A New Toy


Well. I have a new toy to play with.

I love software. It’s no secret. Every time I find a new piece of software to play with, so long as it’s free or I can get it for free (ahem), I’ll try it. Within limits. of course, but for the most part, I’m a slut for software.

So I’ve experimented with a couple of email clients over the last couple years. Mozilla Thunderbird, for one. It was okay. At the time I installed it and tried it, it was not only free and not difficult to use, it was the only one which connected to almost all my email accounts. Yahoo mail, of course, is a problem child. They won’t let you connect unless you pay for their email, which stinks, and I won’t do it. So phooey on them.

Anyway, I’ve avoided using Thunderbird because it’s slow (to me), cumbersome, and doesn’t handle Gmail accounts well. Frustrated, I gave up on it. It was easier to use my little WebMail Notifier addon for Firefox than it was to use Thunderbird, and that just defeats the purpose.

So tonight, I lamented to my wife about how much I wanted to be able to work offline and still get my email. My feed readers and other things interfere with actual work I have to do lately, and I need to curtail how much time I spend on the Internet. So I wanted an offline client to check ALL my email. If I sign on to Firefox I’m going to end up losing a couple of hours. I’m undisciplined.

logo-windows-liveShe spent a while searching and offered me two potential clients. One specialized in Gmail, but I have other accounts I want to check too. So I held that on the back burner. Then she told me about Threadsy. Okay, it’s great – she can tell you about it if you’re interested – but I wanted to stay off the browser, not work in it. So strike that.

Then she showed me one she loved. It used to be Microsoft Outlook Express. Now, it’s called Windows Live. It’s incredible.

First, it accepted all my Gmail accounts without problem. There’s a setting in Gmail you need to use to permit IMAPI access, then you’re good to go. It naturally took my Hotmail account without even asking. But it also offered to establish subscriptions for my RSS feeds. That means I could read your blogs, my comments and almost anything else providing an RSS feed, right here in my little Live window.

OH, heaven!

Now, I haven’t set up the subscriptions to either my RSS feeds or any newsgroups. But I have established all my email accounts and got them going. Live was so clever it took the ridiculous tags Gmail uses instead of folders, called labels, and it turned them into folders all by itself for me. So if I’m overwhelmed looking at my Inbox, I don’t have to filter the mail and risk forgetting to remove that filter later. I can just click in the folder of choice and see all the mail in those folders. And as email comes in I can just move it to the appropriate folder and it’s out of my way; then it syncs everything up on the mail server too and voila! My email is solved!

So, if you’re a Windows user, and you like Thunderbird or are on Outlook Express stubbornly refusing to upgrade, you need to look at this. The software’s free; it’s fast; it’s simple to use and set up; it’s interface is clean and intuitive. It’s fantastic, and I don’t generally rave about email clients. But I give this one two thumbs up and can’t wait to dig farther into it to see what else it can do.

Interested? You can download it here. It also offers to install a bunch of other stuff too, but you don’t have to take ‘em. I do, however, recommend Windows Live Writer. 😉

Have fun. 🙂

-JDT-

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17 thoughts on “A New Toy

  1. I’m cyber-space challenged, a computer retard, and my system is so slow and antique that I’m afraid to add anything else for fear losing the whole lot. It sounds great though. I lose so much time checking email accounts every day . . .

    Maybe in the future when I’m rich and famous and can afford a new set-up!

    Ha! I know that feeling, Louise! One day soon! From your keyboard to God’s ear. 🙂

  2. I use Outlook, but you think I should get Windows Live? Ok, twist my arm why don’tcha.

    HAHAHA! If Outook’s working for you, don’t worry about it. I tried using Outlook but actually liked this better, and it was WAAAAAYYY easier to set up. But it’s cool if you’re already able to do whatcha need. 🙂

    • I already had it on my ‘puter. Guess I downloaded it along with Live Writer. I’ve been using it all day and I have to say it’s way smoother and faster than Outlook Express. Might be a keeper.

      It’s WAY better than OE, but I thought you meant OUTLOOK (the non-express kind). Yes, it’s MUCH better! 😀

  3. Wish I had known… I would have turned you onto it sooner. Have you tried their Office Live Workspace or Skydrive for online storage? I use it to access stuff on my work computer from personal stuff. Eliminates the neeed for thumb drives. I have it on good authority that those can fail at inopportune times 😉

    Nope, I sure haven’t, and if they’re free services that won’t become PAY services at an inopportune time, I’m going to investigate post-haste. 🙂

    • @ Kree I know! This is the same guy who rolled his eyes a me for years for using Outlook Express and then Live! I’d upgraded to the new set-up before my comp died, but didn’t want to d/l a bunch of stuff onto his comp when mine died.

