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  • HELP! Any email experts out there? Q. re Outlook 2007 & IMAP

    Although I use GMail for the convenience of push email to various clients (Web and phone), all the rest of my mail is served by our own servers and via the tried and tested POP/SMTP format to Outlook 2007 on my laptop.

    Our mail servers are IMAP compliant, so I'd like to switch to IMAP so I can access my email (old and new items) more conveniently using the Web and my smartphone, as well as Outlook 2007 on my laptop.

    Is it just as simple as reconfiguring my mail accounts in Outlook 2007? I have dozens of them and they all use one Outlook PST file, although I use rules channel incoming mail into meaningfully appropriate folders within Outlook.

    If anyone has any advice on this, I'd be very grateful!

    Ian
    Founder and editor of:
    Olympus UK E-System User Group (http://e-group.uk.net)
    Four Thirds User (http://fourthirds-user.com)
    Digital Photography Now (http://dpnow.com)
    Olympus camera, lens, and accessory hire (http://e-group.uk.net/hire)

    Twitter: www.twitter.com/ian_burley
    Flickr: www.flickr.com/photos/dpnow/
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    NEW: My personal BLOG ianburley.com
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  • #2
    Re: Any email experts out there? Q. re Outlook 2007 & IMAP

    Originally posted by Ian View Post
    Although I use GMail for the convenience of push email to various clients (Web and phone), all the rest of my mail is served by our own servers and via the tried and tested POP/SMTP format to Outlook 2007 on my laptop.

    Our mail servers are IMAP compliant, so I'd like to switch to IMAP so I can access my email (old and new items) more conveniently using the Web and my smartphone, as well as Outlook 2007 on my laptop.

    Is it just as simple as reconfiguring my mail accounts in Outlook 2007? I have dozens of them and they all use one Outlook PST file, although I use rules channel incoming mail into meaningfully appropriate folders within Outlook.

    If anyone has any advice on this, I'd be very grateful!

    Ian
    No takers?

    Ian
    Founder and editor of:
    Olympus UK E-System User Group (http://e-group.uk.net)
    Four Thirds User (http://fourthirds-user.com)
    Digital Photography Now (http://dpnow.com)
    Olympus camera, lens, and accessory hire (http://e-group.uk.net/hire)

    Twitter: www.twitter.com/ian_burley
    Flickr: www.flickr.com/photos/dpnow/
    Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/ianburley/
    NEW: My personal BLOG ianburley.com
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    • #3
      Re: Any email experts out there? Q. re Outlook 2007 & IMAP

      Well, if anyone is interested... I've done some research. IMAP is good because you can basically access your email anywhere from anywhere. And if you delete an unwanted email from wherever you are accessing it (Web mail client, your smartphone, or one or more PCs with an IMAP-compatible mail client like Outlook, etc.) it will be deleted everywhere, even if it has been downloaded say to your computer's IMAP folder for that account. In other words, IMAP maintains synchronised mail stores where ever you want them.

      I have Outlook 2007 on my desktop PC and my laptop. But Outlook on my desktop has been useless for my main email because the laptop was set up for primary mail access. This means that once the mails have been received on my laptop they are deleted off the server and so my desktop can't get them.

      Now, by setting up IMAP on both my desktop Outlook and my laptop Outlook, I can have identical message stores on both machines.

      If I mark one message as read on one machine, or via webmail or using my smartphone mail client, it will be changed to unread wherever I access my email from, too.

      Now, there are problems of course! With Outlook, all my mail up to now has been organised in folders and there are rules that move mails to appropriate folders, etc. I still have to figure this out, but if you move a message from the IMAP folder for that account (wherever you're accessing your IMAP mail from) it will also disappear from everywhere else you might want to access your mail from in future. You can move it back again and it will be restored, incidentally.

      So it looks like I will have to set up a whole new folder structure for all the accounts I want to convert to IMAP. But I think it will be worth it.

      Nothing to do with photography, but maybe interesting!

      Ian
      Founder and editor of:
      Olympus UK E-System User Group (http://e-group.uk.net)
      Four Thirds User (http://fourthirds-user.com)
      Digital Photography Now (http://dpnow.com)
      Olympus camera, lens, and accessory hire (http://e-group.uk.net/hire)

      Twitter: www.twitter.com/ian_burley
      Flickr: www.flickr.com/photos/dpnow/
      Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/ianburley/
      NEW: My personal BLOG ianburley.com
      sigpic

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Any email experts out there? Q. re Outlook 2007 & IMAP

        As you probably know already with POP you download all email (usually deleting it on the server) to your local PC. IMAP means you store it on the server and usually cache a copy in your email application (Outlook in your case). Just in case anything goes wrong ensure you have a backup on the server.

