Archive folder in Mac Mail?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by AbingdonBod, Aug 22, 2014.

  1. AbingdonBod macrumors newbie

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    Aug 22, 2014
    Location:
    Oxfordshire, UK
    #1
    Would someone kindly explain to me the purpose of the Archive folder in the Mail App on my new MacBook Pro? Is it a kind of backup?

    I didn't create the archive folder, or knowingly add any emails to it, but somehow it has ended up it over 5000 emails. How does this happen and why? The emails I've looked at in the Archive folder appear to be copies of what exist elsewhere in the InBox, Sent folders etc.

    Sorry for the newbie question. I'm a new mac user of about a week.
     
  2. dyn macrumors 68030

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    #2
    It is not a backup nor meant to be one. The archive option is what it says it is: you archive mail with it aka you file it away as you would with a letter (or simply put: you store things you no longer need but you don't want to throw away just yet in an archive). You could also set up a folder structure and file it in one of those if you want to give it more meaning.
     
  3. AbingdonBod thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #3
    Eeerrr .... yeah. That's roughly how I would define an archive. But that's not my question. This folder has created itself and, as far as I can tell, populates itself with emails according to its own criteria. Why is it there? What does it do that keeping all these emails in my inbox, sent folder and wherever doesn't do for me? Sorry, I just don't see the point of it. If I wanted to archive emails surely I would create a folder and transfer those I wanted to into it. Can I safely delete the archive folder?
     
  4. illusionx macrumors 6502

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    #4
    Are you using gmail? Gmail automatically store all mail that you "delete" in the archive folder.
     
  5. AbingdonBod thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #5
    No, I'm not. I got my MacBook Pro about two weeks ago. I transferred a lot of emails in from four existing email accounts with my ISP on a PC running Windows XP.

    I take it then that such an Archive Folder is not normally created by the Mail App on a Mac?
     
  6. ApfelKuchen macrumors 68030

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    Between the coasts
    #6
    An Archive is not created by default by OS X Mail - it'd be created by one or more of the email accounts you use, if those accounts already have an Archive folder (you could see that by signing into the webmail interface for those accounts).

    If you're using an iMAP email account (whether Gmail, Yahoo, iCloud, etc.), you will see whatever folders are setup on the IMAP server, including defaults like Archive.

    To see exactly what's being archived, click the triangle to the left of the Archive icon. That should reveal the specific account(s) that have archives.
     
  7. AbingdonBod thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Aug 22, 2014
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    Oxfordshire, UK
    #7
    ApfelKuchen - Thanks. That's just the sort of information I was seeking.

    Yes, my Archive folder contains all the emails - sent, received and in sub-folders - within four of my accounts with an ISP (Virgin Media), which uses the GMail system I believe. I can't actually log into the GMail version of these accounts. It just bounces me off to my ISP. But as you say, each of these accounts probably has an Archive folder. Interestingly, although I can log into my emails using the web in Safari - via my ISP's site - I still don't see an Archive folder. Perhaps it's hidden?

    I think I will just leave it. It's not doing any harm. I suspect that even if I could delete the folder, it would return?

    Thanks for your help.
     
  8. illusionx macrumors 6502

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    Brossard, QC
    #8
    Archive folder in Mac Mail?

    Gmail systems list the archive folder in "all mail" when using the web client.

    If you delete the folder, it would defeat the purpose of using gmail. Which is keep all your mail forever.
     
  9. AbingdonBod thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Aug 22, 2014
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    Oxfordshire, UK
    #9
    OK. I see an All Mail folder when I access my email accounts via the web. I wondered whether that was equivalent.

    Sorry if these questions seem naive. I'm used to using Outlook Express and POP which doesn't show separate accounts. You just see an Inbox, Outbox, Sent, Drafts and Deleted Emails. It just lumps everything together irrespective of how many email accounts you have.

    I converted all my accounts to IMAP when I did the transition to this new MacBook.
     
  10. AbingdonBod thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Aug 22, 2014
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    #10
    Yes, I see that. Having an automatic backup on the server is a good idea. IMAP is quite dangerous I suppose in enabling you to wipe any or all emails from any device that accesses the account.

    I used to backup my POP emails for the same reason. But at least with POP if you deleted an important email on one device you probably still had it in another one.

    What's going to happen when all these IMAP accounts get full? Or won't they? Will service providers keep upping the space available as time goes by and memory gets cheaper?
     
  11. illusionx macrumors 6502

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    #11
    Gmail accounts never get full. I think it's at some 27gb of space right now, it is enough to store a life time of emails. you will lose your account if you switch ISP though. that's why I never use it and stick with an email address that can follow me for life. (I've had my hotmail account since 97).

    Also, the "archive folder" does not equate a back up. If you have anything important that you need a double of, do copy them to another folder or a local folder.

    ----------

    Btw, the email account from your ISP which resides inside gmail are managed by google. So your storage grows with google.

    Google make enough money to give a large amount of storage to users for free.
     
  12. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

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    California
    #12
    Just so I understand, can you not see this ISP account at Gmail.com?

    The default setting for Gmail IMAP is set so when you delete a message it goes to the archive folder. If you have access to the gmail.com settings, you can change that behavior and make deleted messages go to the trash if you want.

    [​IMG]
     
  13. AbingdonBod thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Aug 22, 2014
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    #13
    Thanks, Weaselboy. I might do that.

    Apparently not. When I try I briefly get a page saying:

    "Your Google Account is managed by Virgin Media
    In a moment you'll be sent there to finish signing in."
     
  14. illusionx macrumors 6502

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    Jul 4, 2014
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    #14
    You should still have access to the all the gmail settings from the virgin portal.
     

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