In Lion OSX 10.7 Apple added a feature to Mail called Conversations.
Conversations simplifies the process of browsing email threads without throwing away any of the information you need.
It’s an elegant solution to a complex problem.
How Do I Turn On Conversations
- Open Apple Mail.
- Go to Mail in the Menu Bar and select Preferences.
- In the Viewing tab, under View Conversations, check Include Related Messages and Show most recent message at the top.
- Close the Preferences Menu.
- In the Mail Menu, select View > Organize By Conversation. If you prefer, you can click the Conversations icon in the Toolbar.
In the Inbox, Conversations groups emails by thread under the last email received.
A number with a disclosure triangle indicates the number of messages in the Conversation that are in the current mailbox.
Click on the disclosure triangle and it turns down to reveal those emails.
To see an entire message thread, click on a conversation in the Message List.
The Preview window shows all messages from that thread starting with the most recent.
In the setup above, we chose to Include All Related Messages, so we get to view our own responses in the thread. This makes it very easy to follow.
As you scroll up or down, notice that extraneous Header information has been removed for the sake of clarity.
If you’d like to see that Header data, click Show/Hide Details.
Double click on a Conversation to open it. You can now select any message from the thread and Reply, Forward, Flag, Print or Delete just that email.
To return to regular viewing mode, go to the Mail Menu, and select View > Organize By Conversation to uncheck this option. You can also ungroup messages by clicking the conversations icon.
If you delete the top email in a thread, you will delete the entire thread. Remember, if you make a mistake press Command Z to undo the last command.
The current location of an email is shown in the Header details underneath the date.
Happy Monday. Hope this tip makes the week go a little faster.
If you have questions, please use the Comments section below.
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Sorry, this does not work for emails with the same subject line. I wish programmers would just leave well enough alone and let us organize our emails without imposing mandatory “Smart” options!
It’s only meant to work for emails that are part of a connected thread. I would suggest the option of connecting all emails with the same subject line to Apple. Sounds like a good feature. – John
I have a Mac with Apple Mail Gmail — the scene with the yellow bars. HOW do I turn OFF conversation view? The “go to preferences” etc don’t seem apply to the buttons on the yellow scene view. I’m 86 so this needs to be a simple message by message. Thank you.
I tried to paste a yellow screen picture but it wouldn’t ‘take.’ Sorry
In Apple Mail go to “View” in the toolbar. The fourth menu option is “Organize by Conversation”. When emails are organized by conversation, this has a checkmark next to it. Simply, select it and the checkmark will disappear.Hope this helps. – John
I am sending out large numbers of emails at once using BCC, and I would like to sort the responses from each vendor into individual conversations. I currently get responses from 15 different vendors in the same “conversation”, but they are not related conversations… Is there any way to sort conversations by recipient instead of by subject?
Any other suggestions are welcome!
Hi Max – If they all come from the same email, I am not aware of there being any way to parse out the results. Maybe someone else can chime in if they have ideas – John
I’m trying to send multiple emails with different subject to one recipient at 1 time, and I want to group those emails into 1 conversation. Is it possible to implement that by adding Headers[‘In-Reply-To’] (and Message-ID if necessary)? Is Apple Mail client aware of that?
I doubt it, but why not test it out on a friendly email. – John