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Missing Mac Mail Message Body's After Rebuild of Account

Posted on 2009-05-04
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Last Modified: 2013-11-24
I recently had to recreate a user account on a iBook running Tiger.  I was able to restore the mailbox (I thought), but some of the messages before a certain date do not have anything in the body.  The message body shows the following:

The message from . . .  concerning THANK YOU has not been downloaded from the server. You need to take this account online in order to download it.

Any suggestions?
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Question by:rtroia
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by:jhyiesla
ID: 24299195
I don't have a tiger system with a version of mail that old, but it sounds like there might be a setting somewhere in preferences that told the mail app to only download the header info and leave the body of the email on the server.

Do you have web mail access to this account?  If so, you could probably log onto that and see if the emails themselves are still there.
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by:rtroia
ID: 24299223
I do not believe the messages are still there.  It is a POP3 account and the messages are deleted after they are downloaded.
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jhyiesla earned 125 total points
ID: 24300014
Found this in the online help for my Mac Mail running in Leopard:

Mac OS X 10.4, Mail: Messages seem to be missing, or "Message has not been downloaded" alert appears when opening

Symptoms

If email messages seem to be missing from a Mail mailbox in Mac OS X 10.4 or later, and you're sure you didn't delete them, follow these steps to troubleshoot the issue.

You should also use these steps if this error message appears when you try to open a message:

"Message has not been downloaded from the server, take this account online to view."

Resolution

Use these steps, one at a time, until the issue is resolved. Note: If you wish to back up your Mail messages before troubleshooting, make a copy of the Mail folder on a different disk (but leave the original Mail folder where it is). The Mail folder is in your Home folder's Library folder (~/Library/Mail).

Try rebuilding the Mail mailbox where messages are missing or can't be opened.
Reindex all messages:
Quit Mail.
In the Finder, choose Go To Folder from the Go menu, and go to ~/Library/Mail/ .
Or, choose Home from the Go menu, then open the Library folder, then open the Mail folder.
Move the Envelope Index file to a different location, such as your desktop.
Move any folders in ~/Library/Mail/ that begin with "Mac-", "Exchange-", or "IMAP-" to a different location, such as your desktop.
Open Mail. Mail will reindex all messages. This process may take several minutes depending on how many messages you have in your mailboxes.
If the account uses POP, try reimporting the problematic mailbox as a "Mail for Mac OS X" mailbox. You can import from your mailboxes in ~/Library/Mail/account name, where account name is the style and name of your account, "POP-Mac," for example.

Tip: Remember to select the folder that contains your mailbox, not the mailbox itself. For example, you would select the ~/Library/Mail/POP-account name folder.

If this doesn't help for a POP account, try importing as type "Other" instead of "Mail for Mac OS X". Select the mailbox itself (for example: ~/Library/Mail/POP-account name/Inbox.mbox).
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