Mail Reader Comparison

Have you noticed how most mail readers stink? After a KMail frustration today, here’s a comparison to help you choose your next mail reader.

  • Outlook: Always looks normal, then suddenly e-mails your 6GB PST file to Russian spammers or Microsft and deletes it
  • Thunderbird: Your choice of 42 fully themable crash messages in 30 languages
  • Gnus: Crashes, after first consuming 2GB of system RAM
  • Lotus Notus: Makes you wander through virtual filing cabinets for 2 hours to find your e-mail, *THEN* crashes.
  • Pine: Sends a satisfaction survey to the University of Washington every time it crashes
  • Elm: Impossible to distinguish a crash from regular usage
  • Eudora: Crashing the same way since 1985
  • Mac Mail.App: Can handle up to 5 simultaneous animated segfaults at once
  • Evolution: Crashes, but never really dies…. or does it???
  • Hotmail: Crashes are “to serve you better”
  • GMail: You must receive an invitation before we prevent you from deleting your mail… and no, that is not Mr. Ashcroft at the keyboard.
  • KMail: Pops up a new dialog box every 5 minutes to inform you that it’s crashing again, “just in case you didn’t know”
  • Mutt: Crashes can be removed by just the right .muttrc
  • MH: Crashes, then presents the core file as new mail

13 thoughts on “Mail Reader Comparison

  1. You must have forgotten to set gnus-eat-memory-and-crash to nil. Rookie error.

    Reply

    Jaakko Reply:

    Setting this variable is not necessary if you have been using Gnus for mail from at least Quassia (5.6). But thanks for noticing; I’ve been recommending Gnus for people and always wondered why it didn’t seem to take.

    Reply

  2. GNUMail.app and
    sylpheed(-claws)

    Reply

    jgoerzen Reply:

    I haven’t used these much… would you like to suggest an appropriate entry in the list? :-)

    Reply

  3. At least Thunderbird avoids the old Mozilla suite mail client’s trick of occaisonally showing your vitally important email folders as empty, only to come back perfectly normally after a restart.

    I don’t think Mozilla mail ever lost any of my email when doing this, but it managed to regularly recreate that same sinking feeling in the pit of your stomach that PST file corruption can induce.

    Reply

  4. Crashes, then six months of spam re-appears at your inbox.

    And I can tell you that this is neither a joke nor funny.

    Tip for email users, don’t use Evo with IMAP.

    Reply

    jgoerzen Reply:

    Heh, that does sound bad (and made me chuckle) :-)

    Shameless plug: You might be interested in OfflineIMAP.

    Reply

    Anonymous Reply:

    Fast, stable and with spam tools that just simply work.

    If only I could get a decent GNOME theme ^_^

    Reply

    Jason Reply:

    Yes, this happens to me too. You just need to Expunge your inbox occasionally to reduce the irritation.

    Reply

    Anonymous Reply:

    Don’t use Evo with anything! My Evo crashes with MS exchange server…everytime it gets a mail with an attachment. I guess it can handle only plain-text! :P

    Reply

  5. After my mail reader comparison, I’ve been fortunate enough to have a few mail server troubles. So here, to help you with your mail server decisions, is my mail server comparison.

    Postfix: Your mail can now have the distinction of being deleted by 5

    Reply

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