Switching to Web Mail

By Deane Barker on September 28, 2005

I’ve decided to make the switch to pure Web mail. It’s been a long time coming.

About three years ago, I got sick of having to sync a POP account in two locations, so I switched to IMAP. I’ve loved that set-up ever since. I have an account at Fusemail, which I pay something like $2 a month for, and I have two Thunderbird installations hooked to it — work and home.

However, one thing I’m tired of is not having the same settings from each install carry over to the other. Labels, filters, spam settings, address books, etc. — I have to set each of these up in both places. Not to mention little things like the arrows that tell you if you replied or forwarded a message that can’t be manually duplicated. (I’ve complained about this problem twice — here and here.)

So, given this, I’m going to give up my beloved Thunderbird and IMAP and move to Web mail. I’m interested in the new Yahoo! client that Zawodny keeps raving about (yes, Fusemail has a Web client, but I hate it).

Has anyone else made the big switch? How did it go?

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  1. yep – I had gotten pretty good at moving my thunderbird profile from computer to computer, but it got really old. I started with Gmail last summer and for a while I kept Thunderbird up to date with my Gmail account, but gradually I stopped opening TB at all. I haven’t used it in 6+ months now and I do everything inside Gmail. I also sent my dad a Gmail invite and he uses it exclusively now too. Previously virusus kept slipping past his Thunderbird filter, then NAV would flag them and quarantine his entire mail box file. I got sick of pulling the file out of quarantine and manually deleting the infected message with a text editor in order to restore his Inbox. Gmail is much easier for all that.

    I will also be looking forward to the Yahoo client to see how it works. Between Gmail, Yahoo and the new MS Mail coming out, we should be pretty well set for webmail.

  2. I used to download all of my email to Outlook at night but would check during the day with http://www.mail2web.com. That worked for a couple of years but I didn’t like not having external access to the emails that downloaded. I did dual-mode for a while when Gmail first came out by forwarding a copy there. I ran into two issues: I consistently ran into issues (from home and work) where it would hang when sending emails and it was never clear if they were sent or not. Obviously it was pretty early in their release but it was something that I couldn’t live with. Second, not having a delete button was really annoying to me.

    Somewhere along the line, I realized I had access to Yahoo’s Premium email services through the SBC Yahoo DSL partnership. It has a number of features that converted me; most important though was the ability to add my pop account so that it natively used it to send and receive email. I documented some of my issues on my abandoned blog at http://www.swoofware.com/index.php?s=gmail

    I can’t wait to try the new Yahoo interface!

  3. I’ve been using web-based mail that came installed with my personal domain.

    Not only do I not have to worry about client-based software at home, work and everywhere inbetween.

    It also avoids any entanglements that might come by mixing work email with personal stuff.

  4. Tried to download emails using either Thunderbird or Sylpheed but with 3 systems at home (one being a laptop) it all became to much for both me and my wife to keep track of. We now use Gmail for nearly everything. We even got our 17monthold son his own account so we could get free offers. I also have a yahoo account but I have yet to see any improvement in the guid. I currently use my yahoo account for groups and for keeping my gmail clean of sign up clutter.

    For us web mail is the way to go.

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