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Old 19 Mar 2018, 12:00 PM   #16
emoore
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I would find it annoying, but not a real problem if I had to change to a different email address. I'd rely upon updating my LinkedIn profile for anybody I lost touch with that might some day want to reach me. So I would not invest in a more expensive plan just to have my own domain. Your situation might be different.

Why did you originally chose the $50/year plan instead of the $30/year basic plan?. Why did you chose Fastmail in the first place? We might be able to give better advice if we understood your needs better.

I consider Fastmail a good investment because there are no ads/signatures, I typically go over a year without spam in my inbox and the support is reasonable. I don't care about CalDAV/CardDAV or a large mailbox. So I've stuck with a cheap "full" legacy plan. It's about $16/year due to multi-year discounts. When they eventually add JMAP support I'd be willing to upgrade in order to use it.

I have numerous free email accounts (for helping to support Thunderbird in the MozillaZine forums) but I don't rely upon any of them as they don't have any skin in the game.

Do you use webmail or a email client? Outlook and Yahoo cause periodic problems for non-Microsoft email clients such as Thunderbird. If you use a email client I suggest you consider using Gmail if you want to use a free email provider.
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Old 20 Mar 2018, 04:42 AM   #17
TenFour
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Quote:
but I don't rely upon any of them as they don't have any skin in the game.
My experience with "reliability" is that the big free providers are much, much better than most smaller paid providers. By reliability, I mean uptime, lack of serious crashes, defects, etc., and reliable spam filtering. I have never found anything that comes close to the quality of Gmail's spam filters. I believe even FM was taken down by a major DDoS attack a few years ago, wasn't it? There have been several glitches in POBox.com within the past few months. Google and Outlook.com have a lot of "skin in the game" and earn a lot of money from their "free" email services.
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Old 21 Mar 2018, 01:43 AM   #18
werewolf
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emoore View Post
I would find it annoying, but not a real problem if I had to change to a different email address. I'd rely upon updating my LinkedIn profile for anybody I lost touch with that might some day want to reach me. So I would not invest in a more expensive plan just to have my own domain. Your situation might be different.

Why did you originally chose the $50/year plan instead of the $30/year basic plan?. Why did you chose Fastmail in the first place? We might be able to give better advice if we understood your needs better.

I consider Fastmail a good investment because there are no ads/signatures, I typically go over a year without spam in my inbox and the support is reasonable. I don't care about CalDAV/CardDAV or a large mailbox. So I've stuck with a cheap "full" legacy plan. It's about $16/year due to multi-year discounts. When they eventually add JMAP support I'd be willing to upgrade in order to use it.

I have numerous free email accounts (for helping to support Thunderbird in the MozillaZine forums) but I don't rely upon any of them as they don't have any skin in the game.

Do you use webmail or a email client? Outlook and Yahoo cause periodic problems for non-Microsoft email clients such as Thunderbird. If you use a email client I suggest you consider using Gmail if you want to use a free email provider.

I originally used Yahoo free email for years but then they messed with it. I think that the original Yahoo email, about 10 or 15 years ago, was the best ever. I still have that account but it's no longer my main email account. Then I switched to Outlook, and then I was having some trouble with it like disappearing messages or something, so I switched to Fastmail. I used to have a free Fastmail account which they have since closed. I picked the $50 FM account because it looked like more for your money, but I don't need it. For some reason I have never been able to use GMail. I couldn't even figure out how to get my incoming messages into chronological order. I'll switch back to a free email system pretty soon I guess, tho my sub here still has quite a while to go. Switching emails is always a hassle.
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Old 21 Mar 2018, 02:21 AM   #19
werewolf
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What's the best of the free emails these days - Yahoo, Outlook, Gmail, something else?
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Old 21 Mar 2018, 04:48 AM   #20
TenFour
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I think it is neck and neck between Gmail and Outlook.com. They both have their pluses and minuses. The bottom line I think is if you are more wedded to Microsoft apps and services, go with Outlook.com, but if you like Google Docs, Photos, Keep, etc. stick with Gmail. Gmail's online offerings in Drive tend to be more collaborative. Their online document sharing works really well and you can simultaneously edit something with someone else in real time. Outlook.com's online document editing is more like the desktop apps (simplified) and less collaborative. Also, Android phones and Gmail go really well together. There are certain advantages to each one, but I say try both and see which you prefer. If you are signing up from scratch I think you only get 5GB of free space with Outlook.com but you get 15GB with Gmail. Both have good spam filtering, nice webmail interfaces (but different), integrated calendars and contacts, online storage and online apps for creating and editing documents, spreadsheets, etc. and they work with a huge variety of second-party services. Both are big, reliable companies that aren't going anywhere.
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Old 24 Mar 2018, 01:03 AM   #21
werewolf
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Thanks, TenFour. I'll probably go back to Outlook. I hate GMail and always have. Now I can't even sign in to my email account there.
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Old 2 Apr 2018, 02:36 AM   #22
Telecaster68
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FM advantages

