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Free IMAP On Gmail

kdawson posted more than 6 years ago | from the bout-time dept.

Google 440

A number of readers are writing in to tell us that Google is rolling out IMAP support for Gmail accounts. Several people say that some of their gmail accounts offer the IMAP option (in Settings, Forwarding and POP/IMAP) and others do not.

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But... (5, Funny)

JK_the_Slacker (1175625) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095269)

... I thought that only Apple would release an iMap? Had me fooled.

Re:But... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21095341)

yeah, they already have this []

Re:But... (2, Funny)

JK_the_Slacker (1175625) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095355)

Holy crap! It's a map with Missouri on it! Somebody call the Weather Channel, they need to see this. CNN too.

Re:But... (4, Funny)

dwater (72834) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095343)

Nope, google beat them to it, even though they are gSlow. They really dropped the iBall on this one.

Can you use it to upload mails? (4, Informative)

jimmyhat3939 (931746) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095551)

One of the deficiencies of gmail has been that it's very painful to put all your old emails into it. I'm thinking maybe imap will fix this. I happen to be one of the lucky ones who got imap, so I'll keep you posted.

Re:Can you use it to upload mails? (5, Informative)

jimmyhat3939 (931746) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095655)

Ok I just tested it. In fact you *can* use this to upload emails!!! hooray! Now I can use gmail as my primary/only email repository!!!!!

Re:Can you use it to upload mails? (4, Interesting)

Carthag (643047) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095943)

Care to give a bit more details on how you do this? I wouldn't want to accidentally delete all my mails and have to look through backups.

Re:Can you use it to upload mails? (5, Informative)

abes (82351) | more than 6 years ago | (#21096025)

There's an option in the settings to pull email from up to 5 (?) sources on the GMail page. There are several settings that allow you to optionally move or copy the emails. I did the move option, so I could check if any mail didn't make it across.

On the whole it worked great, EXCEPT that the date of the mail got messed up, it took the entire day, and the order was a bit strange. I ended up having to sort by date sent rather than date received. It was also a big pain in the ass to get random mail from my old account throughout the day.

On the other hand, once it was finished, I had stored 5 years of emails from my school account. There's still a few emails that never made the transfer, and I'm not completely sure why yet.

Re:Can you use it to upload mails? (5, Informative)

master811 (874700) | more than 6 years ago | (#21096059)

You'll need Outlook. Any version will do I think, other email clients might work though in my experience Outlook Express doesn't work and neither does the Windows Live Mail client. Thunderbird should work though, but of course if you have a hotmail account or you use exchange, your only option will be to use Outlook. Basically with Outlook simply copy/move your folders (right click or drag) that you need from an existing imap/pop/mapi account whatever and put them into the google imap account. It should be that simple, of course it'll mean uploading the email you copy, so if you have a lot of it or are on a slow connection it will take time.

The more suckers the better !! (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21095707)

google reads your mail, your deepest, darkest, personal matters are all belong to google !!

sucka !!

Re:The more suckers the better !! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21095727)

That is patently untrue. Google by law cannot read my mail. Idiot

Re:The more suckers the better !! (3, Informative)

garbletext (669861) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095989)

Right, but they can build a program to do it, then have the robot summarize the most salient points of your life, from a marketing perspective, to whoever. Manually reading everyone's email would be tedious. Google has developed advanced tools so they can profit off you without needing to.

Re:The more suckers the better !! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21096013)

Google hasn't enabled my IMAP yet, but you should be able to just drag or copy emails from IMAP mailboxes to other ones in most clients.

Yes... Butq (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21096061)

You're a faggot

Re:But... (1)

aichpvee (631243) | more than 6 years ago | (#21096119)

Don't you know that Google and apple have a deal? Why do you think they changed Personalized Google (or wtf it was called) to "iGoogle"?

Well it's about fucking time (3, Insightful)

Junior J. Junior III (192702) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095273)

Are they out of "beta" now?

