POP gmail account not downloading to both iphone and mail app

Discussion in 'iPhone Tips, Help and Troubleshooting' started by illyanadmc, Aug 18, 2008.

  1. illyanadmc macrumors newbie

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    #1
    hi! i did a search for this and didn't see anything helpful, so maybe i have a unique problem...

    i recently received an iphone (non-3G) as a hand-me-down and i am having trouble configuring my gmail account the way i would like. i do not use the gmail website to check my email; i use the mail app. i want to be able to download my gmail (all of the emails i get) to both my iphone and the mail app. so, if i am at work all day and emails come in periodically to my iphone, i want to be able to come home and get all of those same emails on my computer when i check my email through mail.

    when i first set up gmail on my iphone, i configured it as a POP account and did some tests. what i wanted seemed to be working; however, if i checked my gmail on the mail app first, i did not get the email on my iphone (which was fine, because getting the email on my computer is more important). however, if i used the iphone to check gmail before i used the mail app, i got the email on both devices. perfect! i was happy. however, i was having trouble sending email on the iphone. eventually, i decided to delete the gmail account and set it up while synching the iphone (as opposed to manually on the iphone).

    ever since i re-set the gmail account on my iphone, i am not able to download email to both devices. if i receive email on my iphone, i am not able to then download it to my computer. conversely, if i check my email on my computer, i then cannot download it to my iphone. the latter is an issue that does not bother me, but i want to be able to download all of my email from gmail to my computer, no matter if it has been downloaded to my iphone or not.

    i cannot find anything that is different in any of my settings now than it was when i had first added the account. this really is a bother, so any help would be appreciated! and i do not want to use IMAP, so please only give me solutions that will work with POP. thanks!

    (i am running v 2.0.1 on the iphone.)
     
  2. Small White Car macrumors G4

    Small White Car

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    #2
    I'm afraid I'm going to need to ask WHY this is before I can give any advice.

    I'm not saying you can't use POP, but I kind of want to understand your thinking here.
     
  3. bstpierre macrumors 6502

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    Mar 28, 2008
    #3
    Your email is setup to remove the email from the server when you download it. That way it isn't there for the second device that checks. You can change your settings to keep the mail on the server for a limited amount of time (a day or a week, whatever works for you) and it should be there for both devices.

    Of course, your next issue is that email on your computer shows up as unread when you have already read it on the iPhone (or vice-versa). That is the beauty of POP. IMAP addresses this issue.
     
  4. illyanadmc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #4
    i don't want to use IMAP, because i want to have different emails stored on my phone, on gmail's website, and on my computer. i will probably keep very little emails on my phone, but i will keep more on my computer, and i will probably keep everything on gmail's website for future reference. my knowledge of IMAP is that everything is synched up so that, if i were to delete an email off of my phone, it would be deleted on my computer and also on gmail's website. please correct me if i'm wrong!
     
  5. illyanadmc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #5
    my settings on gmail's website (i am looking at them right now) are to "keep gmail's copy in the inbox" - it has been this way from the beginning (when i first set up gmail and had it working properly) and has not been changed. i also have my settings in the mail app to delete after 7 days, not immediately.

    nah, that doesn't bother me.
     
  6. Small White Car macrumors G4

    Small White Car

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    #6
    I'm formulating a plan for you...

    Question #2:

    Is your computer a desktop that is always running (and on the internet) or is it a laptop that gets closed sometimes?
     
  7. danny_w macrumors 601

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    Austin, TX
    #7
    The settings for your case are not on gmail's website, but are in you mail application. You need to set mail.app on your computer and your iPhone to leave the mail on the server. The setting on gmail's website only pertains to what happens when messages are *accessed* via POP; by default mail.app not only accesses the messages but also deletes them. On the computer, go to accounts->(your POP account)->Advanced, and uncheck "Remove messages from server"; the setting is similar on the iPhone.
     
  8. illyanadmc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #8
    :)

    it's a laptop that gets closed a lot, and i check my mail manually (don't have it set up to check every x minutes, like some people).
     
  9. illyanadmc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #9

    as i said before, i have my mail app set to delete messages from server after seven days, but i will double-check that when i get home. as for the phone, i am looking at it now, and it has "never" selected for the "delete from server" option. that has not been changed and does not explain my problem (neither would my mail app deleting the messages, as i am having the problem both ways).
     
  10. Small White Car macrumors G4

    Small White Car

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    #10
    Ok, so you use your laptop like a phone, really. You only start the mail application from time to time, and look at it when you need to.

    (And you barely every log into the gmail website, right?)

