Linked by David Adams on Tue 26th May 2009 15:44 UTC
OSNews, Generic OSes In our latest "Ask OSNews" installment, a reader asks: "Do you think Apple will ever have a standalone Windows version of their email app so that us Window users can download and use it? My family and I currently use Incredimail and occasionally Thunderbird."
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Junk Mail ?
by igeeo on Tue 26th May 2009 16:09 UTC
igeeo
Member since:
2006-09-13

"Mail.app lacks the ability to report a message as spam, for example"

Mail have a "Mark as spam" button (and a spam filter, not 100% effective by the way)

Reply Score: 2

RE: Junk Mail ?
by David on Tue 26th May 2009 16:11 UTC in reply to "Junk Mail ?"
David Member since:
1997-10-01

I should say that it lacks the integration with Google Mail's "report as spam" feature. I could report it as spam using Mail.app's internal spam filtering, but that's not the solution I'm looking for.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Junk Mail ?
by Alex Forster on Wed 27th May 2009 02:28 UTC in reply to "RE: Junk Mail ?"
Alex Forster Member since:
2005-08-12

Use IMAP instead of POP, and then move any spam messages to the "spam" folder that GMail automatically subscribes you to. That's how I do it on my iPhone and Thunderbird.

Plus, IMAP is generally better because all clients will be synced with each other regarding deletes and folders and message moving, since it's all done server-side.

Edited 2009-05-27 02:32 UTC

Reply Score: 3

Bill Shooter of Bul
Member since:
2006-07-14

My friends rave about it. I can't understand why anyone would want to use it. Thunderbird seems to have better filtering/ sorting capabilities and its available on every system I have: mac, windows, linux, bsd.

I feel the authors pain, I also cut my teeth on VMS email. That was at a time where there would be strange delays in sending email. A couple of times I sent an email, and it didn't arrive until a couple weeks later. ( probably due to tube cloggage ;) )

Reply Score: 2

PowerMacX Member since:
2005-11-06

I use Mail.app at home and Thunderbird at work and the one difference that really bothers me is the way threading works in each. In Mail.app, if you have everything sorted by date, when a new email arrives to an existing thread the entire thread gets moved to the top. In Thunderbird, new emails to old threads get "buried", never to be found again... ;) (meaning: I had to disable threading in Thunderbird since revisiting every old thread to see if there are new messages is ridiculous)

Another thing I wish they improved is Thunderbird's version of Mail.app's "Smart Folders". I used Thunderbird for almost a year before discovering that they actually existed! They just happen to very "cleverly" hidden in a submenu, but are not available at all in the most obvious place: the contextual menu in the folders panel. I really hope they make them more obvious eventually, since it's a very useful feature that gets used a lot in Mail.app.

Reply Score: 2

Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

view->threads->Threads with unread

Then view->threads->Threads with unread

That limits your view to threads that contain new messages.

Smart folders are nice and they're there.

So is it just a UI thing? that seems to be the consensus of my friends that are die hard mail.app users. I just don't see that as enough of a difference to use one over the other. The open source nature and availability of a common interface over various OSes are why I don't use mail.app.

Reply Score: 2

Last sentences are just nonsense (BIG TIME)
by kragil on Tue 26th May 2009 16:24 UTC
kragil
Member since:
2006-01-04

Of course somebody will develop a new mail application. Maybe not commercially, but who cares.

For users with just one main computer an app that integrates calendar, mail, IM and social network messages and maybe tasks and todos in a new and excellent way might get a lot of users. (Think integrating web services in one app .. like Flock for messaging, calendar and tasks or something similar)

Reply Score: 3

kragil Member since:
2006-01-04

People will likely build Google Wave clients.

PS. Change is upon us.

Reply Score: 2

I doubt it'll happen either, but
by polaris20 on Tue 26th May 2009 16:26 UTC
polaris20
Member since:
2005-07-06

I'd much rather see iChat ported over. iChat is a great XMPP client, and is the only one I know of that'll connect to an internal and secured XMPP server and do video chat.