Re:Well it's about fucking time (2, Informative)

Laebshade (643478) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095333)

Still in beta, but this is great news. I use gmail exclusively, and came to the realization, as others had already pointed out, that doing so is foolish. Imap support will make it easier to make full backups. Just last week I did a complete backup with a linux box and pop3 access to the gmail (with getmail/tar/bzip2). Now I can just keep an imap client running on my home system to constantly keep copies of the mail (once I get the imap option in gmail, that is). Thanks Google!

Re:Well it's about fucking time (3, Funny)

dwater (72834) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095365)

Google are experts on the whole Web-2.0 thing - it's good to see them finally getting hang of the Email-1.0 thing too.

Re:Well it's about fucking time (1)

nateb (59324) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095401)

I think email 1.0 is uucp.

pop should be 1.1, then, and imap 1.2

Re:Well it's about fucking time (2, Informative)

multipartmixed (163409) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095641)

I dunno. POP3 and IMAP4 are both serious enhancements to the MUA experience.

I'd peg UUCP as 1.0 -- straight copying of files and appending to a mailbox on the machine where the mail was read. Mail path directed by sender through well-known hosts.

1.5 would add SMTP, and the ability to deliver over TCP/IP using berkeley name resolution (DNS) without the need for well-known hosts. Mail is still read on the machine it is delivered to.

2.0 seriously enhances the user experience, by allowing the user to retrieve e-mail from a central repository (mail server) to be read by a (potentially offline) MUA via POP2. 2.1 would be POP3, 2.2 would be IMAP, 2.2.3 would be IMAP4.


Re:Well it's about fucking time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21096049)

> Are they out of "beta" now?

If their points of data make a wonderful line,
And they're out of beta, it's about fucking time
Google's glad you got burned
Think of all the things they learned
For the users that are still alive...

FCUK yeh! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21095283)

Everyone bow down to Google! GOOG is the greatest companty ever and I have an erection because thwey are offering this impa thing

its like their maps only with an i so its yours

It has something to do with servers and fo4rwrding mail and stuff, something 99.999% of normals will never ever care about ever. But its google doing it so its news!

hooray for GOOG! we love you guys!

IMAP WEEE!!! (1)

Ximok (650049) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095305)

Took long enough. I always wondered why they chose POP over IMAP in the first place. But then again, I'm just a real big fan of IMAP.


Re:IMAP WEEE!!! (5, Insightful)

cs (15509) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095623)

You write:

I always wondered why they chose POP over IMAP in the first place.
I'm only guessing, but think about the server resource usage. Everything they offer at present (web, pop) involves a client connecting, sucking briefly, and letting go. IMAP connections tend to be much longer lived, and that's a serious allocation issue with millions of users.

Got me excited there for a minute. (4, Informative)

Kadin2048 (468275) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095317)

I just went and checked; no IMAP option for me. Just the usual POP ones.

It'd be nice to get IMAP, though. Right now I basically only do Gmail from one machine, because when I access it from another one, either via Gmail's web interface or via a standalone POP client, everything gets screwed up. There's no tracking of which messages I read through the web interface when I later get them via POP, and emails that I send through the web pop up in my Inbox in Mail later. It's okay if I'm going to be away for a while, say on vacation or something, but it's obnoxious enough that if I'm away for a day or so, I just let it go.

IMAP would be a huge step up.

Re:Got me excited there for a minute. (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21095403)

Just checked my two account it appears that my oldest one has the imap link and the newer one doesn't yet

Re:Got me excited there for a minute. (2, Interesting)

wnknisely (51017) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095563)

Same here. The account I set up back when Gmail was only available to blogger users is now IMAP enabled. The Google App accounts are still POP only. Hopefully it will only be a couple of days till they're all IMAP capable.

Re:Got me excited there for a minute. (4, Informative)

finiteSet (834891) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095757)

IMAP is an option for me and I only registered my Gmail account a month or so ago. I put off getting a Gmail account for quite some time only because it lacked IMAP support - I couldn't be happier with this development.

