[APP][5.0+] FairEmail - Fully featured, open source, privacy oriented email app

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M66B

Recognized Developer
Aug 1, 2010
26,276
56,697
I am currently testing FE with a view to replace K9. So far, most stuff either works as I'd expect or I understand why it doesn't and can work around it.

However :) there are a couple items which baffle me. First, I have two gmail accounts (IMAP) defined with (so far as I can tell) identical parameters (other than username and password, of course). The first of those (T) is the default account. Both accounts are configured to update their inboxes when FE is started but only the second (M) does so. Also, in the Receive settings tab (below "Allow receive messages for these accounts") the checkbox for the T account is greyed and disabled and I can only tick and enable/disable M!?

The other thing is that most folders are defined with "7/30" for the "Number of days to synchronise/to keep messages". That's fine but it doesn't seem to do what I think it should do. If I delete all message LOCALLY (ie NOT on the server) and then synchronise such a folder, FE downloads 40 messages with many older than 7 days. I suspect I totally misunderstand the meaning of these numbers.

I also have one suggestion. As FE is new software to me I very often have to jump into the settings... that's quite a few taps when a message is currently showing. Perhaps a shortcut option (and jump back where I left) would be nice.

Last but not least a question. If I export settings (after going pro of course) can I import them only with the same pro version?

And thanks for a pretty impressive app! (I should add that I am also a heavy user of NetGuard... so my switching to FE is almost certainly gonna happen.)
I am not sure what is disabled. Are you sure you configured both accounts as IMAP? The only reason the checkbox I think you mean is disabled, is for a POP3 account. Maybe a screenshot will be useful.

At the top of the navigation menu there is a settings wheel with a menu to directly jump to a specific settings tab page. Is that helpful?

Settings import/export works as you expect.
 
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TooMuchSloeGin

Senior Member
Sep 19, 2013
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See the attached image. Both accounts have been defined identically, both are definitely IMAP and both work in the same way (ie I see and can work with the server folders etc). And I have never defined the T account as anything else than IMAP either.

Further, the settings. When I am deep in the folder hierarchy, I have to tap back for a few times until I can find the Settings wheel. That's what I meant. Not only tapping, I also lose my position in the folder hierarchy.

As to export... I have no expectation. I just want to know whether importing works across versions and devices.
 

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M66B

Recognized Developer
Aug 1, 2010
26,276
56,697
See the attached image. Both accounts have been defined identically, both are definitely IMAP and both work in the same way (ie I see and can work with the server folders etc). And I have never defined the T account as anything else than IMAP either.

Further, the settings. When I am deep in the folder hierarchy, I have to tap back for a few times until I can find the Settings wheel. That's what I meant. Not only tapping, I also lose my position in the folder hierarchy.

As to export... I have no expectation. I just want to know whether importing works across versions and devices.
Please send me the debug info by long pressing 'Support' in the navigation menu and I will check the settings.

You can swipe from the left side inwards to show the navigation menu and to go to the settings quickly.

Export/import works across devices, but if you set up a Gmail account with the quick setup wizard you'll need to authenticate it again on another device.

Edit: my guess is that the account is set to manual sync in the account settings (via "Manual setup and account options" in the main settings screen), which also explains why it isn't synced automatically:

https://github.com/M66B/FairEmail/b...de/email/FragmentOptionsSynchronize.java#L685
 
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TooMuchSloeGin

Senior Member
Sep 19, 2013
54
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Stratfield Mortimer
Edit: my guess is that the account is set to manual sync in the account settings (via "Manual setup and account options" in the main settings screen), which also explains why it isn't synced automatically:
Yep, that setting was indeed the culprit (I have set up both accounts manually as I am not a great friend of auto-this and auto-that, and obviously I changed this for the first account but not the second). Thanks for the pointer.

The swipe left for the settings works... alas I am known not to be the greatest swiper under the sun so this sort of thing doesn't come natural ;-)

That leaves me with the 7/30 thing. Any enlightenment there?
 

M66B

Recognized Developer
Aug 1, 2010
26,276
56,697
Yep, that setting was indeed the culprit (I have set up both accounts manually as I am not a great friend of auto-this and auto-that, and obviously I changed this for the first account but not the second). Thanks for the pointer.

