Any mail app that doesn't take up space?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by dastinger, Apr 21, 2015.

  1. dastinger macrumors 6502a

    dastinger

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2012
    #1
    Hey,

    I've used Apple Mail, Sparrow and now I'm using Airmail. Loved each one of them but all had the issue where, after some time, their data folder took so much space that it started to make a difference on my SSD. Is there any (good) mail app that works purely online and doesn't take any or almost no space?

    Thanks
     
  2. tdhurst macrumors 68040

    tdhurst

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    #2
    Uh...

    Yes, just use the webmail interface from something like yahoo, gmail, or iCloud.

    The point of most desktop mail apps is to have offline access, which means you'll have to store everything locally.
     
  3. dyt1983, Apr 21, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2015

    dyt1983 macrumors 65816

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    #3
    edit: to remove personally identifying information not relevant to thread.
     
  4. dastinger thread starter macrumors 6502a

    dastinger

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    #4
    Thank you for your answer but no, the point of most desktop mail apps is not to use the web interface on the browser and having an alarm + notification each time you receive mail. Managing mail with multiple addresses is also way better as it is formatting text and dealing with attachments.

    I really don't care if my mail is accessible offline and that's why I'd love to have all I have mentioned above without losing GB of space on a small SSD.





    Thank you. I've used Thunderbird as well on my early Mac days and completely forgot about it. Maybe there's also an option for maximum offline storage on Airmail and I didn't find it. I'll have a look and, in case I don't find it, I'll make the switch.
     
  5. ApfelKuchen macrumors 68030

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    #5
    "The point..." means different things to different people.

    While it may not be important to everyone, offline access is factored into most cloud-connected apps (IMAP email, the protocol used by just about every mail provider these days, is a cloud-based system). Mobile use has to be assumed these days, and an internet connection can't always be assumed. Anyone whose work has been brought to a screeching halt by the lack of web access (or isn't willing to be held hostage to high airport/inflight wifi charges) is likely to appreciate this.

    If you use iCloud on Mac, all cloud content will be cached on the local drive as well (iCloud Photo Library includes a setting to manage this). Ditto if you use the Dropbox app on Mac, and many others. Due to the even smaller storage space available for mobile devices, developers have been adopting caching systems that are more aware of available storage and will remove infrequently-accessed items from the cache if necessary. These techniques are finding their way to Mac and Windows apps as well.

    This goes back to the days of AOL's heyday, when it wasn't just a matter of being off-grid, but of saving the cost of per-minute dial-up charges (sign on, collect mail, sign off, reply offline, sign back on to send). While the cost of connecting has dropped dramatically, the more we become dependent on the cloud, the more likely the temporary lack of a connection can create problems.
     
  6. dastinger thread starter macrumors 6502a

    dastinger

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    #6
    I totally agree with you and you are right in saying that "the point" means different things to different people. We (me and tdhurst) both used the expression wrongly.

    Bottom line is, I'd like a mail app that doesn't take space because having my mail available when offline is not a priority to me. And while I understand that cloud based apps are storing more and more information on our drives from day to day this can be awful to users who have a small SSD which is my case.

    Anyway, we are way off topic now but thank you for your post.
     
  7. dyt1983, Apr 21, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2015

    dyt1983 macrumors 65816

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    #7
    edit: to remove personally identifying information not relevant to thread.
     
  8. dastinger thread starter macrumors 6502a

    dastinger

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    #8
    Thank you! I'll definitely give it a shot again and I guess it's exactly what I am looking for :)
     
  9. BrianBaughn macrumors 601

    BrianBaughn

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    #9
    From what I've seen there are at least a few online email clients with support for multiple accounts. I wouldn't be able to comment on any of them.
     
  10. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

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    #10
    In Airmail preferences you can turn off message attachments and message bodies so they don't download unless you want them, you can also limit the headers to the last month only. That should give you a miniscule amount of space taken up. This can be set per account.

    In addition to Thinderbird (which I don't think is being developed any more last time I looked, there is Postbox which is the commercial (and currently developed) version.

    I need to sync with an Exchange environment, I found Airmail better at that for me.
     
  11. dyt1983, Apr 22, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2015

    dyt1983 macrumors 65816

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    #11
    edit: to remove personally identifying information not relevant to thread.
     
  12. dianeoforegon macrumors 6502a

    dianeoforegon

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    #12
  13. dastinger thread starter macrumors 6502a

    dastinger

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    #13
    Thank you. I will take a look at that in Airmail since I really enjoyed the interface and would like to keep it if possible.

    Hum, that looks interesting but I wish they had a trial of some sort so I knew how it worked exactly. Going to search for video reviews and make a decision.

    Thank you all for your help, guys!
     
  14. BrianBaughn macrumors 601

    BrianBaughn

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    #14
    I'd be interested to know what the hard drive space savings are for the various solutions posted here.
     
  15. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

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    #15
    Depends how much mail you have ;)

    Webapps take zero (so viewing Gmail via Safari etc), additional disk space, nothing is stored outside the normal browser cache.

    Apps like Airmal set to not download message bodies or attachments will locally store the message headers so a few 10's of MB - but depends on how many emails you have.

    The saving can be in the GB if you have a large mailbox with large attachments...
     
  16. dastinger thread starter macrumors 6502a

    dastinger

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    Mar 18, 2012
    #16
    After having Airmail installed for about two months with 3 addresses I had 3GB of space being used. Not too much but if it grew exponentially, it would be a big issue on a 256GB SSD with two different OS.
     
  17. BrianBaughn macrumors 601

    BrianBaughn

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    #17
    I was thinking more of specific amounts saved by specific apps...as in, "I'm using MiserMail which is taking up 1.2GB of space for a Gmail account that takes up 7.2GB in Mac Mail."
     
  18. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

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    #18
    But anyone elses number will be pretty meaningless to you, what you will save will depend on the amount of mail you have and its mix and size of any attachments.

    The apps save space by not downloading elements of the mail (body and attachments), not by applying anything comparable app-to-app.

    I could quote you 100GB, someone else using the same app could quote 10GB saved, that has no meaning to you if you have 3 emails with no attachments, you will save nearly nothing.

    Best to just download each app, have it download you email headers and see how much space is used vs the app you have with downloading bodies and attachments.
     
  19. glenthompson macrumors 68000

    glenthompson

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    #19
    Apple mail has the option to not download attachments which goes a long way in reducing the space needed.

    The best approach is to stop using your mail server as a filing system. Few e-mails need to be kept in that format and can be saved elsewhere if needed for archiving. I'm a strong proponent of Inbox Zero. I currently have 1 message in my inbox and less than 100 on my mail account. About 20 of those are items that need to be filed elsewhere. Lest you think I don't get many e-mails, I typically get 100-150 per day.
     
  20. BrianBaughn macrumors 601

    BrianBaughn

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    #20
    I understand that. I'm an Apple Consultant. I'm just wondering if there's anything new on the subject...hence my interest. I'm thinking things haven't changed since my last experiments on this subject. I think the OP is probably going to be disappointed.
     

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