I use FM specifically because its handling of aliases and identities is better than any other service I've tried. I frequently have to send emails as if they're from another email address that I control (employers/clients, generally), and it's really easy to do this with FM, and it just works. Gmail (and I think Yahoo) force you to send these emails via the employer's SMTP server, which means if your employer can't be bothered to help, you just can't do it. Outlook.com just won't do it, short of messing about with Admin settings every time you want to change email addresses.

It's also easy to set up 'throwaway' aliases on the fly (like 'throwaway@fastmailidentity.fastmail.co.uk') and have mail to them divert into a specific folder. Google kinda sorta does this (though they don't shout about it), I have no idea if Yahoo does.

If you're heavily involved in the whole Gmail ecosystem and you use an Android phone, there's a lot to be said for sticking with Google though.

The FM Android app used to be unusably slow for me, so I forwarded everything to backup Gmail account for use on my phone. But the update in the last few days seems to have sorted that out, so I'm going to try going back to the FM app again.
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Old 2 Apr 2018, 09:56 AM   #23
TenFour
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You can set up aliases in Gmail and use Gmail's SMTP to send from the alias. There is a limit of 100 outgoing emails per day, but that is enough for me for now. Setting up the aliases is a bit of a pain, and not something you want to do all the time but works fine.
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Old 3 Apr 2018, 06:12 PM   #24
ferrety
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Telecaster68 View Post
I use FM specifically because its handling of aliases and identities is better than any other service I've tried. I frequently have to send emails as if they're from another email address that I control (employers/clients, generally), and it's really easy to do this with FM, and it just works. Gmail (and I think Yahoo) force you to send these emails via the employer's SMTP server, which means if your employer can't be bothered to help, you just can't do it. Outlook.com just won't do it, short of messing about with Admin settings every time you want to change email addresses.

It's also easy to set up 'throwaway' aliases on the fly (like 'throwaway@fastmailidentity.fastmail.co.uk') and have mail to them divert into a specific folder. Google kinda sorta does this (though they don't shout about it), I have no idea if Yahoo does.

If you're heavily involved in the whole Gmail ecosystem and you use an Android phone, there's a lot to be said for sticking with Google though.

The FM Android app used to be unusably slow for me, so I forwarded everything to backup Gmail account for use on my phone. But the update in the last few days seems to have sorted that out, so I'm going to try going back to the FM app again.
Me too
The alias thing plus the beautiful 'sieve' is why I signed up too. I have a different email address for each company I use & I NEVER give out the main email account. So if any company is compromised or passes on my email I can delete it without having to change the others.
I love this thing!
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Old 3 Apr 2018, 11:55 PM   #25
InquiringMind
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I have used Fastmail along with several other email services for many years. When they eliminated free service, I signed up for paid service. The price was reasonable and Fastmail was never down for me.

What I like about them most is that they do NOT put your ip address in outbound emails that are sent from the webmail interface. Since broadband users can get stuck with the same ip address for months or years before it automatically changes, I really am uncomfortable with this piece of info being attached since you never really know whose hands your email will end up in in this wild west cyberworld we operate in.

My friends and family who use the big webmail services like yahoo, outlook, and gmail have all had their emails hacked. Small services are less of a target for crackers.

