Macintosh OS X Mail Version 6

To Use OS X Mail With UW Email (Deskmail)
  • You must be eligible to use UW Email (Deskmail). Students generally are not eligible.
  • You must activate your UW Email (Deskmail) Inbox.
  • You must forward your personal UW NetID email to UW Email (Deskmail)

Not sure? You can check your eligibility, activate your email account, or forward your email yourself.

The Mail application is automatically installed as part of OS X. No separate installation is necessary. Mail version 6 is distributed as part of Mac OS X 10.8 ("Mountain Lion").

Configuring Mac OS X Mail to Use With UW Email

To configure Mail for use at the UW, you will need to set it up correctly. Be sure your computer has an active Internet connection.

Note that wherever "myuwid" is used in the example "screen shots" you will need to use your own UW NetID.

  1. StepsActions
  2. To run Mail click it in the Dock, select it from "Launchpad" or equivalent. If Mail has not been run before, a new account creation wizard will appear, and you'll see a dialog window similar to the one pictured below:
    Welcome3

    NOTE: If you don't see this dialog it just means that Mail has been run before. If you have an existing account and would like to add your UW email account, run Mail, select Preferences, then Accounts and click on the plus (+) button in the lower left corner to add a new account. This will launch the new account creation wizard as above.

  3. In the Welcome window:
    • Enter your (actual) name
    • Enter something for the "Email address" that will not(!) work, we've used "name@bad-address", otherwise Mail may find incorrect information for your UW account and try to configure an "Exchange" account for you
    • Enter your UW NetID password, just so you won't have to later
    • Press Continue
  4. In the window that appears, replace the default values so that the window looks like the following:
    incoming

  5. The Account Type should be IMAP.
  6. The Description can be anything you like, but UW (Deskmail) Email is suggested.
  7. Your Incoming Mail Server should be your_uwnetid.deskmail.washington.edu, where your_uwnetid is replaced by your actual UW NetID.
  8. Your User Name should be your UW NetID.
  9. Enter your password in the space indicated, if not already present.
  10. Click Continue.
  11. In the window that appears, replace the default values so that the window looks like the following:
    Outgoing

  12. The description can be anything you like, but "UW SMTP" is recommended.
  13. Outgoing Mail Server should be set to smtp.uw.edu.
  14. Most users will want the option to "Use only this server" turned on.
  15. Check the box "Use Authentication" turned on, enter your UW NetID in the "User Name" box and your password in the "Password" box, if not already present.
  16. Click Continue
  17. The window should look like the picture below:
    summary1

  18. IMPORTANT! Turn off (no check mark) the option to "Take account online" at this time, there are a couple more settings to adjust.
  19. Click "Create".
  20. At this point you'll need to make some additional changes to get Mail to read your UW email correctly. The instructions below detail this process.

Creating Your UW Account in Mail

The main Mail window is pictured below, you may have one (or more, or none...) email account already listed, but need to add your UW account to Mail or adjust some settings that the "new account" wizard won't let you change.
Mail1

  1. StepsActions
  2. From the Mail menu, select Preferences, then (if necessary) click the Accounts item to bring up the accounts preferences panel, pictured below. If you have completed the new account creation process above you should have values similar to the ones listed below. As mentioned before, some of these values will need to be changed.
    account1

  3. Edit the Email address to be correct by replacing the "bad-address" with "uw.edu", that is, your Email address should now be set to "your_uwnetid@uw.edu".
  4. Click on the up/down arrow to the right of "Outgoing Mail Server (SMTP):", then select "Edit SMTP Server List" and select "Advanced" to bring up a window like the picture below.
    SMTP2

  5. Confirm that your Outgoing Mail Server is set to smtp.uw.edu unless you are connecting via a non-UW network, in which case, enter the SMTP server name that is provided by the service provider you do use.
  6. Confirm that your Server port is set to Use default ports and that Use Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) is checked.
  7. Authentication method should be Password.
  8. Enter your UW NetID for the User Name field and your UW NetID password for the Password field.
  9. Click OK. This should bring you back to the accounts window.
  10. Click the Mailbox Behaviors tab to continue with the options panel pictured below.
    account2

  11. For now, select "Never" under each of the "Delete... when:" prompts. Mail will then only actually permanently delete things when you manually perform the action.
  12. Click the "Advanced" tab to continue with the options panel pictured below.
    account3

  13. Be sure the check box next to "Include this account when checking for new mail" is checked.
  14. Mail really WANTS to cache all messages and attachments, that lets it provide certain functions and services with good performance, but MAY impose a performance burden when checking for new messages. The setting shown, "All messages and their attachments" makes the maximum amount of data available to Mail on the Mac.
  15. Next to IMAP Path Prefix, you must enter "mail" to see the same folder collections that you see with Alpine, Web Alpine, etc.
  16. You must be sure the check box next to "Use SSL" is checked (this will automatically fill in the correct port number, 993).
  17. Select (from the pop-up list) an Authentication method of Password.
  18. Keep the option to "Use Idle" checked.
  19. Click the red button in the top left corner to close the Account configuration panels. You should be asked if you'd like to save your changes, please click Save.
  20. Finally, click under "Mailbox" select "Synchronize..." to get a list of any folders you have on the UW email server.

