that we haven't already discussed that makes everything secure and requires no learning.
     
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Dec 30, 2011, 05:40 AM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
I stand corrected, I just double checked and confirmed this. You can have as many filters as you want, but they are account specific. How many rules and accounts do you have? Why would it be problematic to recreate these for each account?
Because I've got 5 accounts, and am about to use another work account. That means I've got to figure out how to retain this huge structure of files, filters, and folders for these 5 disparate accounts - w/o Global Rules that would integrate them.

Perhaps you should look into an IMAP host that supports server side filtering? This would certainly be ideal for you, as your messages would be pre-filed as you like without relying on a client to do this for you, so if you were to access your account via another client (say, a web based one), your messages would be placed in the folders you'd expect to see them in without having to establish rules within this new client - i.e. the rules would be just a part of the account itself.
I know why you mean in theory, but will need to do some further digger to ensure I'm completely following you on this point. I suppose the one thing that I'm confused about is if / how using an IMAP host that supports server side filtering would still enable me to integrate my structure of files, filters, and folders for these 5 disparate accounts.

Looking at the RFC specifications for the IMAP protocol, unless I'm missing something, there is no industry standard for tagging. There is message flags (reply, new, mark for deletion, etc.), but it seems like attaching metadata to messages by way of tags/topics is up to the client.

I'm not sure whether Postbox will attach a custom X-header to a message to indicate its topic or whether it files this internally, but if there is an X-header this header would be able to be read by some other application such as Mail Steward, in theory.
Hey, as long as it has does the same thing, and has a high degree of functional flexibility, then great!

I don't understand why you don't start playing around with the different clients you have researched and why you are worrying so much. This migration is really not as big a deal as you make it out to be, save importing your contacts which is probably going to be the trickiest part and a part that doesn't seem to concern you much (maybe cause you've been using the OS X address book?)

You can get an IMAP account going (any IMAP account, it doesn't matter), setup some rules, forward/redirect some messages to yourself to test your rules (in Postbox/Thunderbird there is actually a redirect command for making this easy), subscribe to a mailing list or two so that you start to receive new messages at this account, play around with stuff, experiment with migrating your mail a folder at a time, whatever.

You can kick the tires, this is not some sort of one-way ticket. If you are just thinking of this as a matter of timing, you could import what you have now, play around, and when you are comfortable with making the switch just delete all of your messages off the IMAP server and run the import again to sync up with your POP mail store. Alternatively, you could experiment with a garbage, disposable IMAP account on something like GMail that you could just stop using or delete once you are done with it, import what you have now to this temporary account, test it, and then ditch it when you are ready to switch for good.

By importing POP downloaded mail into a new client you aren't *moving* everything off of your old system, you are just copying mail to the new system.
The reason why I'm reluctant to "kick the tires" and experiment w/ other email clients at this stage is because I'm facing a problem that is basically threefold: (1) I've got to setup an IMAP account, and figure out how to transfer all of the POP mail to the new IMAP account (new and old messages); (2) I have to transfer a huge structure of files and folders that filters and retains 5 different email accounts, (3) without the Global Rules in Postbox (or whichever client I choose) I will need to thus use an IMAP host that supports server side filtering (which I have to figure out), per your advice. Each of these poses three, big distinct challenges -- and yet each of these problems are totally interconnected given what I'm aiming to do. Agreed? And yes, I'm still relying on the OS X address book (for my basic contacts).
I didn't realize that Mailsmith was POP only, that kind of sucks. However, looking into this some more it looks like Mailsmith supports the mbox format, so you can export your messages into mbox files that Postbox/Thunderbird/OS X Mail should be able to import.

The stuff I was saying about drag and drop doesn't apply though, you're right, that's not going to work... The vast majority of email clients support both POP and IMAP, I just assumed that Mailsmith did too.
Yup, I understand. Yeah, Mailsmith sort of support IMAP, but in a limited way. And yes, I could important the mbox into whichever client I chose. But I'm still back at the three-headed hydra that I mentioned above, and so it seems that importuning the mbox wouldn't be helpful in that regard (e.g., transferring a huge structure of files and folders that filters and retains 5 different email accounts).

Security-wise I'd recommend just keeping on doing what you are, and that is learning what you can. There is no magic bullet technology that we haven't already discussed that makes everything secure and requires no learning.
Understood. Thanks very much for your help w/ that, and the sage advice....

Thanks again...
     
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Dec 31, 2011, 07:09 AM
 
Hey again, Hope this doesn't seem like a nudge, but I just wanted to follow up on the remaining questions...

-Is there a recommendable IMAP host that supports the server side filtering that you suggested?

-And by setting an IMAP host that supports server side filtering would I then be able me to integrate my structure of files, filters, and folders for my disparate email accounts? I want to be sure I understand you correctly...

-Even if I can import my old POP earthlink message via a transferred mbox into whichever client I choose, how would I be able to integrate into the newly set up IMAP mail system and integrate it into my disparate accounts? Like I said, I was expecting to use Global Rules to integrate the accounts into my folders (as I've w/ Mailsmith). It's not clear how one could replicate this w/in a new email client and / or IMAP host.

I think once I'm able to resolve these questions, I'll be much more inclined to start kicking the tires on the different email clients!

Just out of curiosity, what are you misgivings about Thunderbird?

Also, I've read that most people who use POP w/ Mac Mail don't have a problem with it; conversely, I've read how those who use IMAP w/ Mail are displeased. Is the way Mail works w/ IMAP where it often breaks down for you? Just curious...

Thank you so much...again!
     
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Dec 31, 2011, 10:42 AM
 
I have three POP accounts I use on two computers and have no issues...just setup the delete from mail server option to a month out or so and no worries. I was not happy with IMAP (forgot why but it drove me nuuuuts).
     
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Dec 31, 2011, 11:26 AM
 
@cgc
I used to think that, too, but if you want to keep mails synced across devices, the only way to do that is to use IMAP. E. g. if you send a mail by iPhone, then it won't appear in the Sent mail folder on your Mac.
I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.
     
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Dec 31, 2011, 04:14 PM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
@cgc
I used to think that, too, but if you want to keep mails synced across devices, the only way to do that is to use IMAP. E. g. if you send a mail by iPhone, then it won't appear in the Sent mail folder on your Mac.
That's exactly why I'm gearing up to make the conversion. By the way, do you have any ideas or suggestions re: some of the queries I've made about mail clients and how best to integrate my disparate email accounts? Or if there's a there a recommendable IMAP host that supports the server side filtering that @besson3c suggested?

@besson3c has been incredibly helpful, as were you with my back up questions... I value all of the great help and support on this forum (which I've been referring to other colleagues), so I'm eager to hear what you guys might have to say!

Thanks again...
     
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Dec 31, 2011, 05:08 PM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
@cgc
I used to think that, too, but if you want to keep mails synced across devices, the only way to do that is to use IMAP. E. g. if you send a mail by iPhone, then it won't appear in the Sent mail folder on your Mac.
That's what I want...my wife and I share the same email account but I spam filter her stuff and she spam filters mine. Works well.
     