        It is unclear to me from your description if you have one "inbox" (on the server) where all your email goes (from various email addresses) or whether you have multiple inboxes one for each email address. I use the former approach as I find it easier to manage. Just get all messages forwarded to one inbox and then operate your rules and filters in the one place.

        When you move to using IMAP the Outlook filtering rules you will be using will operate on the folders on the server. Using Outlook (or any client application - MUA) to do the filtering will have advantages/disadvantages. The advantage is that creating the rules probably has an easy to use interface. One disadvantage is your Outlook needs to be running for the filtering to work which might not be what you want if you are away for a two week holiday.

        I use procmail, running on a server, to sort my incoming mail which is very efficient and reliable but probably not end-user friendly. The tools available depends on the type of server you use.

        Storing lots of email in a single PST file would make me nervous. If the file gets corrupted somehow you risk losing all your email (backups are good locally too) so it is good that you are moving to IMAP. For similar reasons I prefer storing email messages in a maildir (one file for each message) if one message gets corrupted you can still access your other messages.

        Hope that helps.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Any email experts out there? Q. re Outlook 2007 & IMAP

          Thanks for that. We run Linux webservers and have CPanel for managing the servers, including mail.

          All our mail accounts served by our servers have their own ID and password, so yes we have multiple inboxes.

          It may be that I won't need to use IMAP to access and managed most of these accounts, though if IMAP works really well, then I may well shift over completely. But there is no urgency.

          We do have some spam traps on the servers, so some rules are happening there, and I'd certainly like to explore the possibility of applying more intelligence at the server.

          Ian

          Originally posted by fitheach View Post
          As you probably know already with POP you download all email (usually deleting it on the server) to your local PC. IMAP means you store it on the server and usually cache a copy in your email application (Outlook in your case). Just in case anything goes wrong ensure you have a backup on the server.

          It is unclear to me from your description if you have one "inbox" (on the server) where all your email goes (from various email addresses) or whether you have multiple inboxes one for each email address. I use the former approach as I find it easier to manage. Just get all messages forwarded to one inbox and then operate your rules and filters in the one place.

          When you move to using IMAP the Outlook filtering rules you will be using will operate on the folders on the server. Using Outlook (or any client application - MUA) to do the filtering will have advantages/disadvantages. The advantage is that creating the rules probably has an easy to use interface. One disadvantage is your Outlook needs to be running for the filtering to work which might not be what you want if you are away for a two week holiday.

          I use procmail, running on a server, to sort my incoming mail which is very efficient and reliable but probably not end-user friendly. The tools available depends on the type of server you use.

          Storing lots of email in a single PST file would make me nervous. If the file gets corrupted somehow you risk losing all your email (backups are good locally too) so it is good that you are moving to IMAP. For similar reasons I prefer storing email messages in a maildir (one file for each message) if one message gets corrupted you can still access your other messages.

          Hope that helps.
          Founder and editor of:
          Olympus UK E-System User Group (http://e-group.uk.net)
          Four Thirds User (http://fourthirds-user.com)
          Digital Photography Now (http://dpnow.com)
          Olympus camera, lens, and accessory hire (http://e-group.uk.net/hire)

          Twitter: www.twitter.com/ian_burley
          Flickr: www.flickr.com/photos/dpnow/
          Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/ianburley/
          NEW: My personal BLOG ianburley.com
          sigpic

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Any email experts out there? Q. re Outlook 2007 & IMAP

            I was hoping I could use GMail as an IMAP client to access my mail on our servers, but it seems you can only do that with POP mail - unless anyone has a work around?

            Ian
            Founder and editor of:
            Olympus UK E-System User Group (http://e-group.uk.net)
            Four Thirds User (http://fourthirds-user.com)
            Digital Photography Now (http://dpnow.com)
            Olympus camera, lens, and accessory hire (http://e-group.uk.net/hire)

            Twitter: www.twitter.com/ian_burley
            Flickr: www.flickr.com/photos/dpnow/
            Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/ianburley/
            NEW: My personal BLOG ianburley.com
            sigpic

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Any email experts out there? Q. re Outlook 2007 & IMAP

              Originally posted by Ian View Post
              I was hoping I could use GMail as an IMAP client to access my mail on our servers, but it seems you can only do that with POP mail - unless anyone has a work around?

              Ian
              You could forward email from your server to a Gmail account. Then access all your email using IMAP to Gmail.

              http://mail.google.com/support/bin/a...n&answer=75725

              However, if you have IMAP on your servers why would you need to do that? I am sure Google will be only too happy to mine your data

              If you are running a Linux based server procmail will be available and it is probably also available through cPanel.

              If it is just you accessing the email I would recommend that you consolidate your email into one inbox it will save you work in the long term. You can then sort your email into sub-folders under that inbox and create profiles for each address. I also like that all my sent mails (for all my email accounts) are stored in one place. This means I can easily search for all emails I have sent to a particular recipient.