The swipe left for the settings works... alas I am known not to be the greatest swiper under the sun so this sort of thing doesn't come natural ;-)

That leaves me with the 7/30 thing. Any enlightenment there?
By default 'browse' is enabled (advanced account settings), which means more messages will be downloaded on scrolling down, independent of the 7/30 setting. I guess you'll want to disable this.
 
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TooMuchSloeGin

Senior Member
Sep 19, 2013
54
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Stratfield Mortimer
By default 'browse' is enabled (advanced account settings), which means more messages will be downloaded on scrolling down, independent of the 7/30 setting. I guess you'll want to disable this.
I'll experiment with that and if I can't get it to do what I want I'll be back :)

One thing I'd say is that there so many options and so much "cross dependency" that getting the hang of things is not trivial. Then again, setting the options is something I'd do once and then forget.

Thanks for the help and have a nice day...!
 

de_Wolf

Senior Member
Apr 30, 2022
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One thing I'd say is that there so many options and so much "cross dependency" that getting the hang of things is not trivial. Then again, setting the options is something I'd do once and then forget.
This is always a balancing act for the developer. If there are too few settings options, the users are dissatisfied, if there are too many, they are dissatisfied as well.

The good thing in the settings is the search function, this has often helped me to locate options.
 

TooMuchSloeGin

Senior Member
Sep 19, 2013
54
10
Stratfield Mortimer
This is always a balancing act for the developer. If there are too few settings options, the users are dissatisfied, if there are too many, they are dissatisfied as well.
Sure and I'd be among the first to advocate for more options. I guess what I am trying to say is that if the number of options exceeds a certain threshold then it becomes hard to know which option is where and does what, especially if changing an option has repercussions elsewhere. So it becomes ever more important to have an orthogonal set of options, grouped in a logical way. I know very well that this is hard to achieve, with the way software tends to grow organically.

As to search, I use that... but that "browse" option is a perfect case in point: I searched for it but it won't find the option I needed to change, probably because it's buried deep in the Advanced options within Main.

@M66B: Once I had located and disabled the "browse" option, the 7/30 setting is indeed honoured. That's good... but of course I've now lost the ability to browse :) In my view, the behaviour should be that the "7/30" setting should be honoured independently from the browse option. If I say 7/30 (or 1/5) I want 7/30 (or 1/5). That's probably just me.
 

M66B

Recognized Developer
Aug 1, 2010
26,276
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Sure and I'd be among the first to advocate for more options. I guess what I am trying to say is that if the number of options exceeds a certain threshold then it becomes hard to know which option is where and does what, especially if changing an option has repercussions elsewhere. So it becomes ever more important to have an orthogonal set of options, grouped in a logical way. I know very well that this is hard to achieve, with the way software tends to grow organically.

As to search, I use that... but that "browse" option is a perfect case in point: I searched for it but it won't find the option I needed to change, probably because it's buried deep in the Advanced options within Main.

@M66B: Once I had located and disabled the "browse" option, the 7/30 setting is indeed honoured. That's good... but of course I've now lost the ability to browse :) In my view, the behaviour should be that the "7/30" setting should be honoured independently from the browse option. If I say 7/30 (or 1/5) I want 7/30 (or 1/5). That's probably just me.
Since the app will already keep message for 30 days on your device, it isn't useful to limit 'browse' to 30 days too (or another number of days if this was configured).
 
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TooMuchSloeGin

Senior Member
Sep 19, 2013
54
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Stratfield Mortimer
Since the app will already keep message for 30 days on your device, it isn't useful to limit 'browse' to 30 days too (or another number of days if this was configured).
I agree and that's not what I meant. What I mean is this scenario:
1. Delete all messages in folder LOCALLY, not on the server. The folder is now empty.
2. Enable browse and have 7/30 (or 1/5).
3. Sync the folder.
4. The folder (as it's now) downloads ~40 messages, some more than 6 weeks old. Why 40? Why more than 6 weeks?
5. The folder (as I'd expect it) downloads exactly 7 (or 1) day(s) worth of messages but the user can browse for more if s/he wants.

Browse as an explicit action should always override 7/30 (or 1/5). But simply syncing a folder should not.
 