All the others are either 3rd party hosted or won't do it. I've got a SSL enabled XMPP server, and iChat video chat over it is fantastic, arguably better than Skype, and definitely better than MSN or Yahoo. Sadly it only works for OS X, and no available Windows/Linux XMPP client supports video chat compatible to iChat's method.

Reply Score: 3

Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

Yeah ichat is a nice program. It has its quirks where my buddy list will disappear completely with no way to bring it back outside of disconnecting from the account and then reconnecting. But, other than that its pretty solid. And I do prefer it to pidgin.

Reply Score: 2

Other Options
by dru_satori on Tue 26th May 2009 16:41 UTC
dru_satori
Member since:
2005-07-06

As a user of both platforms, I find Thunderbird slightly annoying, and Mail.app comfortable despite some of it's weaknesses. Unfortunately, I am with the original response that Apple will not bring Mail.app to Windows.

With that in mind there are a couple of options. One, you could subscribe to a MobileMe account and use the MobileMe web mail implementation which is as close to Mail.app in a web browser as you will find. It is quite usable on Windows.

The other option would be to install GnuStep on Windows, and then build GNUMail.app and use that. It should work, though I haven't tried it in a while, and provides much the same workflow as Mail.app does.

Reply Score: 2

I hope not.
by jrronimo on Tue 26th May 2009 16:41 UTC
jrronimo
Member since:
2006-02-28

There has been at least two incidents where I work where the quantity of user's mail in Apple Mail *breaks* Apple Mail. This link isn't quite the one I'm looking for, but it's pretty close: http://support.apple.com/kb/TS1895

Choice quote: "How large does the mailbox have to be for this to happen? With Mac OS X 10.4 or later, 2.0 GB or larger. With Mac OS X 10.3 through 10.3.9, there's not a specific size where this will always occur--the mailbox could be anywhere from a few hundred megabytes (MB) to over a gigabyte (GB) large." (emphasis added.)

Now, of course this is a note about an older version of Mail, and maybe it's been improved since then, but I'm not going to trust my mail to any client where the programmers just don't know about some sort of limit where the mail program can't handle things anymore. Seriously, isn't that something that a code review should turn up?

I know I sound angry -- it wasn't even my mail that was lost, haha -- but it just seems that this shouldn't be a problem at all, ever. The users in question had many thousands of e-mails -- upwards of 60k, meticulously organized, so making new mailboxes didn't help.

The solution, in the end, was to hand-create the directory structure that Thunderbird would be able to notice and move the user to Thunderbird. Tedious and probably better handled by a perl script, but I don't know perl, and it worked.

Stick to Thunderbird and stay away from Pegasus Mail; you'll be fine.

Reply Score: 1

RE: I hope not.
by dru_satori on Tue 26th May 2009 17:08 UTC in reply to "I hope not."
dru_satori Member since:
2005-07-06

FWIW, Thunderbird and Outlook have a similar issue on FAT32 drives, so I don't know that anyone needs to be pointing fingers :-)

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: I hope not.
by jrronimo on Tue 26th May 2009 18:06 UTC in reply to "RE: I hope not."
jrronimo Member since:
2006-02-28

Fair enough, haha. ;)

Though I would argue that a Windows box should be using NTFS and an Apple box should be using HFS+. ;)

Reply Score: 1

RE: I hope not.
by foljs on Tue 26th May 2009 18:15 UTC in reply to "I hope not."
foljs Member since:
2006-01-09

There has been at least two incidents where I work where the quantity of user's mail in Apple Mail *breaks* Apple Mail. This link isn't quite the one I'm looking for, but it's pretty close: http://support.apple.com/kb/TS1895

Choice quote: "How large does the mailbox have to be for this to happen? With Mac OS X 10.4 or later, 2.0 GB or larger. With Mac OS X 10.3 through 10.3.9, there's not a specific size where this will always occur--the mailbox could be anywhere from a few hundred megabytes (MB) to over a gigabyte (GB) large." (emphasis added.)

Now, of course this is a note about an older version of Mail, and maybe it's been improved since then, but I'm not going to trust my mail to any client where the programmers just don't know about some sort of limit where the mail program can't handle things anymore. Seriously, isn't that something that a code review should turn up?

