Mail keeps a list of all the email addresses for people you have emailed.
It doesn’t discriminate. Even the ones you typed in incorrectly get stored and will pop up in Mail’s auto-complete drop-down menu for ever after. That’s annoying and it slows you down.
It’s Spring in Australia, so I’ve been spring cleaning Mail (See “Spring cleaning to regain disk space”).
Cleaning out the Previous Recipients list is part of the drill. It’s a good idea to do this from time to time, not only to clean out the duds, but also because:
- Apple Mail’s Junk Filter will not mark an email as junk if it comes from an address in your Previous Recipients list. Along with the Address Book, it functions as a de facto “white list”. Keeping it up to date helps Mail to find junk better
- It’s quite fun to go through the list and wonder who all these people are that you have emailed at least once.
You can find it under the Windows menu.
It presents you with a list of the names, email addresses and the date of the last email sent:
I cleaned out 53 addresses this time around. I’m not sure if it actually speeds Mail up, but it feels faster and the annoying mistakes no longer appear in the drop-down list for me to wade through.
Tags: Apple Mail, Apple Mail Tips, Junk, mail.app, Previous Recipients, Productivity, spring cleaning