              Your spam filtering is probably done using something like SpamAssassin and/or using White/Black/Grey listing.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Any email experts out there? Q. re Outlook 2007 & IMAP

                Originally posted by fitheach View Post
                You could forward email from your server to a Gmail account. Then access all your email using IMAP to Gmail.

                http://mail.google.com/support/bin/a...n&answer=75725

                However, if you have IMAP on your servers why would you need to do that? I am sure Google will be only too happy to mine your data

                If you are running a Linux based server procmail will be available and it is probably also available through cPanel.

                If it is just you accessing the email I would recommend that you consolidate your email into one inbox it will save you work in the long term. You can then sort your email into sub-folders under that inbox and create profiles for each address. I also like that all my sent mails (for all my email accounts) are stored in one place. This means I can easily search for all emails I have sent to a particular recipient.

                Your spam filtering is probably done using something like SpamAssassin and/or using White/Black/Grey listing.
                Yes we run SpamAssassin, although since I enabled it I haven't touched it - does it need to be configured for updated filters?

                Unfortunately, several people access inboxes on our servers and some of us need to share access to selected mailboxes. This has been enabled by setting the server to send a copy of received emails to whoever.

                I can see IMAP being great for me to enable shared access to certain inboxes.

                I was thinking of using GMail for convenience as it's a nice enough and accessible web mail client. On the server we have Horde, Squirrel Mail, and RoundCube, but the latter two look pretty poor to me. Horde is a bit clunky but powerful and enables mail searching.

                I don't know much about procmail.

                Ian
                Founder and editor of:
                Olympus UK E-System User Group (http://e-group.uk.net)
                Four Thirds User (http://fourthirds-user.com)
                Digital Photography Now (http://dpnow.com)
                Olympus camera, lens, and accessory hire (http://e-group.uk.net/hire)

                Twitter: www.twitter.com/ian_burley
                Flickr: www.flickr.com/photos/dpnow/
                Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/ianburley/
                NEW: My personal BLOG ianburley.com
                sigpic

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Any email experts out there? Q. re Outlook 2007 & IMAP

                  Originally posted by Ian View Post
                  Yes we run SpamAssassin, although since I enabled it I haven't touched it - does it need to be configured for updated filters?
                  Newer versions of SA use sa-update, take a look at http://wiki.apache.org/spamassassin/RuleUpdates

                  Originally posted by Ian View Post
                  Unfortunately, several people access inboxes on our servers and some of us need to share access to selected mailboxes. This has been enabled by setting the server to send a copy of received emails to whoever.
                  Well, I think you already have most of the tools available to you. Shared IMAP folders are quite good for some specific uses but become quite stretched if you try to do more with them. For example, you might want to sort things into a sub-folder when messages come in but another user would prefer everything appearing in the inbox.

                  More complex situations are ususally better handled with groupware solutions. However, you say you already have Horde and find it clunky. There are lots of alternatives (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...ative_software) but it might be you are not free to install your application of choice on the cPanel server. I have set up a Citadel system (http://www.citadel.org/doku.php) for a client and they quite like it.

                  If you do go down the route of using Gmail at least have an exit strategy just in case they change something in the future.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Any email experts out there? Q. re Outlook 2007 & IMAP

                    It would be nice to be able to store sent mails in IMAP folders, not yet worked how to create additional folders that are synchronised. I created a sub-folder to the IMAP store folder in Outlook, but this was not replicated elsewhere.

                    Ian
                    Founder and editor of:
                    Olympus UK E-System User Group (http://e-group.uk.net)
                    Four Thirds User (http://fourthirds-user.com)
                    Digital Photography Now (http://dpnow.com)
                    Olympus camera, lens, and accessory hire (http://e-group.uk.net/hire)

                    Twitter: www.twitter.com/ian_burley
                    Flickr: www.flickr.com/photos/dpnow/
                    Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/ianburley/
                    NEW: My personal BLOG ianburley.com
                    sigpic

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Any email experts out there? Q. re Outlook 2007 & IMAP

                      Originally posted by Ian View Post
                      It would be nice to be able to store sent mails in IMAP folders, not yet worked how to create additional folders that are synchronised. I created a sub-folder to the IMAP store folder in Outlook, but this was not replicated elsewhere.

                      Ian
                      I take that back - it did but took a while to show up

                      Ian
                      Founder and editor of:
                      Olympus UK E-System User Group (http://e-group.uk.net)
                      Four Thirds User (http://fourthirds-user.com)
                      Digital Photography Now (http://dpnow.com)
                      Olympus camera, lens, and accessory hire (http://e-group.uk.net/hire)

                      Twitter: www.twitter.com/ian_burley
                      Flickr: www.flickr.com/photos/dpnow/
                      Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/ianburley/
                      NEW: My personal BLOG ianburley.com
                      sigpic

                      Comment

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