Apple Mail for Sierra - Leaving a Copy of Messages on the Server

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If you have configured your e-mail address as a POP account then you will have the option to decide whether downloaded mail should remain on the server as well as how long it should remain there.

This guide is specific to Apple Mail for OS X Sierra. If you are unsure which version of OS X you are using, you can check by doing the following:

  • Open the Apple Menu (apple mail).
  • Select About This Mac.


If you are not using OS X Sierra, then you will need to refer to the guide which corresponds to your version of OS X.


The following steps will assist you in adjusting the setting for leaving mail on the server in Apple Mail:

1. Open Mail.

2. Select Mail from the menu and click on Preferences.

3. Click on the Accounts icon and select your e-mail account from the list on the left-hand side.

4. Under the Account Information section, you will see a tick box labelled Remove copy from server after retrieving a message:

  • If you want all downloaded mail to remain on the server, remove the tick from this box.
  • If you prefer to leave a copy of mail on the server, ensure that this box is ticked and select the amount of time allowed before the messages are removed (e.g.: After one week).


Note: If you access your e-mail address from multiple devices (e.g.: from a mobile phone or another computer), then you will need to ensure that a copy of mail is left on the server otherwise your other devices may not receive mail.

5. Once you have made the appropriate changes, close the Preferences window. If the Save Changes box appears, click on Save.

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