Gmail IMAP problems

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vili
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Joined: Tue Jul 29, 2008 11:22 am

Gmail IMAP problems

Post by vili » Thu Oct 23, 2008 10:34 am

First of all, thanks for the brilliant piece of software!

I have, however, encountered a small problem with PopTray (or perhaps with one of its plugins). It may be that I am doing something wrong, so here is my setup:

- I have two accounts that I check, with a 5-minute interval, one of which is a Gmail account.

- I want PopTray to only notify me when there is email. I don't need or want it to download or modify the messages in any way. I have therefore set the protocol of both accounts as IMAP (the SSL version for Gmail). For this I use the IMAP4rev1 plugin.

- I use Windows XP (SP3, but the problem occurred also with SP2).

Now, most of the time everything works perfectly. However, at least once a day the Gmail check fails. This, I suspect, is a problem with the Gmail server and not PopTray.

However, how PopTray handles these failures is something of an issue. Whenever the Gmail check fails, PopTray opens a small error Window. This window opens behind all the other windows, which means that I won't know that a check error has occurred until I either close all windows, or spot the icon when scrolling through the ALT+TAB list of running programs.

The window itself is not the main problem, though. The real issue is that after encountering an error, PopTray no longer checks for new mail, either from Gmail or from the other account, not until I close the error window. Consequently, with me totally oblivious to the fact that an error has taken place and PopTray is no longer checking for new emails, hours may easily pass until I start wondering why no new mail has arrived and start to investigate.

It would be good if PopTray could simply silently ignore errors like these and would try the failed server again during the next scheduled check.

I tried checking "Ignore Connection Errors" and "Ignore Retrieve Errors" in the Options, but this does not seem to have any effect.

PopTray could perhaps also modify the notification area icon to somehow display that the last check failed, and possibly even optionally play a sound. But the main thing would be to have the program continue checking for mail boxes after an error has occurred.

Or is it just that I am doing something wrong?

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Rdsok
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Post by Rdsok » Fri Oct 24, 2008 12:25 am

IMAP isn't a standardized implementation for email... each IMAP server uses their own standards so email clients ( and checkers ) do have more issues with this type than others.

The best way to get around it is to enable Gmails SSL POP3 email access instead and then setup PopTray to access it that way.

vili
First Timer
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Jul 29, 2008 11:22 am

Post by vili » Mon Oct 27, 2008 9:43 pm

Thanks for the reply, Rdsok!

The problem with the POP3 protocol is that, as far as I can see, it cannot determine whether a message has already been read or not. I may read a message in my webmail before Poptray notifies me about it, but leave it in the inbox to wait for a time when I feel like replying to it. This results in a situation where Poptray will notify me about a message that I have already read. This is why I personally prefer to use IMAP.

I do understand that the IMAP protocol introduces its own challenges, and that POPtray is primarily a POP notifier, not an IMAP one. In fact, I am not saying that Poptray is to blame for the actual errors that I receive from Gmail -- rather, as I pointed out in the original post, the problem has more to do with the way in which these errors are handled.

Also, like I suggested in the original post, it may well be more of a problem with the IMAP4rev1 plugin than with Poptray itself. Or even with the way in which I have set up the program. I don't know. If someone can suggest something, I would much appreciate it.

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Rdsok
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Post by Rdsok » Tue Oct 28, 2008 1:56 am

Since there is no info on whether further development will be done by the plugins author... I can make no other suggestions.

Personally I'm "old school" and don't feel that an email server should be used as a storage device so I download and then delete the emails as they come in. I prefer to keep them on my system were I'm actually in control of the access to them and can back them up as I see fit.

vili
First Timer
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Jul 29, 2008 11:22 am

Post by vili » Tue Oct 28, 2008 9:10 am

Since there is no info on whether further development will be done by the plugins author... I can make no other suggestions.
Thanks nonetheless, Rdsok!

For me, keeping emails online is a must as I need to be able to access them regardless of what computer or mobile phone I am using.

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