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Mac Mail - Default Address that I am sending to

3336 Views 11 Replies Latest reply: Feb 12, 2013 6:02 AM by pmstrain RSS
The Hammer610 Level 2 Level 2 (285 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Jul 25, 2011 8:03 PM

I have recently switched from Entourage to Mac Mail.   The biggest problem I have with Mail and Address Book is that when I have a person who has several different email addresses (the person I am sending the email to), I cannot easily select one of the addresses as default.   This was easy in Entourage, but not Mac Mail / Address Book. 

 

When I create a group, I seem to be able to go through and pick a default address in Address Book, but that does not always carry through when I send the group.   For an individual, there does not seem to be an option when editing the address card.

 

I have several people who are annoyed at me because I keep sending them email to the wrong address when I just select their name.   The only way I have found to fix the problem is to delete the other optional addresses, but that means I can never select the other addresses.

 

This should be easy.

 

I have done a search and there is lots of information about setting a default sending address (mine), but not a receiving address from the Address Book card.

3.06 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo iMac, Mac OS X (10.6.4), G5 1.8 GHz and iBook 10.4 - both 10.4.11
  • linda2009 Level 1 Level 1 (35 points)

    I also have this issue and have been searching for an answer in the forums with no luck.  Each contact should be able to set a default email address, or at the very least the First email address listed should be default.  But, it seems Address Book does not have a reason for which address it picks.  And yes, I have cleared the Previous Recipiants list.

     

    I am wondering...Does the new upgraded Mail app that comes with Lion fix this annoying issue that has been around for ages?

     

    Does anyone have a way to resolve or some kind of workaround besides creating two entries for contacts?

     

    Thank you!

    mac mini, Mac OS X (10.6.8), 2.66 GHz, 8 GB, 500 GB
  • Gary Sumlak Level 3 Level 3 (580 points)

    OK.  It is unforunate that the group has not responded to this already.  But, if you have not firgured out a solution, here it is....

     

    Each App in the Mac OS that uses an email address can override the Address Book default (usually the first email address created).  For example, setting the default email address for contacts in an Address Book Group, in Apple Mail, and iCal is very straight forward.... once you know how.

     

    Address Book Groups - setting default email for contacts

    1. Create the Group
    2. Add Contacts to the Group
    3. Select/Highlight the Group
    4. From the Menu select Edit > Edit Distribution List
    5. A Distribution List window with pop up, showing the contacts, and the default email address in BOLD.
    6. Click on the email address you want as the default for the contact so that the email address turns bold and all other addresses are gray.
    7. Continue for all contacts in the list as necessary.
    8. Any time you now use the Group name, the default address set in step #6 & #7 will be used.

     

    Apple Mail - setting default email for contacts

    1. From the Mail Menu, select Window > Address Panel
    2. Find the contact and select the contact name.  The contact will be surrounded by a bubble, as well as the default email address.
    3. Click on the address you want as the default so it is now surrounded by the bubble.

     

     

    Apple iCal - setting default email for contacts

    1. From the iCal Menu, select Window > Address Panel
    2. Find the contact and select the contact name.  The contact will be surrounded by a bubble, as well as the default email address.
    3. Click on the address you want as the default so it is now surrounded by the bubble.
    4. When you select a contact to email alarms or invites, the default email address set in #3 will be used.

     

    If any of this is confussing, please do not hesitate to reply back.

     

    Good luck.

     

    Ta


  • linda2009 Level 1 Level 1 (35 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 26, 2012 8:27 AM (in response to Gary Sumlak)

    Gary,

     

    That doesn't seem to work for me in Apple Mail.  It seems Mail follows my decision some of the time and some of the time it does not.  For some of the contacts it is particularly stubborn.

     

    The only common thing I could see was that the contacts that it doesn't remember my choice usually have at least one email that is a "cell" text address (i.e. phonenumber @ vtext.com).  It always picks the cell address, no matter what I do (unless I remove the cell address entirely).

     

    I haven't tested it on every contact in my address book, so I am just guessing here.  But for two of my most common contacts, Mail always chooses the wrong address, no matter how many times I try to set the default in the Address Panel.

     

    Needless to say, the above method you describe is not fool-proof for Mail.  It doesn't work for me.

  • DowntownTim WPB Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 10, 2012 8:00 AM (in response to Gary Sumlak)

    Awesome, it works for me. Thank you Gary.

  • Gary Sumlak Level 3 Level 3 (580 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 10, 2012 1:38 PM (in response to linda2009)

    Sorry for getting back late.  The instructions should have done the trick.  Have you tried deleting the Mail preferences file "com.apple.mail.plist"?  These files can get corrupted and mess with the functionality of the associated apps. 

