Backing Up Gmail

When you set up email address with Gmail, you effectively have your email in the “cloud”. Being able to access your email anywhere, anytime is fantastic, but what if the cloud disappeared???

I am not at all thinking that this will happen with Gmail, but I do keep lots of precious information in Gmail. I would hate to lose this information, so to take the right precautions, I really need to be backing up my Gmail.

If like me, you set up a email address with gmail after already having another established email address, you will already have a mail client that you use. For example Apple Mail 3.0, Outlook, Thunderbird 2.0 or Windows Mail.

To start the process of backing up Gmail, you will need to configure another email client (as listed above) to receive your Gmail account. Then just follow these steps:

1. Adjusting Settings

Backing Up Gmail

Once in your Gmail account go to settings at the top right hand corner, as illustrated by the red arrow.

2. Forwarding and POP/IMAP

Backing Up Gmail - Forwarding and Pop/IMAP
Click on to the Forwarding and POP/IMAP tab as highlighted by the red arrow.

3. Enable POP

Backing Up Gmail  - Enable Pop Button
Click on the option to enable POP for all mail. This will even include even mail that’s already been downloaded online in your Gmail account.

4. Save Changes

Backing Up Gmail - Save Changes -tab
Make sure that you scroll to the bottom of the page and click on save changes.

5. Go To Email Client

All you need to do then is open the mail client that you have configured for Gmail, and check for new messages. It may take some time for your messages from Gmail to be downloaded if you have not done this in a while. But be patient and you will soon have all your emails down from the cloud and a back up copy if you wish!

Accessing Gmail Offline

So you have set up email address with Gmail, but have found that there is times that you would like to access your email, but can’t as you are not online? Well Gmail Labs are testing a new application that allows you to access your emails when offline.

The Official Gmail Blog describes how this feature works:

When you lose your connection, Gmail automatically switches to offline mode, and uses the data stored on your computer’s hard drive instead of the information sent across the network. You can read messages, star and label them, and do all of the things you’re used to doing while reading your webmail online. Any messages you send while offline will be placed in your outbox and automatically sent the next time Gmail detects a connection.

Our goal is to provide nearly the same browser-based Gmail experience whether you’re using the data cached on your computer or talking directly to the server.

Sounds great doesn’t it. But if you are new to Gmail, you may be at a loss as to how to turn this feature on. I will take you through the required steps so you can be accessing your Gmail offline in no time!

Step 1 – Settings

Once in your Gmail account, find the “Settings” tab located in the right hand corner and click on this.

Step 2 – Settings Options

There are a number of options under the Settings heading. Select “Labs” as higlighted by the red arrow.

Step 3 – Labs

Labs is the testing ground for new functionality of Gmail. As the spiel states, these functions are under development and testing so are not perfect, but they are certainly worth trying. Scroll down until you can find the offline feature as shown above.

Step 4 – Enable Offline

Once the offline function has been locataed, simply click on “Enable” as highlighted by the red arrow.

Step 5 – Save Changes

The final step is to click on “Save Changes” which can be found at the top of the Labs page. Now if you are without internet access you will still be able to access a local cache of your email.