Re:Got me excited there for a minute. (1)

hyades1 (1149581) | more than 6 years ago | (#21096081)

I have one of the oldest GMail accounts. No IMAP for me, so far. Whatever system they're using to determine who gets offered IMAP first, it has nothing to do with when your joined up.

Re:Got me excited there for a minute. (2, Informative)

AxemRed (755470) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095535)

Same here... I just checked, and I only have an option available for POP. When I clicked on the "learn more" link, it explained POP and gave me a couple of other links. One of those links was titled "what about IMAP." When I clicked on that, it said that the document was not available. Ya, I would really like IMAP a lot more than pop.

Size of headers? (5, Interesting)

Psychor (603391) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095325)

Not sure exactly how they're going to implement this, since I can't see the option in my account as yet. I would imagine they'd have to limit it somehow though, since for accounts with thousands and thousands of emails sitting around in them like mine, the size of even downloading the headers via IMAP would be fairly prohibitive?

I would guess they'll limit support to a few hundred of the latest mails only or something like that, but if anyone has checked it out and has any information that'd be useful.

Re:Size of headers? (5, Informative)

HeavyD14 (898751) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095449)

I went in and downloaded every header from my All Mail folder, right from "Gmail is different, here is what you need to know" from 3 years ago to my latest email from 2 minutes ago. It took a minute or two, but they all came through.

Re:Size of headers? (0, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21095473)

Yeah, no limit that I can notice - just downloaded my archive of 1412 messages...

Re:Size of headers? (1)

Jay L (74152) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095519)

I don't see why they'd limit it; if they're already willing to transmit your whole mailbox via POP3 (which requires looking up every message and transmitting it in toto, attachments and all) they oughta be willing to send down just the headers - especially since IMAP can be very efficient in only getting new/changed headers, and if they're smart, they store the needed headers up in the index and not down in the message.

A bit late... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21095329)

This would have been nice when I started. Now my gmail inbox is a mess. Currently, my Thunderbird inbox is clean and my gmail account has 20,000 or so unread messages. Does anyone know if it's possible to get google to replace its stuff with mine?

Re:A bit late... (2, Informative)

Kadin2048 (468275) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095527)

This would have been nice when I started. Now my gmail inbox is a mess. Currently, my Thunderbird inbox is clean and my gmail account has 20,000 or so unread messages. Does anyone know if it's possible to get google to replace its stuff with mine?
Why wouldn't you just sync up your Gmail account to a folder in Thunderbird (once you have the option, of course), delete everything currently in your account, and then copy the contents of your Thunderbird inbox to it?

Labels or Folders? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21095345)

I personally hate "Labels", but how will Gmail support something basic like folders?

Re:Labels or Folders? (4, Interesting)

RuBLed (995686) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095433)

Isn't that the same? And you could tag a single mail with multiple labels, which is essentially like making a shortcut on every folder/label? I use very basic labels but yes I agree, labels should have an option to have a folder like interface.

Re:Labels or Folders? (2, Interesting)

dwater (72834) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095531)

I don't much like the labels either.

I've been a satisfied Fastmail [] user for several years now. Apart from gmail being free (FM has free accounts too, but they're ad supported or something - I pay for their premium service), I don't see any advantage in their interface.

I wonder if this new imap service will help people who already have stuff in folders (like me) move to gmail? I tried gmail a while ago and it was a pain to set it up to do the same as fastmail was doing automatically (ie use plus-addressing). Perhaps I'll give it another try, afterall, free is good.

Re:Labels or Folders? (2, Insightful)

Bronster (13157) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095617)

We still have better support at FastMail though :)

(yes, I do work for FastMail - was wondering if we'd get mentioned in this thread)

Oh - and we're responsible for most of the bugfixing that's happened in the past few releases of Cyrus thanks to being early adopters and thanks to me spending far too much time reading C code for my sanity.

Re:Labels or Folders? (2, Informative)

dwater (72834) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095777)

> We still have better support at FastMail though :)

Indeed, support is excellent. I particularly appreciate the RSS feed to the status weblog, and the fact that is has accurate and honest commentary on any current problems - not that there's much traffic on there, but it happens from time-to-time (nothing that's affected me though - well, not recently).

