MailMinder™ 2.0 - Frequently Asked Questions
What does MailMinder do?
MailMinder allows you to set rules that are automatically applied to all of your incoming email messages. You can base rules on the following criteria:
- Full Email address of the sender
- All or part of the subject of the email message
- Messages with no subject (NEW in 2.0!)
- Domain (or partial domain) of the sender (NEW in 2.0!)
- All or part of the sender name or email address (NEW in 2.0!)
- Messages from anyone in your address book (NEW in 2.0!)
- Messages from anyone who is NOT in your address book (NEW in 2.0!)
When new messages arrive, the rules you set can automatically do one or more of the following whenever you receive a matching email:
- Refrain from blinking the indicator light on the phone
- Mark the email as read
- Delete the email
- Alert you that an email received (now using configurable BlackBerry notifications, NEW in 2.0!)
- Blink the indicator light with one of a variety of colors (NEW in 2.0!)
- Forward the email message to another address (NEW in 2.0!)
- Change the priority of the email message in your Inbox (NEW in 2.0!)
You can use MailMinder as a spam filter, and/or to prevent unnecessary new message indicators, and/or to alert you when you receive an important email!
What is new in MailMinder 2.0?
Version 2.0 of MailMinder adds a variety of new features and capabilities beyond those found in 1.0. In addition to the new match rules and actions described above, this version also adds these features:
- You can restrict rules to individual email accounts on your phone (in addition to rules that apply to all incoming email, as was supported in the 1.X version.)
- You can now add more than one action for a rule, so for example if a message arrives on your work email account from someone who is not in your address book, you can tell MailMinder to lower the priority of that message as well as have it not blink the LED.
- Alerts are now handled via the standard RIM notification system, with the option to customize each alert sound and vibration behavior via the BlackBerry sound profiles tool. This lets you use standard and/or custom ringtones for the alert sound and to have different behavior for each alert you create.
- New statistics (with a visual graph) provide a daily snapshot of how many messages have been processed, how many matched (by sender, subject or domain), and how many of each action has been applied for you by MailMinder.
- Application settings now allow you to:
- Disable MailMinder if you want to turn it off for a brief period
- Prevent MailMinder from manipulating the LED if you have other applications that control the LED for you
- Customize the default action to take when no rule matches (so by default, for instance, you can blink the light a special color other than red, or mark messages as read, etc.)
- You can create rules directly from your address book to match the contact you are viewing as an email sender.
What does CellAvant do?
In addition to developing BlackBerry applications like MailMinder, CellAvant develops custom consumer and enterprise BlackBerry, iPhone, and Android applications as a service. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your project today.
How do I add a MailMinder rule?
From your email Inbox
Either while highlighting an email in your Inbox, or while viewing an email, press the Menu button and select "Add MailMinder Rule." You will see a popup window where you can configure the rule properties and add it to your database. Values such as the sender email address, subject, or domain will be automatically filled-in with content from the email message you started with.
From your address book
Either while highlighting a contact in your address book listing, or while viewing the details for a contact, press the Menu button and select “Add MailMinder Rule.” You will see a popup window where you can configure the rule properties and add it to your database. Values such as the sender email address or name will be automatically filled in with content from the contact you started with.
From the MailMinder Rules screen
While in the MailMinder Rules screen, press the Menu button and select “Add new rule” to bring up a blank new rule template.
Regardless of how you add the rule, it immediately becomes active (no need to restart, exit, etc.). Also, if you create a new rule from a message in your Inbox, it will be applied to that message as soon as it is created. For example, if your new rule would delete the message, after the rule is added the message will be deleted.
What does each of the MailMinder rules do?
There are seven actions a rule can trigger:
- "Don't blink the light" will prevent the indicator light from blinking when you receive emails that match the rule.
- "Mark as read" will automatically mark as read emails that match the rule – this will also prevent the light from blinking when such emails are received.
- "Delete message" will automatically delete emails that match the rule. If in your Email Reconciliation Options (located under your BlackBerry Messages Options), your "Delete On" setting is set to "Handheld" or "Prompt," then MailMinder will only delete emails on your device. If this setting is set to "Mailbox & Handheld," then this rule will delete emails both on your device and on your email server.
- "Alert me" will trigger an alert when you receive emails that match the rule. See "How do I set alert preferences" for instructions on alert settings.
- “Blink with color” will blink the indicator light on your phone with the color you choose.
- “Forward message” will send a copy of the message to a contact you choose from your address book.
- “Set priority” will adjust the priority of the email message in your Inbox. Messages with a high priority are shown with an exclamation mark when viewing your Inbox. Messages with a low priority are shown with a down arrow when viewing your Inbox.
Where it makes sense, actions can be combined together. For instance, a rule can both alert you that a message has been received, and forward it to another person for review. Combinations that don’t make sense (such as don’t blink the light and blink with color) are not possible to be combined. (MailMinder won’t let you do this, you don’t have to remember.)
How do I view/edit/delete my MailMinder rules?
Click on the MailMinder application icon to view the rules you have set. They are grouped by sender-based rules, domain based rules, and subject-based rules. Highlight a rule and press the menu button and select either "Edit Rule" or "Delete Rule." You can also select "Filter Rules" from the menu to narrow down the list of rules based on keyword(s).
Can I run all of my MailMinder rules for all the emails in my inbox?
Yes, click on the MailMinder application icon, press the Menu button, and select "Apply Rules Now." This will perform actions that make sense such as marking messages as read or deleting messages that match your rules, but will not do things such as blink the light or trigger alerts – those actions only apply to newly received messages.
