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Mac Mail Details (Jan. 2007)

Our new server is fast and robust enough to work well the Mac OS X Mail.app program and with all sent and received mail stored on the server. Due to the various Mail.app configurations suggested by ITS at different times in the past, we suggest that all Mac Mail users check their mail settings, and, if necessary, move saved mail from their local Macs to the server.

Synopsis

The recommended setup is to use the IMAP protocol and keep all Draft, Sent, Junk, and Trash mail in mailboxes on the server. Enable SSL for incoming and outgoing mail, with Port 993 for incoming mail and Port 465 for outgoing mail. Make certain that the IMAP Path Prefix: (in Mail > Preferences... : Accounts : Advanced) is blank rather than "INBOX".

Next, select your top-level Sent, Drafts, and Trash mailboxes on the server, and designate their functions by using Mail's Mailbox > Use this mailbox for > menu for each mailbox. (Also, if you previously stored junk messages on the server in an Inbox>Junk folder, create a new Junk folder at the top level, and designate this new mailbox for Junk.)

Finally, look for any other locations that have saved mail, and move them to the server. Mail from any previous "Sent" or "Sent Messages" folders on the server or your mac can be dragged into to the new Sent folder, and then the old folders deleted. Any previous "Trash" or "Deleted Messages" folders can be deleted.

Folders you have created on the server as sub-folders of the Inbox can be dragged out to the top level

Checking Your Current Mail Settings

NOTE: These specific instructions are based on the Mail.app from OS X 10.4 Tiger. Some details vary for older versions, but hopefully the gist is the same.

To see if you are using the POP protocol or the IMAP protocol:

  • Choose the Mail>Preferences... menu item, and then click the Accounts icon in the row at the top of the dialog window that appears.

The panel at the left of this window should show an At-Sign icon and a name for every email account that you have configured in Mail. Find your Simon's Rock mail account in the list. (It may be the only one, if you don't chekc other mail from work). Under each account name is the account type, either "POP" or "IMAP", or possibly ".Mac" if you have an Apple email account.

  • For each account, you can set the name in the Description field at the top center of the panel. This is the label that Mac Mail will use when ever it refers to this account, so set it to a name that makes it clear to you which account it is referring to. For example, if you check mail for your personal and your Simon's Rock accounts, you might name them "Home email" and "SR email".
  • If you are using POP, you merely need to confirm your server SSL settings, as all of your mail is on your Mac's hard disk. (However, you should also contact ITS about upgrading to IMAP, which gives better backups, and better web mail functionality).
  • If you have IMAP, you'll need to check your server SSL settings, and also check the locations of your "special" mailboxes and any mailboxes you have created, and possibly move mail from your local Mac's disk to the server.

Outgoing Mail Server Settings:

These are the same for all users, POP and IMAP

Look in the lower portion of the Mail>Preferences... dialog on the Accounts page.

  • First, click on your Simon's Rock account in the Accounts list at left (it may be the only item in this list),
  • Then open the Outgoing Mail Server (SMTP) list and confirm that you have an entry for mail.simons-rock.edu.
  • Select this item in the list if it is not already selected. (Note that your simons-rock item entry may have your account name at the end).
  • Next, click the Server Settings... button to open a dialog window with the settings for this mail server. In this dialog, confirm the following settings (and change them if they are not set this way):
    1. The Server Port is set to 465
    2. The box Use Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) is checked.
    3. The Authentication is set to Password.
    4. The User name and Password fields have your Simon's Rock user name and password.
    5. Finally, click OK to close the server settings dialog.

POP Incoming Mail and Folder Settings

To confirm that you are using SSL when you read mail from the server:

  • If it is not already open, choose the Mail>Preferences... menu item, and then click the Accounts icon in the row at the top of the dialog window that appears.
  • Make sure your Simon's Rock account is selected in the Accounts list at the left of the window.
  • Click the Advanced button at the upper-right of the Accounts panel.
  • Confirm the following settings (and change them if they are not set this way):
    • The box Use SSL is checked.
    • Port: is 995.
    • Authentication: is Password.
  • Then close the Accounts Preferences panel, clicking Save to save any changes if necessary.
  • Your mail should now be working with the new server. Since all of your folders are on your Mac, the changes to the server should not have effected them.