    Let met think a little more. Everyone else is giving you fine advice, but there are literally thousands of ways to do this stuff. I'll get back to you in a little while with what I think is best for you.
     
  11. illyanadmc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #11
    basically... i mean, i have mail open all the time, but i get new mail manually (i am too easily distracted when new mail comes in, so i have to pace myself).

    correct. only when i am away from home and need to check my email - now that won't be a problem with the iphone.

    sounds good. i appreciate it. i am pretty sure that all of my settings are correct for what i want gmail to do, but it just won't do it. it just bugs me, because i had it working perfectly before but i couldn't send email from the phone, which is why i deleted and then re-added the account.
     
  12. danny_w macrumors 601

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    #12
    Then I would suggest logging into the gmail website and checking to see if your messages are there. They are probably getting marked as "read" when the 1st device downloads them, so the 2nd device to attempt a download doesn't see any "new" messages to download. This is one of the most common problem of trying to use a POP email account on multiple devices. It may be possible to write some complicated server-side rule to handle this, but I'm not sure that is even possible.
     
  13. illyanadmc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #13
    by the way, Small White Car, i gotta give you props for your icon. coincidentally, the "dmc" in my username stands for delorean motor company.
     
  14. illyanadmc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #14
    one of the first things i did when i noticed the problem was to log on to gmail's website to see if the emails had been deleted. the emails were there and bold (unread). i even read them and then marked them as unread again to see if i could then download them onto my computer. no such luck. the many tests i have done since (sent myself an email from a different account and checked it with computer first, then phone first) have left the emails unread on gmail's website but unable to download to more than one device.
     
  15. danny_w macrumors 601

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    #15
    I found this help page that may be useful to you. Apparently gmail senses when POP mail has been sent to one client and does not send it to any other client, even if it is still remaining on gmail.

    http://mail.google.com/support/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=47948
    EDIT: I think the clincher here is the word "recent:" in front of you username.
     
  16. illyanadmc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #16
    thanks for the tip! when i was searching the forums here before i posted, i did see something about a "recent" check off box in the advanced settings for email on the iphone, but there was no such box to be found. the post was old (pre-v.2), so i figured it was something that had since been removed.

    i did just change my username on the iphone to add "recent:" to the front, and when i went into mail, it downloaded my gmail inbox (luckily, i have not yet made this my primary email address, and there were only 12 emails in there). when i get home, i will see if changing my username in the mail app will do the same, and then i'll run some tests. i have my fingers crossed!
     
  17. danny_w macrumors 601

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    #17
    Great! I hope it works for you. If it does, I may do the same thing, because I am wary of keeping all of my email only on an IMAP server. I periodically make archives, but that would not be necessary if all of the email reside on my computers (and clones/backups).
     
  18. Small White Car macrumors G4

    Small White Car

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    #18
    First, more Deloreans:
    http://gallery.me.com/penguincouple#100140

    Ok, now, on to the plan. I'm suggesting something I DON'T DO MYSELF, so if anyone else can comment on this, that would be great! I'm suggesting what I think will work, but I have no real world experience with it.

    So tread slowly. (That being said, I think it will work.)

    I suggest, basically, using IMAP between the server and the laptop, but continuing to use POP3 between the server and the iPhone. I'll explain how to USE this, then I'll explain how to create it.

    1 - USE

    A message will come to your server. After 15 minutes it will show up on your iPhone. Whatever you do on the iPhone WILL NOT change the status of the message online. Read it, delete it. Do whatever you want. Your iPhone inbox lives in its own world so do what you want there. Keep what you want on the phone, erase what you don't want on the phone.

    Later, you can open your computer and launch mail. Every message will download there, no matter what you did with the iPhone earlier. They'll still be marked "un-read." If you find new mail noise distracting, simply close the Mail app on the laptop and ONLY launch it when you want to check it. Then close it again.

    You will have a folder on your Mac with a copy of EVERY message you've every gotten. This will be automatic so you don't have to do anything. Since this exists, you don't have to be so careful with your in-box. You know that everything is still on the Mac, no matter what you do online.

    You also have a 'SAVED on SERVER' folder. This will be manual. If you have something in G-Mail you want to keep on the server, you'll drag it from the In-Box to this folder, and it will live on the server forever. You don't need to put all e-mail there (which is why it's manual) because you have copies of stuff on the Mac. This is just stuff you want to keep super-safe.

    You never need to log into gmail.com to maintain any of this. Once we set it up, you'll do everything through Mail.app on the laptop.