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Dec 31, 2011, 07:19 PM
 
Originally Posted by jprint714 View Post
Hey again, Hope this doesn't seem like a nudge, but I just wanted to follow up on the remaining questions...

-Is there a recommendable IMAP host that supports the server side filtering that you suggested?
GMail does server side filters. You haven't indicated whether you are confining your search to free options, so I'll leave it at that for now. GMail is probably the best of the free.

-And by setting an IMAP host that supports server side filtering would I then be able me to integrate my structure of files, filters, and folders for my disparate email accounts? I want to be sure I understand you correctly...
A server side rule is just like a client side rule, only it performs this action on the server the moment it is received.

-Even if I can import my old POP earthlink message via a transferred mbox into whichever client I choose, how would I be able to integrate into the newly set up IMAP mail system and integrate it into my disparate accounts? Like I said, I was expecting to use Global Rules to integrate the accounts into my folders (as I've w/ Mailsmith). It's not clear how one could replicate this w/in a new email client and / or IMAP host.
I'm not sure what the concern is here. Worst case scenario you have to setup rules for each account rather than what you are calling global rules. Server side rules are tethered to that account, so you won't be able to create one set of global rules that applies to all accounts. AFAIK this is the norm, I'd probably give up on the notion of global rules.

I think once I'm able to resolve these questions, I'll be much more inclined to start kicking the tires on the different email clients!

Just out of curiosity, what are you misgivings about Thunderbird?
I have no misgivings at all, Thunderbird is great! Postbox is basically just Thunderbird with more Mac specific features, and more features overall. I just like having these extra things, that's all.

Also, I've read that most people who use POP w/ Mac Mail don't have a problem with it; conversely, I've read how those who use IMAP w/ Mail are displeased. Is the way Mail works w/ IMAP where it often breaks down for you? Just curious...

Thank you so much...again!
OS X Mail is a crappy IMAP client, that's true. The problems with it include performance with large mailboxes, spawning too many connections (sometimes reaching server defined limits resulting in delays in doing stuff while these additional connections timeout, although this depends entirely on the IMAP server config), a lack of IMAP specific features such as folder subscriptions, and general quirkiness. I used to work in an email provider where we hosted around 150,000 accounts, and dealing with iPhone connectivity was at times a challenge (the iPhone mobile mail client at the time seemed to share the same problems as OS X Mail).

Thunderbird/Postbox are both great IMAP clients. As far as I'm concerned, aside from PINE they are the gold standard of how an IMAP client should behave.
     
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Jan 1, 2012, 01:56 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
GMail does server side filters. You haven't indicated whether you are confining your search to free options, so I'll leave it at that for now. GMail is probably the best of the free.
Thanks! Well, of course I'd prefer to a free server, but I'd certainly consider getting a paid one if there are strong recommendations to get one. Right now, I pay for an Earthlink account so that I have a ton of space in my account. Like I said, I use my email account also as email storage (instead of Mail Steward), and that includes having keeping my email on the server for some time. I only do so because my Mailsmith has crashed a few times, and I've often lost important emails. Anyway, this is a round about way of saying that I'm happy to use Gmail, but would also considered a paid option if there are important,r recommendable reasons to do so (esp. if there's one that would improve security and performance!).

A server side rule is just like a client side rule, only it performs this action on the server the moment it is received.
So, does that mean that if I set up a an action (such a creating a folder) w/in an email client that manages an IMAP account, it will replicate in the online version of that account? Just want to be sure I totally follow you here...

By the way, I've also found it slightly onerous to assign folders new email address (i.e., assigning a folder a new email address for storage). Is there generally an easy way to do this in Gmail (e.g., via simple keystroke or something)?

I'm not sure what the concern is here. Worst case scenario you have to setup rules for each account rather than what you are calling global rules. Server side rules are tethered to that account, so you won't be able to create one set of global rules that applies to all accounts. AFAIK this is the norm, I'd probably give up on the notion of global rules.
Oy...I'd rather not... I appreciate what you're saying, but giving up global rule means desegregating (and possibly overhauling) my email folder system as it exists right now...if I understand you properly.

My grave concern about all this comes down to this: If I do have to give up global rules, will I still be able to have a system where I'm able to integrate my email accounts into shared folders (e.g., a common folders for "Friends," "Family," "Work")? Or would I have to do this for each individual account, and then create Topic or Tags to aggregate these messages into one integrated folder? I'm obviously trying to avoid this, since it would great a tedious workflow w/ setting up a new email system, and every time I'd assign a new email to a folder and Tag / Topic. Does that make sense?

I have no misgivings at all, Thunderbird is great! Postbox is basically just Thunderbird with more Mac specific features, and more features overall. I just like having these extra things, that's all.
I see... What kind of extra things does it have that Thunderbird (and Mail) lack? Those might be the same kinds of features that I'm seeking! Does Thunderbird also have a sophisticated system of using Tags or Topics? And does it have a lot of granular search options? That's one feature that I really like on Postbox...

OS X Mail is a crappy IMAP client, that's true. The problems with it include performance with large mailboxes, spawning too many connections (sometimes reaching server defined limits resulting in delays in doing stuff while these additional connections timeout, although this depends entirely on the IMAP server config), a lack of IMAP specific features such as folder subscriptions, and general quirkiness. I used to work in an email provider where we hosted around 150,000 accounts, and dealing with iPhone connectivity was at times a challenge (the iPhone mobile mail client at the time seemed to share the same problems as OS X Mail).
Thank you very much for clarifying this! Ok, I'm starting to understand why separates these email clients, and the factors that I need to consider as I move forward...

Thunderbird/Postbox are both great IMAP clients. As far as I'm concerned, aside from PINE they are the gold standard of how an IMAP client should behave.
I hear ya, and thank you again for clarifying that... Like I said, I'm first trying to establish which IMAP account, then which email client would work best for me for integrating my five email accounts into one cohesive system of folders and tags (or topics), and have some of the core features that I'm seeking (e.g., strong variable search options, and specific alerts / sounds for individual mailboxes).

Thank you so much again for all of your help with this... I feel like I'm really close to solving all of this - I'm hopefully just a few short questions away!
     
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Jan 1, 2012, 04:51 PM
 
Originally Posted by jprint714 View Post
Thanks! Well, of course I'd prefer to a free server, but I'd certainly consider getting a paid one if there are strong recommendations to get one. Right now, I pay for an Earthlink account so that I have a ton of space in my account. Like I said, I use my email account also as email storage (instead of Mail Steward), and that includes having keeping my email on the server for some time. I only do so because my Mailsmith has crashed a few times, and I've often lost important emails. Anyway, this is a round about way of saying that I'm happy to use Gmail, but would also considered a paid option if there are important,r recommendable reasons to do so (esp. if there's one that would improve security and performance!).
Security improvement: no, privacy: yes, performance: too hard to say, probably negligible.

