Finally! Mail.app + gmail imap the way I like it

So for those of you who’ve tried it, you may have found that using Apple’s Mail.app with the new gmail IMAP can be a frustrating experience if you have a lot of mail. And by LOT, I mean several years of archives, since, you know, you can keep everything on gmail.

And one of the other frustrations many have had is that gmail IMAP doesn’t support subscriptions. So you can’t unsubscribe from that huge All Mail folder. If you have over 2000 messages, there’s not much you can do but cry in frustration while it syncs. On every email check.

But here’s a fix! Or at least a work-around until gmail adds proper subscription support. And I realize someone else may have figured this out, but at last check, I’m the first person to actually document it (based on my last set of google searches). On to the Instructions!

Step 1 : Log into the gmail interface
Step 2 : Rename any labels you want in Mail.app to “folders/[labelname]” – don’t worry, gmail will automatically change your filters to reflect the new names
Step 3 : Load Mail.app
Step 4 : Go to the gmail account settings
Step 5 : Select “Advanced”
Step 6 : Change the IMAP Prefix Path to “folders”
Step 7 : Save the account settings, and restart Mail.app

Ta-da! And damn, it’s fast now. I may be able to re-add the 7K messages I archived off in my attempts to shrink my gmail mailbox into something mail.app wouldn’t choke on.

About Kevin Sonney

Kevin Sonney - who, contrary to popular opinion was NOT raised by wolves - grew up in central North Carolina. He fell into the technology field by accident in 1991, when he gave up the wild and crazy lifestyle of an on-air AM radio DJ to become a mundane technical support monkey. The technology industry has never really recovered from this. Kevin has worked for such names as IBM, Red Hat, webslingerZ, and Lulu Technologies (we won't mention the ones that didn't survive the experience). He currently works as a Linux Administrator for Apptio. In his spare time he rescues stray animals and plays video games with his two sons. His wife, we're sad to say, helps him get past the really hard bits. Kevin is still not very mundane, he just got better at hiding it.
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1 Response to Finally! Mail.app + gmail imap the way I like it

  1. clubjuggler says:

    Now, that’s a nice hack! Very cool.

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