1 2 Previous Next 20 Replies Latest reply: Nov 12, 2012 8:12 PM by MnSteve2
physci Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

My information in address book shows as follows

Name: J Doe

Email address: johndoe@mail.com

 

If someone has me in their address book as Doe John and sends an email to me at my email address (johndoe@mail.com), Mail.app does not recognize me and asks me if I want to 'Add to Address Book'.

 

The same happens if a sender has a minor change in the Name (such as even a dot in the name) of any recipient, regardless of the fact that I have the correct name in the address book. Mail fails to recognize the recipient even though the email address is identical, and will ask me if I want to 'Add to Address Book'.

 

One would expect Mail to use just the email address and recognize the contact as already being in the Address Book.

 

I just spent a good three hours investigating this.

There have been numerous posts discussing this both here and elsewhere over the years but I'm surprised that there has not been a solution. Here are some examples..

1. Mail can't recognize my contact email address

2. Address Book editing

3. Mail doesn't show names from the Address Book

 

In the 3rd example above, Golden Shoes suggests that this is the same for every email client, but I must disagree because Postbox and Thunderbird does display the information correctly from the Address Book, infact Postbox does this impressively I must add.

 

It would be great if this was fixable in Mail. Is there a solution for this?

  • 1. Re: Mail fails to recognize names from address book
    Glenn Leblanc Level 5 Level 5 (5,940 points)

    Open the address book pane within the Mail application. See if the contacts there match what's actually in address book.

     

    Are you using iCloud and if so, do you have other accounts enabled for AB with different sets of contacts?

  • 2. Re: Mail fails to recognize names from address book
    physci Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    The contacts in the AB pane of Mail matches exactly with what's in the AB.

     

    I do use iCloud and no, I only have one iCloud account with one set of contacts enabled for AB.

     

    When I open emails in Postbox, the name of the contacts match up well with what's in AB. The same emails in Mail.app do not recognize the contact, asking me if I want to add to AB. It's weird- one would honestly expect Apple's own Mail to be more integrated wrt this.

  • 3. Re: Mail fails to recognize names from address book
    Glenn Leblanc Level 5 Level 5 (5,940 points)

    Open the iCloud preferences and uncheck Contacts in the list. Choose to delete contacts from the computer.

    Open Mail (if it's already open, quit and reopen). Check the address book within Mail and it should be empty of contacts along with AB.

     

    Recheck contacts in the iCloud preferences. Your contacts should reappear in AB. Quit and restart Mail and check the AB pane and contacts should appear again.

     

    This should rebuild the database files for AB and AB in Mail. Really about the only thing I can think of to do.

  • 4. Re: Mail fails to recognize names from address book
    physci Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I followed your suggestions.

     

    Both AB and AB within Mail were empty of contacts after I deleted my iCloud contacts from the mac. I even did a reboot just in case. After this, I rechecked contacts and all my contacts appeared again both in AB and AB within Mail.

     

    I quit and reopened Mail to find that the problem still persisted. I know and rechecked that these contacts are not present in my previous recipients list so it is definitely not that database which is preventing this.

     

    The funny thing (maybe not funny since this is really bugging me) is that Mail on iOS (iPhone) works just fine. The Mail on iPhone seems to query the sender/recipient email address, accurately realizes that the contact is already in the AB, and shows as such. The same email in Mail.app on the mac asks me if I want to add the contact to AB.

     

    Is this really a unique situation? Is everyone else not experiencing the same?

    If you ask someone to change your name within their address book and send an email to you, does Mail on the mac recognize you regardless of what that sender named you as? Or does it ask you to add to AB?

  • 5. Re: Mail fails to recognize names from address book
    Glenn Leblanc Level 5 Level 5 (5,940 points)

    Doing the above usually will clear problems.

     

    Try this:

    Quit Mail. In the Finder, select Go, then Go to Folder and paste:

    ~/Library/Application Support/AddressBook/AddressBook-v22.abcddb

     

    Move the AddressBook-v22.abcddb file to the trash. Open Mail and see if that helps.

  • 6. Re: Mail fails to recognize names from address book
    physci Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Tried this. Didn't help- still asks me on those contacts if I want to add to AB.

     

    I really appreciate the help though. I'm curious if my experience is rather uncommon.

  • 7. Re: Mail fails to recognize names from address book
    Glenn Leblanc Level 5 Level 5 (5,940 points)

    What's strange to me is why Mail is asking you to add any contacts to AB. Do you have some 3rd party add-on to Mail or AB to atuomatically add contacts to AB?

    I know you can have a Yahoo account automatically add new contacts to AB, but it's not an option within the Mail application.

