Archiving email: got into a mess

Hi everyone.

I want to back up old mailboxes stored in the On my Mac section of the Apple Mail mailboxes, and then erase those (in order not to overburden the Mail app; it takes ages to launch these days).

From the Import sidebar I archived several mailboxes from the On my Mac location. Then I took the fateful step of deleting the source mailboxes. After that, whenever I go to the import sidebar and click on the Apple Mail location, Devonthink 3 goes into a spin and I have to Force Quit.

In hindsight, I realize that the Archive option is not meant to backup mail boxes I want to delete from the Mail App. Which leads to my first question. What is the best way to import mailboxes I mean to delete in the source? Should I rather have chosen Import in this usage case?

My second—rather pressing—question is, how can I possibly return to using the Import sidebar in order to archive mailboxes I mean to preserve in the source — in other words, how I can I nudge DT3 to gracefully deal with the mailbox mismatch (and stop going into a spin) whenever I press Apple Mail in the Import sidebar?

My third question is: going forward, can I sometimes choose Import from the Import sidebar in order to archive mailboxes I mean to erase, and other times choose Archive to update mailboxes Ii mean to keep? Or is it an Either/Or decision?

Thank you in advance for any lights on these matters!


Do you use the latest version 3.9 of DEVONthink and is the Mail plug-in both installed and enabled? See Mail > Preferences > General > Manage Plug-Ins…

This concept is covered in the Archiving Email > Import Or Archive section of the built-in Help and manual

Ah! It was installed but not enabled. Now DT3 correctly reads Mail’s mailbox structure, and the spin is gone. Thanks!

Thank you for replying. Actually, I had read and reread that passage. I gathered that importing is an ad hoc thing whereas archiving is best for updating permanent mailboxes. But that says nothing about whether it’s advisable to mix the two approaches or not, and DT3 was behaving poorly, which is why I asked. After having enabled the Mail plug-in, though, DT3 is interacting smoothly with Mail and I’m reassured that I can use both procedures.