For this to be remotely useful for non-geeks, try adding a small IMAP server so people can access the mails through their mail clients. Having to re-upload all mail back to a (presumably new) gmail account will take ages and accessing the mails locally is not really helpful these days with mime encoding and HTML email.
On a related note: If you have a small box with a PTR record laying around somewhere, you can use my setup described at http://pilif.github.com/2011/02/how-i-back-up-gmail/ to route all incoming and outgoing mail through a mail server you own as it moves to and from gmail.
If you ever lose your google account or its data, all mails will be on your small box in convenient maildir format, ready to be served over IMAP.
If you bring that line back, please replace it with 'For techies and non-techies' or similar.
One of the stated purposes of this tool is to "liberate your emails" by letting you keep local copies of every e-mail you send and receive. If you need to use a third-party IMAP server to keep a backup of your e-mails, how does that liberate you? Now you're dependent on two online services instead of one.
Reading locally stored e-mails would be a problem for non-geeks, though. But I think the right way to solve that problem would be to offer a program to read those e-mails, or even better, a plugin to a popular mail client (such as Thunderbird) so that the e-mails can be accessed through the mail client. Depending on the "cloud" just detracts from the stated purpose of this tool.
That way, if your google account goes away (I guess we all agree that administrative account lockout is way more likely than google actually losing data) and you need an email RIGHT NOW, you would just configure any imap client to use the daemon provided by the backup application (localhost:143)
Or it could bundle some web based mail client and then open a browser.
It's impractical to reupload the whole backup to gmail before being able to access your mail.
But now you've got a background process running on a privileged port, yikes! (It's got to be a daemon that starts automatically, because "non-geeks" will not understand why they have to start another program before accessing their mail in Thunderbird.)
I think you're misunderstanding pilif's comment. That "small IMAP server" would run locally on your box, which gets you to the goal of having any standard mail client read the archive.
But a quick question of concern - gmail is pretty smart and can tell when I am just using it for bulk storage. If you send yourself 8 emails in a short amount of time, each with maximum sized attachment sizes, gmail will politely tell you to cut it out for a while.
Does this software run the same risk? I am wary to let it just keep barging in after connection errors, if there's a chance gmail will get upset and ban me from my own account. My gmail is my lifeblood, and I want to back it up from the entity that scares me the most of taking it away from me.
Thanks for making this!!
Surely the back-up should protect you in case you lose access to your Google account...
However, I bet some people do use google drive to back-up other google services. It's not ironic, just foolish IMO.
I'd prefer the direct zip, sure, but I'm just saying that it's not inconceivable.
If I'm 'downloading' or otherwise 'exporting' data from any service, I expect it to be all the data. Not a diff wrt the last time I clicked the button.
However, clicking "download backup now" is a very easy 1 click operation, and I can just store that zip file wherever I want. Done.
I mainly use Gmail via IMAP (and the web version when I need to set up filters). Therefore, I'm intrigued that folks seem to be interested in a 1-click-download kind of solution.
If you would like to participate and help me developing Gmvault contact me on twitter at @zoobert or via email: guillaume((dot))aubert((at))gmail((dot))com
I will now work hard to finalize Gmvault and produce the first final release (available within a month).
If you would like to report some issues or would like extra features: submit them to https://github.com/gaubert/gmvault/issues
We already have s3cmd in our environment, so you can:
ssh firstname.lastname@example.org s3cmd get s3://rsynctest/mscdex.exe
So if we put this into the environment, you could call it over SSH:
ssh email@example.com gmvault sync firstname.lastname@example.org
... which is fantastic.
More like this.
"With the restore command Gmvault can recreate your gmail mailboxes in any Gmail account. All attributes such as Gmail labels are preserved and recreated. With restore, you will recover your Gmail account exactly as it was."
I would use it just for that! When I wanted to unify my email/calendar etc. under one account there didn't seem to be anyway of transporting existing gmail over. Gmail doesn't even have a way to do it if you decide to start paying them!!
I will fix that in the next version. Thanks for the feedback
am I miss interpreting how its working?
1. Download the tgz and unzip.
2. Create and activate a new virtualenv in that directory.
3. easy_install -U distribute (in my case, the version of distribute installed by pip was too old for imapclient)
3. pip install logbook gdata imapclient
4. Replace bin/gmvault with the following
sys.path.insert(0, os.path.abspath(os.path.join(sys.path, '../lib')))
import gmv.gmv_cmd as runner
You can also use easy_install or pip. It is on Pypi
Create a virtualenv as it is better and do:
pip install gmvault (or easy_install gmvault)
See http://gmvault.org/install.html#py_install for further info
1. OfflineIMAP expects standard IMAP servers. GMVault has special casing to handle Google's wonky IMAP support, along with features like labels and the "All Mail" directory.
