Before upgrading to El Capitan Mail

Before upgrading to El Capitan, you first want to clone your drive. While a Time Machine backup is a good option, if you need to revert to your previous OS X a clone is much easier and quicker than Time Machine. I suggest SuperDuper to clone your drive. SuperDuper is free to do an erase and clone. You can purchase to do schedule and smart backups. If you don’t have an external drive, check out this 3T Western Digital drive. (the 2T is often only a few dollars less). You can partition the drive and use it for clone and Time Machine.

If you are running Snow Leopard 10.6, Lion 10.7, Mountain Lion 10.8, I would suggest doing a clean install of El Capitan 10.11. If your version of OS X is 10.9 or higher, you can try upgrading El Capitan over your current install. You can always revert to the clone. Erase the internal drive and reinstall El Capitan if you find a clean install is warranted. (be sure to save the El Capitan installer. It can be found in Applications. It’s named “Install OS X El Capitan”. By default Apple deletes the installer after the install is finished.)

I’m going to focus on Apple Mail in this article. See 6 Steps to Prepare a Mac for the OS X El Capitan Update for other helpful tips before you upgrade.

Mail in 10.11 is imported from V2 to V3 folder.  See Clean up Mail folder to free up space from your drive and  Troubleshooting Apple Mail in OS X 10.11 El Capitan for more info. This import process has been troublesome for many users. I suggest you do a clean install of Mail to avoid any upgrade issues.

Before you upgrade to OS X 10.11 El Capitan.

In Mail, remove all your IMAP accounts and any Exchange accounts. Removing the account in Mail > Preferences will take you to System Preferences > Internet Accounts to remove. Simply uncheck Mail. When you add back in El Capitan all your settings will be remembered. You might need to add password again so be sure you have your passwords handy.

When you remove a POP account, the Inbox messages are removed from Mail. Be sure you export your data before removing a POP account. If the messages are no longer on the server or you do not have a backup of your Mail folder, you would loose the Inbox messages.

You can use Apple’s export as Apple Mailboxes or you can export with this third party option, Emailchemy.  If you have lots of subfolders you’ll find that Emailchemy is worth every penny.

Export a folder in Mail

Under Mailbox in the Menu bar select Export Mailbox. You will need to do this for every folder and subfolder.
Mail-Export

Use Emailchemy to export your folders.

Download Emailchemy.  The demo will mask subject and sender fields in the converted email. Please try the demo before purchasing. This will save all the folders in Mail. Your folder sturcture will be saved. To purchase: $29.95

  • Select Apple Mail to convert

EC-Import

  • Select your Mail folder. By default Emailchemy will show the correct path.
  • Select Convert

EC-Import2

  • Select your destination folder. Desktop is selected in this image.
  • Save as MBOX file (standard mbox). This saves all your folders and subfolders. You keep your folder structure.
  • You can delete the converted_email folder after importing or save to an external drive then delete.

EC-Import3png

After you have saved all your local mailboxes, in your User’s Library….

  1. Scroll down to Containers folder > delete the com.apple.mail folder
  2. Delete the Mail folder. Iif you do not have a Time Machine or clone backup of Mail simply rename to Mailxx. After you are satisfied with your El Capitan Mail upgrade, you can delete the Mailxx folder in your User’s Library.
  3. Restart and delete the Trash

Now you are ready to upgrade to El Capitan.

After the OS X 10.11 El Capitan install,  go to System Preferences > Internet Accounts to add back your accounts. I suggest you add one account at a time. Let the account download fully before adding your other accounts. Some IMAP accounts need to have the Drafts, Trash and Junk folder set correctly.

usethismailbox

Import the local “On My Mac” folders.

Under File  select  Import Malboxes…

Mail-Import

If you used Mail to export, select Apple Mail.

If you used Emailchemy select the bottom option: Files in mbox format

Mail-Import.

Using either option you will find your folders under Import folder. Toggle open to view. You can move out of Import folder by dragging to the “On My Mac” header.

import-folder.

You can select to move the messages in default folders (Inbox, Drafts, Trash, Junk) under Import back to the top folders for your POP accounts. Note if you left messages in the Inbox on the server, you will have duplicates. Before adding the imported Inbox messages back, delete any newly download Inbox messages that are in your Imported Inbox

If you need personal assistance, you can contact me for support.

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Clean up Mail folder to free up space from your drive

Free up space from your drive after upgrading OS X.

Unless you have done a clean install of OS X, you might want to check your Mail folder to delete any old files that are no longer being used.

Apple Mail stores your data in your User’s Library. Unhide your User’s Library folder and locate Mail folder to get started. Continue reading

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Troubleshooting Apple Mail in OS X 10.11 El Capitan

The Apple Mail upgrade process in OS X 10.11 El Capitan has been problematic for many users. Let’s look at what has changed and optons to fix a bad upgrade.

Apple Mail is stored in your User’s Library. Apple hides User’s Library by default. You’ll need to unhide in order to continue. How to enable the User’s Library folder

Since OS X 10.7 (Lion), Mail has been stored in the User’s Library > Mail > V2 folder. Starting in OS X 10.11 El Capitan, Mail is stored in User’s Library > Mail > V3 folder.

This screen shot shows my V2 folder compared to V3 folder.

Compare V2 folder to V3

This is an example of a V3 folder with a bad upgrade. As you can see, it’s a mix of old folders with new.

upgradev3

To Repair Mail in El Capitan follow these steps.

Step 1: Make sure you have backup. If you have Time Machine or clone backup you are covered. If not, be sure to duplicate your Mail folder in the User’s Library.

