In the System Preferences, we see a checkbox option for Mail.

screenshot of System Preferences > iCloud > Mail

If we click the Options button on the iCloud Drive item in that same list, we see another checkbox option for Mail.

screenshot of System Preferences > iCloud > iCloud Drive > Options > Mail

➥ What is the difference?

What happens if I turn off the Mail checkbox in the iCloud Drive > Options dialog? iCloud has a habit of suddenly deleting all documents, so this makes me quite nervous.


1 Answer 1


The first option, System Preferences → iCloud → Mail, controls whether the iCloud Mail account is available in the Mail app. Unchecking this option will remove the account from Mail, along with all the associated email. This won’t permanently delete the mail: it will still be accessible on iCloud.com, and in Mail if you switch the option back on.

The second option, System Preferences → iCloud → iCloud Drive Options → Mail, controls whether Mail can use iCloud Drive. This is used when you try to send a file that is too large for email; you will be prompted to use Mail Drop, where the attachment is uploaded to iCloud Drive and transferred seamlessly to the recipient.

  • Days before enabling iCloud Drive at all, Mail offered to use that Mail Drop feature when I had enclosed 30-meg video. So that does not fit with the second part of your Answer. Sep 16, 2019 at 7:02
  • @BasilBourque The filesize limit of Apple Mail service is 20 Mb. Source
    – modlin
    Sep 16, 2019 at 16:35

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