    What you should see now is something like this, though your list of folders and messages will differ. If so, the basic configuration is complete and has been successful, you should check the optional steps continued below.
    Mailbox1a

Configuring Mail and Alpine to Share Folders

By setting the "Account Prefix Path" to "mail" you've already got Mail app and Alpine (Web Alpine, etc.) looking at the same starting place for folders. You should probably also configure Mail app so that you can see deleted messages (until expunged), similar to what Alpine uses, and uses the same folders Alpine does for copies of sent mail.

Note: Perform this configuration only after getting the basic Mail app configuration above done and having seen a list of your UW email folders from within the Mail app.

  1. StepsActions
  2. If it isn't already running, run the Mail app (be sure you have an active Internet connection first...).
  3. Click on your "sent-mail" folder in the list of folders, this will select that folder for the next action. From the "Mailbox" menu select "Use This Mailbox for -> Sent". Note that when you do this your "sent-mail" folder will disappear from the list of folders! It is now represented by the "Sent" folder, but it is still really named "sent-mail" on the server, so you'll see the same sent messages from OS X Mail, Alpine, Web Alpine, etc.
    use-sent-mail2

  4. Mail will have created a "Drafts" folder on the server. It is not recommended to share a "Drafts" ("postponed") messages folder between Alpine and Mail, so this is probably fine.
  5. Click on your "Trash" folder in the list of folders, this will select that folder for the next action. From the "Mailbox" menu select "Use This Mailbox for -> Trash", the same folder Web Alpine uses for this function.
    use-Trash2

Configuring Message Composition Options

You will probably want to set the message composition option to send "plain text" by default, so that it can be read by the most people with the least trouble.

  1. StepsActions
  2. If it isn't already running, run Mail (be sure you have an active internet connection first...).
  3. From the Mail menu, select Preferences, then click the Composing item to bring up the composing preferences panel, pictured below.
    compose-prefs

  4. Next to Format, use the pop-up list to select Plain Text.
  5. Click the red circle in the top left corner to close the preferences panel.

Configuring Mail to Use the UW Directory Service (LDAP)

By configuring Mail to use the UW Directory you will always have up-to-date email contact information for UW students, faculty and staff.

  1. StepsActions
  2. If it isn't already running, run Mail (be sure you have an active Internet connection first...).
  3. From the Mail menu, select Preferences, then click the Composing item to bring up the composing preferences panel, pictured below.
    compose-prefs

  4. Be sure the check box next to "Automatically complete addresses" is checked.
  5. Click the Configure LDAP button to bring up the server configuration panel, similar to the picture below.
    LDAP1

  6. Click the plus (+) button in the lower left corner to add a new LDAP service, which brings up a panel similar to the picture below.
    LDAP2

  7. Click next to Name and add a descriptive name as you prefer (e.g., "UW Directory")
  8. Click next to Server and enter "directory.washington.edu"
  9. Click next to Search Base and enter:
    o=University of Washington, c=US

    NOTE: Type this exactly as it appears. The first character is the letter "oh" (NOT the number zero). Be sure to include the comma and the space after Washington. Also note that you can change the behavior of the LDAP search by modifying this string. For example, to limit the search to ONLY UW faculty and staff use:
    ou=Faculty and Staff, ou=People, o=University of Washington, c=US

    Or, to limit to students only use:
    ou=Students, ou=People, o=University of Washington, c=US

  10. Leave the Port and Scope at the default (389, Subtree) settings.
  11. Click Save and then Close.
  12. Click the red circle in the top left corner to close the preferences panel.

    Note that Mail actually cooperates with the OS X Address Book program, and it is this program that actually was configured with the LDAP server information.

Converting Your Alpine Address Book

There is a Web page to export entries, other than local lists, from your Alpine address book as a Comma Separated Values (CSV) formatted file, see:

Export My Alpine Contacts

The Apple "Contacts" (Address Book) program is able to import CSV formatted files, see:

Import Files to Mac Address Book

Do note that you may need to edit the "headers" (field names) from file exported from Alpine to import correctly.

Check Eligibility and Activate UW Email (Deskmail) Inbox and Forwarding

  1. StepsActions
  2. Go to Manage Computing Services to check the status of your email service.
    • If "UW Email Inbox" is not listed, then you are not eligible for this service. Most students are not eligible to use UW (Deskmail) Email.
    • If "UW Email Inbox" is listed, but not checked, check the box. Then click "Subscribe".
  3. Go to Manage Email Forwarding to verify and set your UW NetID personal email forward to "UW Deskmail".
    • Click on the "Forward to UW Deskmail" checkbox, if is not already chosen, then click on "OK"
  4. To verify the new settings:
    • Open Web Alpine.
    • Click "Inbox" in the left column to see the messages in your Inbox. Next, click on "Compose", create a test message, address it to your UW NetID personal address (your_UW_NetID@uw.net) and send the message.
    • Wait a few seconds then click "Check Mail" to see your message arrive.

    If you encounter problems confirming a working email account with Web Alpine, then ask for help and get that resolved before proceeding.

Last modified: July 16, 2013