In recent years Google Mail has become the most popular online eMail program. Due to its ease of use, combined with incredibly smart and useful features and a few cool gimmicks for the freaks among us, it easily outrivals its major competitors Hotmail and Yahoo.
One issue that any web-based eMail program faces is accessibility. Although this may not sound right, it will become clear in a second. Imagine you didn’t use a desktop Mail program and clicked onto an eMail hotlink in a document or on a website. What would happen? Of course your computer would not not launch your web-based eMail program, instead it would launch something like Outlook and since you’d not be using it, it would not work in the first place. If this isn’t fiction to you, but rather sounds like a scenario that keeps annoying you, stay tuned because if you’re using Gmail, there is a solution.
gAttach! is a Windows desktop application that solves the above described issue. It installs to your computer as a mail application, but in reality it links to your Gmail account. It does require .Net Framework 2.0 and a few more steps to work, but after some initial effort it will work flawlessly.
You must make gAttach! your default mail application to make Gmail your default email client, else it’s not going to work. The options window opens automatically once the installation is completed. You can either let gAttach! log you in automatically by providing your username and password or decide to give your details via the browser once you would like to compose an eMail. The latter approach can come in handy in case you’re using more than one Gmail account or if you don’t trust the application. You can also share your Google Apps account domain, in case you’re using one.
If gAttach! doesn’t work properly from the start, maybe some of the preferences aren’t right for what you expect it to do. With the above shown settings, gAttach will only copy the eMail address to your Gmail drafts folder, but it will not launch Gmail (first option).
The first time gAttach launches your browser to open Gmail, it will install an extension, at least that’s what it did for Firefox. For the attachment to work you first have to restart the browser, but from there the whole thing works like a charm and you will never want to return. All mailto links opened in Gmail.
Now you can comfortably send files to eMail or Mail Recipient or click on eMail hotlinks in almost any Windows application.
Definitely a very handy application for Gmail fans who want to keep all of their mail, including drafts and sent mail in one central location without giving up the one obvious comfort of a desktop mail application: local accessibility. Do you agree?