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email message which cant be deleted

2499 Views 15 Replies Latest reply: Apr 16, 2010 10:40 AM by Glenn Carter RSS
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marcbeaudry Calculating status...
Currently Being Moderated
Apr 9, 2010 11:09 AM
i've got one message - i can delete it - but the minute i exit the app - and re open MAIL - the message has returned - i've tried deleting the message rebuilding the mailbox - the message reappears.
i've tried deleting the message- deleting the MAil message plist and restarting the machine.
the message reappears .
all thoughts ideas and suggestions are welcome
MacBook, Mac OS X (10.6.3)
  • azamino Level 4 Level 4 (1,615 points)
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    Apr 11, 2010 1:10 AM (in response to marcbeaudry)
    if you can find the .emlx number of the mail itself you can go to User/Library/Mail and find that email itself and delete it through Finder.
    I cant discover an easy way to find out the .emlx number however.
    This way is workable however: make a temp folder/drag that email into it/make sure that email is the only email in that folder/go to Library/Mail/Mailboxes/folder/and double click the email to be sure you got the right one/then use Finder Delete to delete it
    2.4 Ghz 15" macBook Pro 4 GB RAM, Mac OS X (10.6.3), Time Capsule 1TB
  • Glenn Carter Level 4 Level 4 (3,360 points)
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    Apr 11, 2010 1:24 AM (in response to azamino)
    Here is another approach as well. The original poster does not say who is their email provider (MobileMe? Gmail? Yahoo? etc...). However, most email providers have a Webmail interface that you can log into via a browser.

    You might try logging in and deleting the troublesome email there. Then quit and relaunch Mail.app and see if the email is now gone. With an IMAP account this is surely to work. But even if it is a POP account it might resolve the issue since your email provider might keep downloading the same email to your Mac even though you keep deleting it. So either way this procedure might resolve the issue.

    Let us know. Cheers!
    MacBook Pro 2.4GHz (Early 2008), Mac OS X (10.6.2), MacBook Pro (2010-Any Minute), MacBook (2009), Time Capsule, AppleTV, 2 iPhones
  • Glenn Carter Level 4 Level 4 (3,360 points)
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    Apr 12, 2010 10:46 AM (in response to marcbeaudry)
    Go back into your service provider's Webmail interface and see if the message has returned there as well. If it has then delete it there again.

    Now go back to Mail.app and select the accounts Inbox. Go up to the Mailbox menu and select "Rebuild".

    Let us know if this helps. Is this a IMAP or POP account. You may need to contact your email service and see if they can delete the message from their servers.
    MacBook Pro 2.4GHz (Early 2008), Mac OS X (10.6.2), MacBook Pro (2010-Any Minute), MacBook (2009), Time Capsule, AppleTV, 2 iPhones
  • Glenn Carter Level 4 Level 4 (3,360 points)
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    Apr 13, 2010 2:00 PM (in response to marcbeaudry)
    Try this: CTR-Click (right-click) on the errant message. In the contextual box that appears chose "Move To..." and select Trash. Does it get moved?

    Now go up to the Mailbox menu and select Erase Deleted Items --> In All Accounts.

    Any change?
    MacBook Pro 2.4GHz (Early 2008), Mac OS X (10.6.2), MacBook Pro (2010-Any Minute), MacBook (2009), Time Capsule, AppleTV, 2 iPhones
  • direwolf8 Level 4 Level 4 (1,280 points)
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    Apr 14, 2010 9:14 AM (in response to marcbeaudry)
    an error occured while moving messages to mailbox TEMP


    Since it can't move the message, it will continue to appear. Check out mailbox TEMP and fix the permissions/ownership as needed.
    G5, Mac OS X (10.5)
  • Glenn Carter Level 4 Level 4 (3,360 points)
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    Apr 14, 2010 11:15 AM (in response to marcbeaudry)
    Let's try something that has been suggested by one of our other contributors here. I'm confident it will work, but hesitated to suggest it in the event some of these other, easier, suggestions worked.

    Let's establish a few things first:
    So the recalcitrant email is still in your INBOX. Is that correct?
    You were not able to move it anywhere else?
    Do you have many other messages in this mailbox besides the troublesome email?
    Do you have Mail configured to received mail from more than one email account?

    Quit Mail.
    Go to Home Folder/Library/Mail.
    Look for a folder labeled with your email address. It might appear as:

    POP-youremailaddress ...or...
    IMAP-youremailaddress

    Open the folder and go to INBOX/Messages.
    You are going to see a list of numbers each ending in".emlx". Highlight the first one and hit CMD-Y. This will open the message in QuickView. If this is NOT the message then, while QuickView is still visible, hit the down arrow to view the next message. Keep doing this until you find the email in question.

    When you have found the message, close the QuickView window and hit CMD-I. This opens the Get Info window. Scroll down to the bottom and note the Sharing & Permissions. It should read something like:

    yourusername (Me): Read & Write
    everyone: No Access


    Is that what you see? If not, click the gold lock icon in the lower right and enter your username and password for logging into this Mac. Now change your "Privilege" to "Read & Write". Then close the Get Info window.

    Leave this window open and go back to Mail and see if you can now delete this message. If you still cannot delete it, then quit Mail, go back to the finder window in which you discovered the message (it should still be highlighted - you can double-check with QuickView) and drag it to the trash.

    Relaunch Mail and see if the message is now gone. Let us know what happens.
    MacBook Pro 2.4GHz (Early 2008), Mac OS X (10.6.2), MacBook Pro (2010-Any Minute), MacBook (2009), Time Capsule, AppleTV, 2 iPhones
  • Glenn Carter Level 4 Level 4 (3,360 points)
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    Apr 15, 2010 12:05 PM (in response to marcbeaudry)
    Very bizarre Marc. So you INBOX refuses to remain empty?

    Can't remember if you discussed this or not, but do you have any rules set up? How many? And what are they designed to achieve?
    MacBook Pro 2.4GHz (Early 2008), Mac OS X (10.6.2), MacBook Pro (2010-Any Minute), MacBook (2009), Time Capsule, AppleTV, 2 iPhones
  • Glenn Carter Level 4 Level 4 (3,360 points)
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    Apr 15, 2010 5:28 PM (in response to marcbeaudry)
    Can't remember if you have tried this yet:

    Quit Mail and go to Home folder/Library/Mail and rename the Envelope Index to "Old Envelope Index".

    Then relaunch Mail. It will take a minute or two to re-index your mailboxes. Let us know what happens. Cheers!
    MacBook Pro 2.4GHz (Early 2008), Mac OS X (10.6.2), MacBook Pro (2010-Any Minute), MacBook (2009), Time Capsule, AppleTV, 2 iPhones
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