Kudos on the Cyrus work too, btw. I had a go at implementing it at one point, but the project 'changed direction'[1]


[1] out-sourced to some provider called Luxsci (also pretty good, IMO) because running a server requires a fair amount of on-hand expertise that we couldn't rely on long-term. I really wanted to use FM - there were some options but you guys weren't geared up for the commercial setup we wanted.

Why? (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21095689)

What is there that you can do with folders but not with labels? I never understood the resistance, personally. I've always considered labels more powerful and therefore better, but maybe I manage things differently than most people--I set up a bunch of filters and now every single message I get is appropriately labeled, then "archived" (so that it doesn't show up in my inbox).

That way, the few things left unclassified await me in the inbox (and I can filter them if need be), but everything else is under an appropriate label (and because I mark *everything* as read once I'm done with it, it doesn't really matter that there's one message with two or more labels).

Re:Labels or Folders? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21095785)

I used to be with FastMail, and then MailSnare. I'm now using 1and1 [] . Their support sucks, but I haven't needed to use them yet for e-mail (I've used them for other services).

5 mailboxes, 2GB storage, IMAP, SMTP - $0.99/month.

PS, labels suck. I don't just want to tag something... I want to MOVE it to a folder. Gmail's interface sucks too. They should purchase Yahoo mail or something.

Re:Labels or Folders? (1)

pk69 (541206) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095437)

I've got it enabled. The labels show up as folders in Apple Mail, but no mail inside of them.

Re:Labels or Folders? (4, Insightful)

Kadin2048 (468275) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095583)

I personally hate "Labels", but how will Gmail support something basic like folders?
Well, since you can do everything you can do with Folders, with Labels, I expect it really won't be that hard.

All you need to do for a 'folder' is have a label that says "present in xyz folder." So to put a message in a folder you just tag it with that, and then the 'folder' itself is just a view that only shows messages with that tag. How the messages are actually stored on disk is irrelevant to the user. This means you can use database storage schemes that are much more efficient for large sites than flat files.

The obvious advantage to a user of tags vs folders is that you can have a single message in more than one psuedo-folder in a tag-based system; in a true folder-based system, you either need to make a copy of the message in order to store it in two folders, or you need to do something nasty with symlinks/pointers.

Re:Labels or Folders? (5, Informative)

daemonc (145175) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095633)

I wondered that myself, but don't have the option to try it out yet. Fortunately Google did a good job of explaining the Label to Folder mapping here: []

Re:Labels or Folders? (1)

Darkforge (28199) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095857)

Great link! For those who don't want to click through to the Google Help link:

How do actions sync in IMAP?
Your IMAP client will show all of your default Gmail views under a special [Gmail] folder hierarchy. Here's a guide to how other actions in your IMAP client will appear in your Gmail account.

Action on mobile device/client (e.g. iPhone/Outlook): Result in Gmail on the web

Open a message: Mark a message as read
Flag a message: Apply a star to the message
Move a message to a folder: Apply a label to the message
Move a message to a folder within a folder*: Apply a label showing folder hierarchy ('MainFolder/SubFolder')*
Create a folder: Create a label
Move a message to [Gmail]/Spam: Report a message as spam
Move a message to [Gmail]/Trash: Move a message to Trash
Send a message: Store message in Sent Mail
Delete a message: Remove label from the message, or delete the message permanently if the message is already in the Spam or Trash label

*IMAP translates labels with a forward slash (/) into a folder hierarchy like you see in your computer's file system. If you have a label such as 'Family/Friends,' you may want to reconsider your naming schemes because your IMAP client will display it as a folder named 'Family' with a subfolder named 'Friends.'

Re:Labels or Folders? (1)

dpete4552 (310481) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095695)

Gmail already supports "something as basic as folders". Simply label the e-mail, click archive, and it is in a folder. The only difference is you can have one e-mail be in multiple folders at the same time. By default when you "move" an e-mail into a folder/label Gmail allows you to continue to see that e-mail in your Inbox as well as in that folder/label. If you click archive then you will only see it in that folder/label.

