The New Mac Operating System Works Very Poorly With Gmail

Apple recently put out
Mavericks, a new version of its operating system for Macs.

It sounds like installing it will cause you some headaches if you are a certain kind of Gmail user — the kind that prefers to use Apple’s default “Mail” app and not the Gmail website.

Quoting Joe Kissell from Tidbits, here are few of the issues:

  • “It’s no longer possible to rearrange Gmail mailboxes in Mail’s sidebar; those at the top level of your Gmail account are always in alphabetical order (although, strangely, mailboxes nested within another mailbox can still be reordered). Drag a top-level mailbox to a new location and it snaps right back to where it was. This isn’t a problem with other account types, or with local mailboxes.”

  • “Mail now forces you to use the default locations for Gmail’s Sent and Trash mailboxes. (That is, if you choose another mailbox and choose Mailbox > Use This Mailbox For, the submenu listing special mailboxes like Sent and Trash will be dimmed. Previously remapped mailboxes may appear empty in Mail, giving you no obvious way to see those messages.) One of the implications of this change is that deleted Gmail messages will always be permanently removed in 30 days even if you set Mail to never delete them, because it’s no longer in Mail’s control; deletion is done on Gmail’s side.”

  • “Although you can uncheck “Store draft messages on the server” for Gmail accounts, the setting doesn’t stick, meaning drafts are always stored on the server.”

  • “The badges Mail uses to tell you how many unread messages are in each mailbox may be significantly off. For example, one user reported that even after a Mail rule successfully moved messages from the Inbox to another Gmail mailbox, the Inbox unread count still included those messages.”

Kissell goes on for much longer about what’s wrong with Gmail.

Many of his issues seem to stem from hacks he’d implemented to get the prior version of the Mac operating system working better with Gmail.

After reading Kissell’s post, Marco Arment recommends that anyone who wants to use Apple’s Mail app should probably switch to Fastmail, what he calls “a standard IMAP email host.”

Or Gmail users could switch to using Gmail only through their browser. I did that maybe six months ago because Apple Mail was taking up too much hard drive space and my life was not ruined by it.

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