     

    Mail shouldn't care what another person list your name as, providing they sent to the correct email address.

     

    What I would suggest to see if a problem lies within your user account is to create a new user account on the computer for testing.

    Log into that user and create the Mail account there. Sign into iCloud and check the contacts also so the AB will be populated with your contacts.

    See if it works there. If it does, at least we will know if there is something to fix within your user Library.

  • 8. Re: Mail fails to recognize names from address book
    physci Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks, I will try your suggestion later today and report back.

     

    I must clarify that Mail does not ask me automatically. The contacts (only those with a name that is different from AB) simply come up unrecognized. When I click on the blue bubble drop-down, I get the option 'Add to Address Book' (instead of 'Show Contact Card').

     

    More info with an example:

    I receive an email from a contact. His name and email in my AB is Rob DT and robmt@mail.com

    He sends me email as Rob D. T.  which has periods after D and T. This comes up as being unrecognized in Mail. If I add them to AB, I get a duplicate card. If I then quit Mail, merge both Rob's cards in AB and reopen Mail, Mail will recognize Rob's name as long as the AB Name is Rob D. T.

    If I then edit the Name in AB to a Rob DT, Mail again shows the contact as being unrecognized.

  • 9. Re: Mail fails to recognize names from address book
    Glenn Leblanc Level 5 Level 5 (5,940 points)

    OK. I understand a little better now. If anything is different in the contact name (even if the email address is the same), it doesn't show "Show Contact" in the dropdown like you said. You get "Add to Address Book" or "Copy Address" options.

    This is the same on mine, but it isn't causing problems. I have many contacts that send under different names than what I have in AB. But the application does recognize the address as beign in my AB. I have rules set to change the text color of AB contacts. These contacts with different names still get recognized and rules get applied to them even though they show a different name.

     

    Also tried the search field. As long as the name appears in either in the name or address field, the search works fine also.

     

    So, I understand that what you see is similar or the same as what I'm seeing, but is this actually causing you a problem? I can understand if you are constantly adding address from mail messages and not sure if you have them or not.

  • 10. Re: Mail fails to recognize names from address book
    physci Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Great.. I'm glad that your experience is similar to mine- that rules out my having to set up a new account and all.

     

    Yes, the situation is similar to what you've described. I am constantly adding to the AB and I get annoyed when I end up adding duplicates because Mail failed to indicate that the user is already in the AB. Postbox on the other hand does a perfect job at this and emails that are not in the AB are easily distinguishable. I however use Mail and would be thrilled if there were a fix.

     

    So I just tried to explore the rules you mentioned and all I find is the option to color-code emails if a sender is in the AB. Is it possible to change the text color of AB contacts?

  • 11. Re: Mail fails to recognize names from address book
    Glenn Leblanc Level 5 Level 5 (5,940 points)

    You can set text message color in a rule like this:

    Screen Shot 2012-06-18 at 4.36.29 PM.png

    All incoming messages from your AB will be colored per your choice. You should put this rule ahead of others in the rule list.

    Note that rules only apply to incoming messages. Any other messages already downloaded can be applied manually by selecting the messages, right click and choose apply rules.

  • 12. Re: Mail fails to recognize names from address book
    physci Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Unfortunately this doesnt help much because it only color codes emails from a sender in the Address Book. It does not color code messages addressed to (both to: and/or cc:) recipients (single or multiple) that are in my Address Book.

     

    It's frustating that this is not fixed within Mail.app on the mac.

    On iOS and other third party applications, this works as expected.

     

    I sent feedback to Apple. Here's the link if anyone else is interested.

  • 13. Re: Mail fails to recognize names from address book
    Glenn Leblanc Level 5 Level 5 (5,940 points)

    You're right. Only works on messages recieved from. This won't work in the header field with multiple addresses.

     

    Possibly since Mountain Lion is moving more toward the way iOS devices work, there may be some changes there.

    We'll see.

  • 14. Re: Mail fails to recognize names from address book
    JeremyK Level 1 Level 1 (15 points)

    Wow! I am so glad to find someone else who is experiencig the same problem and is as frustrated about it as I am.  The one difference is that both my OS 10.5.8 system and my iOS 5.1.1 iPhone both exhibit the same problem.

     

    I have found this situation most often occurs when I initially receive an email from a new contact BEFORE I had added them to my Address Book. The next time I receive an email from them I still only see their email address in the column view but their name is displayed in the window with the message body (sorry, hard to explain; look at the attached screen shot).  As mentioned previously, this happens both on my MacBook Pro and my iPhone.

     

    I would love to find a way to have the senders name appear in both locations not just in the message body!

     

    example.gif

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