Succession of Apple Mail problems leading to lost mail :( Can anyone help? :)

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Miss Terri, Jan 19, 2011.

  1. Miss Terri macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2010
    Location:
    US East Coast
    #1
    Hi folks,

    I searched for the answer to my question but did not find anyone else with my same problem, so I hope you all can help me out.

    I have a relatively new MBP 13 (barely used), and after moving things onto it from a Time Machine backup, it seemed to be working fine. I had been computerless for a short stretch, so it downloaded all my POP mail from the missing time period and all was good.

    Last night, I awoke the computer and used it for a few minutes, then got a message something like "Your mail index is damaged and Mail had to shut down"

    I re-started Mail and it said it needed to re-import all of my Mail (not sure from where? I had no external drives plugged in) The choices were only Yes or Cancel, so I said Yes.

    The re-import completed and I went to check my mail boxes. On one of my accounts, the newest mail is now from April 2010. :eek: (On the other, less important account, the mail is current to today, natch.)

    I rebuilt the mailbox in question with no change.

    I'm not sure what to do next, or what might have caused this :confused: (There are a few other factors that may or may not be pertinent, but I did not want to overload this post -- but depending on what people think/say, I will be happy to add any description that might help.)

    If anyone could help I sure would appreciate it. I'm a bit frantic right now.

    I'm running 10.6.3 with Mail version 4.2

    Thank you!
    Miss Terri
     
  2. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    #2
    I realize this won't be much help to you now, but you could avoid this in the future by using IMAP for email if possible, instead of POP (which is a dinosaur). If your email host doesn't support IMAP, consider switching to one that does (like gmail).

    IMAP keeps your mail on the server, and Mail.app maintains local copies of your messages, but if they get lost it just retrieves them again from the mail server. I did this recently, when I started having problems with my local copies of mail acting flakey. I just deleted it all and retrieved fresh copies from the server (two gmail accounts, plus a work IMAP account).

    Not to mention, if you have multiple devices accessing your mail (like Mac, iPad, iPhone), by using IMAP they can all be in sync with respect to your email with no extra effort on your part.
     
  3. Miss Terri thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2010
    Location:
    US East Coast
    #3
    RaceTripper,

    Thanks for the reply, and I will see if my ISP (which is a bit of a dinosaur itself) offers IMAP. I kind of knew POP was getting a bit long in the tooth, although since I only have the one "device" it has been fine so far.

    Okay, news on the problem, in case anyone else should stumble across this thread:


    Went to Genius bar, they poked around on my computer, could not find any evidence of my missing mail, and said it was Gone. :(

    I had a backup done in November so that meant December and January were unrecoverable :( At least I had a backup for April to November.

    But.... I still had suspicions about that renamed Mail folder from the "MyName1" account..... I lobbied for temporarily getting rid of that folder, and renaming my "old mail" folder to "Mail.'

    We did that, and Voila, the mail came pouring into the inbox! Glorious, December and January Mail!

    There is one gap from September to November, but I have a backup for that (in MyName1"), and the Genius explained to me how I can do an "import" from my current (MyName) mailbox to move that over without the apparent glitches I had before (when I simply renanamed the whole folder from "MyName1"). Fingers crossed and the creek don't rise, I'll get all my mail back. :D

    I post this to that if anyone else finds this thread they can hopefully use the info.

    Miss Terri
     
  4. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    #4
    Now you understand why people hate POP. On top of that Apple's Mail app is flakey. It does screwed up things with IMAP mail too, but at least you always have your original mail on the server.
     
  5. Miss Terri, Jan 21, 2011
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2011

    Miss Terri thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2010
    Location:
    US East Coast
    #5
    Okay, news on the problem, in case anyone else should stumble across this thread:

    Went to Genius bar, they poked around on my computer, could not find any evidence of my missing mail, and said it was Gone :(

    I had a backup done in November so that meant December and January were unrecoverable At least I had a backup for April to November. (I had not been using the computer so only opened it occassionally so it could download mail.)

    I had suspicions about a folder that I had re-named. Someone (not me) had migrated everything over to my new computer and mistakenly ended up with my account being "MyName1" instead of "MyName." To recover from that, I had wiped the computer and started fresh with "MyName," migrating my data from an older TM backup that had always only been associated with MyName.

    That left only some missing e-mail. To get that I named my current User-Library-Mail folder to Mail Old and then dragged over the Mail folder from the MyName1 account (which was now on a Super Duper backup). I had always had suspicions about that, but the genius thought it was okay and I should just stick with the now-current Mail folder and not go re-naming things again (fair enough; and it had worked fine for some time; it did not go haywire just after I made the original change so there was now way to *know* that was the problem).

    I lobbied for temporarily getting rid of the (new) Mail folder, and renaming my "Mail Oldl" folder to "Mail.' We did that, and Voila, the mail came pouring into the inbox! Glorious, December and January Mail!

    There is one gap from September to November, but I have a backup for that (in MyName1"), and the Genius explained to me how I can do an "import" from my current (MyName) mailbox to move that over without the apparent glitches I had before (when I simply renanamed the whole folder from "MyName1"). Fingers crossed and the creek don't rise, I'll get all my mail back ;)

    I post this to that if anyone else finds this thread they can hopefully use the info.

    Miss Terri
     

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