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Permanently delete email?

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Assuming you mean with Apple's OSX Mail application,...

 

First, before you do this, you can archive the mail in a mailbox by right-clicking (or control-clicking) on that mailbox and selecting Archive Mailbox. This is a good idea in case you discover later you really wish you could remember one of those messages you deleted.

 

Then open Mail's Preferences and visit the @ Accounts pane. Select the account for the mailbox on the left side of the preference pane.

 

If the account type is POP then just click the little "-" minus box on the bottom of the pane. That will parmanently delete the mail account mailbox and all messages it contains from Mail. Mail will no longer check that account for new mail. Your POP account's mail provider may continue to accept new messages for you. You'll have to contact them (via website or phone, depends on who it is) to delete the account on their end.

 

If the account type is IMAP or MobileMe, then go to the "Mailbox Behavior" and set the "Trash" behavior to Erase deleted messages when "Quitting Mail". Select the mailbox in Mail and select all the messages in that mailbox (command-A) and click the delete icon. Then right-click (or command-click) the Trash mailbox and select "Erase Deleted Message". Then go back to the Mail Preferences pane and delete the account with the "-" minus button at the bottom. Your IMAP account's mail provider may continue to accept new messages for you. You'll have to deal with them (via website or phone, depends on who it is) to delete the account on their end.

 

Backups are a good thing before making major changes, in case you accidentally delete something that turns out to be important later.

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Yes, I meant the OSX mail app. Thanks for your help!

 

Assuming you mean with Apple's OSX Mail application,...

 

First, before you do this, you can archive the mail in a mailbox by right-clicking (or control-clicking) on that mailbox and selecting Archive Mailbox. This is a good idea in case you discover later you really wish you could remember one of those messages you deleted.

 

Then open Mail's Preferences and visit the @ Accounts pane. Select the account for the mailbox on the left side of the preference pane.

 

If the account type is POP then just click the little "-" minus box on the bottom of the pane. That will parmanently delete the mail account mailbox and all messages it contains from Mail. Mail will no longer check that account for new mail. Your POP account's mail provider may continue to accept new messages for you. You'll have to contact them (via website or phone, depends on who it is) to delete the account on their end.

 

If the account type is IMAP or MobileMe, then go to the "Mailbox Behavior" and set the "Trash" behavior to Erase deleted messages when "Quitting Mail". Select the mailbox in Mail and select all the messages in that mailbox (command-A) and click the delete icon. Then right-click (or command-click) the Trash mailbox and select "Erase Deleted Message". Then go back to the Mail Preferences pane and delete the account with the "-" minus button at the bottom. Your IMAP account's mail provider may continue to accept new messages for you. You'll have to deal with them (via website or phone, depends on who it is) to delete the account on their end.

 

Backups are a good thing before making major changes, in case you accidentally delete something that turns out to be important later.

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