Gmail’s IMAP abutment roll-out this anniversary had nerds all atwitter about the achievability of synchronized email admission beyond devices, computers, and clients. IMAP is far aloft to approved old POP for attractive your letters and advancement your binder annual whether you’re on your iPhone, appointment or home computer. If IMAP’s got you analytical but you’re not abiding what desktop appliance to use with Gmail, accede the extensible, fast, cross-platform and chargeless Mozilla Thunderbird, our admired Firefox’s little sibling. Here’s how to get the abounding Gmail acquaintance in Thunderbird with IMAP.
As arise backward aftermost night, some Gmail users are seeing IMAP abutment arise in the settings area…
Internet Bulletin Admission Protocol (Wikipedia page) enables email programs to apprehend letters stored on the server. Unlike POP, with IMAP it’s as if you’re browsing a arrangement drive of files on a alien server with an open, alive affiliation to that server; whenever you accessible a binder or appearance a message, it’s displayed from that server live. IMAP maintains a affiliated affiliation with your server and updates real-time.
POP downloads and copies new letters to your bounded inbox. With POP you can download already and abstract from the server, which is its one advantage. But you cannot download letters that accept already been archived and labeled in Gmail via POP, and your applicant has to poll the server to get new messages. With POP access, if you move a bulletin to a binder or brilliant it in your desktop client, that change is not reflected in Gmail and your letters get out of sync. Any rules or mail filters you set up on one apparatus with a POP applicant accept to be set up and reprocessed with a beginning download on all your added machines.
Think of POP as artful files from a server to your computer and alive with them on your adamantine drive. Anticipate of IMAP as aing to a alien server and alive with the files adored there.
We’re artlessly biased arise accessible antecedent software actuality at Lifehacker, but there are acceptable affidavit why Thunderbird is the best desktop applicant best out there for Gmail IMAP access:
First things first. Already you’re attractive your email via IMAP with Thunderbird (here’s Google’s tutorial on how to do that), there are two settings you’ll appetite to set manually: specifically, breadth Thunderbird should abundance beatific letters and drafts. In your IMAP annual settings, the Copies & Folders area, be abiding to change the absence area for Beatific and Drafts to [Gmail]/Sent Mail and [Gmail]/Drafts respectively, as shown.
Even afterwards you do this, you’ll apprehension a few aberrant labels in your Gmail account: [Imap]/Sent, [Imap]/Drafts and [Imap]/Trash. These are Thunderbird’s absence Sent, Drafts, and Debris folders. Already you accomplish the change to your annual settings, you can annul those labels in Gmail and they won’t get regenerated. (Note: except for [Imap]/Trash, which I can’t rid myself of entirely, back T-bird seems affiliated to it. Bueller? Update: see the aing area for the band-aid to the [Imap]/Trash label.)
Reader Vanl explains how to set T-bird’s debris binder correctly, which involves some Thunderbird agreement editing. Here’s how:
Gmail’s IMAP abutment roll-out this anniversary had nerds all atwitter about the achievability of…
UPDATE 2, Nov 8th: A Gmail IMAP architect writes in with added advice about the implications of the Debris tweak:
Using the [Gmail]/Trash as your Debris binder can advance to some abrupt issues, and the Gmail aggregation doesn’t acclaim it.
Our recommended applicant settings folio doesn’t go far abundant to explain why this can be an issue. The botheration is that gmail alone keeps a distinct archetype of a bulletin with assorted labels. If you administer the Debris characterization by agreement the bulletin in the [Gmail]/Trash folder, you are cogent GMail to aish the bulletin from all labels, and GMail will additionally annul the bulletin in 30 days.
If for some acumen you actually apprehend the bulletin to be in assorted folders, and you annul it from one cerebration that alone removes it from that folder, if you set your Debris to [Gmail]/Trash, you will afield aish the bulletin from both folders.
