Email alternative (paid if nec.) to Outlook (or help me bring Outlook into the 21st century)

Aside from some petty problems with Outlook, I don’t understand its size limitations—nor do I think I should have to. Other applications are able to index and quickly search through GBs worth of data; I don’t want to be limited by an email client stuck in 2003. I have 256GB SSD data drive and 18GB of RAM, so I’m not so worried about slowing my system down.

If there are no clients out there that can keep a mailbox greater than 2GB so be it, I’ll wait until they put their big POP panties on and bypass any lecture on what I should and should not keep in email.

I’ll keep Outlook (2007) if I can get it to stop nagging me every time my mailbox approaches 2GB. The rather convoluted instructions on this MS Support Page are promising, but my registry doesn’t have an entry for HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Office. They give direction for creating the keys out of the ether, but still seem to assume \Software\Policies\Microsoft\Office exists.
If I can’t get Outlook over its limits, then what?

My primary email addresses are POP3. I have a few Gmail accounts and a Hotmail account that I rarely use (and I assume I won’t be able to automate it without Outlook).

I’d like to be able to import Outlook’s PST files, particularly the sent mail file.

Same thing with contacts—I’d like to import them from Outlook, but if not something that can build a list from my Inbox/Sent files is important.

Basic rules are fairly important, but I assume any decent client will let me sort into folders by subject, sender or addressee.

At first blush that’s about it. I don’t use Outlook’s tasks, calendar or RSS feeds. I compose almost everything in Word then copy/paste so a fancy editor isn’t important. It would be nice if it could synch sent mail between my desktop and laptop, but not necessary.

And it doesn’t have to be free. I don’t *want *to pay for it if I don’t have to, but a hundred bucks or so would be worth it if necessary.

Have you tried Thunderbird?

FWIW, Mail on OS X handles my 15+GB mailbox directory just fine.

Create a new PST in Outlook and copy everything from your 2003 PST into it - that’ll go to 20GB. 2010 and 2013 will go to 50GB.

I’m seconding this suggestion. We had to do this at work in order to take advantage of the new limits.

Thunderbird plus the Lightning calendar extension and the Silvermel skin. I use BirdieSync to sync calendar and contacts with my Android phone.

Never could stand Outlook. Used Eudora until the dust clogged it. Like TBird quite a bit.

I do computer support and can’t stand either Outlook or Outlook Express and their dreadful PST archive format. Give me Thunderbird any day. So much easier to recover, so much easier to export, so much easier to backup.

Did anyone mention yet that Thunderbird can be yours for the low, low price of $0?

Thanks. I’d tried the creating a new PST file a while back but ran into a series of operator errors (I think the operator is a nincompoop, but I’d better not insult him–he may be reading!).

I have a “Personal Folders Too” inbox/junk mail/etc. folder below the original inbox (and couple archive folders–I’m really sure the operator is an idiot). It’s worked well enough for the most part. Rules put incoming mail into the subfolders under the original inbox, my primary mail goes to “personal folders too.” By “well enough” I mean it gets the job done and so far the hassle of re-merging the two (I get a “cannot move the items. Special folders, including the Inbox, Contacts…cannot be moved:” error) hasn’t been worth it. But I just started getting the out-of-space-please-help message again and hence the post.

If there’s an easy fix to the vaguely described problem of multiple boxes–and an easy way to tell if the new folder won’t have that annoying limit, any direction-pointing would be great.

In the meantime, free you say? Then it certainly can’t hurt to install it and give it a whirl.

Amateur Barbarian if you gave up on Eudora, does that mean PINE is out, too?

Subfolders under the inbox can be dragged and dropped. For the inbox, contacts, calendar, and other root folders themselves select the inbox, ctrl+a to select all the messages, and drag the messages to the new inbox folder. Select the contacts folder, ctrl+a to select all contacts, and drag them to the new contacts, and so on.

Go into account setting to change your default PST to the new file and delete the old one.

I gave up on Eudora only because it had reached the point where it was completely out of date. Thunderbird is a nice replacement with very similar look and feel. I never found anything else that I liked; many of the things I didn’t like were just personal preference and habit.

does Thunderbird still use that decrepit old mbox storage format?

I still use Eudora! On Windows 7, even. Just reinstalled yesterday as my hard drive died. Had my Eudora folder backed up, copied the whole thing over to the new drive from the backup, and am cookin’ with fire once again. I use it to check 20 email accounts.

I can’t get in to any other mail client, as all of them want to spawn new windows with all my stuff, unless I do a preview pane, which I do not want.

I use a mail client with a dozen email accounts, and have used up to 25. Eudora handled the job with ease. Most clients really aren’t well set up for more than one account. TBird is modeled closely on Eudora in a number of respects, including that one - and has a feature I have wanted for a decade; the ability to set different mailcheck intervals. I have unused admin accounts for a which a check a day is plenty; secondary accounts for which a check every hour or two is enough; and working accounts I want updated ever five minutes. Having to check 12-20-25 accounts every five minutes was pointless netthrashing.

TBird doesn’t spawn any new windows if you tell it to use single-window mode. I agree that popping new panes and windows for everything is a window-pane.

In my opinion, after having tried out a lot of mail clients, eM Client 5 is the best one, I prefer it clearly compared to Outlook.

A free version is available, but I recommend the Professional Version for multiple accounts and not just private, but also commercial use. This costs $40.

But there is a better option: You can buy SoftMaker Office Professional (which has eM Client 5 Professional included) as well for just $40 - as an upgrade.

Get an old, cheap SoftMaker Office for a few bucks (or download SoftMaker Office 2008 for free) and you are entitled to buy an upgrade.

SoftMaker Office Professional btw. is a great office suite, seamlessly compatible to all Microsoft Office formats, very fast, user-friendly interface, broad range of functions, MUCH better than other alternative office suites like LibreOffice & Co.

This is my recommendation: Get SoftMaker Office Professional for $40 including three licenses, and free support, and you have eM Client 5 Professional included, which is the best mail client.

Thunderbird tryout going smoothly–need to be carful that I don’t send mail from one program and want it kept as a record in whichever program I end up using in the long-term. Since I have the space will give SoftMaker a try too.

If I delete the old one, change all accounts to point to the new one, and change tools>options>other>advanced>start in this folder, will the collection of folders in the usurping PST file show up at the head of the list? Right now it’s six or seven deep. Not overly traumatic, but returning to the old look/feel will greatly help things.

It’s not completely trivial to try some of the various skins to see if they give you a layout, look and feel you like better. I recommend Silvermel as a starter. Be sure to add Lightning, too, for calendaring.

Looking at it in folder view will be easiest. You’ll have a set of folders for each PST, both at the same level. When you disconnect the old file you’ll just have the new set.

I actually looked into this (eM Client 5) and it looked hopeful, until I inquired about their licensing. It’s licensed per MACHINE, which means if I wanted to use it at home and at work, it would cost over $100. Then comes all the pain of if you reformat your machine or getting a new PC… No thanks.

I suggested buying SoftMaker Office Professional including eM Client 5 Professional - if you do so, you get three licenses, means you can install SoftMaker Office Professional and eM Client 5 Professional on your pc at home, and at work, plus on a third one (e.g. your notebook).