New in Apple’s Mac OS X Lion: Mail 5

“Once again, after seeing the kids off to school and wife to work with a peck and smile, I found myself greeting a visitor, Scruffy, the American Kennel Club certified feature retriever,” The Fairer Platform reports. “He appeared at my door bearing screen caps and text descriptions of new features in Apple’s upcoming Mac operating system rewrite.”

“The biggest change in Mail 5, according to Scruffy (tail wagging enthusiastically) is the new user interface, featuring an iPad-like fullscreen mode. Yes, fullscreen apps are an over arching theme in Lion and this core application is among the first to get the treatment,” The Fairer Platform reports. “Mail 5′s toolbar has gotten a makeover… The most notable change being you can drag mailboxes, etc. to the toolbar and then drag to re-order those — this order is tied to Command + 1, 2, 3, 4… a fast and convenient way to move between mailboxes.”

More info and screenshots in the full article here.


  1. Why can’t they put the calendar, mail, organizational tools in one program. They just can’t hack that Microsloth did one thing better than them. C’mon Apple, swallow your pride just this once. Mail sucks!

    1. I beg to differ. In my experience I like the simplicity of much better then Outlook. I had to use Outlook for years at my job and it always seems to complicated and cluttered. When I want to check mail, I pretty much just want to see mail and thats it.

        1. While we’re on the subject, Apple should unbundle iTunes too. Give me a sync utility, a store, a media player, and take Ping to the ‘net.

          Stop cramming everything into iTunes.

          1. As far as iTunes goes, I’d like to be able to specify which section it opens to on launch.

            I NEVER use the music store. I’d like it to open to the App Store.

            When O When will Apple add an advanced search to the iTunes Store?

        1. I agree! Talk about a backward step. Looks like they borrowed some Bento software engineers. All candy, no fiber or vitamins. I’m hoping that particular design was a plant to track down a leak and the real design doesn’t fall for faux-leather stitching on a screen image.

      1. What Apple needs to do is to unlock the enormous potential of Services in the Menu. Integration from the ground up, so that the simple and clean is the starting point and then you can bring in the clutter only as wanted and needed.

      1. Spoken like a true blind follower. Apple can do no wrong and their ideas are always the best. Yet the minute they change, the new way is the best even if it copies some other idea the blind followers once thought sucked.

          1. Let me enlighten you:

            1. Right mouse button,
            2. Alt(command)/Tab,
            3. Resize windows from any edge (Lion),
            4. Intel,
            5. Finder sidebar,
            6. Exchange support,

            I could go on, but you blind followers won’t open your eyes anyway.

            1. A right mouse click wasn’t all that needed in earlier versions of the Mac OS. It was a much simpler OS and the right mouse button thing came when the OS got more complicated. I still don’t use the right click much outside of WoW or other video games that use it.

              Who ever said alt tabbing was bad? I was glad when they added it.

              I could care less about resizing a window from any edge. Is it useless? Probably not, but I couldn’t give one shit about it. That being said, the resize from any edge thing came from NeXT and is just now being implemented. Apple obviously had other things to worry about in the mean time. 

              Intel was a stupid idea back when it was pentium vs PPC. Pentium chips sucked so much ass. Then intel came out with chips that went crap, combined with IBM’s inability or unwillingness to make power efficient chips. Apple switched and it was better then the alternative. Since then Intel has said they’re glad to have Apple because Apple actually pushes their tech to new limits unlike Microshaft. Intel has even designed custom chips for Apple (first generation MacBook Air chips).

              As far as I remember the side bar thing came from NeTX and was actually copied from NeXT by Microshaft.

              Exchange support is great and actually implemented better in Mac OS since it comes on the consumer version of the OS. In that respect Apple is ahead of Microshaft in the implementation of Exchange. I wish exchange wasn’t needed but until the business world wakes up and decides to use open standards for mail and calendars it will be. 

            2. You dweebs are focused like a laser when it come to Apple. Blinders on and marching to battle with the same song. Try to be a bit more broad minded and perhaps you won’t be seen as the zealots you are.

            3. Important to note is that without Apple computers would have taken a lot longer to become PCs (Personal Computers). It was Apple that began bringing them into the home back when their competition was IBM, not Microsoft! Microsoft was just an OS developer and grew into something larger while Apple was competing on both the hardware and the software fronts.

              Go back and look through the history of the Apple line and the “PC” line and you will see a number of give and take scenarios where they borrowed from each other. A good idea is a good idea.

              I for one am just happy to own a Mac where it functions as promised and doesn’t need a consistent hand-holding from IT. I understand that may limit my flexibility on what programs (apps) I can run. Life is full of choices and I choose consistency and stability over flexibility.

          2. 1. Right mouse button has been available since at least system 7, I know, I’ve used it since then!
            2. Alt(cmd) /Tab, similarly since the old OS days (8? 9? I forget)
            3. Resize windows by any edge has been asked for by the faithful for over a decade!
            4. Intel, we got used to when it proved to be a winner, but lots of us had to be dragged into it kicking and screaming.
            5. Ditto, finder sidebar
            6. Exchange support has also been asked for for a long time.

            We are not blind, plenty of us criticize Apple when/as needed!

