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Use Mail.app's Signature function to send templated email Apps
I am a Mac admin in my company with around 150 Macs. With off all these users, I find that I tend to repeat what I say in my emails several times a month. For example, we have an online help desk system that I like to write new users about, and attach a little "How-to" PDF in the email. I was doing this chore last night and I thought "there has to be an easier way of doing this... an automatic way..." The idea of using Mail.app's Signature feature hit me.

So here's what to do: write out the email and copy/paste it into the Signature window. Of course, you can write your whole email in there, but the window is small, and that's sort of a pain (but to each his/her own!). Go ahead and put an attachment into the email, at the bottom (this is covered in a previous hint) if you'd like. Then save the signature with a description that makes sense. Make sure you have don't have this signature as your automatic signature (that would be a little embarrassing) and that you have "Show signature menu on compose window" checked. Now the next time you are needing to spit out that e-mail, open a new message, pull down the signature menu, choose your letter, and wa-la -- there it is (attachments and all!)

[robg adds: When I read this submission, I emailed Brandon and asked him "Hmm, why don't you just use the Save as Draft feature to put the composed emails in your Drafts folder?" (which is what I do). He replied that, to him, anything in "Drafts" means "Working" or "Unfinished," not "Template." So if you have a similar mindset, use this workaround to create your templates as signatures.]
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Use Mail.app's Signature function to send templated email | 9 comments | Create New Account
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Use Mail.app's Signature function to send templated email
Authored by: notmatt on Jan 27, '04 11:21:19AM

Regarding the 'Draft' option; you have to copy the template to a new message, otherwise you lose the template; when you open and send something in the Draft box, it doesn't keep a copy. This method cuts out that extra step.



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Use Mail.app's Signature function to send templated email
Authored by: MtnBiker on Jan 27, '04 11:22:47AM

I find this handy to store a signature with snail mail address for occasional.

Drafts wouldn't work for me as I use it for drafts and need the reminder that there is something in the draft box. Usually I get stalled and need more information or confirmation, or occasionally because I think maybe I need to think about whether I really want to send the email--I'm on a board and we have discussion that get let's say a little heated and I need to decide whether I adding fuel or information.

---
Hermosa Beach, CA USA



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Use Mail.app's Signature function to send templated email
Authored by: SCID on Jan 27, '04 11:36:25AM

I have used some simple applescript for this task. A collection of applescripts that take the content of a text file and use that as the content of the message. Then just stick the applescript in the scripts menu. Look at the included script "Create new Mail Message" for ideas for where to begin.



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Use Mail.app's Signature function to send templated email
Authored by: aranor on Jan 27, '04 11:37:52AM

Why not simply email the template to yourself and file it in a Templates folder, then select Send Again when you want to send it?



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Comments:
Authored by: jscotta on Jan 27, '04 12:40:53PM

First, I use the attachment feature for something similar. I used it when job searching to have several different resume/cover letter versions. Then, I would attach, using the signatures feature, the appropriate cover letter/resume combination to each job search e-mail.

Second, I really like the idea of an AppleScript Studio system for creating templates. It especially makes sense if you want to "personalize" the e-mail to each person you are sending it to. Plus, with AppleScripts being tied to Mail Rules, I could easily see a bit more automation depending on things like the subject, From, and content.

---
Windows because I have to. OS X because I want to.



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Regarding writing email in signature window
Authored by: spaminacan on Jan 27, '04 04:18:29PM
"Of course, you can write your whole email in there, but the window is small, and that's sort of a pain (but to each his/her own!)."
Actually, the signature edit window can be resized up to your maximum vertical screen size by a simple click'n'drag on the bottom right corner. Great hint though.

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Use Mail.app's Signature function to send templated email
Authored by: eno on Jan 27, '04 05:44:19PM

Save yourself the trouble and do a search for "mail template" on versiontracker...

You'll find that this is vastly superior to that suggested in this hint.



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OTRS
Authored by: vzv55p on Jan 28, '04 06:54:25AM

This is a little off track, but you might just want to consider using OTRS (Open Ticket Request System)

http://otrs.org/

It is a great way to track your work related requests and contains some great tools for standard replies.

With not too much effort, this does install on Mac OS X.



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NOT
Authored by: nyarlathotep on Jan 28, '04 10:01:33AM

MailTemplates is crippleware, and does not do all that much. Why is it that people think they should get 1/7th of the OS cost for adding trivialities?

This is the sort of thing your better off just writing yourself if you need it. There are plenty of Mail.app plugins which are open source, so just glance at one of them, and start writing.. and release it open source.. that is if you actually need it in the first place. And trust me, if you really need this thing, you will not be able to get by with their feature set, you will want your own specilized stuff. If you don't neeed it, don't bother.



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