So, accept you accept a clarify set up to accumulate a archetype of every bulletin in addition label/folder, and you commonly aloof go through your inbox in Thunderbird deleting every message, alive you accept a archetype adored in addition folder, you will be actually deleting both copies. Or maybe you anticipate you are relying on the automated “second copy” that Gmail has in the “[Gmail]/All Mail” folder: again, affective a bulletin to the Debris will aish it from there as well.
Or, conceivably you afield “copied” a bulletin to addition folder, instead of “moving” it, so you again “delete” the archetype that was larboard behind: this will actually annul the bulletin from both places.
In short: If you’re application Gmail’s Debris folder, apprehend that all copies of any bulletin you put there will be deleted, not aloof the one you move there.
Before we move into Thunderbird tweaks and add-ons, analysis out this blueprint of what accomplishments in your applicant will do in web-based Gmail, address of Google.
Note that Gmail labels do NOT map to Thunderbird’s tags. Each characterization is represented by an old academy binder in Thunderbird. If a bulletin has added than one label, it will arise in assorted folders, which is actual cool. To characterization a bulletin in Thunderbird, move it to the adapted folder. To actualize a new characterization in Gmail, actualize a new binder in Thunderbird, and so forth.
Windows/Mac/Linux: The acceptable association at Mozilla alone the latest adaptation 2.0 of the Thunderbird…
If you move a bulletin into a subfolder of a binder in Thunderbird, over in web-based Gmail you’ll see a characterization called ancestor folder/child folder. Conversely, any labels with avant-garde slashes in them will actualize subfolders in T-bird. You Folders4Gmail users in Bigger Gmail may actually adulation this. (Note: the Folders4Gmail calligraphy has been adapted to abutment the IMAP avant-garde carve as able-bodied as a backslash; Bigger Gmail to chase actual soon. Thanks, Sean!)
Click to viewGmail’s good, but it could be better. We’ve featured several Greasemonkey…
Along the aforementioned curve as ambience the Beatific and Drafts folders to adjust above, if you accredit Thunderbird’s Clutter filter, accomplish abiding it moves clutter mail to Gmail’s Spam binder so that Gmail marks it as spam as well. That way the bird’s adaptive clarify can advise Gmail as it learns. Here’s that setting:
Thunderbird has a few appearance congenital or calmly added that are agnate or bout Gmail web-based functionality in a affluent desktop app. Like:
Threaded chat view. Ok, so it’s not absolutely as nice as Gmail’s web-based implementation, but you can appearance letters by thread. Bang on the tiny “display bulletin threads” on to see replies in a hierarchical adjustment in Thunderbird. Image by Digg user D14BL0. Actuality are the results:
Collapse the cilia by hitting the – sign, and new replies to a bulletin won’t actualize a accomplished new band in the list.
There are added Thunderbird keyboard adjustment extensions (I’m additionally fractional to TB Quick Move) but annihilation as affected as Gmail Macros on the web ancillary for you Greasemonkey or Bigger Gmail users. Let us apperceive if you’ve got a bigger alternative.
Getting your Gmail in Thunderbird via IMAP agency you get T-bird-specific beatitude too, like:
You can additionally automatically baddest the absolute adduce for accessible chopping up in your reply, and set whether your signature appears aloft or beneath your quote.
I’ve alone had bound time with the amazing aggregate of IMAP, Gmail, and Thunderbird, so I’m abiding I absent some things here. How are you application T-bird/Gmail/IMAP? Let us apperceive in the comments.
And for added means to enhance Thunderbird, analysis out our ahead acquaint eight analgesic Thunderbird extensions.
Update: Wired News letters that Gmail’s IMAP abutment isn’t abounding to spec; Google says Gmail’s IMAP accomplishing is “fairly complete” and lists what IMAP appearance aren’t supported.
Gina Trapani, the editor of Lifehacker, is captivated to accept the Holy Email Trinity of Thunderbird, IMAP and Gmail calm at last. Her account feature, Geek to Live, appears every Friday on Lifehacker. Subscribe to the Geek to Alive augment to get new installments in your newsreader.
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