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  1. MoodyBlues

    MoodyBlues Compassion is cool!
    VIP Member Thread Starter

    I just found, to my utter amazement, that Gmail has kept on its server everything ever sent or received from my account--but it shouldn't have. :mad:

    Other than Google, no one knows my Gmail address. I don't use its app or web UI. Its mail, like all my other e-mail accounts, is handled by my default mail client, SeaMonkey, on my main computer. The only Gmail it receives is somehow related to Google, e.g., receipts for Play Store purchases and, before it died, notices from G+ groups I was in. The only mail sent from it is on-the-fly notes to myself from this phone.

    Its account settings in SeaMonkey are the same as with all my other addresses: 'leave messages on server' is, and always has been, UNCHECKED. But unlike all my other accounts, these have remained on their server. :eek:

    It was kind of fun scrolling down a decade's worth of memory lane just now, as I painfully, slowly--because I found no 'one fell swoop' method--deleted it all.

    How did I find out about this since I never use it? While scrutinizing G's settings, as I do periodically, I noticed that GM was using 1GB of space. WTF?! Now I know why. :mad:

    Since my mail client is already correctly configured NOT to leave its messages on the server--but that doesn't work--what can I do? :thinking: Wait another 10 years and painstakingly delete a million messages again? :rolleyes:

    MrJavi likes this.

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  2. mikedt

    mikedt 你好

    Only 1GB? When I checked this morning, apprently my Gmail is at "2.83 GB (18%) of 15 GB used", and that' with 12 years of use. So to fill it may take another decade or so. There is an option in Gmail to to delete all stored emails, but do you really want to? To me, my Gmail archive is a major part of my life.
  3. MoodyBlues

    MoodyBlues Compassion is cool!
    VIP Member Thread Starter

    Where? I sure couldn't find it in the GM app!
    But I already have all my GM mail--on my main computer, in my mail client. I don't want anything stored at Google unless I explicitly put it there.

    Believe me, I get the 'major part of my life' thing--that's why I still have all the mail I've ever sent or received. :eek: It's on my hard drives, my domains' servers, in my safe deposit box, and in my Dropbox account. None of which has anything to do with Google--just like I like it!
    MrJavi and Dannydet like this.
  4. lunatic59

    lunatic59 Moderati ergo sum

    I found Yahoo does that, too moody. I have an old business email that has since become my personal email address hosted by Yahoo. I, too have my desktop client (outlook) set to get mail via POP3 and not keep messages on the server. They recently upgraded their mail platform and that's when I discovered that all those message "not kept on server" were actually just moved to a trash folder that you can get to only by logging in to the web UI. There is also no mass delete option. I guess Google does something similar with gmail. Even deleted from the trash folder, i'm sure there are still copies of those messages floating around their infrastructure somewhere.
    MoodyBlues likes this.
  5. MoodyBlues

    MoodyBlues Compassion is cool!
    VIP Member Thread Starter

    This really pisses me off. :mad:

    Like a lot of us here, I've gone over Google's plethora of settings with a fine-tooth comb, due to privacy concerns. To find that my oh-so-meticulous efforts had no effect where GM is concerned makes me very upset.

    If I were a litigious person, with unlimited funds to battle their legal team, I'd sue them over this! :eek:

    Class-action lawsuit, anyone? :thinking:
  6. lunatic59

    lunatic59 Moderati ergo sum

    gmail is a huge undertaking using many server farms across many data centers worldwide. I'm sure there's all kinds of distributed redundancy built in. There isn't one data set per user. The gmail app is an IMAP client while POP3 clients are outdated and I'm sure most cloud providers would like to get rid of it entirely. But, there are those of us who still use it so the begrudgingly enable it. I do think that if you use the gmail app to delete an email it gets deleted, rather than refiled in the POP3 marked as delivered folder. That would require some testing, but it's not that big of a deal to me.

    As for a lawsuit ... first thing you'd have to do is comb through the EULA to make sure there isn't a clause somewhere down in paragraph 1,347 that states they can keep copies of your messages after they are delivered. Then you'd have to prove that keeping them violated any privacy law and finally you'd have to demonstrate how you've been harmed, especially if there was no data breach.

