Tag Archives: Mail

Five Tip Friday ~ Safari tabs on Mac, and Mail


1/ Reopen closed tabs in Safari — One of the most straightforward ways of reopening a tab in Safari is to click on the History button in the top-level menu bar, hover over Recently Closed then click on one of the displayed links. But you can also right-click (or hold down the Control key and normal-click) on the ‘Plus’ icon at the extreme right of the tab bar. A Recently Closed Tabs menu pops out and you can select your link from there.

2/ A key combo for last-closed tab — Mac owners have another advantage over (most) iPad owners in the form of a keyboard shortcuts. Shift-Command-T reopens the last opened tab —not so handy if you closed multiple tabs, but it can at least undo immediate mistakes.

3/ Closing tabs with swipes — Most Mac users know they can close a tab in Safari by either clicking on the tab’s small ‘x’ icon that appears on the left of a tab when your cursor is over it, or by using the keyboard shortcut Command-W (the universal Close Window command). But here’s a relatively unknown method for closing a Safari tab for multitouch gesture fans.
Note that the method described here doesn’t work in all situations. This tip involves a swipe gesture, so you’ll need to be using a MacBook’s built-in trackpad or a Magic Trackpad, but it also works on a Magic Mouse. The second caveat is that this only works for new tabs which launch automatically, for example, if you left-click on a website link that’s configured to open in a new page or a new browser window. This method won’t work for tabs that are launched manually by holding the Command key while you click or by using the right-click menu to Open in a New Tab.
If you click a link in Safari that opens in a new tab, two-finger-swipe back with two fingers to close the tab.
This is the same gesture you would normally use to go back to the previous page, and you would think it wouldn’t work in this case because there’s no “previous page” on a freshly opened browser tab. But, behold, if you’re working with a tab that launched automatically (as described in the caveats above), then this gesture closes the new tab and takes you back to your previous tab.

4/ Mailbox behaviours — To know how each of your email accounts (Gmail, iCloud, Comcast, Yahoo, etc) handles trash in the first place, look under Mail > Preferences. If you choose that and then pick Accounts from the following window, you’ll see a list of all of the email addresses you’ve set up in Mail on the left. Click one, choose the Mailbox Behaviors [sic] tab and you’ll see how often that particular account gets rid of its trash. You can set some, for example, to delete trash permanently when it’s a month old, which stops your Mailbox (which is on your ISP’s server) from filling up.

5/ Get rid of all Mail trash in one go — Click on the Mailbox menu and choose Erase Deleted Items. You can then erase the trash from all your accounts, or pick just a single one to clear out. But whichever way you go, you’ll then be rid of your old stuff. Make sure it’s not anything you actually need to keep, but if you run Time Machine backups this will all be safe anyway.

Extra tip — If you do have Time Machine, just running it does not make your Mail magically reappear. Here’s the trick: Boot Mail. Then boot Time Machine. If you do it this way, Time Machine becomes a dedicated backup server for just Mail, and all those deleted emails become available again.

Five Tip Friday ~ macOS Mail attachments in macOS Mail (not Outlook)

Screen Shot 2016-08-19 at 1.59.22 PM1/ What attachment? —  An email may have an attachment in it, but sometimes, annoyingly, it’s not that obvious. One way to see it immediately is to hold down the Control key on your keyboard and click (or Right-Click, if you have that set up on your mouse or trackpad) the list headers(i.e., usually From Subject, Date Received …) above your main message window to add an Attachments category, which will then show up as a little paperclip icon. In this list the number of attachments an email holds will be listed as a number.


2/ The hidden menu —  An email you receive that has an attachment in it has a toolbar that’s hidden (above) until you mouse/trackpad-move your cursor over it (below).


This hidden menu even has it’s own little Apple trademark ‘Disclosure Triangle’ (circled, above) that shows more; in this case, an additional, drop-down menu. The choices you see when you drop this (by clicking on that little triangle) will differ depending on what type of attachments you’ve received, but a handy option for images, for example, is Export to Photos. Select that, and the attached pictures will drop right into your Photos Library.