M66B

Recognized Developer
Aug 1, 2010
26,276
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I agree and that's not what I meant. What I mean is this scenario:
1. Delete all messages in folder LOCALLY, not on the server. The folder is now empty.
2. Enable browse and have 7/30 (or 1/5).
3. Sync the folder.
4. The folder (as it's now) downloads ~40 messages, some more than 6 weeks old. Why 40? Why more than 6 weeks?
5. The folder (as I'd expect it) downloads exactly 7 (or 1) day(s) worth of messages but the user can browse for more if s/he wants.

Browse as an explicit action should always override 7/30 (or 1/5). But simply syncing a folder should not.
Synchronizing a folder will respect the sync/keep settings. Scrolling down (browse) will download messages beyond the sync settings. The latter can be disabled if you wish and the sync/keep settings will be fully respected. So, a choice ...
 
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Hi, I'm the guy who talked to you on Saturday about switching from PlayStore Pro account to Ghithub version, all flawless with the app, I'd just like to make a suggestion if it's considered a good idea, in the side bar when you click on an account it opens in full screen window with the folder list, would it be possible to make it so that when you click on the account it expands the folder list of that account in the sidebar and another click to collapse?
 

M66B

Recognized Developer
Aug 1, 2010
26,276
56,697
Hi, I'm the guy who talked to you on Saturday about switching from PlayStore Pro account to Ghithub version, all flawless with the app, I'd just like to make a suggestion if it's considered a good idea, in the side tab when you click on an account it opens in full screen window with the folder list, would it be possible to make it so that when you click on the account it expands the folder list of that account in the sidebar and another click to collapse?
I guess you'll want to enable two column mode in the display settings.
 

M66B

Recognized Developer
Aug 1, 2010
26,276
56,697
No, it doesn't and that's exactly my point. If I just do the steps I outlined above, when I sync the folder (without ever browsing) then many more messages (three or four screenfuls) are downloaded than dictated by the settings. At least here.
Browse will fill the screen and prefetch about one screen more to reduce the waiting time. This could mean that older messages are being fetched.
 
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M66B

Recognized Developer
Aug 1, 2010
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I know about that option but that's not what I was referring to, I was referring to the folders appearing under the account name on the left side
Some people have thousands of folders dozens of levels deep, which will let some other email apps crash. Mostly, people are interested in a few folders only anyway. Therefore you can manually add folders to the navigation menu by long pressing a folder in the folder list and create your own shortlist.

Note that you can double collapse/expand the accounts section in the navigation menu, first the folders and after that the accounts.
 
Some people have thousands of folders dozens of levels deep, which will let some other email apps crash. Mostly, people are interested in a few folders only anyway. Therefore you can manually add folders to the navigation menu by long pressing a folder in the folder list and create your own shortlist.

Note that you can double collapse/expand the accounts section in the navigation menu, first the folders and after that the accounts.
Excellent, I have added the folders I wanted but now they are always visible, when I click on the account name they don't expand or collapse, is there some option left to activate for this to work?
 

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  • 8
    So, I can safely ignore reviews like this and also any improvement requests, agreed?
    Of course you can do that. You don't need to add any more features, Marcel. Fixing bugs is more than sufficient and highly appreciated.

    Focus on what's more important for yourself.
    5
    The problem is that the average Play store rating is constantly decreasing and that this is demotivating. For example:
    As I said, I only see the US Playstore where that is certainly not true. 4.7 and steady still today. So maybe the rating is 3.9 and dropping in the German store, I don't know. I would be surprised if that was the case though. In the US store, very few apps get a better rating than Fairemail.

    You have some unfortunate situations for sure in your life right now and we empathize with that. We appreciate the work you put into this app and also your responsiveness to questions, etc. However, some of us would just hope you could see that positive side and good wishes and not focus on the trolls and the few bad reviews, (most of which are the trolls). The trolls see that they get under your skin and that just encourages them.

    Please try to see the glass as half full and not half empty. No scratch that. In the case of the US Playstore rating, the glass really is 94% full. Try not to focus on it being 6% empty.

    Edit: waiting for the next death threat now ...