Step 2: Quit Mail

  • In System Preferences > Internet Accounts, uncheck Mail for each account.
  • Go to the User’s Library
    • Scroll to Containers. Drag the com.apple.mail folder to the trash.
    • Scroll to Mail. Drag Mail folder to the trash.
    • Scroll to Preferences. Drag any com.apple.mail.plist files to the trash
  • Log out under the Apple in the Menu bar
  • Log in
  • Empty the Trash. If not, Mail will continue to try and use data in the Mail folder.
  • Open System Preferences > Internet Accounts and check Mail for your primary account. I suggest adding one email account at a time.
  • Open Mail and test account.
  • For IMAP and Exchange users with no local messages under “On My Mac” there is no step 3 required.

Step 3: Import messages stored under “On My Mac”

Option 1) Use a Time Machine backup. Go back in time just prior to OS X 10.11 El Capitan upgrade. You should only see a V2 folder in Mail.

  • If you are in your User’s Library > Mail folder, enter Time Machine.  Restore the V2 folder to the Desktop. Follow step 2 to import the data into Mail.

Or

  • If you are in Mail under “On My Mac” folders (you’ll need to create a folder if one does not exist to see “On My Mac”) you can enter Time Machine in this view then go back in time and select to restore your folders.

restore from tm

Option 2)  Under File in the Menu bar select Import Mailboxes…

File-import

Select Apple Mail

File-import.

Navigate to your Mail backup folder. Select Mailboxes folder in V2 > Import.

(Most users did not export mailboxes prior to upgrading but if you did, navigate to your exported folders)

Your messages will show up under “On My Mac” in a folder named Import. It will most likely be at the bottom of your folder list and not listed alphabetically.

File-import..

Occassionally, I have seen importing from V2 to show messages formatted incorrectly. If you cannot export from Mail in a prior version of OS X, you can use Emailchemy to convert these to mbox files that will import in the correct format. Emailchemy has a demo you can try first. $29.95 to purchase.

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No Mail Sounds with POP Accounts El Capitan v10.11.1

Apple issued a fix for no mail sounds in OS X 10.11.1. However the fix is only working for users with IMAP accounts.

I verified this by creating a new User as a blank canvas for testing.

  • I added a new POP account and tested. No sound.
  • I deleted the POP account and added it back as IMAP. Now I get sound when receiving.

Is this a bug or by design? It’s hard to understand how sound can work for IMAP and Exchange but not POP if not by design. Users need to send Apple Feedback so it can be logged and put in the queue to be fixed. http://www.apple.com/feedback/macosx.html

In the mean time, the only workaround seems to be to create a rule to play a sound. See this example by ThoughtForce on Apple Discussions.

I suggest all users with POP accounts switch to IMAP if possible. Most email providers offer IMAP as an option now.

What’s the difference between IMAP and POP?

IMAP works by keeping mail on the server. All folders (Inbox, Drafts, Sent, Trash) including your custom folders are saved on the server.

POP works by downloading from your Inbox only. If you read on one device, the read status will not be reflected on other devices. If you delete from server the message only exists on your Mac.

Moving to a new computer or recovering from a crash, IMAP is the easiest option with no loss of data.

By default, Mail will setup most accounts as IMAP. However if you have your account set as POP you will need to remove the account first then add it back as IMAP.

Before deleting your POP account in Mail, any messages in your POP Inbox will need to be saved. Create a mailbox (folder) under “On My Mac”. Move all the Inbox messages for the POP account to this folder. Do this for every POP account that you have. When you remove the POP account, Mail deletes all messages in the Inbox. It does not delete messages in your other folders.

If your provider is not in Apple’s default setup, check your email provider for setup instructions. If your provider does not offer IMAP there are many good free options you can use [ iCloud, Comcast, Yahoo, Gmail, AOL, MSFT’s (Hotmail, Live, MSN, Outlook.com)]

If you need assistance switching to IMAP, you can post a comment for help.

 

 

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This copy of the Install OS X Yosemite application can’t be verified. It may have been corrupted or tampered with during downloading.

If you are trying to use an installer you downloaded previously…

OS X installers downloaded prior to 14 February 2016 won’t work- See TidBITS article: Previously Downloaded OS X Installers No Longer Work [Added 02 Mar 2016]

Trying to update a client’s computer today. After downloading Yosemite installer it failed to run. It would start but fail with the following error:

This copy of the Install OS X Yosemite application can’t be verified. It may have been corrupted or tampered with during downloading.

First step was to download again. That failed. Tried downloading again. Failed. Started looking for help and found many suggestions that worked for some users. After trying reset date, repair permissions, repair drive, remove RAM and downloading multiple times, user purchased a USB thumb drive and we were able to create a bootable OS 10.10 Yosemite installer drive using the installer that failed to run.

  1. The Install Mac OS X Yosemite.app must be in Applications.
  2. Format the USB drive as GUID in Disk Utility. 8GB or larger
  3. Name “Untitled”
  4. Paste the following into the Terminal
  5. Enter Password
  6. When the process is finished you will see Copy Complete. Done. (the process took about 30 min so be patient)
  7. Select the drive in System Preferences > Startup Disk to install.

Thanks to Dan Frakes for instructions on creating USB installer. For more details, see Dan’s blog:

http://danfrakes.com/2014/10/16/how-to-make-a-bootable-yosemite-installer-drive/

[Added info: December 3, 2015] Check out the FAQs on DiskMaker X page for help with errors making a boot disk. DiskMaker X is a free app that many find useful in creating a bootable install disk. This can be very helpful if you are running El Capitan and want to install an older version of OS X like Yosemite on another drive.

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