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Highly recommended e-mail programs

I have to use Outlook at work because of corporate standards, so there's really no choice there. However, at home I've been using Outlook Express and I'm wondering if there's a better alternative.

I don't want to start any religious war here, so let me narrow the discussion. A few years ago (1998?) I tried Netscape and Eudora for mail. They were just okay (Eudora better than Netscape), and Outlook Express wound up winnning as it was continually improved and available on all [Windows] systems that I used.

I like Outlook Express because the interface is easy to use, it's very quick, and it's mostly intuitive. My biggest gripes are that it lacks a calendar feature (like Outlook) and that it seems to lack more complex features when I find I need them.

I am looking for a program that **MUST** have a slick, easy to use UI and handles mail and rules at least as well as OE. A news reader would be nice but is not necessary. A calendar feature is also not necessary but would be VERY nice.

Any thoughts from those who have used or liked OE and now prefer something else?

StickyWicket
Thursday, October 23, 2003

Eudora.  http://www.eudora.com/

It comes in three flavors:
Lite - free
medium - Sponsored
Heavy - You pay

I really like it.  If you like Outlook, it has many of the same email features and tranisitioning from one to the other is simple.  I spent the money and bought it  for my business. 

One of my favorite features is the ability to collect mail from the different addresses on my website, assume that "personality" and send the mail out, all without signing out.  This is a big plus when answering "Information@", and sending out invoices from "accounting@"

It also supports moods (something outlook should add), to prevent you from flaming that would-be client. As well as fully integrated privacy. It also has plugins for PGP and will accept security from most major vendors (Norton, McAfee, etc.)

And No, I do not have anything to do with them.  Just a happy customer.

MSHack
Thursday, October 23, 2003

Is the problem that you don't like Outlook because it's not free?  If so, is the Mozilla calendar + Mozilla Mail not workable for you?

http://www.mozilla.org/projects/calendar/

Ankur
Thursday, October 23, 2003

Personally I'd second the vote for Eudora, but the OP did say they'd already tried it. I run version 3 on the Mac at home, and version 5 on NT at work, and much prefer version 3.

Pegasus Mail might be worth a look:

www.pmail.com

I tried it and couldn't get on with it for some reason, but I know several people who love it. It's free, and the user interface is highly customisable.

as
Thursday, October 23, 2003

I got so ahead of myself in my eudora fest that I hit post before finishing.  So, please continue reading...

Now that I explained the features I like, you were not specific about what bothered you with Eudora.  My biggest complaint with them is that what is possible is not always obvious.

Perhaps, it is the version you used or it is a feature that you specifically need/want/desire.    In my case, "personalities" played a role in my decision.  They also support plugins for other funcitonality but again, is it function or form. Is it an outlook versus modzilla vs opera email client issue or ....?

MSHack
Thursday, October 23, 2003

I use Outlook at home and Eudora at work.  I like Outlook far, far better than Eudora.  I have multiple displays and the MDI interface of Eudora doesn't mesh well with that whereas the SDI Outlook works really well.

You can do the same thing as personalities (to the best of my knowledge) in Outlook XP as well.  Just like the "From:" dropdown in Eudora there's a similar one there in Outlook, too.

Perhaps I’m an atypical Outlook user but I have never (*knock on wood*) had any worms, viruses, etc. infect my PC as a result of an unpatched Outlook.

MR
Thursday, October 23, 2003

I use Calypso, it keeps the mail in a database and, touch wood, is immune from the usual viral infections that Outlook is heir to, its reasonably quick and the version I'm using is free.

There is a later updated product from this base called Courier but I haven't used that at all.

Simon Lucy
Thursday, October 23, 2003

I like Mail.app, but you need Mac OS X to use it.

Jim Rankin
Thursday, October 23, 2003

Years ago I used Eudora (I think the last version I used was 4.0).

I stopped using it when it ate (deleted) several dozen important messages from a folder because the index file apparently became corrupted. 

I felt totally "f*cked" by Eudora in the sense that an end user of an application should not frikking EVER lose data beyond the current document. Yeah, rebuild the index, but NO! Don't delete my damned data... And I maybe had a few hundred messages in the folder, not exactly taxing the limits of any reasonable commercial app. That scared me, I didn't want to risk my data to it anymore. My opinion, anyway.

So, what version is Eudora up to, and has anyone else encountered this issue?

PS: I use Agent because I like it as a Usenet reader and it supports threaded email displays (it nests the replies). And reliable - it's never eaten messages, and I have several thousand messages in a few well used folders. The biggest drawbacks are: only one email POP server per Agent session; the primitive, one dimensional user interface; and the inability to assign messages to particular folders to override the filter logic. VERY fast on filters, though - I have several dozen filters and the delay is imperceptible.