How much storage do you need?

So, does that mean that if I set up a an action (such a creating a folder) w/in an email client that manages an IMAP account, it will replicate in the online version of that account? Just want to be sure I totally follow you here...
It depends on whether these actions and criteria are supported by the server side filtration system. Your client side rules will not be automatically replicated. You'd have your client side rules, and your separate server side rules. The server doesn't know anything about your client and its configuration.

By the way, I've also found it slightly onerous to assign folders new email address (i.e., assigning a folder a new email address for storage). Is there generally an easy way to do this in Gmail (e.g., via simple keystroke or something)?
If you are creating folders to file messages from a particular email address, you can easily create a smart folder to show you all messages from that address. I'm not sure whether smart folders can be created dynamically though based on client side rules.

Oy...I'd rather not... I appreciate what you're saying, but giving up global rule means desegregating (and possibly overhauling) my email folder system as it exists right now...if I understand you properly.
Maybe you could provide an example or two of what your global rules currently do that makes you cringe on replicating in a per-account basis?

My grave concern about all this comes down to this: If I do have to give up global rules, will I still be able to have a system where I'm able to integrate my email accounts into shared folders (e.g., a common folders for "Friends," "Family," "Work")? Or would I have to do this for each individual account, and then create Topic or Tags to aggregate these messages into one integrated folder? I'm obviously trying to avoid this, since it would great a tedious workflow w/ setting up a new email system, and every time I'd assign a new email to a folder and Tag / Topic. Does that make sense?
There is definitely some misunderstand here if you are thinking that you'd have to give up having shared folders.

You can setup as many folders as you want, decide what server the folders should reside on or whether you want that folder to exist locally (it's generally a better idea to store all mail on the server though). Your client side rules can filter messages into whatever folder you want, even if that folder resides on a totally different server from the originating message. As far as your client is concerned, the folders available to it as candidates for performing rule actions are the totality of all email accounts configured to be available within this email client.

Your server side rules would be different though, as the actions would only be able to file into folders within that account. Your server side rules know nothing about what is available in other email accounts.

Make sense?

I see... What kind of extra things does it have that Thunderbird (and Mail) lack? Those might be the same kinds of features that I'm seeking! Does Thunderbird also have a sophisticated system of using Tags or Topics? And does it have a lot of granular search options? That's one feature that I really like on Postbox...
What Postbox has over Thunderbird (to the best of my knowledge):

- Topics
- Social network integration
- Some search options
- I'm not sure whether Thunderbird has smart folders or not?
- I'm not sure whether Thunderbird has a mail archive feature?
- To dos
- Universal Inbox
- Favorite folders

What Postbox has over Mail (to the best of my knowledge):

- The aforementioned more compliant IMAP implementation stuff
- Topics (although I believe OS X Mail supports labels, which are similar)
- Social network integration
- More search options
- Archive (I believe)
- Extensions
- Favorite folders
- Folder subscriptions
- Multiple identities
- Integrated calendaring (if that is your thing, I prefer iCal though)
- Better PGP support via Enigmail

These lists are not comprehensive and may be not entirely accurate, this is just off-the-top-of-my-head stuff...

Thank you so much again for all of your help with this... I feel like I'm really close to solving all of this - I'm hopefully just a few short questions away!
Cool!
( Last edited by besson3c; Jan 1, 2012 at 04:59 PM. )
     
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Jan 1, 2012, 05:26 PM
 
Two more things Thunderbird is lacking, AFAIK:

- OS X Address Book support
- OS X Lion full screen support
     
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Jan 2, 2012, 09:29 PM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
Security improvement: no, privacy: yes, performance: too hard to say, probably negligible.
Gotcha. Thanks!

How much storage do you need?
Well, I'm currently using 75% of 500 MB in my Earthlink account (I'm paying for the extra space). Not sure how that compares to other accounts...

It depends on whether these actions and criteria are supported by the server side filtration system. Your client side rules will not be automatically replicated. You'd have your client side rules, and your separate server side rules. The server doesn't know anything about your client and its configuration.
Argh... I kind of figured it might be a reach, but I was hoping that one could just replicate the actions on one side and have it automatically appear on the other. Guess I'm trying to avoid setting everything up through the sever side - and just generally find an easier process for quickly and easily filtering email from a new account into its appropriate folder.

If you are creating folders to file messages from a particular email address, you can easily create a smart folder to show you all messages from that address. I'm not sure whether smart folders can be created dynamically though based on client side rules.
I think we're talking about slightly different things here... I'm asking about an easier process of putting a new email address (e.g., from a new or unassigned email sender) into a filter for an appropriate email folder. In Mailsmith, it's a slightly tedious process of copying and pasting the email address from a message, opening the folder (mailbox), then opening one of the attached filters, and then pasting the address into the right filter, ensuring that said filter has is attached to the proper hierarchy of mailboxes, and follows the right transfer rules. If there's any glitch, the email doesn't filter...and it becomes such a laborious process that the leads to unassigned email messages piling up in my Inbox (because it's such a pain to organize things accordingly). So...I'm just wondering if there are some sort of easier shortcuts for the process in other email clients (like Postbox!). Thanks...

That's also why I wish there was a way to just filter stuff from from the client side - instead of filtering both from the client side AND the server / IMAP account side.

Maybe you could provide an example or two of what your global rules currently do that makes you cringe on replicating in a per-account basis?
I've been trying trying to think of how to best how to explain this... This is approximately how my setup is configured:

(incoming mail) [just showing numbers as messages as they come in]
(outgoing mail) [just showing numbers as messages as they go out]
(spam) [actually collects spam]
(trash) [actually collects trash]
NetworkSolutions account [For a project specific account]
INCOMING
Phase 1
Phase 2
sub-task C
sub-task D
SENT

Earthlink accound [For general email]
INCOMING [non filtered messages]
1 Personal
Family
Friends
2 Work
Project 1
Project 2
Project 3
Subproject X
Subproject Y
3 Lists
Group A
Group B
etc., etc., etc...
SENT

Gmail
INCOMING
SENT

In short, there are some situations where I want mail from NetworkSolutions account to go into folders (or mailboxes) in the Earthlink account, and vice versa, and then messages from my Gmail account go into the folders for both accounts as well as Gmail's own INCOMING folder. I suppose that some of this could be reconstructed in such a way so that Topics take over where I've been using folders / mailboxes. This is the overhaul I'm dreading because: (a) This would involve and enormous amount of copying and pasting email address in order to transfer my setup from my Mailsmith filters into Postbox Topics (unless someone has devised a easy transfer solution!); (b) I'd have to do part of this twice - for the email client side AND the IMAP server / account side (correct? See below for follow clarifying questions on this...); (c) I'm not sure I'd be able to transfer the contents of my mailboxes from Mailsmith into Postbox. Yes, I can export Mailsmith mbox's, and import them into Postbox, but I suppose that they'd just filter into Topics (once I've fully set them up), but they wouldn't be converted into the IMAP server side filtration system (when i have my Earthlink account forward messages to an IMAP server). Is that a fair assessment? and (d) I'm always a bit worried that the export / import of mbox messages could result in them getting corrupted (which has happened to me once before)...but hopefully everything will go smoothly on that end...