            1. Your public education is wrong – STFU is either an acronym or an abbreviation, depending on how you pronounce it. When expanded, it does become four words.

              You will make neither make friends nor convert anyone in this forum to your viewpoint by calling us “blind followers.” If you were someone whose opinions were worth considering, then you would not generalize in that manner.

    2. I agree.
      On my iPad and iPhone I get seamless integration of Mail, Calendar and Contacts to Exchange 2003.
      I was hoping for the same in Lion but alas, it still requires crappy gymnastics using DavMail for Calendar and Contacts.
      Unbelievable. 🙁

  2. Yeah, after being stuck on Entourage for a decade I tried Mail 6 months ago. I’m ready to dump it, it’s hopeless for any power user.

    Im trying Thunderbird now, any good suggestions?

  3. What the heck is supposed to be so great about having full-screen for everything? I have zero desire for a Mail window 27 inches wide and 16 inches high!!!

    1. “Full Screen App” is always an optional view. Like going full screen or not when watching a video in a window. It may be less useful on a 27-inch (diagonal measurement) iMac, compared to an 11-inch MacBook Air.

      The interesting part is that a window in Full Screen App mode becomes a new “Space” (as in the Spaces feature), so you can easily switch back and forth between the window using “Full Screen” mode and your regular Desktop; it’s not one or the other. AND, you can put more than one window into Full Screen App mode at the same time, and each one becomes a new “adjacent” Space.

    2. Full screen is a step backwards to the idiotic Windows metaphors. I’d assume it’s optional for those of us who know how to manage multiple apps running in numerous windows.

      1. Full screen is a good way not to ruin your eyesight when running an app on a 13 inch MacBook Pro.

        Also, there is nothing more frustrating then having to scroll left-right in an app just to click on buttons because the app is half the 13″ screen. I prefer to click full screen then have to maximize and then adjust more by dragging wider and taller.

        Additionally, Spaces was cumbersome and slow requiring too much effort IMO to use effectively. I like things to be smooth and natural. Making an app Full Screen and then using a gesture to move between these apps and the desktop is the way to go. Improvements on Expose and the Spaces screen are also welcome.

        I give this one to Microsoft for implementing Full Screen a while ago. Though I think the final First Prize goes to Apple for knowing how to manage Full Screen through Spaces (versus a cluttered taskbar) and provide a cleaner and more efficient way to move between apps.

    1. No Bounce is Bad. I make careful use of Bounce. It would be a loss to me, too. Hopefully, someone may come up with a way to add that back in. I suspect some people are not careful in how they use it. Perhaps that was the issue. Otherwise, I don’t understand why it would be removed.

      1. Just wondering what the best way to use Bounce is?

        Are there some emails where it shouldn’t be used? If so, how can you tell?

        Also, I’m all for keeping the apps separate. I’d even like the To Do and Notes to be separate. Probably comes from my Palm Desktop days, but the To Dos being in Mail is silly.

        1. The easy and short answer is to check the full headers (command-shift-H or pull down to all headers from the message menu) and be sure that the from email (which is where a message would be replied to or bounced to) is the same as the return path from which the spam came. If not, you’re just sending a bounce to some unsuspecting person that was spoofed by the spammer.


    1) I cannot click a key or a tool bar button to skip to the next or previous message when I open a message in its own window. The arrow keys work only if I am in a preview pane, which is not my preferred way to read my mail.

    2) When a Contact has more than one email address, I cannot mark a preferred address as “default” for sending email.

    3) If an email message is received that contains more than one attachment, I would like to be able to selectively delete attachments individually, rather than be forced to either keep them all or delete them all.

  5. I don’t get this full screen app idea!

    I hope there’s an option to disable that or I won’t go to Lion!

    I have to work in Windows atvwork all day and am always annoyed by the way it wants to take over my screen. I want to be able to place and size my work areas in a way that suits me!

  6. @Seamus

    I completely agree. I detest full screen. It makes absolutely no sense on a huge monitor.

    I don’t know about you guys, but I do a lot of drag and drop (this is one of the things that is so awesome on a mac). Harder to do in full screen…

  7. @Seamus

    Full screen is beneficial on smaller displays like the MacBook Air, to make the most of screen estate. Appetizing? You better believe it! ™ :snake:

  8. So far the default is not full screen – its only an option. I hope they include something in the settings that allow you to chose the default to be full screen. Its meant to be more ‘iPad’ like and does make sense for some. E.g. smaller screen as mentioned but also to focus on the task at hand without any distractions (love that on pages!)

    1. Agreed. If I look at my screen I like to just see the one app and not all the background noise. Too distracting. It looks cleaner to me.

      I also don’t understand people saying they won’t go Lion over this feature. And especially stating you hate Windows because of this when even in Windows you can make program screens whatever size you want and it will remember these settings. There are plenty of Apple vs. PC battlegrounds though Full Screen is not one of them.

      Full screen is welcome for laptops, optional to use (though it works great with Spaces which IMO was cumbersome in the past), and as for drag and drop (which was also improved in Lion!) on Windows at work? Two screens, yeah baby!

  9. Anyone have an answer to this question?
    I know how to change the background color in Mac Mail, but try sending it to, say, an AOL account and the background remains white…what gives?
    What’s the point of having the ability to change the color only for it not to appear in the msg when received.

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