      Feels a lot like vindication, I can tell you that! LOL 😉

    • They’ve been free for over a year and a half now and I haven’t heard any rumors about it going to pay services. You know I’d let you know first 🙂

      Well then I’ll be checkin’ ’em out. 🙂

  4. DarcKnyt, If you are interested in email notifier for Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo and POP3 email accounts. I would strongly suggest you to use Multi Email Notifier. I am sure you will find it useful.

    Ashbey, thank you very much. I’m not so much interested in a notifier as I am in a desktop email client capable of handling Gmail properly. When I used Thunderbird for email, I had a problem with it leaving everything in my Inbox; Windows Live Mail, however, automatically created separate folders for each of Gmail’s labels, and put them properly in their place. It works very well and is doing a great job so far. Thank you for the new item to examine though! I love new software! 🙂

    • DarcKnyt, thank you for the reply. Let me know if you ever need an email notifier, just for the purpose of new mail notification. I will be glad to give you a full copy.

      Wow, Ashbey, that’s a VERY generous offer! Thank you so much! I very much appreciate that. Please feel free to stop by any time. 🙂

  5. So what are the main advantages over Thunderbird? I haven’t had any issues with Thunderbird so I need a further sell… 🙂

    If you’re not having any issues with TB, don’t worry about it, Jaymie. I didn’t like getting emails from myself in my Inbox; that’s how TB handles the threading/conversation thing Gmail does with emails. But WLM shows me double messages — one from my Inbox and one from the All Mail folder of Gmail. I can get around that by not using the All Unread Email view and just going to the specific Inbox folder. But again, if you’re good with what you have, well — if it ain’t broke, y’know? 🙂

  6. I have Gmail and Live.com emails and didn’t know I could sync them up! That would save me a lot of time switching back and forth. Now what is that IMAPI thingy you talked about?? Is there tutorials on how to use this?

    Don’t worry about that. Just download it and set it up. It walks you through easily enough. There are lots of email formats out there and WLM seems to grip and grab ’em all! Give it try!

    I use Live Writer all the time and like I stated, I have Live.com email but haven’t really checked out the rest of the app.

    They’ve got some good ones! 🙂

  7. I have a feeling I’m so 1990s. I use the stuff I’ve always used: yahoo for mail, internet explorer, google for search, youtube for videos. I never look for new stuff because I like things the way they are. Yes, I know I could probably save time, but I don’t like change. I had msn as my homepage for years and recently they changed the format to something I didn’t like so now yahoo is my homepage.

    Eh, Yahoo Mail doesn’t work with ANYthing, Thunderbird, Microsoft — nothing. You have to PAY to get access to their system through a client, so don’t bother. Change isn’t ALWAYS good. 😉

  8. Oh, this is funny. I just switched from Windows Live to Thunderbird! I didn’t like reading my RSS feed in WL but I love reading it in Thunderbird.

    Hehehee! Diff’rent strokes, ne? 😀 That’s why they make chocolate AND vanilla! 🙂

    I am concerned that you said Thunderbird had trouble with your Gmail account, though. In what way? For a while I checked my Gmail account with Thunderbird and online, but saw no difference in number of messages caught by Thunderbird. Is it something else you had a problem with?

    I don’t like seeing my replies to emails in my Inbox. With TB, I see one from you and one from me. How? I don’t know. TB just doesn’t know how to sort through the way Gmail does its thing. It’s not a big issue, but is VERY annoying. I don’t want to have to move half my emails into the Sent folder manually. But with WLM, I don’t have that issue. I haven’t set up RSS feeds yet, though, so we’ll see. 🙂

    • Hmmm, I don’t have that problem with TB and Gmail.

      Interesting! Maybe you could tell me how to configure it so it doesn’t do that? I’d LOVE to know!

      One thing I did like better about feeds in LiveMail was a link to “View this online.”

      I don’t know if I’ll do RSS feeds in WLM. But have you tried the new TB 3.0? Tabbed interface, anyone? 😀

      • I just downloaded it. And guess what? It now shows a link to the actual post in the feeds! Yay! I’m sticking with TB.

        Stick with what’s working for you, definitely. I’m not sure I want my feeds in WLM right now. I assume you downloaded TB 3.0? Please, let me know how you set up your Gmail so you only see incoming and not outgoing mail in the Inbox! I’d like to give it a fair shake. 🙂

  9. Sounds very cool! Thanks for the review. I’m officially the “I.T. Gal” in my office, although I don’t do much to keep up with current computing issues. Basically it means I call the contract tech when something breaks, that’s all. But people do expect me to know a thing or two, so it always helps to get a little education.

    Well, for your enterprise system, you might not want this client. It’s not anywhere near as robust as Outlook for enterprise use; and if you’re the one responsible for IT, you probably have an email server for your company, right? This is just for home use, I’d think. Check out the site for more information though. 🙂

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