There is definitely some misunderstand here if you are thinking that you'd have to give up having shared folders.

You can setup as many folders as you want, decide what server the folders should reside on or whether you want that folder to exist locally (it's generally a better idea to store all mail on the server though). Your client side rules can filter messages into whatever folder you want, even if that folder resides on a totally different server from the originating message. As far as your client is concerned, the folders available to it as candidates for performing rule actions are the totality of all email accounts configured to be available within this email client.

Your server side rules would be different though, as the actions would only be able to file into folders within that account. Your server side rules know nothing about what is available in other email accounts.

Make sense?
I think so. If I understand you correctly, there is no real cross-account filter that will enable Postbox to file mail into specific folders (correct?), but that means that each account had designated folders (either locally on the clients or on the email servers) but Postbox's Topics work across accounts, correct?

I guess one of my big sources of confusion is over the role that Postbox's folders (and smart folders) play vis-a-vis Topics...

Two other quick questions... When one creates a folder system on an IMAP email account (server), does that folder system replicate from IMAP into an email client like Postbox? This is a slight variation on a previous question...and I just want to be sure I'm totally understanding the point! Regardless, I'm curious how / why one would create folder system on an IMAP email account (server) versus a local system on the email client - esp. if there's no bilateral replication. If I understand what you've described, the point is that setting up a folder system on an IMAP email account (server) is a way of doing the first pass of filtration, something like:

INBOX
-Personal
-Work
-Assorted
SENT

And then the client / local system would be focused on filtering / managing mail on a more granular level. Is that correct?

Here's another question... Does Postbox allow for any kind of hierarchical Topics structure? I would need something like that since I've got about 100 topics (or mailboxes), some of which are nested, and hidden when not needed (or just grouped to maintain a certain order). Is it possible to do something like this?

As far as the iPhone goes...it seems like Postbox's local system wouldn't have any impact on the organizational system in the iPhone's Mail, correct? I was hoping that Mail was the way to go since it would seem that I'd have one consistent email order that would be on my Mac and my iPhone. But I'm guessing that's just not in the cards yet, correct...? Just curious if there's anything you do to better coordinate your mail / organizational set up between your Postbox account and your iPhone...

What Postbox has over Thunderbird (to the best of my knowledge):

- Topics
- Social network integration
- Some search options
- I'm not sure whether Thunderbird has smart folders or not?
- I'm not sure whether Thunderbird has a mail archive feature?
- To dos
- Universal Inbox
- Favorite folders

What Postbox has over Mail (to the best of my knowledge):

- The aforementioned more compliant IMAP implementation stuff
- Topics (although I believe OS X Mail supports labels, which are similar)
- Social network integration
- More search options
- Archive (I believe)
- Extensions
- Favorite folders
- Folder subscriptions
- Multiple identities
- Integrated calendaring (if that is your thing, I prefer iCal though)
- Better PGP support via Enigmail

These lists are not comprehensive and may be not entirely accurate, this is just off-the-top-of-my-head stuff...
This is sooo great... Thanks so much for taking the time to spell all of this out for me!

Is there any chance that Postbox allows you set up specific alerts / sounds for individual folders and Topics? I can do this in Mailsmith client, and REALLY hope Postbox can do it, too. Seems it's a powerful enough app that it ought to...

Cool!
Can't say how much I really appreciate all of your help with this... I really do feel like the end is within reach! I hope (and expect) others have been benefitting from this exchange...
( Last edited by jprint714; Jan 2, 2012 at 09:39 PM. )
     
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Jan 3, 2012, 06:40 AM
 
One quick addendum... When @besson3c asked:

How much storage do you need?
I answered:
Well, I'm currently using 75% of 500 MB in my Earthlink account (I'm paying for the extra space). Not sure how that compares to other accounts...
I just realized that because I'm essentially using my Earthlink account as a POP account, the space for an IMAP version of this usage (i.e., through the Gmail "bounce" system I described earlier) could be significantly higher because of the way that IMAP (ostensibly) pairs incoming and sent emails, no?

Thanks again! Really looking forward to the next reply...which might be one of the last for this threat!
     
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Jan 4, 2012, 01:43 AM
 
Originally Posted by jprint714 View Post
Well, I'm currently using 75% of 500 MB in my Earthlink account (I'm paying for the extra space). Not sure how that compares to other accounts...
Why do you leave a copy of your messages on the POP server? I've never understood what the point of doing that is as a POP user? I'm not criticizing you, I'm just wondering if there is some aspect to this that I'm ignorant to, because I know a fair amount of people do this.

I think we're talking about slightly different things here... I'm asking about an easier process of putting a new email address (e.g., from a new or unassigned email sender) into a filter for an appropriate email folder. In Mailsmith, it's a slightly tedious process of copying and pasting the email address from a message, opening the folder (mailbox), then opening one of the attached filters, and then pasting the address into the right filter, ensuring that said filter has is attached to the proper hierarchy of mailboxes, and follows the right transfer rules. If there's any glitch, the email doesn't filter...and it becomes such a laborious process that the leads to unassigned email messages piling up in my Inbox (because it's such a pain to organize things accordingly). So...I'm just wondering if there are some sort of easier shortcuts for the process in other email clients (like Postbox!). Thanks...
With Postbox the process will be similar, although you could set up a rule to filter addresses that are not in your OS X Address Book into their old folder, and from there you could setup new folders for these addresses. You could also just attach a topic to these addresses as "new users" or something and isolate them that way. You wouldn't want new folders automatically created anyway, at your first spam attack that managed to get past your spam filters you'd have a mess of folders, so either way you are going to have to do some manual stuff.

That's also why I wish there was a way to just filter stuff from from the client side - instead of filtering both from the client side AND the server / IMAP account side.
Huh? Client and server side filters are not paired together, it's one or the other. You can filter stuff from just the client side, or just the server side. There is no way to do both at the same time.

In short, there are some situations where I want mail from NetworkSolutions account to go into folders (or mailboxes) in the Earthlink account, and vice versa, and then messages from my Gmail account go into the folders for both accounts as well as Gmail's own INCOMING folder.
It sounds like you need this extension:

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/thu...er/?src=search

I don't know if this will work in Postbox, but this will allow you to redirect messages within your filters. By redirecting a message you duplicate it while leaving all of its particulars intact, sending it to another address. You could have a second filter that would filter based on this secondary address.

(b) I'd have to do part of this twice - for the email client side AND the IMAP server / account side (correct? See below for follow clarifying questions on this...);
I'm not sure where you got this idea from. No, you won't.