Your only legitimate gripe is that Gmail doesn't allow you to have the e-mail be archived by default after you apply a folder/label to it -- that way it would feel more like it's being "moved". Either way you have the same result, just a little more flexibility in being able to have an e-mail in more than one folder at once.

Re:Labels or Folders? (5, Insightful)

the_wesman (106427) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095833)

hi - no offense to your viewpoint, but I find this unfathomable - at work, we use ms outlook/exchange and I despise organizing things into folders - the reason is that some things are applicable to multiple categories - for example, my company has multiple software products and each has a build and automated test cycle - so when product B is built, I get an e-mail about the build, and when it's smoke tested, I get another e-mail - I would like to label these as "product B" (for both e-mails) and "build results" and "test results" for the others, respectively - seems to me that you only gain functionality this way - using gmail's implementation as an example: you can then click on the label that says "product b" and see all the stuff (build and test results) for that product exactly the same way you would as if there were folders ... actually, I just thought of a difference: you don't get a folder hierarchy ... dunno, that doesn't seem like a huge loss to me - is that why you prefer folders? seriously - I'm baffled as to why anyone would prefer folders vs a label/tag system.... to each his own - cheers

Possibly unrelated... (1, Insightful)

HartDev (1155203) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095351)

I was helping someone use the Gmail chat feature and it magically dawned on me how much gmail kicks the crap out of Hotmail, I have some old Hotmail accounts and I was skeptical to move over to Gmail, but since I have I wondered how I ever used Hotmail. Man when I was a kid it was the email that your ISP gave you.....Well whatever will be will be!

Re:Possibly unrelated... (1)

garbletext (669861) | more than 6 years ago | (#21096057)

Wait, your ISP "gave" you a free Hotmail account?


jmitchel! (254506) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095359)

I read gmail via web at work, pop on my phone, pop & web at home. That means stupid effort to make sure that all the messages I've read are marked read everywhere, and that all the messages I haven't read get read without marking something read by habit. Worse - Gmail pop seems to have a tricky way of deciding what should or should not be downloaded. I've been hoping for GMail IMAP for ages, and praying for it ever since I got my e-mail friendly phone.

I have it. (4, Informative)

vitaflo (20507) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095361)

Shows up on mine. Given I was a very early adopter of gmail, I wonder if they aren't doling it out to the old timers first.

Re:I have it. (3, Informative)

UltraMathMan (1139987) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095391)

Sweet me too! Don't know if I'll use it or not though, I kind of like the interface - or perhaps it's that I'm just used to it :)

Re:I have it. (5, Informative)

AWeenieMan (1103895) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095415)

I have the option on an account that is about 18 months old and another one that is about a month old. So, it doesn't seem to be related to when accounts were created.

Re:I have it. (1)

Karrots (14012) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095447)

My gmail account which is quite old doesn't have the option. On the other hand my Google Apps account does.

Re:I have it. (1)

pk69 (541206) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095499)

Seems like it, I have an account from Jun 21, 2004. Never deleted one message. Consequently Apple Mail is choking on around 10,000 emails :(.

Re:I have it. (1)

MalleusEBHC (597600) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095515)

My account is over 3 years old, but I don't see it as an option yet.

Re:I have it. (1)

waterwingz (68802) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095579)

I've got it on both of mine. Maybe its a function of how much you actually use the account (other than to filter spam) ?

No. (2, Informative)

asserted (818761) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095629)

this is really a random fraction, staged rollout. Just wait and you'll have it too in due time :)

Re:I have it. (1)

teh moges (875080) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095963)

Are you American? The reason I ask is that when they rolled out chat, I couldn't access it for a long time. I changed my location to USA and there it was. They might be doing the same thing here (USA only first, others later)

Re:I have it. (1)

GarfBond (565331) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095589)

Same here. I signed up under the referral days too.

It works, it really works!

