I am sorry, but I do not understand what you are asking me to do. My Previous Recipients list has many address in it, but they do not populate e-mail addresses. I also can not click-and-drag from the Previous Recipients list. I can click-and-drag from my address book.
When I type in an e-mail address, it is resolved with the persons name, so the data from the address book is available for that step.
I don't know is this is related, but since my OP I have noticed that my address book is not correct - I have 4 devices synchronized with iCloud. Three of them have the same data and this machine is missing some contacts.
That's about what I was wondering, but mine was to remove one Previous recipient from the list & see if it gets added back.
Seems that info is in some db file...
I'm not positive, but without Mail, Address Book, or iCal running, I'd make a copy of this file...
Then trash the original & rename...
Start Mail & see if Previous recipients works.
I did what you suggested and I am getting the same thing happening.
Could this have anything to do with the fact that the Address Book is not syncing with iCloud? I am wondering if Address Book is FUBARed. Since the OP I notice that I can not add a .vcf file, nor can I load a backup .abbu file to Address Book. Would it make sence to trash the local Address Book database and re-sync from iCloud? If so, how would I do this?
Hmmm, do a get info on /Users/YourUserName/Library/Application Support/AddressBook/AddressBook.data & the folders on up from that, are any Locked or not have R&W rights for you?
Maybe copy these files then trash the originals for a test, without Mail or AB running?
I checked AddressBook.data and the folders on up from that and none were/are locked and I have R&W rights.
I copied and deleted AddressBook.data, com.apple.AddressBook.plist & con.apple.AddressBook.abd.plist. When I restarted Address Book, com.apple.AddressBook.plist & con.apple.AddressBook.abd.plist were recreated. Mail is still behaving as before - addresses are not pulled from Previous Recipients nor Address Book. When I open Previous Recipients and delete an address from that list, close Mail and then reopen Mail, the deleted address is back in the list.
Not sure if this is related, but in Address Book, the option to "Delete Card" is greyed out. So, it looks like there are permissions errors, but I can't find anything that I don't have R&W rights to that I should.
Just to make sure, I "Reset Home Directory Permissions and ACLs" using the Password Reset Utility from the Repair Utilities (Command + R boot). This finished in a VERY short period of time (this worries me), and did not change any of the problem behaviors.
Any other thoughts?
See if this helps...
Open Keychain Access in Utilities, use Keychain First Aid under the Keychain Menu item, then either check the Password under that item, change it, or delete it and start over.
Keychain Access asks for keychain "login" after changing login password...
Resetting your keychain in Mac OS X...
If Keychain First Aid finds an issue that it cannot repair, or if you do not know your keychain password, you may need to reset your keychain.
Keychain First Aid found one problem
Item “com.apple.system.DefaultSharingIdentity” is damaged (missing decryption key)
It removed that file. I rebooted and everything is the same as it was before.
Since the OP, I have found that a bunch of my System Prefferences get re-set every time I reboot the computer. For example, every time I reboot I need to go the the "Sound" panel and tell the computer to use the Line Out as the output device. Not sure if this is related.
First, Safe Boot , (holding Shift key down at bootup), use Disk Utility from there to Repair Permissions, test if things work OK in Safe Mode.
Then move these files to the Desktop...
Reboot & test.
PS. Safe boot may stay on the gray radian for a long time, let it go, it's trying to repair the Hard Drive.
I did all of those things. Disk Utility found a buch of things that needed to be repaired. When I ran Repair Permissions again, there was still a long list, which appeared to be the same. I moved the files and rebooted the computer. I had to reset a few things and then I rebooted again. Some of the changes took (desktop setup) and some did not (sound output). Mail is still not filling in addresses.