(c) I'm not sure I'd be able to transfer the contents of my mailboxes from Mailsmith into Postbox. Yes, I can export Mailsmith mbox's, and import them into Postbox, but I suppose that they'd just filter into Topics (once I've fully set them up), but they wouldn't be converted into the IMAP server side filtration system (when i have my Earthlink account forward messages to an IMAP server). Is that a fair assessment?
You can run filters on a group of selected messages, they don't have to be new messages, but your mbox import job should also perserve your folder structure.

and (d) I'm always a bit worried that the export / import of mbox messages could result in them getting corrupted (which has happened to me once before)...but hopefully everything will go smoothly on that end...
If the import doesn't work this is definitely going to be much harder for you no matter what you migrate to. Why don't you try a test import right now?

I think so. If I understand you correctly, there is no real cross-account filter that will enable Postbox to file mail into specific folders (correct?), but that means that each account had designated folders (either locally on the clients or on the email servers) but Postbox's Topics work across accounts, correct?
Yes.

I guess one of my big sources of confusion is over the role that Postbox's folders (and smart folders) play vis-a-vis Topics...
I think you're making this more complex than it is. AFAIK topics are just a way for Postbox to group together arbitrary messages. The account they reside within shouldn't matter.

Two other quick questions... When one creates a folder system on an IMAP email account (server), does that folder system replicate from IMAP into an email client like Postbox?
Yes, that's the whole point of IMAP: any IMAP client will gain you access to the exact same stuff.

If I understand what you've described, the point is that setting up a folder system on an IMAP email account (server) is a way of doing the first pass of filtration, something like:

INBOX
-Personal
-Work
-Assorted
SENT

And then the client / local system would be focused on filtering / managing mail on a more granular level. Is that correct?
No. Again, I think you are making this more complex than it is.

When you create folder in an IMAP account you are doing the exact same thing you have been doing all along, only that folder resides on the server. You can create folders for high level categories such as Work, Assorted, etc. or you can create more specific granular names, it's entirely up to you.

Really, the only conceptual change going on here is that with IMAP all of your mail and mail folders are stored on the server. When you create a folder in your client, your client is creating a folder on the IMAP server using the IMAP protocol. When you delete a message with your client the client is speaking IMAP to the server telling it to delete that message, and when you move or copy a message it is speaking IMAP to the server again. Your filters simply look at messages and speak IMAP to the server the same way based on the resulting action. When you point a new IMAP client at your account it speaks IMAP to do all of this same stuff.

Make sense?

Here's another question... Does Postbox allow for any kind of hierarchical Topics structure? I would need something like that since I've got about 100 topics (or mailboxes), some of which are nested, and hidden when not needed (or just grouped to maintain a certain order). Is it possible to do something like this?
You can't do hierarchical topics, but you can do hierarchical folders (folders within folders). You can hide folders you don't need by unsubscribing to them in Thunderbird or Postbox (OS X Mail doesn't support doing that).

As far as the iPhone goes...it seems like Postbox's local system wouldn't have any impact on the organizational system in the iPhone's Mail, correct? I was hoping that Mail was the way to go since it would seem that I'd have one consistent email order that would be on my Mac and my iPhone. But I'm guessing that's just not in the cards yet, correct...? Just curious if there's anything you do to better coordinate your mail / organizational set up between your Postbox account and your iPhone...
Both your phone and Postbox would be able to access the same mail and folder structure, but the iPhone Mail client has no filtration support of any kind. The next time Postbox sees these same messages it will file them appropriately, but if you step away from your computer and monitor your mailbox with your iPhone for a while your messages won't be filtered on the iPhone until Postbox next checks for new messages. The iPhone has no spam filtering of any kind either.

Is there any chance that Postbox allows you set up specific alerts / sounds for individual folders and Topics? I can do this in Mailsmith client, and REALLY hope Postbox can do it, too. Seems it's a powerful enough app that it ought to...
Doesn't look like you can do specific alerts/sounds, unless there is an extension which does this. I don't know why somebody would want to do this, this would get annoying, especially when Postbox finds, say, 10 new messages all at once. To each their own I guess!

Can't say how much I really appreciate all of your help with this... I really do feel like the end is within reach! I hope (and expect) others have been benefitting from this exchange...
Good luck. I'd say just dive in and start kicking tires... Don't worry so much!
     
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Jan 4, 2012, 05:02 AM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
Why do you leave a copy of your messages on the POP server? I've never understood what the point of doing that is as a POP user? I'm not criticizing you, I'm just wondering if there is some aspect to this that I'm ignorant to, because I know a fair amount of people do this.
I agree: It must seem nuts. My simple answer... I've had mail clients crash in the past, and I've lost tons of archived email! So, when I have a crash, at least I'll have my old messages still archived on the server.

Also, after my emails have been automatically sorted into their mailboxes and sub mailboxes, I sometimes need to reference all of my emails to remind myself what I've received, who I need to follow up with, and who I'm waiting to hear back from. In those cases, I just refer to my online account to job my memory. My sense is that I might not need to do this any more given Postbox's layout. Is that correct?

By the way, give my answer to your question about space (and general concerns about security), my concerns about transferring from POP to IMAP, and the way in which I'm hoping to set up an IMAP account so that it forwards the POP address (i.e., retaining the to / from POP email address while bypassing it, and solely relying on the new IMAP account), what IMAP email account / server would you ultimately recommend? Still Gmail or is there something else? (This might be the most important question of the whole thread!)

Like I said, I'd prefer to a free server, but I'd certainly consider getting a paid one if there are strong recommendations to get one - esp. if there's one that would improve security and performance!

With Postbox the process will be similar, although you could set up a rule to filter addresses that are not in your OS X Address Book into their old folder, and from there you could setup new folders for these addresses. You could also just attach a topic to these addresses as "new users" or something and isolate them that way. You wouldn't want new folders automatically created anyway, at your first spam attack that managed to get past your spam filters you'd have a mess of folders, so either way you are going to have to do some manual stuff.
Sorry...I probably didn't frame my question well. I was just trying to figure out if there's a quick and easy shortcut for assigning new or unfiltered messages to mailboxes and / or Topics. That's all. The process in Mailsmith is so tedious that I put it off...and so many messages are unfiltered, and clutter everything up. Any good solutions?

Oh, and do you know if Postbox offer a "tickle" feature to remind users when to follow up w/ email correspondence? If not, are they any add ons for this or alternate solutions? Would be such a helpful feature... Thanks!

Huh? Client and server side filters are not paired together, it's one or the other. You can filter stuff from just the client side, or just the server side. There is no way to do both at the same time.
Actually, I asked because I got the impression that one could and (perhaps) should pair server side folder with client side folder, based on this articles on Postbox's site:

Subscribing to IMAP Folders : Postbox Support

It sounds like you need this extension:

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/thu...er/?src=search

I don't know if this will work in Postbox, but this will allow you to redirect messages within your filters. By redirecting a message you duplicate it while leaving all of its particulars intact, sending it to another address. You could have a second filter that would filter based on this secondary address.
Thanks so much for this. Looks like an interesting solution... Yeah, that might work. It seems like a way to work around global rules, but instead of filtering you're adding more mail, correct?

