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Take Control of Apple Mail in Leopard

Stamp Out Spam!

Save $5! Buy with Take Control of Spam with Apple Mail for only $15!

May 13, 2008
The Author

Joe Kissell has written more than 50 books about the Mac, including many popular Take Control ebooks. He runs Joe On Tech and is also a contributing editor of TidBITS and a senior contributor to Macworld.

Take Control of Apple Mail in Leopard

Go under the hood with new (and old) features in Apple Mail in Leopard!

Are you using Apple Mail in Leopard effectively? In this book, author Joe Kissell provides comprehensive guidance, with a focus on features that were new or updated in the Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard version of Mail.

Version info: This ebook covers the version of Apple Mail that comes with Leopard. Ebooks about several later versions of Mail are available; use the Search field above or look in the catalog to find them.

You’ll learn how to use and customize the Mail window, control the size and styling of incoming messages, and make rules to move messages into different mailboxes automatically. The book covers outgoing mail, showing you smart ways to address messages, send attachments, and send HTML-based messages. But, that’s not all! You’ll also find advice about setting up accounts, solving account connection problems and other bug-a-boos, handling spam, managing attachments, making backups, searching, signatures, notes and to-do items, Data Detectors, and more.

More Info

You’ll find answers to questions such as:

  • What are the most important changes in Leopard Mail?
  • How can I read my email on more than one computer?
  • How do I set up my Gmail account to work with Mail?
  • What should I do if my email won’t come in? What if it won’t send?
  • How do I use Mail as an RSS reader?
  • How can I make the text of an incoming message larger?
  • Is there a way to force Mail to display only plain text?
  • How can I automatically sort my messages into different mailboxes?
  • How do I read, save, and delete incoming attachments?
  • I made a note, but where did it go?
  • Are there third-party tools that extend Mail’s capabilities?

"I love this ebook! It’s easy to read, easy to navigate, and darned informative. I thought I knew everything about Mail but I’ve already found several tips that help me use it better."    -Katie Weller (writing about the previous edition)

What's New

Learn What’s New in Leopard Mail

The version of Mail included with Leopard (3.x) looks superficially much like the version that shipped with Tiger, but it has many changes. Among them are these:

  • Data Detectors: Automatically put contact and schedule info to use. See Use Data Detectors.
  • Quick Look for attachments: Open many attachments instantly. Read Deal with Incoming Attachments.
  • Junk mail filtering changes: Change when the Junk Mail filter runs. See Set Mail’s Junk Mail filter correctly.
  • RSS support: Read RSS Feeds right in Mail.
  • Forward as Attachment: Forward Messages as Attachments rather than as text.
  • Stationery: Use Mail Stationery to create template-based messages such as newsletters.
  • Rich text improvements: Read about new formatting options available in Handle Message Formatting.
  • Photo browser: Attach photos from iPhoto. Read Learn attachment basics.
  • Re-orderable sidebar: Move certain items up or down in your sidebar. See Arrange Your Mailboxes.
  • Notes and To Dos: Keep track of all your reminders in Mail. Read Keep Track of Notes and To Do Items.
  • Improved Spotlight searching: Find Your Messages more easily than before.
  • SMTP server options: Read Pick a server (just one) to learn about Mail’s new SMTP options.
  • Time Machine support: Never lose a message! Read Back Up and Restore with Time Machine.
  • Archive Mailbox command: Archive a Mailbox for long-term storage outside Mail.

Will this book help me solve my spam problem?

A three-page section in this book offers three core suggestions for zapping spam. For most readers, those suggestions should lead to a reasonably spam-free email existence. However, because some curious or overly spam-ridden readers will want more than three pages of information, Joe has, in fact, written a whole ‘nother book about the topic, called Take Control of Spam with Apple Mail. You can buy it along with this one in a bundle for $15 (see the left sidebar of this Web page).

Update Plans

This ebook covers Mail 3, the version of Mail that Apple shipped with Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard. We do not plan to update this ebook again for Leopard. Ebooks about several later versions of Mail are available; use the Search field or look in the catalog to find them.