    I can't say that this is "right" but the only other way of keeping your email completely under your control is to run your own server on your own premises.
    MoodyBlues likes this.
  7. MoodyBlues

    MoodyBlues Compassion is cool!
    VIP Member Thread Starter

    Yeah, I see what you're saying, @lunatic59--but I'm still pissed off. :mad:
    Now that's a thought! :D

    Nah, too much work. Maybe 20 years ago, but not now.

    But really, if Earthlink/Spectrum's servers, and my domains' servers, can obey my mail client's instructions, why can't Gmail's? I understand that we're talking about a huge system, redundancy, etc., but delete means delete. To me. *shrug*
  8. lunatic59

    lunatic59 Moderati ergo sum

    Oh, I don't know. I have one and it requires minimal attention once setup. It's quite convenient actually. If you go with a Linux distro like Cent OS or Ubuntu with a minimal install and then run the install package for the free version of iRedMail, add your certificate from Letsencrypt and configure your mx records, you're good to go. Of course if you don't have a static public IP you'll need to do some dynamic DNS nonsense and since your server would be the ONLY location for mail files, you'll need a good backup routine.

    I guess the line between work and fun gets a little blurred where tech is concerned. ;)

    To many email services "delete" means remove from the primary database, but keep the backups. Or, it means 'hide' from the account user. How many times a day do you think Google support gets panic calls from users who accidentally delete things they didn't intend to? I'm sure they'd rather be the hero than the guy who has to say "Sorry. You deleted it and it's gone."
  9. MoodyBlues

    MoodyBlues Compassion is cool!
    VIP Member Thread Starter

    You're forgetting one little detail that changed that for me, my friend.

    Pre-sepsis-almost-died-6-months-hospitalized-still-recovering, nothing was off limits. Today, almost everything is. I rarely even check my mail, which involves going to the room where I've deliberately left my main computer. I've refused to bring the laptop to where I am right now, bed, because I see that as a final concession...that things will never be normal again.
    You know, having 'grown up' so to speak, on UNIX, that's always been my reality, and the reality I would tell my end-users. Of course, I could, and did--but incredibly rarely, like a handful of times--restore something from the previous night's backup. But they understood that 'delete means delete' so you'd better be careful! Trust me, I'm sure they were filled with dread when they had to tell me what they'd done, and ask me to do a restore. :eek: I was extremely busy, and a nuisance like that did not please me. :D So I drilled into them that deleting was permanent, and don't do it unless you're SURE about it.
    puppykickr and lunatic59 like this.
  10. svim

    svim Extreme Android User

    If you don't want to have Google data mining your emails, don't use Gmail.
    Even if you were to get the Seamonkey email client to delete emails after you read them, they're all still scanned and assessed in transit (incoming and outgoing). Whether they're deleted right away or years old, Google has already got what it wants no matter if you leave them in Google's servers or you store them in an archive folder in your Seamonkey email client.
    That said, I stopped using email clients years ago and now rely primarily on the web interfaces with multiple Gmail accounts and various email services,and haven't encountered the problem you're stating. Most email services retain deleted emails for a limited time period (in case the user want to restore a deleted message) but I have yet to encounter an email service that doesn't delete them eventually.
    puppykickr likes this.
  11. MoodyBlues

    MoodyBlues Compassion is cool!
    VIP Member Thread Starter

    I have no problem having a GM account, which simplifies buying apps from the PS, you know? And it's not about Google mining my data--I'm fully cognizant of what they're doing when I use any of their services. It's about delete meaning DELETE.
    That's great--for you! :) Wouldn't be so great for me. I've had long stretches of time without Internet access. If I relied on your method, I'd have lost access to any mail I may have needed to refer back to for some reason. But it's really the "I like to be in control" factor that keeps me using a mail client, and saving, archiving, or deleting mail as *I* see fit. In 35 years of using e-mail, it's never been a problem...until GM. *shrug*


Gmail Forum


Gmail is an easy to use email app that saves you time and keeps your messages safe. Get your messages instantly via push notifications, read and respond online & offline, and find any message quickly. With the Gmail app you get: • An organized inbox - Social and promotional messages are sorted into categories so you can read messages from friends and family first. • Less spam - Gmail blocks spam before it hits your inbox to keep your account safe and clutter free. • 15GB of free storage - You won’t need to delete messages to save space. • Multiple account support - Use both Gmail and non-Gmail addresses (Outlook.com, Yahoo Mail, or any other IMAP/POP email) right from the app.

March 16, 2020
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