: Is this possible? - IMAP-like server at home


tilt
Jun 24th, 2010, 12:50 PM
If someone could guide me on how to get this done I would be much obliged:

What I have:

I have three email accounts - GMX, GMail and Yahoo.
I have set up all three as POP3, downloaded to my MacBook at home and deleted from the servers. I do not trust "teh internet" and prefer not to leave any info of mine out there.
I have an iPhone 3GS and am planning to get an iPad.
I have set up my email accounts on the iPhone too to download, but leave the messages on the servers for my MacBook to download on the weekends (when I get back home) and delete from server.


The problem with the above setup:

If I send or reply to an email from my iPhone, it does not show up in the "Sent" folder on my MacBook.


What I would like to be able to do:

I would like my MacBook to continue downloading the emails from the servers and delete them from the server, as is happening now. Only, I would make sure this happens constantly instead of only on the weekends when I am home.
I would like the MacBook to act like an IMAP server so that I can access those emails from the Mail app on my iPhone (or future iPad) that I will be carrying with me all the time. This should behave such that when I read an email on my portable device it should be marked as "read" on my MacBook; and when I reply to or send a new email, it should show up on my MacBook; and when I delete a message from the iPhone or iPad, it should get deleted from my MacBook.


Is this even possible? I am completely clueless when it comes to networking, so I would need a lot of hand-holding.

Thanks and cheers

Chealion
Jun 24th, 2010, 01:57 PM
Possible - yes. Easily? Not in the slightest. It is possible to set up an IMAP server and have it pull from POP3 sources, and then just hook all your devices onto your personal IMAP server, but getting all the software to work together *and* properly managing a mail server? That's almost a full time job.

It'd be easier to use Gmail to pull your other POP3 accounts and then deal with their odd IMAP implementation and t3h internet.

===

On any iOS device you can have the device auto bcc or auto cc you on any email you send - that may work as a workaround for you.

hayesk
Jun 24th, 2010, 02:23 PM
Almost a full time job? Not in the slightest. That said, you do need to know what you are doing. Basically here's what you have to do:

- If you don't have a fixed IP, get a dynamic address from dyndns.org or similar
- Install and configure IMAP server on your Mac.
- configure your router to forward the IMAP port to your Mac
- Set your other accounts to automatically forward to your Mac

You may want to look at junk mail filtering options too. You're going to get a lot of junk mail.

Chealion
Jun 24th, 2010, 10:04 PM
Almost a full time job? Not in the slightest.

Depending on the how interested he is in having server side spam prevention, not leaving himself up for being used as an SMTP relay, etc.? It'll sure feel like a full time job until it's done being set up and even then the best spam prevention should be tweaked to handle the spam you actually are receiving.

a0rez
Jun 25th, 2010, 12:27 PM
How about a Mac Mini Server? Solves the problem but like Chealion said, it's not going to be easy. I run a Tiger server at home with a IMAP and it was quite a trick to setup. I probably spend around 3-4 hours a week administering the server.

a0

tilt
Jun 25th, 2010, 12:52 PM
Thank you all. You pretty much confirmed what I was worried about - that it needs regular TLC to be able to do this; and unfortunately I neither have the time nor do I have the knowledge.

Chealion, the one thing I want to avoid is to have to cc or bcc myself every time. Also, this method does not put the email in my "sent" box, but rather the "inbox", which does not serve my purpose.

Plus, I do not want to use GMail's IMAP implementation. GMail is the one I am most untrusting about, from among my email providers.

But, of course, thank you for the suggestions and for taking the trouble to respond :)

Cheers

Chealion
Jun 26th, 2010, 04:22 AM
Chealion, the one thing I want to avoid is to have to cc or bcc myself every time. Also, this method does not put the email in my "sent" box, but rather the "inbox", which does not serve my purpose.

Still kludgy, but a mail rule on your MacBook that moved any message from your Inbox to your Sent box when sent from you might make it a bit less painful.

Really do wish a nice and easy solution existed. (Google's may work but it's not the easiest to set up alongside any issues with Google or issues with that your info is stored in the US)

chas_m
Jun 26th, 2010, 04:45 AM
Plus, I do not want to use GMail's IMAP implementation. GMail is the one I am most untrusting about, from among my email providers.

Another, and in my opinion much more trustworthy, option is MobileMe.

Since Apple does not accept any advertising for the service, they have no motivation to sell or examine your information (and they don't). You can forward the other accounts to it, then designate one particular machine to be the one to which email is deleted off the server once that machine has it.

I like them for lots of other reasons, but easy-to-remember, ad-free email (and best-in-class webmail) is among the reasons I have been a customer since day one.