Bored Bystander
Thursday, October 23, 2003

This is another topic that's continually rehashed here.

Pegasus Mail is great, but doesn't have a slick UI, it has a more Windows 3.1 UI, even though it was recently re-written from the ground up. It's powerful, but it takes some getting used to.

Eudora Mail is probably the next most popular after Outlook. I've never really used it.

PocoMail is pretty good and has a number of features that are designed to prevent viruses from gaining access to your computer.

As for Calender/Organizers, Mozilla Calender looks good (thanks for the link). Microsoft Schedule Plus ( http://discuss.fogcreek.com/joelonsoftware/default.asp?cmd=show&ixPost=58234&ixReplies=8 ) is good, but you probably need MS Office to install it, so why not use Outlook?

If you have a Palm, then Palm Desktop is a good choice since you can take your to do list and calender with you.

There are server/browser based calenders that are probably good, though the UI will be slower, of course.

www.MarkTAW.com
Thursday, October 23, 2003

Bored - was your disk full?

If you download mail and your hard drive is full, Eudora:
1) Gets your mail
2) Deletes it from the server
3) Tells you that your hard drive is full [OK]
4) Gives you a bunch of blank headers

That's it. Mail gone. Happened to me three times, about a year apart. The last time it happened was when I started searching for a new client. Tried Pegasus, didn't like it, tried Bloomba - ick. Ended up with the Bat!, but may move back to Outlook.

I think The Bat! fills the niche filled by Eudora in the late 90's - the upstart competitor (then it was against cc:Mail). Now Eudora is becoming senescent bloatware and The Bat! is the utilitarian upstart.

Philo

Philo
Thursday, October 23, 2003

I've tried many programs... I started with Eudora, then Pegasus, then Agent, then I wanted html (I was younger then) and so moved to Outlook Express, then I got scared and finally I found THE program: Poco

I like the fact that in Outlook Express I can move all the e-mails from one account to some folder, I couldn't make it work in Eudora or other programs (I'm subscribed to some lists and not all of them have the to: field as my address)

Poco is very powerful, however it took me a lot to make it forward mi e-mails to another acount (when it automatically chekcs e-mails it doesn't send what's in queue, I wanted to leave it unattended)... however it comes with a script language and managed to write a little script...

a guy from Chile
Thursday, October 23, 2003

Hmm. I looked at Star Office & Open Office just now and .. they don't have an email/calender/to-do list program? 5.2 had an email program, but 7.0 doesn't??

And is it just me, or are the Star Office and Open Office sites impossible to navigate? Are there ANY screen caps anywhere? And why do they talk about Open Source whenever you click on something that implies it will answer your questions?

www.MarkTAW.com
Friday, October 24, 2003

Yea eudora had a bug where it would eat mail if it ran out of disk space.  I can attest to that, although I think it is fixed now.

christopher baus (www.summitsage.com)
Friday, October 24, 2003

I use Eudora.  I've used Eudora for years.  I don't necessary like it, but it's still significantly better than anything out there.  I'm still waiting for a good Eudora replacement!

Couple of nice things about Eudora:

*Stores it's mail in standard unix MBX format -- so you'll always be able to get at your email. 
* It doesn't need to be installed; just copy it and run it.  This is great for installations or moving your email to another computer.
* It has that cool underlining spell checker.  I never go to an email client now that doesn't have that.

Of course, the down sides of Eudora is that it's somewhat buggy (although I've never lost a message) and a little bloated.  And they don't really seem to be improving things with newer versions; it's always mostly the same.

Almost Anonymous
Friday, October 24, 2003

mutt for mail, slrn for news. they just work.

neither of them have guis, but since the keyboard interface works quicker than a mouse anyway, who cares?

mutt will do pop3 if you really must, but you'd be better off just getting the mail with fetchmail and pre-processing with procmail.


Friday, October 24, 2003

I was using The Bat! [ http://www.ritlabs.com/en/products/thebat/ ] for two years. It is an excellent email program (small, fast and reliable), but does not support calendar or newsgroups. After that, I went to MS Outlook at work, I loved the calendar but didn't like the email client. This year, I changed jobs and we use Novell Groupwise at work. I wouldn't recommend Groupwise even to my worst enemy.

uncronopio
Friday, October 24, 2003

Outlook 2003 is really much, much better than the previous version I used (the one that came with Office XP). I like the search folders (I understand they were there all the time, but they got slick UI only now), the ability to run scripts on filters, and, of course, NewsGator (well, that worked on Outlook XP too).

Phoenix
Friday, October 24, 2003

One easy, attractive, and free news reader is XanaNews.

Scot
Friday, October 24, 2003

Has anyone tried the new version of Thunderbird?

Scot
Friday, October 24, 2003

F. A. B., Scot.


Monday, October 27, 2003

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