I use the Mail.app to access my multiple email accounts on my MBP and store some of the messages locally so that it doesn't end up stored forever online.

The thing is, I feel like moving a message from my Inbox to a local folder (i.e. "On my Mac") works for all accounts except Gmail. Whenever I move a message from my Inbox to a local folder (either by drag-and-drop or with a rule in Mail.app), I discovered that the email is still in Gmail. It just isn't in the Inbox anymore, I have to go to "All Mail" to see it.

Is there a way to erase the message from the server as soon as it is stored locally? (or even with some delay like with deleted messages) Otherwise, it kind of defeats the purpose of all this...

I discovered that more than 1,000 emails are still stored online while I stored them all on my mac...

1 Answer 1


you need to login to gmail's settings into the Forwarding and POP/IMAP and make sure you have it selected to to delete Gmail's copy, so it doesn't sit in Gmail's folder/server while you have it locally stored on your Mail.app, e.g.; picture below of option you need to select.

as above, so below

notice option "delete Gmail's copy" once you do this you should good to go, hope this helps! :)

  • The thing is, mail is configured as IMAP, so I imagine that POP settings have no impact. Here is my configuration for IMAP: Auto-expunge off / Move message to the Trash. And if I am not mistaken and go from IMAP to POP with your settings, every mail that is on Gmail will only be found on my Mac from now on. I still want Gmail to be synchronised, I just want it to keep the messages I have in the inbox.
    – KevUcc
    Apr 11, 2021 at 18:33

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