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Two methods for reading Hotmail with Apps
Free Hotmail accounts make great second or third email addresses, but the webmail interface (sometimes a great convenience) can also limit their usefulness. I think most people would prefer to have all of their email stored locally were it can be browsed and searched offline. Unfortunately, the only way to do this has been to use the pricey and unmaclike Entourage, or worse, the Classic app Outlook Express. Thankfully there are now two great programs available that allow you to receive your Hotmail email straight into!

The best option for the average Mac user is httpmail, a plug-in for Download the disk image and follow the simple instructions to install and add a Hotmail account, then reboot.

Unix gurus, on the other hand, might feel better about hotwayd, just because it is so much harder to install and configure. Hotwayd is a UNIX tool that emulates a POP3 server, allowing the user to access Hotmail as if were a normal email account. Hotwayd also has the added benefit in that it also works with Eudora, or any other mail client.

If you are feeling ambitious, and have your Mac set up as server/router on a home network, you can even check your Hotmail from any computer running any OS and using any email client!

A comprehensive how-to I wrote may help you get it up and running...


[Editor's note: I had to publish this one after nearly falling out of my chair laughing over the "might feel better..." comment ... probably because I'm quite guilty as charged, at times!]
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Two methods for reading Hotmail with | 12 comments | Create New Account
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Link is down...
Authored by: Ansel_Witty on Feb 06, '03 12:11:31PM

The link for the httpmail site is down, but if you go to, you can download it from an alternate server if you search for it.

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YMMV with httpmail
Authored by: napdaddy on Feb 06, '03 03:20:55PM

I, along with many other people, could not get httpmail to work properly. It did strange things to when I tried to use it.

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Authored by: altaic on Feb 06, '03 03:31:12PM

A great perl script for fetching hotmail to a local account or location is Gotmail. Unfortunately, for some strange reason, it doesn't seem to work. I tried debugging it, but I couldn't isolate the bug. I used it on Linux for a long time with no problems. Anyway, here's the site:

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Works for me
Authored by: crease flinnnn on Feb 06, '03 07:17:21PM

This is a long awaited app..........if only it did outgoing mail.
It didn't work right off the bat ....but, the 2nd or 3rd go round
did the trick! Now I have all my Hotmail messages on my hard drive,
pretty cool really.

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Works for me
Authored by: MacOSXGuy on Feb 06, '03 11:35:34PM

This is brilliant. Thank you so much for providing this functionality. I no longer miss Entourage. Not being able to get HotMail with the for so long was a real drag.

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Authored by: Fabsmartins on Feb 07, '03 10:01:00AM

since Hotmail is not the only free service available, i was wondering if there is a way of applying these methods (or any other method, as a matter of fact), to check other free web based e-mails with

My reasoning is that if this can be done with Hotmail surely it could also be done with the others.

Thank you for the help,

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Other free webmail accounts
Authored by: slowco on Feb 07, '03 01:17:47PM

There have been reports on VersionTracker that httpmail works with EudoraMail (Lycos) accounts. It may work with others. Try it and find out!

For Yahoo! accounts, there is YahooPOPS!

Good luck!

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Other free webmail accounts
Authored by: jtratcliff on Feb 07, '03 04:12:54PM

There's also YoSucker:

which can download Yahoo! Mail and save it as a Unix mbox file...

Just point YoSucker to an mbox file in /Library/Mail and it'll append to it.

for example, here's the OUTFILE line from my YoSucker config file:
OUTFILE=/Users/myname/Library/Mail/Mailboxes/Yahoo! Mail.mbox/mbox

A cron job can run YoSucker every few minutes.

Pros: No psuedo pop server needed, can check multiple yahoo accounts, only gets
new messages, delete from server option, ssl connection available, works with
any mail client that uses unix mbox files

Cons: doesn't automagically show up as new mail in (you need to select the
mail folder for to recognize that there are new messagesin it), requires that
you install some perl modules

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Processor tied up unduly by
Authored by: loungeboykip on Feb 09, '03 08:22:18AM

I think that the httpmail plugin is great. Certainly very useful even at this early stage where you can only read the msgs.

But I did notice that, if left running for a long time, the will hog up to 70% of my processor on my ibook. I never noticed it being that high before I installed httpmail.

The author of the program says he's is looking into it but I thought I'd post it and see if people had other opinions on why this is happening or if it's normal behavior for

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Two methods for reading Hotmail with
Authored by: shakotah on Jan 13, '04 12:04:24PM

use mrpostman (java app) it will let u read hotmail / yahoo and a couple more.

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Two methods for reading Hotmail with
Authored by: isilver on Jan 13, '04 05:48:36PM

I've been using httpmail for the best part of a year now and find it very useful (i.e. it works as claimed) and have nothing but praise for its stability and the commitment of the developer to keep it updated and functioning with each increment of OS X.

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HTTPMail breaks Tiger's Mail 2.0
Authored by: lenlo on Apr 30, '05 02:10:12AM
...or vice versa, depending on how you see it. If you're using the HTTPMail bundle and upgrade to Tiger (MacOS 10.4), you may find that starting Mail gives you an empty shell of an app without any windows. You can still open a mail browser by clicking on New Viewer Window, but you won't see any messages! But don't panic, your mail is still safe. All you need to do is to disable the httpmail_panther.mailbundle by moving it out of ~/Library/Mail/Bundles. Then Quit (Force Quit if necessary) Mail and restart it and all will be good again.

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