Set up Gmail on a Mac

Google’s Gmail is a popular email service, both for personal and business use, and there are a number of options for using it on your Mac.

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  • step 1 Get Gmail
  • step 2 Web Gmail
  • step 3 Set up Gmail
  • step 4 Contacts and Calendars
  • step 5 Getting started
  • More stories
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Sign up for Gmail

There are a number of ways of getting started with Gmail on your Mac. If you don’t already have a Google account then you might want to take a quick look at www.gmail.com, where you can sign up for a free Google account – which includes Gmail, Google Drive and various other Google services all in one account.

The site also includes a useful introduction to Gmail, and explains features such as the 15GB of free storage that is shared across all your Google services.

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Next Prev step 1

There are a number of ways of getting started with Gmail on your Mac. If you don’t already have a Google account then you might want to take a quick look at www.gmail.com, where you can sign up for a free Google account – which includes Gmail, Google Drive and various other Google services all in one account.

The site also includes a useful introduction to Gmail, and explains features such as the 15GB of free storage that is shared across all your Google services.

 

Step 2 of 5: Use Gmail on the Web

You can, of course, use your web browser on the Gmail site to check your mail. That will be useful if you ever have to use a Mac or PC in an Internet café, or a Mac that belongs to someone else for some reason.

It’s also useful if you’re a fan of the Google+ social site, as the Gmail web site allows you to catch up with your Hangout contacts and chat sessions on Google+, as well as just checking your email.

The email features provided in this web browser interface work pretty well, but many Mac users may still prefer to use the more familiar Apple Mail instead.

Read: Email tips for Mac Mail

 

Step 3 of 5: Set up Gmail on a Mail

There are a couple of different ways that you can set up your Gmail account on your Mac. You could go into the Internet Accounts section of your main System Preferences panel and set it up there, but the quickest option is simply to launch Mail, open the Preferences panel and then click the Accounts tab.

Click the ‘+’ button down in the lower-left corner of the Accounts dialog box and you’ll be prompted to specify which type of email account you want to use. Just select Google, and then click the Continue button.

 

Step 4 of 5: Link Gmail Contacts and Calendars

You’ll be prompted to enter your Gmail address and password into Mail. That’s straightforward enough, but you’ll then see this dialog box appear, which asks if you want to use other apps with your Gmail account as well.

You can link your Contacts and Calendar apps with Gmail, and even sync Messages and Notes with Gmail too. However, syncing information between Apple’s apps on your Mac and Google’s online apps can be a bit confusing, so I prefer to just use Mail for my Gmail account and leave all those other apps alone for now.

 

Step 5 of 5: Getting started with Gmail

We created this new Gmail account just for this article, but it’s already received three emails from Google itself. These are worth a quick look as they contain some useful info for getting started with Gmail.

It’s also worth mentioning the ‘Important’ mailbox that you can see in the Mailbox list on the left. This is a handy Gmail feature that uses ‘labels’ – a bit like keywords or tags to highlight your most important emails.

You can change the way that labels work, but this has to be done on the Gmail web site – which is another reason why some people prefer to use Gmail in their web browser rather than in Apple Mail.

Read next: Outlook versus iOS Mail | Tips for using Gmail on your iPhone  | How to set up Hotmail on a Mac

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