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Report: OS X 10.9.2 puts Mail back on track at last

updated 10:33 pm EST, Tue February 25, 2014

Fixes issues with Gmail, Exchange, unread counts and more

A new report by TidBITS' Joe Kissell, author of the forthcoming Take Control of Apple Mail, says that Tuesday's release of OS X 10.9.2 makes great strides towards fixing the known issues with the rewritten version of Mail crafted for OS X Mavericks. As reported earlier, Apple released the update earlier today to address a number of issues, including a serious SSL vulnerability, as well as add FaceTime Audio calling and a new version of Safari among other changes.

According to Kissell, the version of mail in the outfit (officially known as version 7.2, build 1874) addresses most if not all of the biggest issues that have plagued some users (particularly Gmail users) since the release of OS X Mavericks. While Apple lists its fixes to mail in more generic terms, among the biggest fixes were an improvement in the accuracy of "unread counts," improved VoiceOver navigation, better compatibility with Gmail Archive mailboxes and better handling Gmail labels, and resolving an issue that prevented Mail from receiving messages from certain providers.

In addition to Apple's notes, Kissell notes that numerous smaller issues with Gmail special mailboxes has been resolved, including problems with the "store on the server" options in Gmail accounts -- with the new version, users can opt not to store mail on the server at last. Mail uses can also now specify locations other than the defaults for Gmail's Drafts, Sent, Junk and Trash mailboxes. Rearranging Gmail mailboxes in Mail is now possible, apart from the special-purpose, automatically-created Gmail boxes such as Important and Chats.

In good news for AppleScript fans, AppleScripts work correctly again and can "see" into Gmail mailboxes, thus no longer reporting them as empty. Exchange users will be pleased to know that Mail now checks for new messages periodically again, rather than just (and only) on launch. Finally, Smart Groups can now be added to a field in a composed email and, as long as it is spelled correctly, will function as it should -- and dragging a message from any mailbox to the unified inbox no longer requires users to specify which account it goes in as it did in Mavericks previously, it now goes into the right one automatically as per the Mountain Lion behavior.

Kissell says he is continuing to test the new Mail and that he "wouldn't be surprised" to see further improvements (and new bugs, possibly), and that some other well-known issues with Gmail, Exchange and Smart Mailbox counts may not yet be resolved -- but generally sees 10.9.2's Mail as a big step in the right direction. "But, to keep this in perspective," he adds, "Mail is now at the point where it should have been when Mavericks was released."




by MacNN Staff

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Comments

  1. Bicycle

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 04-11-11

    Facebook Audio requires a connected camera. Ok for my MacBook Pro and iPhone, but I don't need a camera on my desktop computer. So on my desktop setup I'll use Skype occasionally. Does anybody know how to allow FaceTime Audio to work without camera connected?

  1. Henriok

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 12-09-99

    No, Mail is _not_ at the level of 10.8 and previous versions. There's still a serious outstanding issue of subscribed IMAP folders that not adressed. This is a feature that's been working for all previous versions of OSX, and it causes every Mavericks user at our company to download and index >3 million e-mail residing in our Public Folder section. These folders were previously only accessible by active selection, now everything is access by all, all the time. The amount of mail is is causing Spotlight to stop working properly which in turn causing Smart folders and search to stop working, message count almost always broken (still in 10.9.2) and Mail has to be restarted several times a day to even get new mail, and when it get's new mail, there's hundreds or even thousands to fetch since it also fetches all new mail in the Public Folders. We can't deploy Mavericks at our company!
    This issue is acknowledged by Apple in Radar, but they haven't done anything about it. I'm starting to think that they never will...

  1. Bicycle

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 04-11-11

    Skype is more useful on a desktop anyway: with screen sharing it's a nice way to talk through a project. Screensharing was possible in iChat, but has been abandoned. Pity to see the downgrading of communication options through Apple software. Apart from that, the sound/image quality of Facetime is far better compared to Skype for instance. So I hope for the return of previously existing options.