3/ Save attachments — You could also use the above menu to save all the attachments if the email has more than one; it you just want to keep one of the attached items, click its name.

4/ Right-clicking — If you can see the attachment right there in the main body of the email, you can just right-click (or hold down the Control key on your keyboard and click) directly on the image (or whatever) and you’ll get a pop-out menu of options.

5/ Quick Look — You could choose Quick Look from the above-mentioned poppet menu to see a high-definition image of the attachment, or play an audio or movie file, but why when you can just click on the image and tap your spacebar? It’s much quicker, and note this is the standard Quick Look shortcut you should learn anyway.

Extra — You can simply drag and drop visible attachments out of Mail and onto your Desktop, or onto the Photos icon in the Dock to import it that way.

— Why so late? Sorry, I got really busy this morning.
— Why no email tips for Microsoft Outlook? Coz it’s clunky and it sucks, in a nutshell. I can’t believe people still bother with it.

Five Tip Friday ~ Mac tips to make your day better

Coz we all need a better day sometimes …

20160427_Customize1/ Add handy buttons to Mail’s toolbar — If you right- or Control-click on the grey area at the top of Mail’s window (and this is worth trying elsewhere, BTW, ie in the Finder, Safari …), choose Customize Toolbar from the pop-up that appears. You will then find extra buttons you can drag up into your toolbar for easy use.
Some people like ‘Organize by Conversation’ available under the View menu, but if you prefer to look at emails as individual items instead of as long chains of responses, you can use the Show Related Messages button to temporarily show the conversation for the selected email only, which can be really useful.

2/ Redirect — Using Redirect is a different method for forwarding emails when you’d like someone else to respond to them. When you forward a message the usual way, Mail changes the colour of the quoted text and puts the forwarding info at the top. When the person you’ve forwarded it to clicks Reply, it will send the response back to you, as you’re the one who forwarded it. But if you use Redirect, it leaves out all of that quoted text formatting and when the person you’ve redirected the message to clicks Reply, the response goes back to the original sender, just as if the email had been sent to the appropriate person in the first place.

3/ Move — You can always drag-and-drop emails into your mailboxes using the sidebar, but you might prefer the Move button. You just have to select the item you want to file away, and then click the Move button to get quick drop-down list to tell it where to go. For anyone with dexterity problems, this is often easier than dragging and dropping, as you don’t have to simultaneously hold your mouse or trackpad button down while you’re scrolling the sidebar. [These came from the Mac Observer, which has more pictures.]


4/ Back up text substitutions — Open System Preferences, go into the Keyboard option, then click Text. You will then see any keyboard substitutions you have set up (for example, I can type ‘mw’ in anything and my Mac fills out my full, lengthy home email address for me). Select one to modify it (click on one) or choose Command A (while the Command key is held down, press the A key) to select all of them. Now click anywhere on this fully selected list and drag them out to the desktop.  This creates a file on the desktop called ‘Text Substituions.plist’. If you ever lose your substitutions, you can just drag-and-drop them back into that same field in System Preferences, so keep this tiny file somewhere safe.

5/ Quick desktop cleanup — Hopefully you know that files strewn all over your Mac;s desktop is NOT a good idea. If anything goes wrong, these are easily lost or damaged as the Finder is NOT designed to look after files that aren’t, well, filed in Documents, Pictures etc. Not only that, since Finder is not designed to care for this load, your Mac will slow down and struggle, plus practically it’s harder to find files that aren’t categorised by their parent folders (Documents, Pictures, Movies …).
But you can delay your filing job, and speed your Mac up just be creating a new folder on the Desktop (click on the desktop, choose New Folder from the File menu) and give it a name like ToFile or ToSort or something, then drag all your desktop files into this. Much better. (But you really should go through and file these every couple of weeks.)

Five Tip Friday ~ Mail: sending large attachments in iOS, Mail Settings Lookup, Auto-Responder

Apple has a page that lets you check your email settings online.
Apple has a page that lets you check your email settings online.

