Note: this wiki is no longer maintained. If you have any questions related to this wiki, please post them on the CrunchBang forums.

Translations of this page?:

NETWORKING Setup Gmail with Claws Mail


Claws mail is a handy little mail client. From the positive feedback I read here on the forums, it seems to be worth taking a look into as a solid replacement / alternative to web-based mail access, thunderbird, evolution, and other more well-known clients.

It can be configured to access your Gmail account, making lighter and faster access to your Gmail than with a browser, but still with a graphical interface. (If you want a real minimalist client, check out the text-based Mutt mail. See this guide to setting up gmail with Mutt. )

Install Claws Mail with:

sudo apt-get install claws-mail


Setup is a snap with the wizard you get on first run. The only details you need to handle are your account/password, the ports to connect to, and your selection of POP or IMAP access.

For Gmail, you want to go with IMAP access so you can use your filters and labels, the two best feature of Gmail, IMO.

For info on POP vs IMAP, see this explanation at Gmail.

The Info

  • Start up Claws, start new mail account
  • Select IMAP
  • Enter username/password (
  • For Recieving server:
  • For Sending server:
  • Enable SSL for both IMAP and SMTP
  • You don't need to enter anything under the “server folder location”

Under Advanced tab, select:

  • STMP Port: 587
  • IMAP 4 Port: 993

(This may not be available in wizard? If so, you will need to select these options afterwards under Configurations→Preferences for Current account → advanced. Can anyone confirm this?)

  • Select Finished

Claws should now startup and download your Gmail account with folders and labels. For most of us, this may take quite a few minutes.

Set Claws as default mail client

You will want to set up Claws as your default mail client.

Open your browser, and when you click a “mailto” link the first time you should get an option to choose your preferred application.

Otherwise, in firefox, select Edit → Preferences → Applications → (Search for) Mailto → Use Other, then navigate to /usr/bin/claws-mail

It may also be necessary to set your default mail application with the Update-alternatives system. Under main openbox / crunchbang menu, select System → Edit Default Applications - OR

In terminal, type:

update-alternatives –install /usr/bin/x-mail-client x-mail-client /usr/bin/claws-mail


Wiki needs:

Have anything else to add, such as setup for other mail providers, POP access, or other problems with installation, please add them here, or possibly merge with new general article on Claws. Also need someone to confirm “Advanced option” during setup wizard, and to confirm whether it is necessary to change default mailer with update-alternatives?

howto/howto_setup_gmail_with_claws-mail.txt · Last modified: 2012/08/06 19:00 by paladin
Except where otherwise noted, content on this wiki is licensed under the following license:CC Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported

Powered by DokuWiki. Hosted by Linode.
Copyright © 2010 CrunchBang Linux.
Proudly powered by Debian GNU/Linux.
Debian is a registered trademark of Software in the Public Interest, Inc.