Recovering deleted emails with time machine?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Beets-and-bytes, May 31, 2019.

  1. Beets-and-bytes macrumors newbie

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    May 31, 2019
    #1
    Hello. I am helping my friend who accidentally deleted all of their emails from their inbox. They did so using their mac mail client that was connected to their gmail account over IMAP.

    They do have time machine, but can that restore emails that were using IMAP? Do they even get backed up? As in I don't think they are stored on the mac with IMAP, I think they are being stored on the gmail servers.

    Thank you for any advice.
     
  2. AlliFlowers Contributor

    AlliFlowers

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    #2
    If they use Gmail, it should all be available in archive. IMAP doesn't store mail locally, it syncs with the server.
     
  3. Fried Chicken macrumors 6502

    Fried Chicken

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    Jun 11, 2011
    #3
    Open the Mail app and enter time machine. Then scroll back, although Alliflowers might be right that the emails aren't stored locally but synced with the server.
     
  4. Beets-and-bytes thread starter macrumors newbie

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    May 31, 2019
    #4
    Thank you for the reply. So the time machine can't help me because of IMAP so it would not have backed up the emails? But when you say its in the gmail archive, you mean I can log into gmail using a browser and find it there? How is the archive accessed? Thank you
     
  5. Beets-and-bytes thread starter macrumors newbie

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    May 31, 2019
    #5
    Yes I did use time machine following these instructions but the inbox was empty for google. So it seems like the time machine would not be able to back up emails fetched over IMAP :(... Thank you for your help.
     
  6. AlliFlowers Contributor

    AlliFlowers

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    #6
    Correct. Log into Gmail through a browser, go to the archive folder, and all your deleted email should be there.
     
  7. Fried Chicken macrumors 6502

    Fried Chicken

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    Jun 11, 2011
    #7
    I didn't know apple mail when using IMAP doesn't keep copies of all emails locally...

    Is there a way to archive all your emails?
     
  8. Beets-and-bytes thread starter macrumors newbie

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    May 31, 2019
    #8
    Unfortunately the emails are nowhere to be found on gmail!
     
  9. chscag macrumors 68040

    chscag

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    Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
    #9
    That's the reason why I keep both an IMAP and POP3 account active on gmail. POP3 mail stays on the server unless you delete it and then it goes to the gmail Trash where it can still be recovered. The disadvantage with using POP3 is that you have to manipulate your mail manually on each of your devices whereas with IMAP what you do on one applies to all.
     
  10. AlliFlowers Contributor

    AlliFlowers

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    #10
    That's odd. I have stuff that I've deleted/archived ten years ago that I can still find in Gmail.

    Try just searching?
     
  11. chscag macrumors 68040

    chscag

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    Feb 17, 2008
    Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
    #11
    Is that with an IMAP account or POP3? Also, "Archived" no longer shows up when accessing the gmail web page. Trash is there but I seem to remember that gmail will delete what's in Trash after a time? Is the storage limit for an ordinary gmail account still 5GB?
     
  12. AlliFlowers Contributor

    AlliFlowers

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    #12
    That's with IMAP. If archive is not showing up, there's a problem, cause you can't get rid of it if you wanted to.
     
  13. Fishrrman macrumors P6

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #13
    I'm an old-school POP email user. So long as POP continues to work, I'll use that (and have nothing to do with IMAP).

    Having said that, if you're an IMAP user...
    and
    You want to keep permanent copies of [certain] emails...

    The way to do this is to create dedicated "archival" email folders in the "on my mac" area.
    You then move the emails you want from the IMAP inbox into your dedicated folders.
    By doing this, you create copies of the emails, separate and apart from the IMAP emails.

    When you do it this way, the mail can "disappear" from the IMAP server (in which case it would no longer appear in your IMAP inbox, correct?), BUT...
    ...Because you "made a copy", you'll still HAVE that copy in your dedicated, "archival" folder.

    Again, I prefer the simple paradigm of POP (download email, now it's existing on your Mac until you actually delete it).
    My "disclaimer" is that I don't use a smartphone, iPad, etc. So I really don't need the "features" that IMAP offers (of being visible on ALL your portable devices)...
     

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12 May 31, 2019