1/ Using Mail Drop in iOS — If you’ve updated to the latest version of iOS 9 on your iPhone or iPad, you have a very handy ability that was only available on the Mac up until now: Mail Drop. This feature will let you send large attachments through email, which is especially great on the iPhone, like a video that is too large to easily share with other people. MailDrop basically uploads the file to an Apple server and sends a download link to that to the recipient – very clever. (This link expires after 30 days; Apple wipes the file from its server.)
This feature is now also built in to iOS 9 now. To use it, all you’ve got  do is, well, use it: select a group of photos or a video that may be too large to send through Mail, and your iOS device will warn you and give you the choice of what to do.

2/ Mail Settings Lookup — Mail Settings Lookup is a free Apple service that can greatly help when setting up an account in the Mail.app (or other email clients). It only works with major email providers like Apple, Gmail, Yahoo!, Hotmail, Mail.com, and a few others. You can’t use it to check the settings of your work email, for instance, not even if your employer uses Gmail on the back end.
Load the page and you get to a form page.
Enter your email address (Apple states it will not store that address). Hit the blue arrow, and you’ll get settings for your incoming email server and outgoing server, too. You can use that information to set up an account in an email client – handy when you want to set up your account on a new Mac or iDevice.

3/ Forwarding multiple emails — If you need to send someone the entire history of correspondence on a project or the trail of an email conversation, open Mail. Either do a search for the messages you need or open the folder they’re in. You’ll have to select them all: if you click on one email and then hold down Shift and click on another, you’ll select everything in between them. Alternatively, hold down the Command key and click on messages, and your Mac will select everything you click on (even if the emails aren’t sitting next to one another).
Now you can click the Forward button in your toolbar (or press Shift-Command-F), and that will start a new email with all of the items you selected in the body of the message.

4/ Forward multiple emails as attachments — Alternatively, forward the selected emails as attachments. Select the emails and then pick Message>Forward as Attachment from the menus at the top or by right-clicking (or hold down the Control key on your keyboard and do a normal click) on one of the emails then choosing that same option from the contextual menu that ‘pops’.

5/ I’m away on holiday — And you can get Mail to do the ‘I’m away’ message for you, you know, like companies do.  In Mail, click on the Mail menu from the menu bar and select Preferences. Select the Rules tab and click on the Add Rule button.
Enter a description for this rule (ie, Auto Reply).
Turn on ‘If ANY of the following conditions are met: Set this section to Account | Exchange’.
Set this section to Reply to Message | Reply message text then click on the Reply message text field to the right to construct your message; ‘I am currently having a wonderful holiday you should all be jealous of and cannot answer my emails until [date’], for example. Or something more considerate … Click OK.
You will now get a message asking if you want to apply this rule to all existing messages. Click Don’t Apply as you only want the rule to work for new messages. Your Out of Office message is now set up.
NOTE: You must remember to disable your Out of Office message manually as it will not turn off automatically. Open the settings again and just uptick this rule so you can use it again another time.

Haptic Macs, SpamSieve junk filtering for Mail, Apple Music hosts Taylor Swift


Future Macs may sport even more haptic technology — Future Macs may sport even more haptic technology, or haptics, a tactile feedback technology that takes advantage of the sense of touch by applying forces, vibrations, or motions to the user. The Magic Mouse 2 already does this to some degree, thanks to its Force Touch technology.

SpamSieve — I mentioned this software yesterday and today I see a full review of it on Macworld: “C-Command Software’s SpamSieve has been around since 2002 and is hands down the best spam filtering software for Mac. Unlike the brute-force filters on servers, SpamSieve learns from your email. If you get lots of emails that contain certain words, SpamSieve learns that these are normal, and sends them to your inbox. However, if spam gets through, you just select one or more messages and press a keyboard shortcut to tell SpamSieve that they are spam; the app learns from that too. And it’s incredibly accurate…” It costs US$30 (about NZ$45).

Apple Music to host exclusive Taylor Swift 1989 World Tour concert video — Taylor Swift will be talking with DJ Zane Lowe on Apple’s Beats 1 radio show. The music star is partnering with Apple to provide a concert video of her 1989 World Tour exclusively on Apple Music starting December 20, 2015, and will also be part of promotions at Apple Stores with displays and Taylor Swift-branded iTunes gift cards.