I guess another way to approach it is to generally lean more on Topics since they cut across accounts. Now I'm wondering about the real benefit of that add-on you sent me would be compared to what Topics does. Can you think of any? Just curious...

I'm not sure where you got this idea from. No, you won't.
Ha! Well...I'm still trying to wrap my head around how IMAP folder would interfacing with client-based folders. That was the source of the confusion.

You can run filters on a group of selected messages, they don't have to be new messages, but your mbox import job should also perserve your folder structure.
Well, I don't know about that. I think it will preserve the mailboxes (or folders in Postbox), but not retain the full structure. The big loss will be that they will not retain the filters. And this is going to be one huge pain to set up...all...over...again....... Ugh. I wish there was some easier solution there (e.g., bulk copying from Mailsmith filters and pasting in Postbox filters for folders and Topics). Do you know of any solutions to this by chance...? I've already asked Postbox's tech support, but so far haven't heard back from them.

I think you're making this more complex than it is. AFAIK topics are just a way for Postbox to group together arbitrary messages. The account they reside within shouldn't matter.
I hear you. I guess it stem from my greatest confusion over the role that Postbox's folders and smart folders play vis-a-vis Topics. And, as a corollary to that, how I would transfer what I've got into the Postbox configuration, and what I should change (e.g., in certain circumstances it would seem to replace folders with topics - since sometimes there are recipients who'd belong to two or more Topics, and not just fall into one folder). This is what I'm struggling to understand right now...

Yes, that's the whole point of IMAP: any IMAP client will gain you access to the exact same stuff.

No. Again, I think you are making this more complex than it is.

When you create folder in an IMAP account you are doing the exact same thing you have been doing all along, only that folder resides on the server. You can create folders for high level categories such as Work, Assorted, etc. or you can create more specific granular names, it's entirely up to you.

Really, the only conceptual change going on here is that with IMAP all of your mail and mail folders are stored on the server. When you create a folder in your client, your client is creating a folder on the IMAP server using the IMAP protocol. When you delete a message with your client the client is speaking IMAP to the server telling it to delete that message, and when you move or copy a message it is speaking IMAP to the server again. Your filters simply look at messages and speak IMAP to the server the same way based on the resulting action. When you point a new IMAP client at your account it speaks IMAP to do all of this same stuff.

Make sense?
I really thank you for detailing this for me... I'm getting there, but this goes back to our confusion over how IMAP folder would interfacing with client-based folders, and the Postbox article I sent you... I'm just trying to fully understand the bilateral relationship between setting up folders, and assigning addresses to them. I suppose this become even more complicated with the conversion I'm trying to do between my POP and soon-to-be-newly-created IMAP account. Hence the confusion! I'm not just choosing a new client, I'm trying to set up a new email account and technology...and fully understand how all of this stuff interacts. Anyway, I'm still not 100% clear on your explanation, but am earnestly trying to fully make sense of it.

You can't do hierarchical topics, but you can do hierarchical folders (folders within folders). You can hide folders you don't need by unsubscribing to them in Thunderbird or Postbox (OS X Mail doesn't support doing that).
Ok, so...folders can group broad categories, and created a definite hierarchy, and then Topics can organize things on a more granular level and exist w/in the folder-created structure? Just want to be sure I'm on target...

Both your phone and Postbox would be able to access the same mail and folder structure, but the iPhone Mail client has no filtration support of any kind. The next time Postbox sees these same messages it will file them appropriately, but if you step away from your computer and monitor your mailbox with your iPhone for a while your messages won't be filtered on the iPhone until Postbox next checks for new messages. The iPhone has no spam filtering of any kind either.
I see. Thanks! Well, sorta... Was hoping there'd be some parity there. Alas, it is not meant to be... Ah well.

Doesn't look like you can do specific alerts/sounds, unless there is an extension which does this. I don't know why somebody would want to do this, this would get annoying, especially when Postbox finds, say, 10 new messages all at once. To each their own I guess!
I'll explain: sometimes I want to focus on two projects for a particular day. As mail comes in, and I'm working on another set of app's, I'd only respond to messages that would make a particular alert sound. Another example: sometimes I'm in another part of my office, within earshot of my computer. Having different alerts helps me differentiate what's important and what's a "secondary" message (for that particular time). You dig?

Good luck. I'd say just dive in and start kicking tires... Don't worry so much!
I just cannot thank you enough for all of your help, insight in support... I think that after I hear back from you on this last round of questions, I should be kicking the tires pretty firmly! The only thing I'd need to do is...carefully plot a step by step process for putting this all together so I don't foul up the transfer... Know what I mean?

Thanks so much again...
     
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Jan 8, 2012, 08:33 PM
 
Hey again,

Just wanted to thank you guys once again for your invaluable feedback - esp. @besson3c! Here are the remaining questions I've got before I start overhauling everything...

(1) As you know from the thread, I place a premium on email security (insofar as I can mage it), and am concerned about transferring my account and messages from POP to IMAP. As part of that transfer, I'm hoping to set up my IMAP account so it interfaces (or forwards) to / from my own POP address. This will enable me to retain my old POP email address (that I want to keep) while bypassing it, and solely relying on the new IMAP account (for IMAP functionality). Based on all of this, which IMAP email account / server would you ultimately recommend? Still Gmail or is there something else?

Like I said, I'd prefer to a free server, but I'd certainly consider getting a paid one if there are strong recommendations to get one - esp. if there's one that would improve security and performance!

(2) Forgive me, but I'm still a little confused about there relationship between IMAP and client client-side folders. I understood that I would only be able to assign email addresses to IMAP folders from the server side, but I think I misunderstood. So, for example, if I set up a folder server-side IMAP folders (e.g., in Gmail), would I be able to then assign new addresses for a folder (e.g., all mail from family go into the "Family" folder) within the client side (i.e., via Postbox) that would affect the filter for the folder(s)? I want to first be sure that I understand that Postbox's filters interface with server-side filters / folders, and in order for this to occur do I have to initially set everything up on the server-side? Sorry for re-posing this questions. I'm trying to be sure I fully understand how IMAP relationships work between the server side and client side, and be sure that I seamlessly implement the new set up from the server-side and client side. As part of that transition...would I be using, in case of Gmail, Filters or Labels to determine which email goes into the appropriate folder?

(3) After my emails have been automatically sorted into their mailboxes and sub mailboxes, I sometimes need to look at all of my emails in one unified inbox to remind myself what I've received, who I need to follow up with, and who I'm waiting to hear back from. Right now, I just refer to my online account to job my memory. Does Postbox provide this kind of unified inbox, by clicking on one of the accounts listed at the top of the column?