  • Next, contact ITS about changing your mail settings from POP to IMAP! In the mean time, be sure you have recently backed-up any email you would be upset to lose.

IMAP Incoming Mail and Folder Settings

To confirm that you are using SSL when you read mail from the server:

  • If it is not already open, choose the Mail>Preferences... menu item, and then click the Accounts icon in the row at the top of the dialog window that appears.
  • Make sure your Simon's Rock account is selected in the Accounts list at the left of the window.
  • Click the Advanced button at the upper-right of the Accounts panel.
  • Confirm the following settings (and change them if they are not set this way):
    • IMAP Path Prefix: is blank. (That is, the entry box is empty. Do not enter the word "blank"!)
    • The box Use SSL is checked.
    • Port: is 993.
    • Authentication: is Password.

  • Now set Mail to keep everything on the server:
    1. Click the Mailbox Behaviors button at the top center of the Accounts panel.
    2. Check all items in this list to keep Drafts, Sent, Junk, and Trash in their mailboxes on the server.
    3. Under Junk, change the drop down menu labeled Delete junk messages when: from Never to One week old (or less, if you will check your Junk folder often).
  • If you made any changes to the Account settings, you will be prompted to save them when you close this panel. Click Save if prompted.
  • Turn on Mail's junk mail filtering:
    1. Click Junk Mail in the row of icons at the top of the Mail > Preferences... window.
    2. Check the checkbox Enable junk mail filtering.
    3. In the section, When junk mail arrives:, select Move it to the Junk mailbox (Automatic).
    4. Now close the preferences window.

  • Find your new Simon's Rock mailboxes, which will be blue folders in the Mailbox list at the left of the message window. If you have some mailboxes on your mac, or from another account, your Simon's Rock mailboxes will be grouped under a gray @ icon labeled with your new account's name, e.g. @ Simon's Rock email.
  • Set the special function for the standard mailboxes:
    1. Click on your Simon's Rock Sent mailbox in the mailbox list.
    2. In the Mailboxes menu, choose Use this mailbox for > Sent.
    3. The Sent mailbox will disappear from the mailbox list and be moved to the Sent icon at the top of the list.
    4. Repeat these steps for the Trash and Drafts mailboxes, choosing the corresponding items in the Use this mailbox for > menu. Now all of these mailboxes should be shown with special icons at the top of the list, rather than as blue folders.

General Hints for Cleaning Up Mac Mail IMAP Accounts

Note for Multiple Accounts: If your Mail program is set to handle more than one email account (e.g. Simon's Rock mail, and mail from a personal ISP) then each of the special mailbox icons will have a drop-down list with the names of each account. When the instructions below refer to, e.g. your Sent mailbox, be sure to select the sub-mailbox of Sent for your Simon's Rock account.

Step A: Sent, Trash, and Drafts

  • The goal here is to move any saved sent mail into your Sent box on the server.
    • Look for any other "Sent Messages" folders on your mac or on the server, and drag their contents to the sent folder on the server. Delete any old empty folders after you have emptied them.
  • Moving Messages: You can select messages in one mailbox and drag them to another mailbox. If you have many messages, move at most about 500 messages at a time in a single click-and-drag operation.
  • Moving Mailboxes: You can click-and-drag mailboxes, or several mailboxes at a time, from your mac to the server, as long as the mailboxes you are moving do not contain any other mailboxes. (Mailboxes with others inside will be marked with a black triangle; click the triangle to see the list of inner folders.) To move these nested mailboxes, first create the parent mailbox on the server, and then drag the sub-folders into it.

STEP 2. After that all works, tackle any mailbox folders used to sort and store old mail. Get everything on the server (if not too tedious) and confirm that Webmail can see the same structure as Mac Mail.