Have it too, even does SSL (2, Informative)

Mr. Arbusto (300950) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095873)

I've been wondering for a while if they'd roll out IMAP, but I was pleasantly surprised to see the supported SSL for IMAP. For them I'm certain the overhead is marginal, it's still a nice mail service.....if you don't mind the google indexing your mail.

my account was enabled (2, Informative)

brjndr (313083) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095409)

I checked and had IMAP enabled, so I changed it on my iPhone too. My iPhone has folders for all my labels now too, and it you click on the folder it downloads the last 50 (or 25, based on your settings) of that label.

Previosly sent mail is in 'sent mail' folder under a 'Gmail' parent folder. Mail sent from the iPhone is in actual 'sent' folder. At least it's not emailing me a copy of my sent mail anymore.

my google hosted domain does, regular doesn't (2, Interesting)

boredandblogging (1168419) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095465)

My regular doesn't show it, but the domain I host with google (the non-premium stuff) has it.

Re:my google hosted domain does, regular doesn't (1)

Scruffy Dan (1122291) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095827)

It is the exact opposite for me. Good to know my custom domain will have IMAP soon.

Better late than never (1)

bogaboga (793279) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095467)

I wonder why it took Google so long to implement IMAP. Sometimes I wonder whether Google is becoming so huge and complex that issues as important as IMAP can take so long to implement. This is where Microsoft is at. Sadly.

Cool! (1)

snl2587 (1177409) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095471)

I'll have to check to see if this is available for me, and if it is that would save some headaches. Currently I use XP and Ubuntu (on the same machine, fortunately) and I'm sharing Thunderbird's profile folder, but that causes lots of little issues. Add this to the list of reasons I've been using my Gmail account for longer than any other account.

Old fashioned way to get IMAP (2, Informative)

AncientPC (951874) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095477)

*requires own domain

1) Create an e-mail account on your domain dedicated for this one purpose.
2) Forward your gmail account to above account.
3) Access above account via IMAP.

I hate POP3 as I routinely check my e-mail across multiple devices / computers daily. POP3 with server copy just doesn't cut it.

Re:Old fashioned way to get IMAP (1)

bucky0 (229117) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095605)

I used to do that too, but I had the problem that when I was on the road, if my desktop wasn't on for whatever reason, then my message filters wouldn't run. Which, to me, is the biggest reason I use IMAP(what good are folders if I have to sort all the emails myself?)

Re:Old fashioned way to get IMAP (1)

AncientPC (951874) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095667)

Yeah I understand. One of my accounts gets quite a bit of spam that makes it way past SpamAssassin but Thunderbird's Bayesian filters will usually pick it up. However it's quite annoying to get spam e-mail notifications on my PDA phone all the time.

The primary reason I like IMAP is that it gives me a central location in which to backup all my e-mail, as opposed to having random e-mails spread across all my computers / devices as it is with POP3. I still archive using POP3 with gmail, but if I'm forced to log in to the web interface to check mail then why bother with POP3 to begin with?

Some have it, some don't, not totally obvious (4, Informative)

Coopjust (872796) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095495)

OK, some interesting bits:

-My Gmail account created late 2004 has it, as well as a friend from a month later.
-My Gmail account created summer 2005 does NOT have it.
-My "Google Apps for your domain" account, late 2006, has it, admins and regular users.
-Unlike typical announcements, it's not showing in the upper right. You have to go into your preferences. If you see a "Forwarding & POP" tab, you lack it. If you see a "Forwarding & POP/IMAP" tab...obviously, you have it.
-All your labels become Subfolders in a "[Gmail]" folder that sits next to your inbox. It also has the spam and All Mail folders (If you have a lot of email, it understandably take FOREVER to load the first time--- "Processing 1 of 7000 email headers")

It's a great move that's likely to keep me on Gmail, but it seems to play a lot nicer with Outlook 2003 on Win XP Pro than Evolution on Ubuntu Gutsy.One email account is perfect, the other is horrible, and other than the username they have the same exact settings. The one that doesn't work has 600 email headers to download, and the other one downloaded 7,000 in a snap.

being rolled out gradually to random subset users (5, Informative)

asserted (818761) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095595)

no point in looking for rollout patterns, user participation is being gradually ramped up and it's done in subsets of users that are basically random.
at some point roll out will reach 100% and everyone will have the option. a little more patience is all that is needed :)

You might need to log out/log in (3, Informative)

Eagle7 (111475) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095525)

I did not have IMAP in my account when I checked (as soon as it was posted on /.). I logged out of Gmail, and logged back in, and suddenly the option was there in settings. YMMV (but hopefully it will work).