    Of course, that should not be happening. I would think it is a matter for law enforcement but maybe that is naive of me to think they will or even can do anything.
    2
    Hello Marcel,
    In the German Playstore the average is 4,8 which is exceptionally good.
    The averages in May to July are are hard to beat. If there were one less 1-star review in August, the average would be 4.77. Since there are not yet so many reviews in August, only one 1-star review has a strong impact.
    I downvoted both 1-star reviews, and the one with "Absoluter Müll" I reported as inappropriate. Please ignore such reviews!

    German Playstore:
    Stars
    1
    2
    3
    4
    5
    Ø
    May
    3​
    0​
    2​
    4​
    253​
    262​
    4,92​
    June
    2​
    1​
    2​
    2​
    114​
    121​
    4,86​
    July
    1​
    2​
    0​
    4​
    88​
    95​
    4,85​
    August
    2​
    1​
    0​
    0​
    28​
    31​
    4,65​
    2
    Because there is more than the US and Germany.
    OK. If you can please post links to Playstores that have these very low ratings then we will stop trying to convince you that almost everyone loves your app. From what I can see, you have one of the highest rated apps in the world and it is hard to watch you torture yourself by being convinced it is not.
    1
    I can only see the US Google store but I don't see this. In the year I have used the app the ratings there have been 4.7 usually. Maybe 4.6 or 4.8 once in a while. You cannot get any better than that. Basically a statistically perfect review rating. Just for fun, I quickly scrolled through hundreds of listed apps and saw almost no others with 4.7 or better. Certainly, way less than 1% of apps have that rating. So, you are with the creme de la creme of Apps on Goggle.

    The problem is that the average Play store rating is constantly decreasing and that this is demotivating. For example:

    Absoluter Müll,nach wenigen Versuchen gelöscht!! - 1 star
    (Absolute garbage, deleted after a few tries !!)

    This was a brilliant app and was on tne verge of purchasing, but as usual, developers cannot help but tinker away and suddenly the ability to simply add cc or bcc has vanished. Whats the point? I am sure there is some super clever geeky way to do this, but can i be bothered? No!! - 1 star

    Since you consider the average rating to be near perfect, we can assume the app is near perfect too. So, I can safely ignore reviews like this and also any improvement requests, agreed? I have other things on my mind anyway, which is being reflected in the release frequency as well. I will keep fixing reported bugs though:


    Also, the token grant rate limit problem still isn't solved either ...

    Edit: waiting for the next death threat now ...
  • 20
    QUESTION ABOUT FAIR EMAIL OPTIONS:
    Assuming the starting point of no on-device Google Account...

    Q: Which of these Fair Email Google mail server options is "most" private?

    1. 2SV/2FA (using any of a half dozen secondary methods), or,
    2. What Fair Email terms "GMail (Android)", or,
    3. What Fair Email terms "GMail (OAuth)".

    Note Marcel knows the answer, so he can instantly nip this tangent in the bud by answering that question in a single word... (where I suspect the answer is undoubtably #3 but others strongly think it's #1 apparently, so I could be wrong - but it's NEVER gonna be #2.

    The desired single word answer is "none". Google scans all your messages and you can only hope that the gathered information isn't used in an un-private way. Option 1 (assumed to be app passwords) and option 3 do not send extra information to Google. Option 2 requires an on-device Google account. You can control the sync options of a Google account via the Android settings. If these options work as expected and are turned off, no information should be sent to Google. This applies to all other Google services and apps, like Maps and Drive, too. You'll need to go into the settings and turn things off and trust that Google honors this.

    I expect to see no more messages about this subject anymore, with no exceptions for anyone. If you want to continue discussing about this, you should create a new XDA thread for this.
    19
    I have just uploaded a 4th YouTube video, with things which are not being described and not were asked for before ...
    Yesterday, the OAuth verification team requested a minor change and a test APK file, which probably means that the app fulfills all requirements now and that the verification process transitioned to the next phase. In any case this is looking good so far.
    16
    The next version will have optionally VirusTotal integration, so you can check attachments easily:

    Screenshot_20220723-102554.png
    13
    Version 1.1941 is available on GitHub now.

    Changelog/download:
    https://github.com/M66B/FairEmail/releases

    Besides a series of small improvements and minor bug fixes, VirusTotal Integration was added. Please see this FAQ for more information about configuring and using this new feature:

    (181) How do I use VirusTotal?