     

    1. Quit Mail
    2. Delete ~/Library/Prefeneces/com.apple.mail.plist
    3. Lauch Mail
    4. Set default contact's address

     

    The default contact email should be displayed as in the pic below.  i.e. whenever I send an email to Apple Canada, the contact will always default to "info@apple.com"

    AddressPanel.jpg

    To change the default email address to "support@apple.com", click on that address so that it is highlighted.

    AddressPanel2.jpg

     

    That's all there is to it.  If that does not work, it is a problem not related to Mail.

     

    If this procedure is not working for you, please do a screen capture of the results of setting the default address.

    1. What the current default address is
    2. what you change it to.
    3. what shows up in the address field.
    4. go back to the address panel, and verify that the new address is selected.

     

    You can use the system app Grab to capture what is displayed.

     

    Good Luck

  • linda2009 Level 1 Level 1 (35 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 10, 2012 2:43 PM (in response to Gary Sumlak)

    Question Gary - If you delete the "com.apple.mail.plist" file, do all your Accounts, SMTP settings, and other Preferences get deleted??  I don't want to delete all my Account settings.  I have several email accounts that I check and it would be a real pain to re-create all that stuff in my Mail, Preferences .... all those settings.

  • Gary Sumlak Level 3 Level 3 (580 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 10, 2012 6:34 PM (in response to linda2009)

    Sorry, I should have included one extra step (feel free to virtually smack me upside my head):

     

    • before deleting "com.apple.mail.plist", use Cmd-Click on the file to get a pop-up menu, and select Compress "com.apple.mail.plist".   This will create a zip file with an exact duplicate of the original "com.apple.mail.plist".  Double click the zip file to recreate the original "com.apple.mail.plist" file.

     

    If you have more than one email account collected in Mail, then, yes, you may no longer see the other mail boxes, but they will still be physically untouched on the Mac in ~/Library/Mail, so you will not lose anything.

     

    As long as you have not emptied the Trash, you can also move "com.apple.mail.plist" back to the preferences folder, replacing the new one, and all will be back as before.

     

    If you did empty the trash, and the original "com.apple.mail.plist" can not be recovered, use:

    1. File > Import Mailboxes,
    2. Select Mail for Mac OS X. then click Continue
    3. Select the ~/Library/Mail folder, and click Choose.  Mail will scan the folder and find the old mail boxes

     

    I hope I did not cause too much panic.

     

    Give me minute, and will post a revision for testing "com.apple.mail.plist"

  • linda2009 Level 1 Level 1 (35 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 10, 2012 6:29 PM (in response to Gary Sumlak)

    Gary, no worries....no panic here.  Just thought I would ask before I set out on that task and then panicked!  =)

     

    Great.  Would like to test that file.

  • Gary Sumlak Level 3 Level 3 (580 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 10, 2012 6:39 PM (in response to linda2009)

    Good thinking on your part... had a lapse myself.

     

    My original premis is correct though... if Mail is not saving the default contact address, then the problem is most likely "com.apple.mail.plist".

     

    As long as you keep the backup "com.apple.mail.plist", you can test Mail with a newly generated "com.apple.mail.plist".  If the default address is saved, then you have verified, the problem with the orginal "com.apple.mail.plist".

     

    Put the orignai back, and you will be back in action.  You may not be further ahead, but you will know the cause.

     

    I will research this some more and get back with a less heart stoping solution...

     

    Ta

  • Glenn Leblanc Level 5 Level 5 (5,935 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 10, 2012 8:26 PM (in response to linda2009)

    linda2009 wrote:

     

    Question Gary - If you delete the "com.apple.mail.plist" file, do all your Accounts, SMTP settings, and other Preferences get deleted??  I don't want to delete all my Account settings.  I have several email accounts that I check and it would be a real pain to re-create all that stuff in my Mail, Preferences .... all those settings.

    Your user settings for the accounts won't get deleted. Just the Mail application's settings will be set back to the default default settings.

     

    Follow Gary's suggestion and try it. Quit Mail, move that file to the trash, but don't empty it. You can always go to the trash and select the files, right click and choose to put the back. Be sure to quit Mail before making these changes.

  • pmstrain Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 12, 2013 6:02 AM (in response to Gary Sumlak)

    Gary,

    I'm looking in on this oldish thread.  I'm not 100% clear if I understand you - I'm with you until the need to compress and unzip the .plist file. What am I doing there?  I tried moving out the .plist file, then when I opened Mail I lost all my mail folders (and thus neglected to test the default mail setting!), and when I replaced the .plist, I still didn't have them.  I had to go to Time Machine to back that up.  So... what are my options to correct this default address issue (I'm in Mountain Lion and latest Mail)?  Can I correct this and keep all my folders, etc?  Would I need to archive everything and reimport it?  Oi.  I thought I could just work today!

    PMS

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