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  • #978985
    Sonja Meyer
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    Hi guys,

    I’m in a bit of a pickle. I use the default mail client on Mac to organise and send all of my emails… however, after purchasing a second Mac and attempting to keep everything in order I have only succeeded in making it messy and complicated. I use email Exchange for my business email which means anything I do with an email is altered from the server and is therefore reflected across both computers. But it doesn’t seem to always work that way? Also, I’ve been storing actioned emails in different iCloud folders, but once again…issues. Some of them only seem to show up on one computer and not the other. Don’t even get me started with iCloud and my bookmarks issue…

    Basically, I strongly dislike the default Mail program! I need another mail client that I can use online to access using both computers, and preferably something that allows me to store or backup the email database or archive on my external hard-drive (I’m not sure exactly how it works).

    Any suggestions?? Preferably something free or low-cost but I’m happy to look at options.

    Cheers,
    Sonja

    #1111242
    Divert To Mobile
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    • Total posts: 2,751
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    Hi Sonja,

    What you need is to have your email stored on a server and not on each individual device / computer. Your email programs (and devices inc phone / tablet etc) will access that server to read and send mail, contacts, calendar, notes and tasks – they will at all times (when able to connect to the mail server) be synchronised in all areas (folders / calendar / inbox / sent etc). This in the microsoft world is called exchange.

    Problem – to purchase an exchange server or exchange license and build an exchange server is costly for small business.

    Solution – you can source hosted exchange. Its about $7 per month. Alternately you can go with google’s mail service which works the same but cant do task, and notes synchronisation and thats about $5 per month (i think).

    IMO a MASSIVE benefit to use this mail technology.

    There are some other alternatives – some of them even open source but nothing will be free as your going to need a server.

    You could try using IMAP through your webhost – its sort of similar but only syncs mail (no contacts, tasks, calendar etc) but in my experience it can get buggy.

    Steve

    #1111243
    Greg_M
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    I use “Mail” (with several email addresses) synced across an iMac, a Macbook Air and a phone and agree it’s not the best email client I’ve used and can be bit opinionated in how it configures which server for which account, that said, it’s working OK now.

    The key for me was using IMAP instead of POP accounts and I haven’t had any issues yet, it costs me about $4.00 a month for up to 10 addresses and unlimited storage (Asia Pacific servers).

    As for backing up your emails to your hard drive, you probably already are if your using “Mail”… I found this out by accident recently, I’m also a Linux user and used to being able to have a “hidden files” option when looking for stuff, there was no obvious way to do this on a Mac so I started Googling.

    There are “hidden” folders and files on your hard drive, among them on a Mac is a “library” folder, in this folder there is “mail” folder and a “mail downloads” folder all your emails and downloaded attachments are in there, this I think, is replicated across all computers using the IMAP account.

    By default these folders don’t show up in “Finder” but you can expose them.

    You can also access the emails on the server using webmail.

    If you don’t have a lot of email addresses to track Google Apps for business is pretty good, then you only need to use a browser, the computer you use becomes irrelevant and they handle the back up … you can still download to a local email client as well if you want.

    #1111244
    John C.
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    Hi Sonja,

    There are two main technologies available for connecting a mail client to most mail servers – POP and IMAP.

    POP is one-way traffic only, so will never keep anything synchronized on multiple computers. POP is what is included for free by most ISPs (like Bigpond and Optus), as well as most website hosting packages.

    IMAP is a two-way communication between a client and the server, so is usually the best solution when using multiple devices to access your mail. IMAP is not usually offered by ISPs and webhosts because it requires more space on the server.

    For my own, and many of my small business customers, I now use Google Apps For Business. It gives the benefits of IMAP, which is similar to those you get from a fully fledged Exchange Server, but for a fraction of the cost and effort. For many business, with less than 10 users, it is completely free.

    You say you’re using Exchange, which is two-way, but Exchange requires Outlook for full functionality. You can use Apple Mail, and still get the two-way sync (but not some of the other benefits), but you need to ensure that you’re using IMAP and not POP – both are technically possible, although an individual Exchange administrator can decide what to allow.

    It can be a confusing topic. Have a poke around on the Google Apps website for some great explanations.

    To see whether you’re currently using POP or IMAP, have a look at the account configuration – it will clearly say which one you’re using next to the words “Account Type”.

    Hope that helps.

    Cheers,
    John

    #1111245
    Robert Gerrish
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    Here at FS, we use a mix of macs and pcs and have found Google apps to be a really good solution …it just works!

    Robert

    #1111246
    otilas
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    As already quoted by others what you need is email which is hosted that way you can access it on multiple machines and mobile devices such as smartphones, this can be a basic solution such as POP or IMAP email hosted by your ISP which doesn’t cost any additional extra as it is part of your ISP costs.

    IMO these accounts shouldn’t be used when running a business as they don’t provide the business level features that you need, these are more suited to personal use, and you want your email address to contain your own domain i.e. @mybiz.com. It gives your business a more professional image.

    However for business I would recommend either Google Apps (free if your staff is less than 10 users, but you don’t get full features) or Office 365. Both of these are targeted towards businesses and offer similar features. Pricing for Google Apps starts from $5/user/month and Office 365 is from $7.90/user/month.

    To determine which is best for your business will depend on your needs and business requirements, the Microsoft Lync and SharePoint that you get with Office 365 is a much better enterprise solution than that of Google Apps, however if mail is all you need then Google Apps would be your best solution and most cost effective.

    Ben

    #1111247
    Geronimo
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    • Total posts: 237
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    To second Robert’s response. Google apps is the answer to so many questions.

    #1111249
    TobyCouchman
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    I use Thunderbird configured with the IMAP type mail server. I think its just great. I have it checking around 14 emails accounts all configured on multiple machines – PCs, Macs and my iphone.

    Thunderbird is built by the guys that made Firefox and is free and awesome. There is a great plugin called lightening which turns syncs your calendar and to do lists like Outlook. Really cool.

    You can find it here
    http://www.mozilla.org/en-US/thunderbird/

    Best of luck
    TC

    #1111250
    Greg_M
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    Sonja Meyer, post: 123719 wrote:
    Hi guys,

    I’m in a bit of a pickle. I use the default mail client on Mac …

    Basically, I strongly dislike the default Mail program!

    After persevering with “Mail” for some time, I have to agree, it’s rubbish … but I’ve just found a new email client for Mac and iphone;

    Sparrow

    It’s light weight, fast, intuitive to use, automatically pulled in all my existing mail folders, fired up my Google apps stuff ditto, (they’ve just been bought by Google, so anything Google seems to just work), it’s also fully integrated with Dropbox and I think Cloud App, also Facebook if your into it.

    It also seamlessly added my other IMAP accounts without the ongoing server conflict issues I was having with “Mail”.

    You can install from the Appstore, or off their site, there’s a free version or paid (about $10.00 au), been using it for a few days now and really like it, even gives you a cool little flash message on screen with incoming mail.

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