    Note that the app hasn't been restored in the Play store yet. For the latest status updates, please see here:

    13
    Using a Gmail account in FairEmail will inevitably leak your IP address, and thus your rough location, but nothing else, except the obvious: the messages you receive and sent and their meta data (sender, receiver, subject, etc).

    Note that it is not a good idea to use a VPN to hide your IP address because you'll probably run into "Please log in via your web browser" at an inconvenient moment.

    For HOTP and TOTP I recommend FreeOTP+.

    I think enough has been said about the privacy aspects of a Google account now. Whether a Google account on your device is a privacy concern or not is off-topic here. If you want to keep discussing about this, please create another XDA thread for this. You can leave a link to the created thread here if you wish.
  • 241
    ic_launcher.png

    FairEmail
    Open source, privacy friendly email app for Android

    banner7_long.png


    See here for a description:
    https://github.com/M66B/open-source-email/

    See here for screenshots:
    https://email.faircode.eu/#screenshots

    Downloads:
    https://github.com/M66B/open-source-email#user-content-downloads

    Frequently asked questions:
    https://github.com/M66B/open-source-email/blob/master/FAQ.md

    Please read this before requesting a new feature:
    https://github.com/M66B/FairEmail/blob/master/FAQ.md#user-content-get-support

    This XDA thread is about using the latest version of FairEmail.

    For support on authorizing an account you should consult the documentation of your provider, see also here.

    Off topic comments are allowed as long they are related to FairEmail and are in the general interest of the followers of this thread.

    Discussion of purchases is not allowed here, please contact me via here instead.
    69
    How was the call with Google today, Marcel?

    Google was pretty friendly and cooperative and told me the favicons are indeed the problem, and it can/should be fixed by updating in the privacy policy to "disclose how your app accesses, collects, uses, and shares user data":

    Privacy Policy​

    All apps must post a privacy policy in both the designated field in Play Console and within the app itself. The privacy policy must, together with any in-app disclosures, comprehensively disclose how your app accesses, collects, uses, and shares user data, not limited by the data disclosed in the Data Safety section. This must include:
    • developer information and a privacy point of contact or a mechanism to submit inquiries
    • disclosing the types of personal and sensitive user data your app accesses, collects, uses, and shares; and any parties with which any personal or sensitive user data is shared
    • secure data handling procedures for personal and sensitive user data
    • the developer’s data retention and deletion policy
    • clear labeling as a privacy policy (e.g., listed as “privacy policy” in title)
    The entity (e.g., developer, company) named in the app’s Google Play listing must appear in the privacy policy or the app must be named in the privacy policy. Apps that do not access any personal and sensitive user data must still submit a privacy policy.

    Please make sure your privacy policy is available on an active URL (no PDFs) and is non-editable.

    So, I have updated the privacy policy and added this new table:

    https://github.com/M66B/FairEmail/blob/master/PRIVACY.md#summary-of-shared-data

    I am not sure if it covers everything, so feedback is more than welcome. @mkasimd maybe you can take a look?

    Note that I have also enabled BIMI, Gravatars, Libravatars and favicons for the Play store version again.

    The short term goal is to release a Play store test version (and associated GitHub version) and to get the update approved. I will think about the next steps after this has been accomplished. Given the huge number of supportive messages I received (much appreciated!) the project will be continued in some form in any case.
    50
    Version 1.1900 is available on GitHub now and in the Play store test program after Google's approval (which is the main goal of this release).

    Changelog/download:
    https://github.com/M66B/FairEmail/releases

    My girlfriend is slowly recovering too :)
    47
    It is time for a new, modern, open source, privacy friendly email client for Android.

    I have just released a first alpha version for feedback on the design and features.

    Not for production use yet!

    Most of the stuff basically works, but be prepared for crashes and error notifications.


    Safe email is a working name, but it is for several reasons not a convenient name, so suggestions for a name are welcome.
    37
    I have just released alpha version 0.15

    Changelog/download:
    https://github.com/M66B/open-source-email/releases

    With a bit of luck the next version can be a beta version.

    I am putting a lot of effort into this project, so thanks are appreciated.