I'm curious how they are implementing labels equaling folders... I see folders in Apple Mail for all my labels, and I see labels messages in my Inbox and in the label folder. I haven't started trying use cases to figure out how deleting, moving, and copying messages in Mail relates to the labels in Gmail.

Re:You might need to log out/log in (1)

RandyOo (61821) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095921)

YMMV (but hopefully it will work)/quote)

No dice here. :(

I got it. :) (1)

L4m3rthanyou (1015323) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095559)

This should be nice... IMAP would allow me to use real mail clients on both of my systems (which have two OSes each) without having to deal with lost messages or that "leave it on the server" mess.

my name is adriane (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21095601)

if anyone on this planet hurts another child they will answer to me.

IMAP over SSL? (1)

ErikTheRed (162431) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095607)

Or am I just a greedy bastard?

Re:IMAP over SSL? (3, Informative)

Coopjust (872796) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095657)

Yeah, the IMAP connection is secured via SSL.

Enabled on my google domain (1)

nubbie (454788) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095609)

Looks like my hosted gmail accounts (google domains) has the IMAP ability. No luck on my normal gmail account.

imap with multiple accounts? (1)

0xC2 (896799) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095663)

Imap can replace web access well enough (e.g. for laptop on the road). But I download multiple gmail accounts from my desktop computer via pop. I don't see how imap could work with multiple accounts. Any ideas?

Re:imap with multiple accounts? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21095723)

I don't see how imap could work with multiple accounts. Any ideas?

Uh.. it works perfectly well. Have you tried using any number of mail clients that support multiple IMAP accounts at once? Thunderbird, for example?

Re:imap with multiple accounts? (3, Informative)

afidel (530433) | more than 6 years ago | (#21096127)

Use an MUA that doesn't suck? Even Outlook 2003 supports multiple IMAP accounts. Thunderbird has supported it since the Netscape Communicator 4 days. Actually I can't think of a client off the top of my head that supports IMAP and doesn't support multiple profiles.

Anyone seen support for IMAP IDLE functionality ? (2, Interesting)

slincolne (1111555) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095715)

Has anyone seen if this supports the IMAP IDLE [] mode of operating ?

This is where your clients stay connected, and the server notifies the mail client when there is mail waiting, rather than having the client repeatedly polling the server.

If/when they get this working it will be fantastic for those of us with mobile devices who can't afford a high end data plan.

PS - if you have a Gmail account, and you can't see the IMAP option in settings, log completely out of gmail, close the browser window, and then connect and check again - that's all it took for me to find this nice new feature ;-)

Yes. (3, Informative)

asserted (818761) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095759)

it does.

why should anyone care (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21095731)

For half a decade you could get good IMAP accounts from the likes of GeneticMail [] (Everything via SSL... LDAP address book XMPP IM years before google talk, etc.) or FastMail [] , or even Apple. Now, for the glory of having ads along with your junk mail, here is google... As usual, google impresses people without actually offering anything impressive at all. I suppose that's genius of a sort.

because it's free and on google scale. (1)

asserted (818761) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095811)

while $random_provider may have been offering it for some time, this is something different.
it doesn't really require much skill to install cyrus or uw imapd and start charging 100$/year for that. i would be surprised if noone did it.
but implementing it for free and on google scale is way, way more than that and needs planning and thought.
first version of gmail was in development for quite some time before it was released in 2004.

Re:why should anyone care (1)

aviators99 (895782) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095903)

What makes you think that there are ads in their IMAP mail? From my testing just now, there are no ads (just as there are none using their POP3 service).