Five Tip Friday ~ iOS Mail can have signatures, and making space in iCloud

1/ Add a simple text signature to Mail for iOS — Unlike on Mac, you can only have one signature per email account on your iOS device. Choose Settings, then Mail, Contacts, Calendars. Choose Signature and create your Signature

ComSig2/ Add a complex signature to Mail for iOS — You can take a signature, complete with image, that you have created on your Mac and use it on your iOS device. Just send yourself an email that contains the signature you want to use. In the email you receive, click on the signature, Select all, then Copy. Now Select Settings>Mail, Contacts, Calendars>Signature
If you already have a signature saved, delete it.
Then double tap to get the save options and select paste. It will remain in place until you decide to change it.

3/ Free up space in iCloud — Call me a Scrooge but I have managed to resist buying extra storage space in iCloud for years now, and I’m running three devices on the account. The first easiest way is to delete emails you have received with attachments in them, and easiest of all is to do this on your Mac as you can delete multiples at once.
Please remember that iCloud is essentially a folder on a hard drive somewhere that you access over the internet, with access privileges set to you via your email address and Apple ID password. 

4/ Delete iCloud backups to free up iCloud space — When a device is set to backup to iCloud, Apple automatically backs up data and settings stored locally on the particular device; it does not create a backup of data already stored in an iCloud account via Mac or iOS apps (from iOS 8.1, that includes iCloud Photo Library, shared photo albums, My Photo Stream, documents, contacts, calendars, mail, bookmarks, and notes).
iCloud backups include purchase history from the iTunes or App Store, app data, home screen and app organisation, iMessage/SMS/MMS text messages, device settings, and visual voicemail on an iOS device. But if you have multiple devices, old iCloud back-ups can quickly fill up their storage — particularly if they’re on the free (yay!) 5-gigabyte tier.
To delete an old iCloud backup from an iOS device, simply open the Settings app, and select iCloud, then select Storage. There’s a line graphic at the bottom of the following screen representing the amount of iCloud storage currently in use. Next, select the particular Backup to be deleted. Users with iCloud being used on multiple devices will have more than one.
Selecting particular old (and redundant) backups to delete (not the current one, obviously).

5/ Choose which apps back up — You can choose which apps back up, too – remember (and please note) that, unlike on Mac or PC where documents go into files and folders independent of the applications that create them, in most cases, iOS apps contain the docs they create within the originating apps – and these can be backed up. So disabling any non-essential apps from a backup frees up space within iCloud storage.
At the bottom of the Backup Info screen, there is an option to Delete the particular backup. Once the backup is deleted, the amount of available iCloud storage will increase in proportion to the size of the deleted backup. To delete an iCloud backup from a Mac, open System Preferences and select iCloud. Then, select the Manage button on the bottom right of the window.

Five Tip Friday ~ iOS 8 and your iDevice, including Keynote

1/ Per-account Mail signatures — Yes, it’s possible. A lot of people only have one account on their iPhone or iPad, but many have two or more. On my Mac I have different signatures for different email accounts, as I use them for different things, and you can do this in iOS 8 too. Open Settings, choose Mail, Contacts and Calendars and scroll down to Signatures. Tap ‘Per Account’ (which you’ll only see if you have more than one account already set up) and configure-away. You can even ‘copy’ artwork from another app and ‘paste’ it in here for more sophisticated signatures with logos etc.

2/ Accessing Handoff with your device unlocked — Using Handoff to swap between your iOS devices and your Mac to complete documents, emails, and messages is a neat new ability with iOS 8 and Yosemite. Opening a Handoff-capable program on your Mac (and, if necessary, firing up an email or a document) will let you swipe up from the lower-left corner of your lock screen to continue that work on your iOS device. But you don’t actually need to lock your iPhone or iPad to access your Handoff stuff; all you’ve need to do is go to so-called App Switcher, which you’ll see whenever you double-click your Home button. Then, to see what Handoff has waiting for you, just swipe from left to right.
That reveals what you can access from your Mac or your other iOS devices. Tap that to open your work on your current gadget.

