Syncronizing mails across Apple devices

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Server, Xserve, and Networking' started by technologylive, Feb 19, 2012.

  1. macrumors member


    Jun 8, 2011

    I'm trying to syncronize the mails on my Mac Mini (Lion) with an iPod Touch (iOS5) and iPad (iOS5).
    I want the folder structure to be the same on all 3 devices.
    So when you delete a mail on one device, it gets deleted on all.
    Just about everything IMAP does.
    But... My ISP doesn't support IMAP :(
    Only POP3. And since I can't change of ISP or emailadress, I need another solution.
    So, I thought maybe it's possible to:
    - Install Lion Server on the Mac Mini
    - Setup an IMAP server that fetches the mails from the POP server of my ISP and sends mails with the STMP of my ISP
    - Setup my devices to sync with my local IMAP-server and send mails with my local IMAP-server so they get in the sentbox of my local IMAP
    Is the above possible? Is there any better/easier/cheaper solution? In my opinion, it seems a little overkill but it's the only solution I found.

    Thanks, Simon
  2. macrumors Core


    Jul 24, 2006
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
  3. thread starter macrumors member


    Jun 8, 2011
    I have a 2-year contract with my ISP. And I'm in the beginning of it and I can't simply cancel it :(
    Changing emailadress is also a problem because it's about a little business and we have cards and papers with our emailadress printed on. There are also a lot of contacts who we would need to inform about the new email etc..
    I*prefer making some local changes instead of having trough the pain of informing everyone, reprinting every paper or card...
  4. macrumors Core


    Jul 24, 2006
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    I guess those are fairly legitimate reasons, but you might think about using an alternate e-mail provider (like GMail) anyways. I don't know if what you've outlined above will work, but it looks like a nightmare in terms of future support. Switching to GMail would be initially painful (but not terrible, especially if you can forward e-mails from your existing account) but it is the better long-term solution.

    I guess it also depends on how important having all your e-mails synced is. If it's a "nice to have" I don't think your above suggestion is worth it.
  5. macrumors 65816

    Jan 1, 2008
    You can install a local IMAP server on your mini (from the MacPorts collection for instance). You don't need to install Lion Server if you don't want to.

    Your mini already has the fetchmail program, it can download mail from your POP provider and hand them to the local sendmail process.

    IMAP doesn't send mail. You don't have to change your SMTP configuration.

    If you don't want to build/install/configure all this yourself, you can buy MailServe from for $25 which is a package that puts this all together for you.

  6. thread starter macrumors member


    Jun 8, 2011
    Thanks for the replies!
    Mailserve looks very good! However, Gmail is also a good solution when I don't want to do any maintenance myself.
    Yes, you're right: IMAP is receiving only.. Didn't thought about that.
    Maybe I'll just try Mailserve and see how it turns out.
    If it doesn't work that well, I just go with Gmail like suggested.
  7. macrumors 68000


    Apr 22, 2010
    I run the Lion Server like you have outlined above (I have run it for years that way, prior with SL). The bonus of the server is that you can easily run everything in one place if you want (web server, calendar server, mail server, and address book server) for your business and push all of that information to your devices like you have planned.

    It is not really that hard to set up if you have some decent knowledge and works like you would like to have done with the advantage of syncing calendars and address books (which you could also do with GMail). Not really recording it (I love mine, but it is not for everyone), just some food for though.

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