As a solid procrastinator myself (and a mysterious Mac fanboy), I tend to stare all day long at my Mailbox and Subscribed Feeds. Even though you are less similar to me, under the depth of my heart, I still believe that you will frequently check your Mailbox. This motivates me in bringing up these cool, less-known tricks in using your Mail that will definitely benefit you, not to make you procrastinate further but to make your spare time more enjoyable.
These tricks include message redirection, message rejection, slideshow of attachments and other nifty Mail tricks. You will definitely want to know more about these as I was in the first place.
Spams are always hated wherever they go, as well as Junk Mails (if junks are not considered as spams). Sometimes, I don’t know how about you, I really want to report them. But here I am just an unknown person from an isolated island, who will believe me? That’s when the message redirection comes into assistance.
When you receive kind of messages that you don’t want (spams, wrong address), you can redirect the message, using menu bar Message → Redirect (keystrokes: Command-Shift-E), to the intended recipient.
Unlike forwarding message, when the recipient (whom you redirect your message to) reply to the message, the reply will be sent to the original sender of the message and will not appear on your mailbox.
Rules and Mailboxes
The more your email address exposed (team mates, work mates, family, etc), the more your message box will be cluttered and make it such a painful experience to go through your mailbox (but still, we must do it, mailbox is one of the sources for killing time). Obviously, there is a way to encounter this not-so-complex issue.
The easiest way is to use Rules and Mailboxes to arrange your incoming mails. Mailboxes are used to store mails and Rules are used to redirect your incoming message to the corresponding mailboxes.
Creating new mailbox is as easy as killing a mosquito (it’s easier than that, probably; Depends on the mosquito). Go to menu bar Mailbox → New Mailbox…, choose your new mailbox location, give it proper name and your new mailbox is set.
Now you have your new mailbox successfully run. The rest you need to do is assigning a rule so that whenever the condition in sync with the rule, the message will be automatically transferred to that Mailbox.
Here is the way to do it:
- Go to menu bar Mail → Preferences…
- Choose Rules
- Click on Add Rule if you want to create new rule or Edit Rule if you want to edit existing rule
- Fill in the Description field and choose the conditions (Subject, Sender, etc) that fits your needs
- Have the rule to perform action: Move Message to mailbox Hello Cupertino! (of course, you can choose other name for your Mailbox, but I prefer you to use “Hello Cupertino!”)
Spelling and Grammar Checker
Spelling and Grammatical errors have long become my most nightmarish obstacle in composing error-free Mail, esp. when I wrote message to my big-boss (the pressure and nervousness sweats me out of my insanity).
After knowing that I can actually have spell and grammar checker while composing your mail, by using menu bar Edit → Spelling and Grammar → Check Document Now (keystrokes: Command-Semicolon), I now can feel a bit relieved.
But most of the time, though the keystrokes are really simple, I simply forgot it. Amazingly, in Mail, we can set our Mail to check the spelling and grammar on the fly, by activating this feature on menu bar Edit → Spelling and Grammer → Check Spelling → While Typing, which should be able to help us in composing error-free Mail.
Message Size and Attachments Detector
Sometimes I will feel that my Mail is a bit dull and dumb. It can only display certain items, and worse, among that certain bit of information, I can’t even find out the size of the message and whether the message got attachment in it or not, which is pretty very troublesome for me.
But later on, I realize that it’s not that Mail doesn’t have it, it’s me who did not customize it, for God’s sake, after this long period of time using Mail!
The customization process is really simple, you just need to go to menu bar View → Columns → Size and you get the size of all your mails displayed on new column. Again, go to menu bar View → Columns → Attachments and you can see how many items were attached to correspondent mails. This is cool, really.
This trick is really wicked, which can turn you into invisible recipient, without the other side of the world (the sender) realizes that they have got into your trap.
Upon finished selecting mails you want to reject, go to your menu bar and choose Message → Bounce (keystrokes: Command-Shift-B). The messages you select will be rejected (or in more technical term: bounced back) and report will be sent to the sender that they’ve reached invalid address. Eventually, this action will discourage the sender from sending you unwanted messages.
Still, you will have a limitation here, if the return address is invalid (done by most of spammers), you can bounce back and the message you bounce will be bounced back again to you It’s really complex, but that’s how it works.
Slideshow of Attachments
I won’t bother to download picture attachments I received. With your Mac OS X Leopard and its super powerful feature called Quick Look, which is also embedded into your Mail, we can have a slideshow of our attachments just by simply clicking on the Quick Look button located at the bottom of the header.
Any types of files readable by Quick Look can be shown with slideshow, not limited to only slideshow of pictures. What a service!
Above, I’ve had a long talk on we as a message recipient. At the sender point-of-view, I also have this nifty trick here to help you resend your message easily.
First, you need to go to your Sent Folder. Just pick one of the messages you want to have it resent, only one. Then go to menu bar Message → Send Again (keystrokes: Command-Shift-D). You will have new message pane opened with all the fields filled up as before you sent the message. Now you can have that message sent again to the same recipient (And this will be pretty much useless without having any changes or modifications on the original message).
Have you ever had a thought of sending message in which the message contains another messages?
This is the trick that I like to call it multiple forward (if other name exists, then so be it). With multiple forward, using menu bar Message → Forward as Attachment, you can do message forwarding not limited to one message, but it’s the forwarding of tons of messages, provided that you have already selected messages that you want to forward.
What will be the forward message look like, I will leave this mystery for you to explore.
Avoid Automatic Retrieval
This is one of the default behavior for your Mail: it will automatically retrieve new mails coming into your email accounts. Do you think it would be convenient for you to have streams of message coming in from your girlfriends/boyfriend when your boss is around?
Personally, I will think that it’s a big NO. That’s why I, and you, will want to have automatic retrieval for certain email account disabled, which can be done by going into menu bar Mail → Preferences (keystrokes: Command-Comma).
Now follow the steps: Accounts → Choose Email Account → Advanced. Under this section, you can see several checkboxes. You can uncheck the checkbox labelled “Include when automatically checking for new mail” which results in that certain account excluded from automatically message retrieval.
Now you need to do your message retrieval manually by
selecting your email account and going to menu bar to perform Mailbox → Get New Mail → Choose Account.
Unveil Header Details
Usually for the headers, you will see several details, such as Sender, Subject, Date and Receiver. These are important and sufficient enough for sending back-and-forth message. But to my geek part, enough is never enough.
To my surprise, we can actually have more complete versions of the header, called Long Header, which can be triggered using menu bar View → Message → Long Headers (keystrokes: Command-Shift-H). After all, I can’t recognize what are the details about.
Do you think that these tricks are enough for you? If you want me to explore further on the Mail application or if you want me to discuss on another topic, you can shout it out at the comment box provided. Thanks!