(4) Postbox does not offer a "tickle" feature to remind users when to follow up w/ email correspondence (the way MailTags does, for example). Do you know of any kind of add ons for this or alternate solutions? Is there a way to request this kind of feature via the Mozilla forum? Would be such a helpful feature... I'm still trying to

(5) Also, Postbox doesn't allow you set up specific alerts / sounds for individual folders and / or Topics. I can do this in Mailsmith client, and had hoped Postbox could do it, too. Do you know of any kind of add ons for this or alternate solutions for this as well?

(6) Is there a quick and easy shortcut for assigning new or unfiltered messages to mailboxes and / or Topics in Postbox? The process in Mailsmith is so tedious that I put it off...and so many messages are unfiltered, and clutter everything up. Any good solutions?

(7) Does Postbox allow for any kind of hierarchical Topics structure that would enable Topics to be nested and hidden when not needed (or just grouped to maintain a certain order)?

(8) Does Postbox have the ability to mark outgoing messages as "Urgent / Important", etc?

(9) Would there be a way to export the POP's outbox via mbox (I know I can do that), and then important them into Gmail's sent mailbox (and therein Postbox)?

I might have a tiny follow up question or two, but I think that's about it! Questions 1 & 2 are clearly the most important.

Thank you again so much for all of your amazing help!
     
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Jan 9, 2012, 11:16 PM
 
Originally Posted by jprint714 View Post
Hey again,

Just wanted to thank you guys once again for your invaluable feedback - esp. @besson3c! Here are the remaining questions I've got before I start overhauling everything...

(1) As you know from the thread, I place a premium on email security (insofar as I can mage it), and am concerned about transferring my account and messages from POP to IMAP. As part of that transfer, I'm hoping to set up my IMAP account so it interfaces (or forwards) to / from my own POP address. This will enable me to retain my old POP email address (that I want to keep) while bypassing it, and solely relying on the new IMAP account (for IMAP functionality). Based on all of this, which IMAP email account / server would you ultimately recommend? Still Gmail or is there something else?

Like I said, I'd prefer to a free server, but I'd certainly consider getting a paid one if there are strong recommendations to get one - esp. if there's one that would improve security and performance!
GMail is fine if you don't mind the privacy issue. Otherwise, I'd suggest registering your own domain name and getting a hosting account somewhere for around $10/month. There are many to choose from, and most/all of the Linux based ones will set you up with access to one of Dovecot, Cyrus, or Courier IMAP most likely - your experience will be pretty much identical.

(2) Forgive me, but I'm still a little confused about there relationship between IMAP and client client-side folders. I understood that I would only be able to assign email addresses to IMAP folders from the server side, but I think I misunderstood.
You must have. All client side rules are handled by your mail client. The only way to setup server side rules is via some webpage provided to you by your email provider on their servers.

So, for example, if I set up a folder server-side IMAP folders (e.g., in Gmail), would I be able to then assign new addresses for a folder (e.g., all mail from family go into the "Family" folder) within the client side (i.e., via Postbox) that would affect the filter for the folder(s)?
Yes, you can revise the rules at any time, adding or removing addresses.

(3) After my emails have been automatically sorted into their mailboxes and sub mailboxes, I sometimes need to look at all of my emails in one unified inbox to remind myself what I've received, who I need to follow up with, and who I'm waiting to hear back from. Right now, I just refer to my online account to job my memory. Does Postbox provide this kind of unified inbox, by clicking on one of the accounts listed at the top of the column?
Yes, it provides a unified Inbox.

(4) Postbox does not offer a "tickle" feature to remind users when to follow up w/ email correspondence (the way MailTags does, for example). Do you know of any kind of add ons for this or alternate solutions? Is there a way to request this kind of feature via the Mozilla forum? Would be such a helpful feature... I'm still trying to
No. It sounds like you need a CRM? Customer relationship management - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

(5) Also, Postbox doesn't allow you set up specific alerts / sounds for individual folders and / or Topics. I can do this in Mailsmith client, and had hoped Postbox could do it, too. Do you know of any kind of add ons for this or alternate solutions for this as well?
Have you looked through the list of available extensions? I don't know of a solution for this off the top of my head.

(6) Is there a quick and easy shortcut for assigning new or unfiltered messages to mailboxes and / or Topics in Postbox? The process in Mailsmith is so tedious that I put it off...and so many messages are unfiltered, and clutter everything up. Any good solutions?
How about a rule for acting on messages that aren't in your address book?

(7) Does Postbox allow for any kind of hierarchical Topics structure that would enable Topics to be nested and hidden when not needed (or just grouped to maintain a certain order)?
I think I answered this already, no it doesn't. Why don't you just download Postbox and see this for yourself? I don't mind answering technical questions, but these are a little annoying, you could find out for yourself in less time than it takes to ask and wait for a response.

(8) Does Postbox have the ability to mark outgoing messages as "Urgent / Important", etc?
No, this is more of an Outlook thing AFAIK, a thing that is often abused and tends to annoy recipients, FWIW.

(9) Would there be a way to export the POP's outbox via mbox (I know I can do that), and then important them into Gmail's sent mailbox (and therein Postbox)?
I don't see why your Mailsmith export wouldn't allow for export of your Sent folder. Sent, Junk, Trash, Drafts, etc. folders are just folders like any other folder, they are just configured by your client to be used for these special purposes.

I might have a tiny follow up question or two, but I think that's about it! Questions 1 & 2 are clearly the most important.

Thank you again so much for all of your amazing help!
I think you should start testing Postbox and any other client that is in the running yourself. You're ready
     
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Jan 11, 2012, 03:01 AM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
Thanks...thought that seems like a much more complex than I was expecting. Tickling seems far easier, no?
     
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Jan 11, 2012, 03:09 AM
 
Originally Posted by jprint714 View Post
Thanks...thought that seems like a much more complex than I was expecting. Tickling seems far easier, no?
I guess....

Does this do what you want?

Documentation – Email – Messages | ReminderFox
     
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Jan 11, 2012, 03:14 AM
 
Originally Posted by besson3c View Post
I think I answered this already, no it doesn't. Why don't you just download Postbox and see this for yourself? I don't mind answering technical questions, but these are a little annoying, you could find out for yourself in less time than it takes to ask and wait for a response.

...

I don't see why your Mailsmith export wouldn't allow for export of your Sent folder. Sent, Junk, Trash, Drafts, etc. folders are just folders like any other folder, they are just configured by your client to be used for these special purposes.
Thanks very much for all of your tremendous help. Sorry if my questions were repetitive and sometimes annoying. As you know, I'm trying permanently forward my Earthlink POP's to a Gmail account (so I can use IMAP), and switching from Mailsmith to Postbox, and implement the following email approach:

The Simple Guide To Managing Your Email More Effectively

I mention this because for the last few years I set up an automatic filtration system for my mailboxes (or folders), so that my POP messages automatically filtered into their designated mailboxes (or folders) - each of which had specific alert sounds to help me differentiate what's important and what's a "secondary" message (for that particular time).