3/ Keynote on iPad — Did you know you can delete old Keynote presentations? Open Keynote on your iPad and click on Presentations. Tap the one you want to delete and hold your finger on it until your presentations start to wiggle (ie, exactly the same as getting into Edit Mode on your Home screen). Tap that presentation a second time and you will see a blue box around it. Now just tap the trash can in the upper left corner and you will see the option to delete it.

4/ Undo Actions — In Keynote on iPad, there’s no need to manually save changes as you work. Keynote automatically saves your work about every 30 seconds. But you can always undo your recent actions if you don’t want to save them: tap Undo in the top-left corner of the screen.

5/ Add transitions — If you don’t have a Mac and have to create your Keynote from scratch on your iPad, or you want to make changes when you are away from your Mac, you can still add or change transitions.
Tap once on the slide you want to add the transition to. You’ll see ‘Double-tap to edit’ fields. Tap the slide thumbnail on the left and you’ll see, near the top in white-on-black text, ‘Transitions’.
Tap on the transitions option and, in the effects tab, scroll down to select the transition you want – you can choose your effect by scrolling.

More — Tap on the Options tab to set other requirements. If you want to add an identical transition to multiple slides, a quick way to do it is create the transition on a single blank slide and then duplicate that slide as many times as necessary. This works on your Mac or your iPad.

Five Tip Friday ~ Mail, Contacts and Calendars


iOS 8 added new options for fine tuning your Mail, Contacts and Calendars.

1/ New Mail options — In the Mail app, tap ‘Mailboxes ‘ at top left to go ‘back’.  In the Mailboxes view, you see an Edit button at top right. Touch that, and you’ll see the two new options: Thread Notification” and Today.
Today shows all messages you’ve received today (as long as they’re still in your inbox).
Thread Notifications includes emails from conversations you’ve asked to be notified about. If you toggle the checkbox next to those options on and then touch Done, they will appear in your main Mailboxes view.
Note that those lines along the right-hand side, in Edit mode, let you rearrange the order they’ll appear in.

2/ Apple’s Mail app on the iPhone and iPad includes a couple handy gestures — These let you flag messages, mark them as read, or toss them in the trash by dragging across an email in the message list. iOS 8 lets you edit your options:
To change the left and right swipe gestures in iOS 8’s Mail app, tap Settings, then choose Mail, Contacts, Calendars. Now tap Swipe Options: you can set the left- and right-swipe options from here, so Mark as Read and Flag are attached to the gesture you prefer. You can disable either from appearing, but you can’t change where the Trash and More options show up.
Changing Mail’s swipe settings can be useful depending on if you’re right or left-handed, how you hold your iPhone, or if you find you use one option more than the other. If you flag a lot of messages, for example, it might be easier to avoid accidentally deleting an email you’d rather not lose.

With iOS 8, you have more power over your recent contacts
With iOS 8, you have more power over your recent contacts

3/ Your latest contacts — When you double-click the Home button on an iDevice, you get the App Switcher/quitter as before (drag the smaller app windows upwards to properly ‘quit’ them). But iOS 8 added your latest contacts along the top for instant call-backs, messages etc – when you tap someone’s avatar in the top region, you’re given a variety of ways to make a connection with them.
But here’s the real tip: you can change what contacts are listed. Visit Settings, choose Mail, Contacts, Calendars and scroll down and touch Show In App Switcher for two options you can turn on or off: Phone Favourites and Recents.

4/ Fine tune your event alerts — While you’re in Mail, Contacts, Calendars, tap on Sync under the Calendars section. Here you can tap on the duration of time you’d like your iPhone or iPad to sync events for.

5/ Set default alert times for calendar events on iPhone and iPad — Alert times are when your calendar alerts you that you have an upcoming event or appointment. You can easily change the setting for when your Calendar app on your iPhone or iPad will alert you of an event.
Again in Settings>Mail, Contacts, Calendars, tap on Default Alert Times under the Calendars section. Here you can choose the default alert times you’d like. You can even set different default alert times for birthdays, timed events, and all day events.