How do I set Alert preferences? NOTE: UPDATED FOR VERSION 2.0!
MailMinder 2.0 alerts are integrated with the standard RIM notifications on your BlackBerry. What this means is that you have the flexibility to customize each alert to behave just the way you prefer. When you add an alert action for a rule, MailMinder creates a new alert notification. The behavior of this new alert can be configured and customized through the BlackBerry sound profile tool.
When you open the sound profile tool and expand the section where custom application alerts are listed, you will see each MailMinder alert prefixed with the string “MailMinder:” followed by the text used to trigger the rule (for instance, a sender rule might say: “MailMinder: email@example.com (Sender).”
Select an alert and configure how you want to be notified when that alert is triggered, such as using a custom ring-tone/sound, vibration, etc. Because each alert you create has a unique entry, you can setup different sounds and behaviors, thus providing the maximum possible flexibility.
NOTE: You can also combine alerts with blink actions in MailMinder if you want a custom light color and sound when a message arrives. In this case, it is important that your alert settings in the BlackBerry sound tool do not specify using the light. MailMinder will remind you about this when you create an alert/blink rule combination.
How does matching work – does it have to be exact? NOTE: UPDATED FOR VERSION 2.0!
Matching rules are searched for as follows:
- The sender email address is checked.
- The domain of the sender is checked. If not matched, sub domains are stripped and the search is repeated.
For example, if the message was sent from a user at “mail.spam.com”, domain rules will be checked for in this order: “mail.spam.com”, “spam.com”, and finally the top level “.com”.
- Partial sender name matches will be checked. This uses a combination of the sender name and email address.
For example, if a message was sent from “John Doe” with email address “firstname.lastname@example.org”, the partial sender rules will be checked to see if any match a portion of the string “John Doe email@example.com”.
- An empty subject match will be performed. If the message has not subject (or the subject is all whitespace), and an empty subject rule has been defined, it will match.
- A subject match is performed. If all or part of the message subject matches one of the subject rules, that rule will match.
- If the sender email address is found in the address book, and a “From anyone in my address book” rule is defined, it will match. Otherwise, if the sender email address is not found, and a “From anyone not in my address book” rule is defined, that will match.
NOTE: If a rule would match otherwise, but has been restricted to only apply when the message was sent to a particular address, it will not apply if the specified address is not on the TO/CC/BCC list. In such a case, the search will continue.
For example, if you have a home and work email account setup on your BlackBerry, and create a rule to match email from your sister if it is sent to your home email address, a message from your sister received via your work email address will not trigger the rule (but also will not stop the search described above, so it might match another rule.)
When the first match is found, the matching rule is triggered and the search stops. If no match is found, the default action (configured via the MailMinder settings) is performed instead.
In all cases, upper/lower case is ignored, and leading/trailing whitespace is removed (where appropriate).
Why do I see all zeroes on the “Summary for Today”?
PMailMinder keeps daily statistics with regard to the number of messages handled, rule matches found, and actions performed. These start off at zero, and reset to zero after midnight each day. Before the first message is processed each day, if you open the “Summary for Today” section of the MailMinder rule screen, you will only see the zero counters. After at least one message is processed, the appropriate counters will increment and a graph depicting the ratios of each will be shown. The inner ring of the graph shows information about matches (sender, subject or domain) and the outer ring shows information about the actions that have been performed.
NOTE: Because one rule can have more than one action, the action counts will not necessarily match the total message count.
How do I keep from losing rules after an OS upgrade, or swapping my phone?
MailMinder supports backup and restore of rule data via the BlackBerry Desktop Manager on your PC. The rule database (named “MailMinder rules”) is automatically saved when you perform a full backup of your device. Using the Advanced option of the Desktop Manager backup tool, you can also save or restore this one database. Consult the BlackBerry Desktop Manager documentation for more information about using this RIM application.
What should I do to get started with MailMinder 2.0?
If you are new to MailMinder, we suggest you do the following as soon as you install. Over time, you will find additional rules to optimize your mail handling, but these are some good starting points:
- Setup a rule to match email from anyone in your address book with an action to blink the light with a color. Consider choosing a unique color that will let you distinguish email sent by people you know from the red blink associated with phone calls, SMS messages, etc.
- Configure the default action in the MailMinder settings. You can use this to blink the light with a special color if you want to distinguish email messages from phone calls, SMS messages, etc. If you want to avoid being notified about new messages that are not important, you can also make the default action “Don’t blink the light.”
- Browse through your email Inbox, and create rules that will help you to handle email that you expect to receive over and over again. For instance, if you regularly receive spam with particular words in the subject, or sent from particular domains, create a rule to delete it. On the other hand, if it is critical that you know when a valued client sends you an email message, create a rule to trigger an alert. If you want to be able to look at the light on your phone and know if your boss has sent you email, crate a rule with a custom blink action for his/her email address.
After Upgrading from Version 1.X
Rules created in the original version of MailMinder will be converted to the new format used by MailMinder 2.0. However, as described in the section on Alerts above, the alerting feature has changed significantly in 2.0. Consider customizing your alert settings to take advantage of the new flexibility. Also, new match and action choices are available. You might be able to consolidate or eliminate rules altogether by taking advantage of the new features. Beyond that, look at the new user advice (above) for things you can consider.
Where can I get help if my question is not answered?
Please email your question to firstname.lastname@example.org.