GMailWatcher for webmail lovers

Thursday, September 16th, 2010

Owais Lone wanted this mentioned on Planet Ubuntu, so I’m proxying for his blog announcement since he isn’t yet an Ubuntu Member:

In case you don’t already know, GmailWatcher is a Gmail notifier specifically designed for the Ubuntu Operating System. It relies heavily on Ubuntu specific packages like MeMenu, Notifications, DesktopCouch but I’m planning a stock Gnome version also so that people on Fedora, Suse and other rocking distribution can use it too.

Most notable features are:

  • Multiple Accounts
  • Google Apps support
  • Secure password storage using Gnome-Keyring support
  • Themable unread emails page
  • Preferences sync using U1

Right now, my target is to make it stable/usable enough in time for Maverick.

This post is essentially a call for user feedback. I would like to know what you don’t like about the way GmailWatcher works. Bugs, usability issues, appearance, anything that doesn’t count as a new feature.


  1. Andrew Ampers Taylor says: (permalink)
    September 16th, 2010 at 12:21 pm

    If the Google Apps support allows me to see my personal email account messages whilst in Google Standard Apps, I will be thrilled. It is a pain having two email addresses and having to have them each in their separate tabs.

  2. MANDY SAULS says: (permalink)
    September 16th, 2010 at 12:34 pm

    Opensource timeouts are really irritating.

  3. Owais Lone says: (permalink)
    September 16th, 2010 at 12:42 pm

    @Andrew Why not link them, forward mail from apps, and label it in regular gmail.

    I do that. It works great.

  4. BUGabundo says: (permalink)
    September 16th, 2010 at 12:54 pm

    @andrew i’ve been using without any glichs with my GAFYD account (now transformed into an almost regular google account YAY).
    the only prob i have with it, is ONE account only.

    Ill try this new GmailWatcher

  5. Mark Kerzner says: (permalink)
    September 16th, 2010 at 1:37 pm

    Cool, thank you!

  6. Søren Hauberg says: (permalink)
    September 16th, 2010 at 3:04 pm

    “It relies heavily on Ubuntu specific packages”. Doesn’t that quite clearly indicate that Ubuntu is becoming a fork of GNOME? I’m not really against such a fork, but I guess I would appreciate if the forking was communicated more clearly.

  7. Paradiesstaub says: (permalink)
    September 16th, 2010 at 5:17 pm

    I would love to see Thunderbird integration of the MessagingMenu :)
    So that the user get informed by notification when a new Mail arrives.

  8. Derek Buranen says: (permalink)
    September 16th, 2010 at 7:10 pm

    This same idea would be very useful if it could be used for POP/IMAP accounts that when clicked launched webmail to a customizable address.

    I use Outlook Web Access since Evolution exchange support isn’t great and Exchange 2010+ Firefox works fairly well. Not only would it be a good use case for me as an exchange user, but netbook users who use POP/IMAP and only want to run web browsers instead of Evolution would benefit too.

    Before anyone responds to this, mail-notification and gnubiff don’t really cut it

  9. Milan says: (permalink)
    September 16th, 2010 at 8:54 pm

    “I would like to know what you don’t like about the way GmailWatcher works.”
    Didn’t try it, how could I, it works only on Ubuntu? Ubuntu only app? Whouuu

  10. Zac says: (permalink)
    September 17th, 2010 at 9:39 am

    This is exactly what want. Looking forward to it in the next release. Please continue working on Bug #1.

  11. Owais Lone says: (permalink)
    September 17th, 2010 at 11:11 am

    Dear Milan,
    I promise a version for other distros too once it becomes stable enough.

  12. gggirlgeek says: (permalink)
    September 18th, 2010 at 12:30 am

    I love ALMOST everything about gmailWatcher except a couple of problems. It offers to alert only on increase — aka new mail only. Thank God, because I would hate to be incessantly alerted about mail I don’t feel like reading yet. However, it zeros out the number every time you click its icon to open your inbox, and whenever you close Firefox. So you have to force a manual check 2 more times to get it to stop saying there’s new mail. Too much nagging and too much work. Even if I give in and mark a bunch of stuff as read in my inbox, that’s more work than I had to do before. Annoying. This is why I have eventually gotten rid of all past email alert systems I’ve used.

    Second, I don’t understand the multiple sign-in feature at all. I think it’s broken. I have signed into 3 different accounts and forced GmailWatcher to check new mail (twice) for each account. However, all it does is display 3 times the number of a single gmail account — 9 unread x 3 = 27. I double checked of course. I am not surprised though because as far as I know it is still not possible to sign in to multiple Google accounts on the same computer at once. So I’m not sure why GmailWatcher offers this feature. BTW I’m on Win7 if that matters *she says as she runs for cover.*

  13. GmailWatcher: A Gmail Notifier Especially Designed For Ubuntu | Exclusive XP4G says: (permalink)
    September 18th, 2010 at 11:18 pm

    [...] been wanting to post this since I’ve read about it on Mark Shuttleworth’s blog but a few bugs delayed it. GmailWatcher is an Gmail notifier especially designed for Ubuntu: it [...]

  14. GmailWatcher for Ubuntu « says: (permalink)
    September 19th, 2010 at 4:54 am

    [...] is a Gmail notifier specifically designed for the Ubuntu Operating System. A post on Mark Shuttleworth’s blog mentioned Owais Lone’s GmailWatcher app. It is under development for Ubuntu 10.04 and 10.10. [...]

  15. 辽河石油报 says: (permalink)
    September 19th, 2010 at 7:29 am


  16. GMailWatcher, per Ubuntu/AppIndicators, ora funziona | Giovanni Raco says: (permalink)
    September 19th, 2010 at 10:13 am

    [...] Via | Mark Shuttleworth [...]

  17. Alket says: (permalink)
    September 20th, 2010 at 5:25 pm

    It would be nice if it opens messages in Evolution not in Firefox.

  18. Owais Lone says: (permalink)
    September 21st, 2010 at 7:04 pm

    Never does it notify about one mail more than once. If a mail is notified once, it’s id is recorded and only the messaging menu entry will indicate it, not notifications. Then, if you open gmailwatcher window, click the unread indicator, click account or label link in preview or read your email, the mail will not be indicated again.

  19. Owais Lone says: (permalink)
    September 21st, 2010 at 7:07 pm

    Previous comment was a reply to gggirlgeek

  20. Serge Matveenko says: (permalink)
    September 22nd, 2010 at 11:46 am

    Awesome! It works great! But it will be realy cool to be able to set custom email client for each account separately, e.g. use web interface for personal accounts and mail client for corporate one.

  21. Owais Lone says: (permalink)
    September 23rd, 2010 at 2:29 pm

    @Serge: You got it. Look out for next release.