  1. Charles Martin

    MacNN Editor

    Joined: 08-04-01

    Henriok: I'm not sure whom you're disagreeing with. The article doesn't say anything about Mail in Mavericks being "at the level of 10.8 and previous versions." Also, while I sympathize with the problem your company is having, as an individual I'm not having that particular issue so Mail's working fine for me. Keep on Apple about the problem, they will fix it -- just never as quick as we'd like ...

  1. canadave

    Junior Member

    Joined: 01-13-08

    It's incredible to me--absolutely incredible--that there still is no mail client that works properly with Gmail IMAP. IMAP has been around forever, and Gmail is one of the largest web-based email systems on the planet. Why there are STILL, after years, issues with simply syncing Gmail IMAP email onto a client desktop, is beyond my comprehension. I've tried Mail OSX, Outlook for Mac, and Thunderbird--all work "for a while" with Gmail IMAP, and then at some point stop syncing properly. There are numerous threads about this phenomenon online, and yet somehow this seemingly basic simple task has yet to be resolved.

  1. infowarrior

    Forum Regular

    Joined: 03-18-01

    Did they fix the problem where IMAP would constantly sync with GMail? I ended up moving my work stuff off the GMail cloud to our departmental IMAP server because the constant syncing was annoying, slowed things down, and above all was just sloppy functioning of Mail.

  1. Marook

    Forum Regular

    Joined: 05-05-99

    @canadave: Because Gmail does NOT use standard IMAP specifications! They have invented 'smart features' (labels) that move messages in the Web interface to multiple folders, that is not IMAP compliant!
    So, while Gmail is, in theory, standard IMAP at the transport level, they make funny things on a higher level..

  1. Spudboy2004

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 01-26-04

    Might kill your internal and external cams. Like it did to me.

    https://discussions.apple.com/thread/5939338?start=15&tstart=0

  1. YangZone

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 05-24-00

    I'll believe it when I see it....

  1. pairof9s

    Mac Enthusiast

    Joined: 01-03-08

    Agree w/ some...YMMV

    Not impressed w/ Mail, at all. It alone has made Mavericks a bummer upgrade over other features I like.

  1. YangZone

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 05-24-00

    @infowarrior added to all that my broadband usage went up by 50GB per month with all that syncing... essentially constant - 16 hours a day. Did not notice how bad it was it for two about months - cost about $75- in overuse penalties.

  1. galley

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 06-23-06

    I've never used the native Mail app in OS X. I just use Gmail in a web browser, and on my iPhone I use the Gmail app. So Gmail works the same for me on my home iMac (with Safari) and my office Windows PC (with Firefox).

  1. galley

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 06-23-06

    I've never used the native Mail app in OS X. I just use Gmail in a web browser, and on my iPhone I use the Gmail app. So Gmail works the same for me on my home iMac (with Safari) and my office Windows PC (with Firefox).

  1. bobolicious

    Dedicated MacNNer

    Joined: 08-15-02

    ...I remember distinctly the last time absolutely everything worked well (for me) and without effort in macos - 10.4.11 - distinctly because I asked if more than 2G of laptop ram was worth the risk of the macos migration required... Email would seem pretty basic. An ode to all of you on the bleeding edge...

  1. Steve Wilkinson

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 12-19-01

    Nearly a half a YEAR after released, it's finally starting to be usable? Sorry, I couldn't hold out that long and switched to Postbox, which 'knock on wood' seems to be handling everything fine. It feels, to me, more like the earlier days of Mail when it worked and was quite fast. It's lacking a few things, like a good print preview, but I'm pretty happy with it overall. There are a bunch of settings to get everything tweaked right, but once I got that figured out, I just set all my computers with those settings... so after the first one, it was super easy.

  1. YangZone

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 05-24-00

    Mail is NOT back on track. Nothing changed for me. "GMail Updating Cache Directory" over and over.... tens of thousands of emails. Back to Thunderbird.

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