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RSS Tips for Mail.app

Why Mail.app?

While Mail.app certainly ain’t the best RSS reader out there, having both email and RSS feeds under one roof certainly has it’s advantages. This feature has been around for a while but only recently have some nasty bugs been resolved which caused read and deleted articles to re-appear at random.

RSS Folders

If you’re like me subscriber of a whole range of RSS feeds, you might want to group feeds at some point. Wouldn’t it be nice to have all say Ruby related RSS articles in one folder?

This feature is available in Mail.app, however, the context menu in the sidebar doesn’t show it and thus many don’t know about it. To create a RSS folder, click the “Mailbox -> New Mailbox” menu item and then select “RSS” in the location dropdown. The folder appears in the sidebar and you can move feeds there.

Make sure you enable the Mailbox column in order to see from which RSS feed a particular article originates.

Feeds with Media Content

Some feeds include media content, most notably pod- or screencast feeds. As of version 4.2, Mail.app attempts to download all linked media content of all RSS articles being fetched which may result in several GB of traffic, takes a long while and slowly eats up your memory. Once you run out of physical memory, the Mac starts to scratch to disk which pretty much stalls the computer.

There’s no easy cure for this, however, a bug has been filed already and Apple seems to be working on it. Meanwhile, you will have to rely e.g. on iTunes to subscribe to the pod- or screencast directly.

Feed URL

Have you ever tried to find out from which URL a RSS feed viewed in Mail.app is being fetched? There is no easy way to display this information in Mail.app itself, but you can open a terminal and type pubsub list to get a list of all RSS feeds subscribed by either Mail.app, Safari or another application using the facilities of Mac OS X.

(Sven Schwyn)

Comments

fernando said on Sunday, January 29, 2012:

Man! Thanks I know this is old but I couldn’t believe there wasn’t an option to find that damn google adress rss feed. Thank you, Incredibly helpful.

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