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I'm using Gmail for all my mails but I would like to have a complete copy on my desktop.

On Windows I was using Thunderbird but on my MacBook I would like to be sure that Mail is downloading and keeping everything.

I know that if I connect by POP, Mail is going to download everything. But as my Gmail account is configured to connect by IMAP, is it downloading all messages to keep them offline or is it only linking to online data?

I have also disabled the attachments' download: now I have changed it and said I would like Mail to download all attachments. Will it download all the attachments from old messages? If not (it seems not), is there a way to make Mail download attachments from all old messages?

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    I know this isn't really an answer, but... I have been using Gmail as POP on my Mac with "leave messages on server" turned on since I've had a Gmail account. With the amount of mail I get it is no big deal to manually delete or file the emails in the web interface as well. But you could set up the mail.app for POP on your gmail account (remember to leave messages on server) download everything, move the mail out and then change it back to IMAP. I think there are also web based Gmail backup services that could do the same thing. – Steve Chambers Jul 6 '17 at 13:12
  • Thanks Steve, I am using IMAP to get the labels but I wondered what kind of backup I would have if my account was not accessible. By the way, the Google Takeout is a very nice way to have a copy of the full mailbox. Otherwise, yes, I may use POP to get everything. – Fredv Jul 7 '17 at 11:48
  • Unsure of what exactly mail.app downloads locally for IMAP mail. – Steve Chambers Jul 7 '17 at 12:57

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