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iOS Mail - large storage of data on iPad

topipad

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I've noticed that my iOS Mail app now has over 2gb of data.

My emails are setup as SMTP, so if I delete mails from the iPad it will delete them permanently from my server, which I don't want.

I think that when I download an attachment it keeps the attachment on the iPad and gradually the data builds up. Also what might be happening is if I search for an old email then all the emails from today's date back to the email I open then become downloaded?

Also due to the quirkiness of how iOS ring fences data in apps I often find that I have to email files to myself to get them from where they are to where I want them to be.

Anyone know how to clean up all the data in my Mail app without deleting it all from the server?

Thanks
 

J. A.

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Delete the email account and set it up again. This should remove at least all the attachments you opened on your iPad from the Mail app storage.
 

twerppoet

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SMTP has nothing to do with how email is stored. It is the protocol/server setting used to send emails. All email accounts use SMTP, well, maybe not Exchange. I'll have to double check that.

What you are looking for is POP4, IMAP, or Exchange.

POP3 does indeed store everything on the receiving device. You only have two choices with a POP3 account. Download me email and delete it from the server, or download my email and leave it on the server. There is no provision for sever side folders, not even deleted or sent folders.

If you need less space taken up on your iPad with a POP account your only option is to delete emails. And yes, there is probably no way to get them back once you do. Unless you chose to keep them all on the server, in which case you may or may not get them all back (and I mean all) if you delete and re-add the account.

IMAP leaves everything on the server. Your iPad becomes a mirror of the servers. However, it only keeps so much of each folder locally synced to the iPad. You have to actually search or scroll down to older emails before they load. How much it keeps depends on settings.

The best way to keep email storage to a minimum for an IMAP account is to move the emails you want to keep to folders you create for this purpose. By default these secondary folders do not receive push updates, and they only keep the first dozen or so emails synced to the iPad for ready access.

For instance, I have folders for Friends, Family, Business, and Other. You can even move emails between accounts this way, as long as both accounts are not POP3 accounts.

If you get lots of pictures and other attachments, and space is at a premium, then you should make a practice of copying/moving those attachments to other storage; your computer or cloud, and then deleting that email.

Email is a terrible place to keep documents.

Exchange works with Microsofts Exchange server and has some differences in details, but in general works like IMAP; in that all folders are kept in sync with the server.

Evernote is another tool you can use if you need to keep a record of emails, but don't want them clogging up Mail. You can forward important emails to Evernote; even specifying a notebook and tags.

This would only be a trade off on where you store stuff, but the free Evernote account does not store files locally; only on the website. The premium account will store your files locally, but you can turn this feature on/off on a notebook basis. So you have control.

Ok, this has gotten longer than intended. :oops:

Good luck.
 
OP
T

topipad

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Sorry I meant IMAP.

I also use folders already and move everything into folders. My inboxes never have too many emails but I often find I need to find an old email and then it downloads loads of emails from that folder as I search older emails.

So I've still got over 2gb of data downloaded onto my iPad.
 

twerppoet

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Yes. That can be a problem.

An alternative might be to use Webmail or your mail provider's app when you need to search for old mail. That won't work with iCloud mail, of course; unless you log into icloud.com from a computer.
 

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