Mac Mail Imports EVERYTHING from my Gmail account

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by TheRealMsMo, Feb 13, 2011.

  1. TheRealMsMo macrumors newbie

    Feb 13, 2011
    Hey Folks,
    So I've been fooling around with the Mail program and I am not impressed.
    I set it up so it would import my mail from my gmail account. The problem is it's importing emails from a year ago that I deleted or emails that I sent and just dumps everything, which is a couple hundred emails in the inbox.

    Is there a way to set it up so that it only imports new emails from just my gmail inbox?

    If not is there a way to just uninstall the program since it's just taking up space?
  2. wrldwzrd89 macrumors G5


    Jun 6, 2003
    Solon, OH
    Mail is not the greatest client in the world when it comes to interacting with GMail - it has several shortcomings, as you (and I) have discovered. Unfortunately, I don't know of a workaround other than to use a different client just for GMail.
  3. miles01110 macrumors Core


    Jul 24, 2006
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    Um, this behavior has nothing to do with Mail.

    I assume your GMail account is an IMAP account and that you keep all your messages in the "Inbox" folder in the web interface. Since IMAP works by holding your messages on the server until the client downloads them, all of the messages in the Inbox folder are synced with Mail once you set it up. In order to get only "new" messages in Mail, move all of the "old" messages to a different folder or archive them to remove them from the Inbox.

    Removing Mail "to save space" is pretty pointless. The amount of space it takes up is miniscule compared to the size of your hard drive.
  4. karsten macrumors 6502a


    Sep 3, 2010
    this should fix it. also under the gmail heading under mailboxes, click on each one and go to Mailbox/Use this mailbox for-> and match up inbox, sent, junk etc. if you haven't done so already. mail works great with gmail once you get it set up right
  5. TheRealMsMo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 13, 2011

    Is this on the Mac Mail end or the Gmail end, because I'm not seeing it.
    In Mail, Under the *Mailboxes* heading I don't have anything that says Gmail, just Inbox.

    I also have it set up as through POP for the importing, I don't know if that matters.

    And miles01110 you didn't read my post. It's importing everything; Trash, Archived, Sent, which is all stuff that is NOT in my Gmail Inbox.
    I don't care if it imports "old" stuff from the inbox but I don't need to see the 15 emails I sent to my editor a year ago, and his responses I deleted.
  6. miles01110 macrumors Core


    Jul 24, 2006
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    Actually I did, but I was specifically responding to the misinformed person that thought the behavior you were seeing was specific to Mail. It is not.
  7. GGJstudios, Feb 13, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2011

    GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    miles01110 understood your post perfectly. The way IMAP works, regardless of the mail app you use, is to download everything initially, so what's on your computer is a mirror of what's on your mail server. After the initial download, it will sync changes between your computer and the mail server. If you don't want the trash from your Gmail on your computer, empty your trash in Gmail before you sync with Mail.

    How-to: Proper Gmail IMAP for iPhone & Apple Mail
  8. karsten macrumors 6502a


    Sep 3, 2010
    let's get you set up with IMAP instead of POP.

    in mail:
    mail/preferences/accounts, delete your account listed, then click + to add new one
    type in your email and hit create
    on mine it automatically creates a new gmail account with default IMAP settings
    go to mail/preferences/accounts/mailbox behaviors and make sure all are checked

    then you should see on the left of the program mailboxes, rss, then gmail/[Gmail]/All Mail, Spam, Starred, Inbox, etc.

    click on inbox under this gmail heading, then do mailbox/use this mailbox for->inbox.

    then do the same for trash and junk. when you're done you should have on the left:



    all mail

    see if that works
  9. ditothegreat macrumors newbie

    Feb 14, 2011
    I have a similar question...I'm sorry if the answer has already been posted, but I didn't see it.

    I would like to get the mail that goes into my "inbox" sent to apple mail.

    Is there any way I can get only the inbox content?

    I file mail regularly, but still have copies of emails that I have filed saved on my computer....My question is if there is anyway to only keep the inbox on the computer. I still want to be able to store mail on the gmail server, but am not worried about being able to access older emails through apple mail.

    I hope I was able to somehow describe what I am trying to say.

    Any help is appreciated. Thanks.
  10. Flavor macrumors newbie

    Jun 19, 2010
    IMAP mail syncs every message GMail has. POP should download every message and wipe them from GMails servers. POP isn't ideal if you want message statuses (read, flagged, etc) synced from Google to Mail App.
  11. r0k macrumors 68040


    Mar 3, 2008
    I use gmail, mobile me and a few other mail providers. I have mobile me first in the chain. The danger is that sometimes Apple's spam filter deletes stuff I really need and I never find out about it because I check my spam folder very rarely and it auto deletes after only a few days. From mobile me, my email is forwarded to gmail. I use gmail as a giant bucket to make all my mail searchable. There are close to 100K messages in that thing. I don't let Mail fetch anything from gmail, only mobile me and my other accounts. I do have the gmail set up in Mail but I disabled fetching mail and I even removed the password so it couldn't log in and screw anything up.

    I've thought about putting in the correct password and letting it grab all that legacy stuff so I could have it locally and not depend on an internet connection to search old email, I've just never gotten around to it.

    I also have Thunderbird on my Mac. It has mail import and export add ons that came in handy so I keep it around but only use it rarely.

    In gmail, when you put a label on email, it stays in your inbox. This can lead to a lot of duplication if a mail client (like Mail or Thunderbird) thinks the messages in the folders are unique, it can download them more than once. I had to shut off Thunderbird sync for the "all mail" folder because it was trying to download my emails 3 times. It was downloading the entire gmail inbox. It was downloading messages over again if they had labels and treating them as folders. It was also downloading a huge pile of mail from a folder it called "all mail". So I would have had 3 copies of my email totalling close to 18 gig. No thanks. So what I liked about Thunderbird was it let me set sync options on a per folder basis.

    If you want a mail client that gives you a lot of control over things and supports many similar add ons as firefox, I suggest Thunderbird. I don't use it as my primary email but I keep it around for when I want to do something Mail can't figure out how to do.

    BTW, I suggest you never set up any pop email access. Pop is designed for people with one computer (or device) accessing one server. Dead simple. As soon as you have a second device, say a Macbook and an iPod Touch, pop falls apart. Emails you read on your iPod still show up as unread online and on Mail on your Mac. But if you set all your devices to use IMAP, you will be in for some slow syncs the first time (walk away and watch an episode of Spongebob), but the reward is your read, unread status, etc is properly synced across all your devices and you never run into a problem where your iphone grabbed an email and deleted it from the server so you gotta go check your iphone for the message despite the fact you are sitting in front of your Mac.

    hope this helps...

Share This Page