43 Folders

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Desktop or web-based email?

After getting used to Gmail 3 years ago, I swore I'd stick to web-based email. With IMAP now available, I set it up last week in Apple's Mail client on my desktop to integrate better with offline storage, emailing links, etc, and found myself changing my ways.

It wasn't easy: The initial download took forever and I had to work at getting Apple's Junk Filters to cooperate. (I.e., still work on the 2 POP accounts I check in Mail while leaving Gmail's already filtered mail alone).

I'm a convert. I used to open a browser window with three tabs: Google homepage, RSS, and Gmail and check it throughout the day. Now I'm in Mail only when I need to be, and ignore RSS and news until it occurs to me to catch up.

I did really like the Gmail interface, with conversations, shortcuts, etc, but I've been trying to make Safari my full-time browser and it wasn't playing nice. I've found a surge of productivity by sticking to the desktop.

How do others find web-based vs. desktop email to impact their productivity?

cosmic's picture

I like GMAil with IMAP

I switched to Web mail and stayed away from mail clients because I did not want to have "I left in on my machine" problems.

The "I left it on my machine" syndrome is especially dreadful for documents. Most of the documents I really need can be retrieved from my Inbox or Sent Mail. Gmail has been a blessing for someone devoted to web mail and still is my favourite web application and I have been using it well without leaving Safari (thanks to WebKit nightlies).

Nonetheless I tried to set up Mail.app and IMAP to see how it feels. I tried it first to see if Evolution could help me be better organized (nope: it's kGtd).

I think the GMail team deserves hugs, kisses and flowers for having set up an SMTP server that puts my sent messages online in the Sent Mail label. If I had not had this I would have switched back after five minutes.

I also found out how to make delete become archive on server side. It wastes some more space not being able to choose when to delete and when to archive, but I have reduced my incoming mail a lot.

After a couple of days with Mail.app I have found that letting it collect my messages makes me open the browser only when I need to for a purpose and saves me a lot of divergent behaviour.

I am considering staying with IMAP when I am on my Mac since I do not lose anything and have everything accessible with GMail from everywhere.

I have also a Yahoo Premium account and I am tempted to pipe it into GMail with pop, but I have many years of history in there and might put up with their client.

I set it up as a pop3 account with "leave mail on server" for now and once every day I access the Yahoo client to clean things up.




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