I have my GMail account setup with Mail.app using IMAP. I accidentally deleted my Sent Mail through Mail.app, emptied the Trash. This propagated to the cloud, and I lost all my Sent items.

The one smart thing I was doing was backing up. So I have the Mail.app backups. I reverted to a backup which had my Sent Mail and started Mail.app back up. Upon restart, my Sent Mail was back, but then disappeared on first sync, because it looks like it pulls email statuses from GMail down to Mail.app, where as I need to push an entire folder/label/mailbox to GMail.

So to sum it all up: How do I sync with GMail using Mail.app so that my local email is pushed to the cloud?


  • Use Pop3 next time and leave a local copy on the other server for Mail.app if you want to. – Ivo Flipse Feb 17 '10 at 6:45
  • POP3 is NOT the right answer. POP3 needs to die. IMAP is the right choice. Auto-sync can be overridden. – Alex Mar 16 '10 at 0:45
  1. Disconnect from the internet
  2. Restore your Mail.app backup
  3. Open Mail.app, and copy the messages from the GMail sent folder into a new local folder
  4. Connect to the internet and sync. The messages in your sent folder should dissapear
  5. Drag the messages from the newly created local folder back into the sent folder in GMail
  • I believe this is the correct answer. – Alex Mar 16 '10 at 0:46

Wow, quite a costly accident! Rather than restoring the entire backup, try to import just the Sent Items folder into your current Mail.app. It will be in its own folder under Imported Mailboxes (or something like that). Then move the mail from the imported Sent Items folder to your actual Sent Items folder. That should propagate to the server.

  • I wonder if that actually works. – cregox Feb 27 '10 at 15:41

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