Posted by Tonya Engst

  1. What to Do If A New Email Message Is Completely Black

    Apple has posted a Knowledge Base article detailing a problem with generating Mail messages after installing Safari 5 on a system running the latest version of Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard or 10.6 Snow Leopard. When you start an email message in Mail using some other program to get the ball rolling, the new message may have black text on a black background, rendering it unreadable.

    [This problem was fixed in Safari 5.1. —Tonya 27-Oct-2010]

    For full information see Apple’s article about the problem.

    Posted by Doug McLean (Permalink)

  2. Mail Tips and Musings from Joe Kissell

    Find out what Joe thinks about changes in the Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard version of Apple Mail and with the topic of email generally. In MacVoices #1076, Joe joins host Chuck Joiner to chat about what’s new in the world of handling spam, how to use Google Apps to manage multiple email addresses within a single Gmail account, compromises and changes that Apple made to Mail in order to turn it into an app for an iDevice, and more.

    Joe also talks about what’s new in his Mail-related ebooks that were released in May of 2010—Take Control of Apple Mail in Snow Leopard, Take Control of Spam with Apple Mail, and Take Control of Mail on the iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch.

    Posted by Tonya Engst (Permalink)

  3. Read Your Email on Multiple Computers

    In MacVoices #1065, Joe Kissell talks with host Chuck Joiner about two core email concepts - the POP and IMAP protocols. In particular, he explains how IMAP makes it possible to work with your email messages from more than one computer in a fluid, sensible manner. He also gives tips for switching from POP to IMAP and for using IMAP in popular email systems, including Gmail and MobileMe accounts, the Mail program on a Macintosh, the Mail app on an iPhone or iPod touch, and he discusses how the Gmail approach to storing, searching, and labeling email messages can sometimes be “hyper-weird.” Joe also talks about how spam filtering can work with IMAP accounts.

    Posted by Tonya Engst (Permalink)

  4. New Features in the Snow Leopard Version of Apple Mail

    The Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard version of Apple Mail has been out for a while. Here’s a quick look at what’s changed between the 10.5 Leopard version and the Snow Leopard version:

    • Mail now natively supports Microsoft Exchange Server 2007.
    • You can re-arrange items in the sidebar.
    • Performance has been improved significantly, especially when displaying the contents of mailboxes, searching, and moving messages.
    • Data detectors can now recognize flight numbers.
    • HTML message editing has been improved in several respects.

    Posted by Tonya Engst (Permalink)

  5. SpamSieve 2.7.7

    C-Command Software has released a maintenance update to its powerful Bayesian spam filtering software, SpamSieve. Changes include improved compatibility with pre-release versions of Mac OS X, enhanced filtering accuracy, modernized program code, an updated version of the Vietnamese localization, and an updated version of the Apple Mail script for discarding spam. Also, a bug that prevented the Apple Mail command Train as Good from moving Exchange messages back to the Inbox has been fixed, and encoded HTML mail is no longer recognized as spam in the default settings.

    Posted by Doug McLean (Permalink)

  6. Mixing Gmail with Apple Mail

    If you’ve ever thought that a great way to reduce spam would be to redirect email that you receive from your primary email address (or all your email addresses) through a Gmail account, you’re not alone. And, if you’ve struggled with sometimes wanting to use Gmail, but sometimes wanting to use Apple Mail, you’re in good company, particularly the company of Joe Kissell. To learn much more, check out Joe’s exceptionally detailed TidBITS article, Achieving Email Bliss with IMAP, Gmail, and Apple Mail. The first part of this article has background information about the IMAP method of retrieving email from a mail server, while the second details how to make your email work like Joe’s does.

    Posted by Tonya Engst (Permalink)

  7. Using a MobileMe Email Address in Mail

    Apple has posted a KnowledgeBase article about setting up Mail to use a email address. The article tells you to upgrade to Mac OS X 10.5.4 and to install the Mac OS X Update for MobileMe. It then details what to expect in Mail with respect to any old .mac email addresses and new .me email addresses.

    Posted by Tonya Engst (Permalink)

  8. Switching to Mail from Eudora

    Switching to Mail from another email client is slightly out of scope for “Take Control of Apple Mail in Leopard,” but if you are interested in migrating from Eudora to Apple Mail, check out my recent TidBITS article, Reluctantly Switching from Eudora to Apple Mail.

    Posted by Tonya Engst (Permalink)