A year or so ago I started making plans to move away from gmail. I had 3 main reasons for doing this:

  1. It was part of a wider move I made to use less Google products. I’ll probably write more about another time since it has been a pretty radical shift.
  2. I didn’t really trust Google to handle my privacy, especially with regard to email.
  3. I wasn’t a fan of gmail functionality wise and thought I could have something closer to my desired workflow elsewhere.

This particular move involved downloading offline copies of all my archived email and then deleting everything from gmail. I still kept using the service, but as soon as a new email was received it was either deleted or downloaded and then deleted.

The idea was that when I had the time to change email provider I’d then upload all the .eml files so that my message history was preserved. This as you’ve probably gathered didn’t go to plan. The email provider I was all primed to switch to unexpectedly shut down, and this has left me looking for another.

I haven’t found one that I’ve fancied yet, and points 1 & 2 are still things that I want to address. In the mean time, I have managed to address 3 in a satisfactory manor using some tools I hadn’t realised existed. With that I’ve decided, at least for the time being, I’m going to gmail.

“But hang on, why is this returning to gmail if you never left?”

It’s not so much me as my emails. I had several thousand .eml files in storage, and they’ve all gone back onto gmail under the new workflow. It’s not ideal and certainly not what I wanted out of this exercise, but to be honest I’m just getting tired of messing around. Though if anyone does have any suggestions for email providers drop me a message, because it could be I’ve just missed the one.