By using this system, and by setting up Postbox, I'd essentially be undoing that entire system that I've used for years. So, while I set up this process, I'm importing my mail from Mailsmith into Postbox and transferring my old folders and filters. To that end, I've asks questions about organization and importing to answer the following questions:

-In order to set up this process The Simple Guide To Managing Your Email More Effectively, and make it successfully interface with my old hierarchical system of folders and filter, I need to determine: (1) If I ought to store my old folders system (e.g., Personal, Work, Assorted) inside of the Archive folder (i.e., so that the folders would exist as a subset underneath the Archive folder), and; (2) That I use Gmail's labels in place of filters to maintain the previous storage system.

-By using the Asian Efficiency set up, and transferring my old system, would the newly archived emails be referred to their corresponding folders by hitting the Archive key after finishing my email? That's sort of the desired outcome I'm aiming for.

-Like I said, I use a hierarchical system of mailbox (or folders) in Mailsmith. So, if I use Gmail's label for the sorting macro folders (Personal, Work, Assorted), and would I then using Postbox's Topics for the more granular sub-folders? I've just been using "sub"-mailboxes in Mailsmith, but it seems that I'd have more flexibility through setting up Topics in their place (so that more than one contact can exist in several Topics). Then the question is...what to do with the sub-mailboxes from Mailboxes when I import them into Postbox (as well as the POP sent mail on Mailsmith).

Hence the questions on importing, hierarchy, organization, etc. Again, I'm sorry to have pelted you w/ so many of those questions...but I'd hate to set up one filer / folder system only to have to redo it all over again (in either the client or server). You did?

Thanks again... Cannot tell you how much I appreciate all of your help...
     
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Jan 11, 2012, 05:40 AM
 
Originally Posted by jprint714 View Post
-In order to set up this process The Simple Guide To Managing Your Email More Effectively, and make it successfully interface with my old hierarchical system of folders and filter, I need to determine: (1) If I ought to store my old folders system (e.g., Personal, Work, Assorted) inside of the Archive folder (i.e., so that the folders would exist as a subset underneath the Archive folder), and; (2) That I use Gmail's labels in place of filters to maintain the previous storage system.
I don't use that mail system, so I can only answer this in a technical manner.

I don't know where POP messages will be imported to, but the folder structure should be preserved, and you should be able to move messages around once the import is done. Try it with a folder or two to see for yourself, assuming Mailsmith allows you to export single folders?

I don't understand your next question here.

-By using the Asian Efficiency set up, and transferring my old system, would the newly archived emails be referred to their corresponding folders by hitting the Archive key after finishing my email? That's sort of the desired outcome I'm aiming for.
Archiving Messages : Postbox Support

-Like I said, I use a hierarchical system of mailbox (or folders) in Mailsmith. So, if I use Gmail's label for the sorting macro folders (Personal, Work, Assorted), and would I then using Postbox's Topics for the more granular sub-folders? I've just been using "sub"-mailboxes in Mailsmith, but it seems that I'd have more flexibility through setting up Topics in their place (so that more than one contact can exist in several Topics). Then the question is...what to do with the sub-mailboxes from Mailboxes when I import them into Postbox (as well as the POP sent mail on Mailsmith).
I don't know what you are asking here. Give it a try..

Hence the questions on importing, hierarchy, organization, etc. Again, I'm sorry to have pelted you w/ so many of those questions...but I'd hate to set up one filer / folder system only to have to redo it all over again (in either the client or server). You did?
Which is why I've been suggesting that you just try this with one folder or something. I don't understand why you seem so skittish about trying a test import of some of your mail. Does Mailsmith not allow partial exports? Even if it doesn't, it's pretty easy to zero out an email program so that you are back to square one with it.

I suggest doing a dry run and testing things out for yourself. You are overplanning.
     
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Jan 27, 2012, 03:05 AM
 
Ok, I've followed your advice and have been trying out Postbox for a while.

Ideally, I'd lie to first see all the message in Inbox. Then I'd like to the process the emails through replying to messages or applying a "reply" label so that they temporally transfer to a "reply" folder (and then I'd uncclikc the reply label after replying to messages). Then I'd like to click on the Archive button and transfer them to their designated folders and subfolders. For me, dragging-and-dropping message into relevant folders would be a time costuming affair w/ the volume of emails that I've got. And I've already been filtering unread messages in particular folders - thus enabling messages to automatically transfer to a folder as they come in. While that filtering-transfer system has it's advantages, I sometimes loose track of messages as I bounce between folders trying to account for new, incoming messages. That's why I'd like to employ a system that first shows new messages in the Inbox, then processes the email through the aforementioned system, and *then* press Archive (or something like it) so that processed messages will automatically transfer into their designated folder. Make sense? Is it possible to this? Thanks!
     
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Jan 27, 2012, 03:13 AM
 
I suppose, as a corollary to my previous question, I should say that I'm still trying to understand the practical difference between using labels and message filters for sorting incoming mail. How does Postbox transfer messages into the assigned folders differently through using labels versus filters? Can you also please explain the difference in how messages behave when arrive into Postbox w/ labels versus via message filters? And how would they behave differently with using the "Archive" button? Thanks!
     
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Jan 27, 2012, 07:12 PM
 
Give them a try and see what you like. Stop over analyzing features and see how they operate.
     
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Jan 27, 2012, 07:53 PM
 
jprint: it sounds like you haven't discovered the "run filters on message" option? You can do this on a whole bunch of selected messages all at once.
     
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Jan 30, 2012, 12:40 AM
 
Yup, I did - thanks! But a few quick questions about that...

It's still not totally clear to me the practical difference with using folders / subfolders within my accounts versus creating folders / subfolders within "On My Mac"...and how best to organize via Filters and / or Labels. It seems like Topics is used allows for cross-account email organization, correct?

Again, I'm trying to understand the practical difference between using labels and message filters for sorting incoming mail. And so, that's why I keep asking how Postbox transfers messages into the assigned folders differently by using labels versus filters.

I'm still getting the hand of Postbox's filter system. It's a bit different than Mailsmith (better and worse in some ways).

One small question: If I'm assigning a one folder per one email address, which radio button would you suggest that I use? "Match all messages"?

One big question (wish!)... Is there a Keyboard Shortcut or button I can use to "Manually Run" filters? Man, I hope so... I'm search for some kind of shortcut instead of having to select Tools->Run Filters on Folder. Please let me know what kind of solution you'd recommend. Thanks!

Finally, do you know why some folders (e.g., the Gmail folder) us identified with brackets and italicized? Does this signify that they have some sort of different function than other parent folders? I'm still not totally clear on how subscriptions works w/ folders...but I'm trying to figure it out.

Thanks so much again for all of your help!
     
 
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