Rebuild Mailboxes in Apple Mail solves most of the problems with Apple Mail. And also, after sometime, the mailboxes can become heavy and start causing issues. Rebuilding removes any kind of corrupt or damaged files that can be present inside profile folders.
In-built function for re-building the mailbox isn’t complicated at all in Apple Mail. In fact, it is simply a matter of few clicks.
Just click on the mailbox menu, choose ‘Rebuild, and wait. Waiting is the most difficult step in the whole process as it can take hours, depending on the number of mails and the total size of database. If you have more mailboxes, you must do this for each one to completely resolve the issues you are facing.
The thing that I don’t like about this otherwise effective and simple rebuilding option is that it will re-download every single item from mail servers (for IMAP and Exchange accounts). That is kind of a point of re-building, but it is frustrating.
Manually Reindex / Rebuild mailboxes in Apple Mail
Re-indexing is very similar to rebuilding the mailbox, however, there’s a slight difference. If after automatically rebuilding, Apple Mail still doesn’t function, you can manually re-index your mailbox.
Apple Mail automatically try to re-index every mail message itself when an issue is suspected, but manual re-indexing is always recommended.
Here’s you can manually re-index / Rebuild mailboxes in Apple Mail:
- – Quit Mail (if it’s open)
- – Open ‘Finder’, and go to ‘Library’
- – Go to the location – /Library/Mail/V2/MailData
- – Look for a file that begins with “Envelope Index”
- – Copy the file somewhere else (for restoring it back if anything goes wrong), and delete the original one.
- – Launch ‘Mail’ and it will automatically try to re-build the file you deleted.
- – Again, it might take a lot of time to reindex the email messages.
- – If “Mail” is not working fine, copy back the original ‘Envelope Index’ file
- – If it’s working fine, you can delete the backup file
Re-building and Re-indexing can solve majority of issues with Apple Mail. It is basically the reset options for Apple Mail that gets your entire database refreshed, looks for issues, and remove them.