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What is that Email Quota All About?

We sent out an email notification on Friday, June 30th, to all Earthnet customers, regarding their usage of disk space with their email account. Here's a copy of this notification:

Many of our email accounts have accumulated large amounts of disk space because the owners are not dumping  emails off the Earthnet servers onto their workstations. This means all your emails sits on our servers and takes space. This results in performance issues as well as maintenance problems for our system administrators. During the month of July, we will be updating our policy on the amount of disk space available to each customer's email account. This means that every person will have a quota of disk space available for free. All customers using more than the available quota will be charged for overage. In the meanwhile, please take some time (maybe this weekend) to clean up your inbox and get rid of unwanted emails. Your help in this matter will be much appreciated.

Here's a list of FAQ's about this subject...

Q - I am an IN2L customer, am I affected by this measure?

A - No, this measure does not apply to IN2L customers, whose email system automatically cleans up inboxes when they fill up.

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Q - How much space will I be allowed from now on?

A - The number hasn't been finalized yet, we will keep you posted as soon as we have decided on a definite number. However, you might want to start freeing up room as soon as possible if you are using more than 20 MB ( = 20,000 KB).

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Q - How can I tell if I'm above the quota?

A - Customers who already are using too much space for their email will receive an email from Earthnet, giving them the details of how much space above the quota their email account is taking. This email has not been sent yet, but will be in the next few days.

In the meantime, a good way to have a rough idea of how much space you're using is to log on to webmail. Click here for instructions (click "skip maintenance" if prompted).

Once you're connected to your mailbox through webmail, you should see how many messages you have. If you have more than a couple hundreds messages in there, then you are likely to be above the quota, especially if many of these messages contain large attachements.

Now, sort your messages by size. The size column is the one on the very right side. Simply click on the word "Size", and it will reorganize your list of messages by size. If it shows the smallest at the top, just click the word "Size" again, and it will reorganize the list with the biggest in size at the top of the list.

Now that your messsages are sorted by size, you can see how much space you're using by adding up the size of each message. The numbers shown are in KB (kilobytes), and you want to stay underneath 20,000 KB total.

Removing all the messages bigger than 100KB will drastically reduce the size of your inbox, quickly and efficiently. If you do not want to delete those messages, please read on to see how to setup your email in an email program such as Outlook Express or Apple Mail.

Note: if you can see a link called "Purge deleted" in the upper right-hand corner, after you've deleted some messages from webmail, click it to "empty the trashcan" and actually free up the space. If there is no "purge deleted" link anywhere, your email is automatically purged when deleted.

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Q - How does that affect me? How do I clean up my inbox?

A - This measure might not affect you, depending on how you manage your email (again, if you are an IN2L customer, this measure does not affect you - click here for more info).

If you have setup your email account with an email program, such as Outlook Express, Eudora, Thunderbird, Apple Mail, Entourage, etc... and you are using the protocol POP3, then most likely, you won't have to worry about quotas. That's because by default, POP3 email accounts retrieve the email from our servers, and put it onto your computer, then removes it from our server. You can have as much mail as you want once it's on your computer.

Please note that Apple Mail leaves a copy of the messages on the server by default, unlike all other email programs. To learn how to turn off this feature (to prevent email from building up on our servers), please click here.

If you are using an email program but it's setup as IMAP instead of POP3, then most likely, your emails are building up on our servers, and you need to remove them from the server somehow, if there are too many. To do this, either delete them (and don't forget to hit the "purge" button), or simply drag and drop your emails from your IMAP folders into your local folders. The procedure depends on your email program. Usually, your email program will display a list of folders on the left side of your screen, and you should see 2 separate groups of folders: the "local folders" and the "online folders". The "online folders" will probably be named after your email address. The local folders are folders that reside on your computer only. Once an email has been moved to a local folder, it will "live" on your computer, but won't be accessible from another machine.

If you're using only webmail to manage your email, then you will have 2 options:

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Q - What will it change for me to remove those messages from your server?

A - If you simply delete those messages (if for example you are using webmail exclusively) without downloading them, then you won't be able to read them anymore.

If you setup an email program to download those messages onto your computer - using POP as explained above - then you will have a copy of those messages on your computer for future reference. However, they will be gone from Webmail, and if you need to read these messages from another machine, you will not be able to.

One reason why you would need to keep a copy of some messages on the server is if you're on vacation, or working remotely, and need to have access to messages you have received a while ago.

If you are on vacation or working remotely, you will still have access to your new mail (the messages you haven't downloaded onto your main computer yet), for as long as you do not download them through your email program on your main computer.

If you have setup your email program to leave a copy of your messages on the server, but only for a certain number of days - for example, 5 days - then you will be able to check 5 days worth of emails from any computer you'd like (from Webmail or from your main email program), then when messages get older than 5 days old, they will be automatically removed from our servers, but not from your computer.

Moreover, for those of you who used to have thousands of messages on webmail, cleaning up your mailbox will drastically improve the speed of Webmail.

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Q - I am using an email program and POP3, but when I log on to webmail, all my emails are there! How do I get rid of them?

A - If you're using POP but still see old messages on webmail, it means your email program is setup to leave a copy of the messages on the server. To see how to turn this feature off, or to adjust it so that it leaves only a couple of days worth of emails, please click here.

Apple Mail users will probably fall into this category, since the program leaves the messages on the server by default.

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