DWIM(.nl) - Backup your email! It's easy


Do What I Mean

February 10th, 2020

Backup your email! It's easy

Email has become the core of corporate (and often private) communication. Most of us use it all day every day.

There used to be a time, where you downloaded your email and read it locally. But these days, email lives on a server somewhere. Which is A Good Thing, because we are mobile and this lets us read our email everywhere (which, in itself, is a mixed blessing at best).

But there's a downside: We now depend on the service providers. When their service is down, or we are off-line (the horror!) we don't have access to our email anymore. Or worse, if our provider goes out of business or just decides to discontinue its service, we may even loose our email permanently.

Fortunately, the solution is easy: back up your email. On Linux the most mentioned solutions are offlineimap and mbsync. A little research shows many people choosing mbsync over offlineimap, so I decided to follow suit. With the help of this and this post I had it set up without too many problems.

Then I watched over 20k (almost 10 years worth) of my emails being pulled in, which comes to almost 6GB. It's now all save and cosy on my local hard drive. Synchronizing takes just seconds and I can still also access my email in the cloud from my smart phone and tablet.

As a bonus, and not entirely by accident, I can now read my email in Emacs using mu4e. But that's for another post.

tags: productivity, it

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