Previous 1 2 Next 25 Replies Latest reply: Feb 28, 2014 1:11 AM by ashland_A
Sam Halliday Level 1 Level 1 (95 points)

Since the upgrade to Mavericks, the backspace button moves gmail IMAP messages to Trash, and not All Mail like it used to.


How can I go back to the old behaviour... I want to archive my mail with the backspace key, not delete it.


Crazy crazy silent change in behaviour with very bad UX.

  • ginsbu Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Agreed. Making this change silently is likely to result in lost e-mail for many people. It's also inconsistent with iOS Mail behavior.


    The new behavior is particularly annoying since I have mail rules that filter certain messages into other folders and mail automatically archives these messages when moving them; so now I have to remember to archive when removing messages from my inbox, but delete when removing them from filtered mailboxes.

  • whootang12 Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    Do you guys agree the update Apple posted today to Mail did NOT change this behavior?  If it did, I can't seem to figure out how to fix this.

  • William Lloyd Level 7 Level 7 (20,980 points)

    Odd.  The change makes it consistent with anything else *but* Gmail - where the backspace key has deleted emails since OS X was released.  Given it's now treating Gmail IMAP like "normal" IMAP, I can't see this changing back.  You can always use a different key combination to move the email to the archive.

  • ginsbu Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
  • whootang12 Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    I found that link as well, but reading the comments as well it sounds like making the required change in gmail would break the behavior in ios7 on my phone and ipad.  Wish they would implement this consistently across platforms. 

  • ginsbu Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I believe that it's only supposed to break the Mailbox app alternative e-mail client for iOS, not the regular Mail app, but not having tested it myself I can't say for sure.

  • kakgungor Level 1 Level 1 (20 points)

    After searching around without any luck, I created a plugin for Mail that intercepts the delete key events and redirects them to the archive action (essentially the same behaviour as selecting Message > Archive from the Mail menu).


    Here's a blog post I wrote about it for anyone that is interested: e-key-os-x-mavericks-mail/

  • ginsbu Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks for writing this. I haven't had a chance to check it out yet, but I left a comment on your blog with a few details on my usage scenario.

  • johnmapley Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    This is crazy. The change itself has disrupted my workflow as it has been for several years, and the fact that it was made silently has made me lose important emails that I thought were being archived, not deleted. I'm glad I noticed it when I did so I can get most of them back (ie they've been in Gmail's trash for less than 30 days).


    I don't remember the last time I perma-deleted an email and can't think why anyone would want to do that in this day and age. To make it not only default behaviour but pretty much the only behaviour of a mail app is beyond ridiculous.


    I have lost vital business emails and information through this undocumented change and I am livid.

  • Sam Halliday Level 1 Level 1 (95 points)

    completely agree with you @johnmapley


    I'm quite shocked that Apple would do this, given their usual attitude towards user experience and I am very concerned about their continuing silence on the matter.


    I seriously doubt they did any user acceptance testing with this new feature and - for the first time in nearly 10 years - I'm now considering the alternatives. If this is a sign of things to come I believe Apple have lost the plot.

  • johnmapley Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    I wish I could say I'm as shocked as you. I switched to using Apple computers a couple of years ago because of the build quality and the fact that if nothing else the OS at least compares favourably to the competition.


    However, the thing that made me hold off on this for so long was their infamous insistence on rail-roading users through unpopular, inconsistent or just plain awful UX choices. There's a reason that nearly every official Apple-made App on the OS X and iOS App Stores has about two stars, and thousands of one star reviews.


    Switching to a third party mail app, at least until this is resolved (presumably as a much-touted "new feature" in 10.10).


    edit: Have tested kakgungor's plugin and it works perfectly, definitely worth it for anyone who still wants to use Mail.

  • Zacharias Beckman Level 1 Level 1 (100 points)

    I agree, this is a horrible decision. I just spent an hour searching for the "archive" keystroke, and of course found none. I did find that "delete" as well as "command-delete" BOTH delete the message to the trash... what's the point of that? Two ways to delete and no way to archive??


    @Sam Halliday you're spot on... I hate to say it, but ever since Steve started to become less involved, Apple has steadily been having more trouble "finding the plot." I just downloaded the latest Pages (5) and, OMG, what a horrible step backwards. Deleted it, sticking with Pages 4 and... sigh, Parallels, Windows 8.1, and Microsoft Word for any serious word processing.


    But back on topic: For those of you fed up with Apple making Mail less and less useful, check out Airmail. I finally installed it and have been trying it out. It's pretty darned good. A few things I don't like but it works flawlessly with gmail, and most important... it doesn't indescriminately delete your mail!!!

  • johnmapley Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    For anyone wondering if today's Mail update fixes this issue, no it doesn't... pretty disappointing.


    Oh, and the update disables kakgungor's excellent Delete2Archive plugin, but the new version of the plugin is already available

  • ginsbu Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I was also hoping for a fix in 10.9.1. Since it didn't arrive, I gave kakgungor's Delete2Archive a try. If you're only using Google mail accounts it may work well, however it doesn't quite doesn't quite restore the pre-Mavericks Mail behavior for other accounts/folders: Delete2Archive behavior is applied to all mailboxes, not just Google inboxes, so pressing delete for a message in a non-Google inbox or local folder now moves that message to the archive folder Mail create or that account or to the local archive folder respectively. That may work for some, but for my non-Google accounts/folders I really want messages deleted, not archived. In other words, I want messages in my Google inbox archived, and messages everywhere else deleted, which is exactly the behavior that Mail gave me pre-Mavericks, and is behavior easily configured on iOS. I don't mention this to knock Delete2Archive, just to note a limitation for my particular use-case. It's ridiculous that users need to look to plugins to try to bring to MacOS Mail the same configurability that Apple itself offers on iOS.

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