Apple Mail IMAP: Sent Mail Showing up in wrong folder on second computer

We've written a lot about IMAP and Apple Mail. We still maintain IMAP is a blessing and essential for any user with more than one computer. Yet Apple Mail still has surprises for us.

In particular, you never know what folder it's going to choose for sent mail. So it's very easy to end up with your sent mail and your spam mail scattered across three different folders on as many computers.

There is a craftily hidden command which will let you sort this out ver quickly.

Under the Mailbox  menu there is menu item called Use This Mailbox For with the following submenu items:

  • Drafts
  • Sent
  • Trash
  • Junk

Whenever you find you have duplicate sent boxes or confusing spam mailbox settings (possible variants I've seen: Junk, Spam, Spam Messages, spam, junk), just pick one and make it the blessed folder across all your computers, migrating existing data to the blessed folder on all computers.

Here's a graphic of the menu you are looking for:

Apple Mail mailbox functions for IMAP
Apple Mail: setting mailbox functions for IMAP

Again we do not recommend storing your Apple Mail drafts on the server at all as drafts can multiply like rabbits when you have two copies of Mail open on two different computers.

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One Response to Apple Mail IMAP: Sent Mail Showing up in wrong folder on second computer


    Hi, can you tell me why an email I sent on IMAP went to the trash folder and was copied into the trash several times. It also appears in the sent folder! Each copy of the email was a progression of the text in the email! Can you tell me if the email was sent? If I have no email failure notification can I assume that the email has been sent to the recipients address?



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