I know I sound angry -- it wasn't even my mail that was lost, haha -- but it just seems that this shouldn't be a problem at all, ever. The users in question had many thousands of e-mails -- upwards of 60k, meticulously organized, so making new mailboxes didn't help.


First, you do understand that 32-bit filesystems (like most of those out there) had a limitation of 4GB per file. And that mbox type mailboxes store all mails in one file.

Second, you do understand that Thunderbird (and almost all clients) has exactly the same type of limitations and problems (and some of its own):

The maximum size of a folder is 4GB unless the file system limits the maximum file size to a lower value. (...) One user had a 4,195,013 KB folder before they got a error message that the folder was full.

Normally whether or not a folder is corrupted has no effect on the maximum size of the mbox file. However, in a very few cases the corruption caused Thunderbird to ignore the maximum file size, once reaching 35GB . (...)

When copying and pasting text from a word processor into a Thunderbird composition window, one user reported a limit of 908KB of text. Text beyond that limit did not appear when the text was pasted into Thunderbird. (...)

The depth of the folder hierarchy is limited by the path to last folders header. That can't exceed the operating systems maximum path length (normally 255 characters). That is not the same as what you see in the folder pane, its includes the path to the parent folder in the profile (which might be over 100 characters), and five additional characters (back slash plus .sbd) for each child folder. If you run into this limit you can display more folders by moving the profile or the accounts directory closer to the root of the drive, so that less of the total path length is wasted. There is additional overhead if any of the folders have non-ASCII characters. For example, if its a IMAP account the server would send the string as modified UTF-7, which more than doubles the number of characters.


Check: http://kb.mozillazine.org/Limits_(Thunderbird)

Second, seriously, those people where cramming 60k messages in one inbox? They should not be let near a computer (hopefully, via a court order).

Last, you do understand that mail was not lost --there was just a bug that made it appear that way. I quote from Apple:

Don't worry, all those things you had in Mail are not history. Your email messages haven't really gone anywhere, but the Mail mailbox may appear empty if you let several hundred MB of messages and attachments (or more!) pile up, regardless of how much free space is on your hard disk.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: I hope not.
by jrronimo on Tue 26th May 2009 18:31 UTC in reply to "RE: I hope not."
jrronimo Member since:
2006-02-28

I understood the mail wasn't lost -- as I said, I found a solution to the problem.

Also, these two incidents WERE using multiple mailboxes -- didn't help.

No single mbox file was near 4 GB, either. There may have been 60k messages, but, like I said, they were well organized into folders.

And, as Apple's article says: This is a problem that can happen anywhere from a few hundred megs on up. Sometimes Maill.app just... dies.

Reply Score: 2

RE: I hope not.
by riha on Wed 27th May 2009 20:38 UTC in reply to "I hope not."
riha Member since:
2006-01-24

There is quite an big difference between the older Mail.app versions and the newer ones.

The difference is that the older versions stored emails in flat "database" files while the newer ones store each mail as an separate file.

Reply Score: 1

I miss Apple Mail
by twm_bucket on Tue 26th May 2009 16:56 UTC
twm_bucket
Member since:
2008-10-09

When I switched from from my Mac to Vista, Mail.app was one thing I missed the most.

Reply Score: 1

No more Desktop Mail
by dmrio on Tue 26th May 2009 17:02 UTC
dmrio
Member since:
2005-08-26

I am pretty sure there will be an Outlook 14.

EDIT: question mark on title

Edited 2009-05-26 17:03 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE: No more Desktop Mail
by Adam S on Tue 26th May 2009 19:55 UTC in reply to "No more Desktop Mail"
Adam S Member since:
2005-04-01

It's on the torrents now, it's Outlook 2010.