    - - - -

    I'm posting this first to see what you think. I'm working on the "how to do this" post next, but take a look and see if this workflow appeals to you.
     
  19. Small White Car macrumors G4

    Small White Car

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    #19
    Here's a photo example of what I'm talking about on the Mac side of things.

    Remember, the iPhone gets everything, but affects nothing else.
     

    Attached Files:

  20. illyanadmc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    providence, ri
    #20
    ooh, pretty!

    it sounds pretty fantastic, and i like the idea of having my emails stored on my computer even while using IMAP (i am wary of not being able to back stuff up, so only having them on the server would be bad news for me). i would have to get used to mail checking automatically, because i don't like the idea of quitting mail when i am not using it (for a few reasons, one of which is that sometimes when i quit mail, all of my RSS feeds download the last month's worth of posts when i re-open, and it is a huge bother to deal with), but that's not a big deal.

    however, i am going to try danny_w's suggestion first, because it is much more simple, and i wouldn't have to switch over to IMAP. however, if that doesn't work, i will probably give yours a try. it is a good idea, though!
     
  21. Small White Car macrumors G4

    Small White Car

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    #21
    I'm mainly addressing your comment on being distrated. Perhaps you can turn off the "new mail" sound and train yourself to ignore the red number badge that appears?

    Dunno, that part of the plan isn't critical. It was only a suggestion.

    Anyway, I'll get back to you with the "how" in a little bit.
     
  22. Small White Car macrumors G4

    Small White Car

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    #22
    1) Pick up the iPhone, give it a hug. You're done there, we're not changing anything on the phone.

    2) Sign into GMail.com and go to the settings. Make sure IMAP is turned on.

    3) Go into Mail.app's preferences and add a new account. Set up G-Mail as an IMAP account. (You'll have an IMAP inbox and a POP3 inbox until you erase the POP3 mailbox. Just leave the old one there until you're sure the new one is working.)

    This will get you going on that:
    http://mail.google.com/support/bin/answer.py?answer=77663

    4) In the lower left of mail, hit the + to make a new mailbox. First, make one "On My Mac" and call it "All Old Mail." Then make another one on Gmail and call it "SAVED on server."

    5) Now, back to Mail.app's preferences. Make a rule called "Save a Copy of Everything." Select the type of message to "Every Message." Then set the action as "Copy Message" to "All Old Mail" mailbox. After you make the rule, drag it to the TOP of the list of rules.

    - - - - - - -

    Now, refer back to my screenshot. That folder in the middle that I point to is where you'll get copies of everything, saved on your hard drive. The bottom folder I point to is where you drag stuff that you want on the server forever. Or, leave it in your inbox. That's the server too. The bottom folder just offers you some nice "clean up" space to clear out the in-box while still leaving the message on the server.
     
  23. illyanadmc thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #23
    alright, so i went home and added "recent:" to the front of my gmail username in the mail app preferences. as expected, when i got new mail, my entire gmail inbox was downloaded. good, good. then, i sent myself a few test emails. i wanted to download them on the phone first and then on the computer (then i would do the reverse test). so, i get the phone and open mail to get new mail. one email that i had sent myself before i made the "recent:" mod to the mail app was in my inbox. however, the test email was not. instead, there was a notice that said "load more messages... 4 messages total, 1 unread" (the three read messages are currently in my iphone inbox, and the one unread is the test). i touch the message and it spins the spinning disc thing... nothing happens. same message. i send another test email... "load more messages... 5 messages total, 2 unread." all attempts to load these unread messages are futile.

    i was able to download the two test emails to my computer with no problems, so it must be the phone. any thoughts? i did a google search, and it seems that people have had this same problem, but no one seems to be giving any answers to what it might be (or how to fix it).
     
  24. almightychey macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2007
    #24
    I too tried the "recent:" workaround and although it downloaded messages to both my laptop and iphone, whenever I responded to an email (on either device) a copy of the sent message would show up in the inbox as a new message. Very Annoying. So I don't know if I was doing something wrong, but it didn't work out of me.
     
  25. danny_w macrumors 601

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    Location:
    Austin, TX
    #25
    I know I saw that very same problem in a thread recently, but I don't remember the solution. I'll try to find it.

    EDIT: Found it:

    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=323090&highlight=gmail+sent+items+inbox

    I'm afraid that is just the way that gmail works because of its 'thread' interface, which doesn't port very well to any mail client. To get around this you can write a server-side filter to immediately archive any messages that you send yourself, and have them skip the inbox; you will need to setup this filter on the gmail web interface under 'settings'.
     

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