It does appear that their IMAP service works much better than their POP3 server. With POP3 (using the protocol directly), retrieving messages using message numbers in order seems to retrieve messages from random time periods, unrelated to anything I can fathom (including "conversations", etc.) It also seems to have something to do with when and how messages have been previously read via POP3. This isn't noticed by most POP3 clients, because they download all of the messages first and then sort by date. But some have a problem with it. Their IMAP server appears to actually honor the policy of having the numbers match the reception time.

Excellent Timing (1)

JStegmaier (1051176) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095745)

For the last six months I've been using paid email hosting because I absolutely needed IMAP. Now that hosting is up for renewal at the end of this week, and here Google is finally giving us that killer feature. Once this actually gets rolled out to my main account on Gmail, I'll be switching back there full time. At the moment, of my accounts only my old, original account has IMAP. It's been my least active for a long time, and it's also the one that all the invites for my other accounts (and various friends' accounts) came from. That's really the only difference I can think of between that account and my others.

Mailbox size jumped too (4, Informative)

frdmfghtr (603968) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095753)

Recently my mailbox capacity was approaching 3 seems to have taken a big jump to 4.3 GB in the last week or two. ANybodty else notice a capacity jump?

Re:Mailbox size jumped too (1)

FRiC (416091) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095925)

The capacity increased happened to both regular gmail and google apps. (apps used to be limited to 2000 MB but is now in sync with gmail.)

New Accounts Come With It? (4, Informative)

JStegmaier (1051176) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095799)

Just to test a theory, I created another account on Gmail, and it had IMAP right from the get to.

Re:New Accounts Come With It? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21096011)

I did the same and didn't get IMAP. Guess it's random.

IMAP should be more bandwidth efficient (1)

postmortem (906676) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095823)

Down with POP3.

Because client won't be not downloading full message to your inbox, but header only, and ones marked for removal can be purged without downloading.

Smart move by Google - a good way to tie people to their service longterm, Hotmail defacto uses IMAP as well if user has Office XP or later.

This rocks. (1)

llamalad (12917) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095945)

I've been running my own mail server for the last seven years just so that I could have IMAP access.

In the last year or two my anti-spam measures have become less and less effective and because I'm no longer a sysadmin at an isp I just haven't bothered keeping up with newer/better ways of spam filtering.

And then there's that Cyrus IMAP sucks balls, and just try to keep it working with qmail-ldap after you've done a dist-upgrade. And then give up on qmail-ldap and lose the ability to use dash-extensions. Bummer.

Methinks that I'll be switching to gmail to handle email for my domains and turning off my IMAP daemon. I'll just run an IMAP client there to have my own backup archive. I'll keep my own SMTP daemon running so that I can get back the dash-ext functionality.

And then I'll point squirrelmail at gmail so that I can keep using my own web-based front-end from places that block web-based email. :-D

This rocks.

Finally (1)

Conspire (102879) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095951)

Well, I have been amazed that a company that has snapped up more genius talent than any other on the planet the past few years could not get its head around IMAP. I mean....WOW!

Its been my biggest complaint about Gmail. I think I wrote in a suggestion 5 minutes after I got my first Gmail account when it was limited to those invitees for "BETA" (which it still says BETA what's with that crazy silly marketing BS someone in love with the word BETA over there?)

Unfortunately, my account does not have IMAP option, go figure.....

IMAP: switch to "English (US)" interface language (2, Informative)

frik85 (951295) | more than 6 years ago | (#21095975)

You have to switch your language to "English (US)" to get the IMAP options in your GMail settings.

Other interface languages will get the update and therefore the translation sync later, as usual.

Well this sucks... (1)

smenor (905244) | more than 6 years ago | (#21096055)

I just bought a subscription to dot-mac last week because I got tired of being stuck with POP with my Gmail account.

Wrong account ... (1)

joe_n_bloe (244407) | more than 6 years ago | (#21096103)

The one I forward all my mail from - IMAP enabled.

The one I forward all my mail to - no IMAP.

Oh well.
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