Reply Score: 2

Email clients, and Apple software
by darknexus on Tue 26th May 2009 17:24 UTC
darknexus
Member since:
2008-07-15

You can pry my imap/email client combination from my cold, dead fingers. No browser interface, not even gmail, comes close to the convenience of Thunderbird/Evolution/Mail.app with an imap account. That's how I use Gmail now, and will continue to use it and if Gmail discontinues its iMap service, I'll find another provider that uses it.
However, concerning Apple's Mail.app on Windows... would you really want that? Look at iTunes for Windows versus its Mac counterpart. Look at Safari on both platforms. The Windows versions are dog slow by comparison, and use more memory than they have a right to. I like Mail.app, but given how closely it integrates with Addressbook and other features of OS X, coupled with the current results of Apple's software porting... NO way, I'll stick to Thunderbird on Windows when I'm forced to use Windows at all which is very rare, thankfully.

Reply Score: 2

parrotjoe Member since:
2005-07-06

I agree about the Apple ports to Windows and their slowness, etc. But, depending on which user base you're considering, there is sort of a hole in stand alone email clients coming up for Windows 7. There is the whole Windows Live Essentials, but it has all kinds of other stuff in it. It would be interesting if Apple did this...just another program to try and lure people to Apple.

Edited 2009-05-26 20:27 UTC

Reply Score: 1

No Way
by Adam S on Tue 26th May 2009 18:56 UTC
Adam S
Member since:
2005-04-01

No spotlight == no reason for Mail.app.

Reply Score: 2

What about us wearing tin foil hats ?
by bugjacobs on Tue 26th May 2009 20:38 UTC
bugjacobs
Member since:
2009-01-03

What about us who wear tinfoil hats and dont trust web based email ? How will we survive without REAL email apps ... Do you guys REALLY trust Google with all your mail ? REALLY ?

Reply Score: 3

fretinator Member since:
2005-07-06

Yeah, I was thinking of disconnecting all of my computers from the internet - I think I would be much saf

Reply Score: 3

David Member since:
1997-10-01

Just because you use online tools doesn't mean you can's also keep backups. http://www.gmail-backup.com/frontpage

Edited 2009-05-27 01:59 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Postbox
by witold.bolt on Tue 26th May 2009 21:10 UTC
witold.bolt
Member since:
2009-04-17

I fully agree with hat Apple will not port Mail.app to any OS, but I think new e-mail clients will appear. Look at Postbox for example - it's quite fresh. I know it's Thunderbird based - but... there is much innovation and energy in the project for now (http://www.postbox-inc.com/).

Reply Score: 1

New Mail Clients
by David on Wed 27th May 2009 02:03 UTC
David
Member since:
1997-10-01

I fully believe that people will still make email clients, particularly ones based on current open source systems. Just like people are still making terminal emulators and FTP clients and other apps that used to be in wider use but still have niche appeal. I think I used enough weasel language in my proclamation to safely say that it's "quite likely" that there will be no "major" news in the email client market.

Reply Score: 1

Two favorites
by Riba on Wed 27th May 2009 07:36 UTC
Riba
Member since:
2006-02-12

I have switched to Postbox from Mail.app in a day and never looked back. For Windows I'd recommend PocoMail, few years ago I used it extensively and enjoyed it.

Reply Score: 1

Why?
by sumone on Wed 27th May 2009 07:52 UTC
sumone
Member since:
2007-02-11

Why would Apple port full-featured well-written apps which make its OS a killer platform to a competing OS?

Reply Score: 1

RE: Why?
by rockwell on Thu 28th May 2009 14:10 UTC in reply to "Why?"
rockwell Member since:
2005-09-13

Why did Apple do so with iTunes and Safari? Think hard ... ... ... ... marketshare.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by Hae-Yu
by Hae-Yu on Wed 27th May 2009 17:41 UTC
Hae-Yu
Member since:
2006-01-12

Thanks for the information on Mozilla and Safari revenue streams. I was under the false assumption that Mozilla was supported by donations and labor. I could never understand to what purpose Apple had ported Safari. Obviously it wasn't important enough for me to look any of that up.

These backroom glimpses are interesting because software as a business has far more dimensions and opportunities than just packaging and selling a product.

Edited 2009-05-27 17:42 UTC

Reply Score: 1

locohijo
Member since:
2006-01-03