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Thread: Which Email client ?

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    Which Email client ?

    I'm about to change to a new Windows 7 PC when I've put the bits together, and thought it was about time I ditched Outlook Express 6 for something a bit more up to date. I was wondering what you guys would recommend I look at first that will do the job for me as simply as possible.

    I keep email running in the background checking incoming mail for a dozen accounts every five minutes.
    I need to send from those twelve accounts separately, with a different sig for each one.
    Some are Gmail, some are my own domains.
    Mails are mainly just text, with the odd Word or Excel attachment, and the occasional picture, but I like choosing my font and text colour.

    Currently I'm on Win XP home, but will be on Win 7 Pro with Firefox as main browser (probably, not checked out Internet Explorer since IE6).

    I've tried Thunderbird a few years ago and didn't like it, though I can't remember why.
    Also got Outlook 2007 which I don't use as it struck me as far too messy and complicated for what I want. I actually gave up trying to configure it for my email accounts and went back to OE6 as it didn't seem worth the effort.

    Any advice where to start looking would be appreciated - but the simpler the better.

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    jim
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    Re: Which Email client ?

    Personally, Outlook 2007. Surprised you've had issues, it's very easy to setup with Gmail. If you use IMAP, no need for constant send and receive either.

    Whether 12 accounts would make it a bit bloated, I'm not sure. I use 4 routinely, and it works fine.

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    Re: Which Email client ?

    Thunderbird with the QuickFolders Add-on has been flawless for me.

    I use it much the same way as you've described but with 'just' 6 email accounts. Each account has it's own tab/folder using the above add-on, each account has it's own sig, etc.

    I use it with Gmail, Hotmail, my own domains and an old AOL <shudder> account.
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    Re: Which Email client ?

    I'm with snootyjim, personally I would use Outlook. I've found that it tends to be far more stable in my experience than OE and Thunderbird (i.e. no corruption) and easy to backup.

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    Re: Which Email client ?

    I've used Becky! Internet Mail for the past 9 years. It has 13 profiles (some are old and unused, though) and it's heavily customised to my preferences. I've never once had it crash, freeze or slow down in the 9 years I've had it.

    http://www.rimarts.co.jp/becky.htm

    Extremely configurable, easily backed up for HDD migrations (app+data folder+registry), very cheap, and it's regularly updated with a changelog - can you imagine Microsoft having release notes for new minor versions of Outlook? That's crazy talk. The application itself is 6.3MB for me, but that's probably more than a new install as I've been just overwriting the files whenever a new version is released.

    Best of all, it isn't Outlook [/Express], which would be a pain in the fracking nuts for me to deal with at home with HDD migrations, lack of customisations and upgrade problems. Outlook cannot do custom signatures per mail account, unless I'm mistaken. 2010 also requires Word as the email editor.

    Do not let the non-Vista non-Ribbon interface put you off - the program is very good. Just give it a try. You can email the developer, Carty, directly if you do somehow find a bug.


    Edit: I'm still of the opinion that email should be fixed-width plain-text only, with no bold or italics etc, for the sake of compatibility with everyone elses email programs. Perhaps I'm a bit of a luddite in this respect.
    Last edited by smargh; 03-11-2010 at 06:56 PM.

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    Re: Which Email client ?

    Thanks for the help guys. I'll check them all out.

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    Re: Which Email client ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nerval View Post
    I've tried Thunderbird a few years ago and didn't like it, though I can't remember why.
    Also got Outlook 2007 which I don't use as it struck me as far too messy and complicated for what I want. I actually gave up trying to configure it for my email accounts and went back to OE6 as it didn't seem worth the effort.

    Any advice where to start looking would be appreciated - but the simpler the better.
    Windows Live Mail 2011 (part of Live Essentials) is actually pretty decent these days - the interface is similar in layout to Outlook 2010, and the behind-the-scenes configuration will be familiar to anyone who's used to Outlook Express. And it's free of course.

    Might be worth a look, particularly as it's a logical progression from your present setup.

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    Re: Which Email client ?

    thanks captain, didn't know about that one, will take a look

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    Re: Which Email client ?

    I'd agree with your comments about the earlier versions of Thunderbird (bit flaky) but the latest is much better. It uses a tabbed layout which takes a little getting used to.

    It has good support for IMAP as well as POP. (It is similar in some respects to the now unsupported Mulberry, which was (IMO) a fantastic (but a little quirky!) e mail client.)
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    Re: Which Email client ?