2. OfflineIMAP is GPLv2 (or 3, at your option). GMVault is GPLv3.
3. OfflineIMAP syncs to either a local Maildir or another IMAP server. GMVault syncs to its own custom on-disk representation.
4. OfflineIMAP uses a username/password to log in to servers. GMVault uses XOAuth.
5. OfflineIMAP is fully bi-directional by default; local deletion propagates to the remote server. GMVault notes that "manually deleting emails or emails' directories does not prevent Gmvault from working."
6. GMVault can encrypt its own archives. OfflineIMAP cannot.
Basically, GMVault looks like a much less general-purpose tool, but in its specialization, should allow for a much nicer experience for users that simply want a backup for their GMail account.
I'm fond of the versatility that OfflineIMAP gives me (I can restore my mail to any IMAP server, not just GMail; I can access the local Maildir with other applications like Dovecot and Mutt; etc.), but excited about the possibilities of GMVault for friends and family.
"Do you have your GMail backed up? No? Here, let me install GMVault for you..."
As for myself, I just imap my Gmail accounts and don't use those features exactly to avoid that kind of lock-in. I've used too many email services and clients in my lifetime to assume Google is the final solution. And safeguarding my mail offline with imap works just fine.
If anyone is interested, here is the URI: http://eblume.github.com/gmail_safe/
Note that this is my first Node app. It needs a lot of polish. It is published under the MIT license, though, which some people here might enjoy.
OSX has some niceties for python apps, you could use py2app to make it an actual binary rather than a folder or bundlebuilder.
Cannot find the python executable to set env var PYTHON_BIN.
Please check where your python binary is.
That should work if python is on your path.
- Require admin for installer (http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb756929.aspx)
- Add to Start Menu
- Doesn't show up in my installed programs list = no standard way to uninstall
I just came back and started to perform a backup. I think you should, too. This is insurance.
For the author: the link from the "Learn More" is broken. It should probably point to install, not documentation.
It would be very impressive if gmailvault functionality could be combined with a local mail client then you could get both a full (uploadable to gmail) backup of the gmail-box and non-browser access.
It already timed-out once (no discernable reason), and after restarting, went right to email number 1 (forgetting about the 1800 emails it had already gotten through).
Regarding the timeout, please send me the error message you had and if it is a bug I will fix it but note that sometimes Gmail cut the connection without any reasons. There is also a retry reconnect process (up to 4 times) if it is not a fatal error (cannot recover from them).
(Issue number 4 on the github project.)
I added my output to the issue.
I'm on Gmvault v1.0-beta from pypi. It doesn't recognize the --restart option. "gmvault: error: unrecognized arguments: --restart"
However, if I recall correctly, Python's built-in SSL support doesn't do certificate verification, so you're still completely open to man in the middle attacks.
(To the author) See http://stackoverflow.com/questions/1087227/validate-ssl-cert... for multiple options to accomplish this.
Solution: set 'Show in IMAP' in Settings->Labels->All Mail on gmail.com
(It stores each mail in two separate files: a .eml file with the message body, and a .meta file with metadata.)
To verify this in Thunderbird, check out Tools -> Account Settings, then go to the "Synchronization & Storage" page. Make sure it's set to "Keep messages for this accounts on this computer," "Synchronize all messages locally regardless of age," and "Don't delete any messages." You can click the "Advanced..." button if you only want to sync certain folders.
To force a sync, you can go to File -> Offline -> Download/Sync Now, but you shouldn't ever have to do that with the above settings.
Invest a bit of time in the looks of your service/startup, if it looks like the next service/startup, it's just another Boostrap themed website that people (I assume) are tired of.
This is ESPECIALLY important when I'm authorizing you with access to my emails -- and there is no way I would do that for someone that I assume is not serious about their product.
HN is a place where lots of launches happen. A place where open mindedness is a plus. Seriously.. if this is actually your attitude, you might miss some cool things. Take a step away from the hive mindset every now and then.
Craigslist aside, you'll be hard pressed to find a successful product that has no attention paid to design whatsoever. Design is important, and it makes me really sad to see it neglected, and so many people supporting not caring about design here (as indicated by comments like this and downvotes)
The typography is decent, the utility of the project is immediately understood (without even having to scroll), the call to action is present and it's two clicks from the main page to having the application downloading.
You're advocating for "prettiness," which is frankly the least important part of design.
If somebody wants to help to improve the website and the documentation please contact me.
I thought people here valued polish and attention to detail... while this may or may not be a fine product, nobody can deny that there was absolutely no effort put into the design. This is really significant - all the downvotes here indicate to me "fuck design, we don't care how your product looks" which is really backwards for hacker news...