Previous Recipients List

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Cleaning up Mail’s Previous Recipients List

  • Mail keeps a list of all the email addresses for people you have emailed. However, It doesn’t discriminate. It even keeps the ones:
  • You typed in incorrectly but get stored.
  • Have changed to a new eMail address.
  • These will pop up in Mail’s auto-complete drop-down menu for ever after. It may even pop an old eMail address from this list rather than the on you just corrected in your address book. This can be very annoying. I had one address that kept failing until I realized that I had a comma where a period should of been.
  • Cleaning out the Previous Recipients list is part of the normal maintenance you need to do occasionally. Not only to clean out the duds, but also because:
  • Apple Mail’s Junk Filter may not mark an email as junk if it comes from an address in your Previous Recipients list. Along with the Address Book, it functions as a de facto “white list”. Keeping it up to date helps Mail to find junk better.
  • It’s quite fun to go through the list and wonder who all these people are that you have emailed at least once.
You can find it under the Windows menu.
It presents you with a list of the names, email addresses and the date of the last email sent.