    I'm in the process of changing my self. I have been mainly using Outlook 2007 on my PC, but I have used thunderbird (on another machine) in the past which was better I felt...I have just been lazy to go back to it.

    And now (because my pc is packed away) I've added all my accounts to my gmail - and I think I'll just stay with this!

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    Re: Which Email client ?

    Quote Originally Posted by peterb View Post
    I'd agree with your comments about the earlier versions of Thunderbird (bit flaky) but the latest is much better. It uses a tabbed layout which takes a little getting used to.

    It has good support for IMAP as well as POP. (It is similar in some respects to the now unsupported Mulberry, which was (IMO) a fantastic (but a little quirky!) e mail client.)
    My main gripe with the current version of Thunderbird is that there's apparently no way of disabling the automatic account setup "feature". Sometimes it gets it right (Gmail/IMAP usually works fine), other times it's too smart for its own good, and it can be a royal PITA having to reconfigure it after the event.

    Otherwise, yes, it's a nice client - the tabbed layout can be switched off if you don't like it, just select the option to open messages in a new window (as opposed to a tab), then in about:config set "mail.tabs.autoHide" to "true".

    I do somehow get the impression that its future is uncertain though - development seems slow and uneventful these days, almost as if they're just going through the motions. I guess most non-corporate users will find Gmail/Hotmail etc good enough nowadays (the web interface, that is), to the point where a "traditional" email client is mostly irrelevant.

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    Re: Which Email client ?

    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainCrash View Post
    My main gripe with the current version of Thunderbird is that there's apparently no way of disabling the automatic account setup "feature". Sometimes it gets it right (Gmail/IMAP usually works fine), other times it's too smart for its own good, and it can be a royal PITA having to reconfigure it after the event.

    Otherwise, yes, it's a nice client - the tabbed layout can be switched off if you don't like it, just select the option to open messages in a new window (as opposed to a tab), then in about:config set "mail.tabs.autoHide" to "true".

    I do somehow get the impression that its future is uncertain though - development seems slow and uneventful these days, almost as if they're just going through the motions. I guess most non-corporate users will find Gmail/Hotmail etc good enough nowadays (the web interface, that is), to the point where a "traditional" email client is mostly irrelevant.
    Thank you for the tip about the tabbed content.

    I'm not sure I'd agree about the gmail/hotmail comment though. Many end/consumer users have their own domain names or use an ISP's POP account. If I see a small business with a hotmail/gmail account my first thought is "not very professional" and a hotmail/gmail address certainly triggers my spam alert! senses!
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    Re: Which Email client ?

    Doesn't necessarily mean an @gmail.com address though, Peterb.

    For instance, you can use your gmail account to pick up POP3 email, and deal with it through the gmail interface.

    Equally, Google Apps uses the Gmail system with your own domain names. When I left my previous employer, they were in the process of implementing it. Custom login page, custom domain, custom addresses, access via web interface, POP3 or IMAP - and all powered by the Gmail interface and systems.

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    Re: Which Email client ?

    ^ Yep yep, all my domain names go through my Gmail in that fashion (only POP3, didn't go to the extent to change MX records) - I really just like their simple interface, and labels to sort and group email (with some filters applied also).

    And my work (very large company), use Gmail for all the employees - having access to docs lets us work on specific stuff we've been sending round...all at the same time is a big plus for what we do sometimes.

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    Re: Which Email client ?

    Quote Originally Posted by snootyjim View Post
    Doesn't necessarily mean an @gmail.com address though, Peterb. snip--->.
    Ah - see what you mean. True - effectively using gmail as a 'remote client' with an http interface
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    Re: Which Email client ?

    I can't help much. I still use Eudora, which is beginning to look at bit like a relic from the dark ages. I did try Thunderbird, but it made aright mess of importing. I downloaded the Eudora implementation of Thunderbird too (Tbird OSE) and keep meaning to try it, but haven't yet.

    For me, Eudora has two main advantages :-

    1) I've been using it since the year dot, so know it well.
    2) Backing up, and transferring to another machine, couldn't be easier.

    On that latter point, simple copy the data directory (which can be anywhere on your system). When you install Eudora on another machine, it ask for the location of data and just point at the new data directory, and it finds everything, be it mail, folders, attachments, address book,etc. There's no need to individually backup from Eudora, or to worry about registry entries, etc. I just keep Eudora data fully backed up with a sync program, and of course, periodic system backups.

    What I would like, personally, is a modern client that :-

    a) imports existing stuff properly from Eudora
    b) is as easy to backup and/or transfer as that.

    I just haven't found it yet.

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