Desktop email


Nothing can beat a well-designed desktop email client. They are more efficient and faster than their web-based counterparts, they make it easier to host your own mail server or use a server other than Google's, and they integrate better with your desktop. Best of all, you don't get distracted by your email when you're being distracted by YouTube. But they've suffered a little at the hands of the web revolution; especially on Linux, their design and UIs haven't kept up with the times. Geary gets close with its conversational view, and KDE's Kube looks promising (if it can ever make it to release), but otherwise, we're usually left with Thunderbird or apps from five years ago. Mailspring, however, is a breath of fresh air. It may be because it's part of a commercial product that seems to take a lot of its inspiration from Mac mail, but it's mostly because it's a fork of Nylas Mail, a beautiful client that attempted to bridge the cloud-desktop divide before closing in 2017.

First, there's a major negative with this application: You need to create a Mailspring account to be able to use it. While most of the application is open source, the company behind Mailspring wants to monetize its software by offering a Pro version. If this is acceptable, you'll be able to step through the login and add your own mail account details to the application. You can then enter your cloud provider details or provide the details for your own mail server. With your data sacrificed to the cloud, you get to experience the UI, and it's definitely one of the best on Linux. The main view to enable is three panels, with your folders on the left, your subject inbox, and the messages on the right. But whether it's worth the account creation is debatable.

Project Website

You need to register online to use Mailspring, but the app itself may be well worth the loss of complete control in certain circumstances.

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