HTH
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Old 4 Apr 2018, 06:49 AM   #26
TenFour
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Quote:
Small services are less of a target for crackers.
I think crackers target email addresses and not necessarily services. Those that get hacked tend to be via phishing or other email attacks, so it is mostly up to the individual person as to whether or not they click on that bad link. Having said that, I have found the biggies tend to have the most robust filtering of spam, phishing, and other bad emails. It is one place that I think machine learning or AI is really doing good work. Maybe Fastmail has better filters than POBox.com, but I found recently that there were a lot of false positives--emails trapped that shouldn't have been, even if I kept reporting the same source as legitimate week after week. And, on the other side of things, I very rarely see something malicious in my Gmail inbox.
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Old 4 Apr 2018, 10:13 AM   #27
ioneja
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As to the OP question -- "What do I gain paying for FM as opposed to using Outlook or Yahoo like I used to?"

Here's what you get by paying for FastMail:

1) An email service that makes its money from you via a simple, honest and clear transaction -- they just make money by selling you an email service that you pay them for directly. Nothing more. Nothing less. The email service itself is the product. YOU are not the product. YOUR DATA is not the product. YOUR PROFILE is not the product. You pay with your money for a service, simple as can be.

The "free" services are actually NOT free. They are making money off of you via a different method, which varies by service provider, and/or what little they let us know of the service they are actually providing. Nothing is truly free, and they have to pay the bills too, so one way or another, they'll make money off of you.

For me, I like the simple transaction that I know what I'm paying for with my money, and FastMail's job is only to provide that service to me, nothing else.

2) You are getting a specific privacy policy and track record, which may or may not mean anything to you or have any financial value to you. The only way to really evaluate the policies IMO is to read them and learn about their track records, and decide on the value to you. With FastMail, in my experience, they have an excellent privacy policy (far better than "free" providers) and a good track record. For me, this is worth paying something for.

3) You are getting a very specific set of features which may or may not be worth something to you, such as the BASICS, which both paid and free email services provide you to some degree:

- An email address you can use to send and receive email
- Storage space for your email
- Various filtering and spam protection services
- Ostensibly, you are getting some guarantee of service performance/reliability
- You are also getting some level of customer support if needed - quality and turnaround varies dramatically

4) You are getting specific INTERMEDIATE and unique features, and this is where things start to get interesting. With any of these services -- FastMail and such services as Outlook.com and GMail -- you'll get a whole list of features all over the map -- just go down the line and see if any of those are interesting to you.

FastMail obviously doesn't have a whole online suite of apps to use, but with Outlook and GMail you get a bunch of great office/collaboration tools -- and those are very compelling and useful. FastMail will NEVER be able to compete on that level with those kinds of office apps. And I hope they never try to. Those are vastly complex apps and they are really useful. Big points to Google and Microsoft for spending billions of development money on them over the last many years.

But with FastMail on the other hand, you get all sorts of very *email-centric* tools that the "free" providers don't have, and likely will never provide at the "free" level... everything from incredible control over domains/aliases, more granular control over filters, spam, identities, IP masking for outgoing emails, login account masking, etc... These kinds of features may or may not be worth something to you, but I constantly find value with them since I have a number of domains, and FastMail handles them beautifully and flexibly with dozens of email addresses/aliases piped through one account, and no one would ever be able to read the headers and know they are all part of one FastMail account.

In a nutshell, if you have any domains, FastMail is a swiss army knife for email. That alone is worth money.

Therefore, there are things I can do with email addresses/aliases/domains in FastMail that I simply CANNOT do with "free" Gmail and Outlook. However, this may not have any value for you.

5) Then there are ADVANCED features that you can tap into, that few people really know about. For example, FastMail has blazing-fast file services that allow you to literally host files and static HTML pages with exceptional performance. If you are very clever with how you use it, and you understand HTML, you can host a bunch of high-performance flat-file websites. Of course this doesn't replace a full hosting environment since it doesn't allow scripting, but for flat file HTML websites, it's incredible. This is a secret weapon that FastMail has, that few people likely take advantage of. Of course, if all you need to do is share files with people, your typical Dropbox or Google Drive or OneDrive account will do the trick just fine. But if you want to host a flat file/static HTML website, you've just got a killer little hosting service in FastMail.

Additionally, another ADVANCED feature is that you also get an entire DNS management console. Again, this is useful for anyone with domains, as it's a full-fledged DNS management feature, not crippled in any way.

Another great feature is how user management works. You can combine accounts, and manage/admin several accounts together. This is GREAT for business and families. Obviously, you can't come close to that with the free services. And even if you PAY for GMail (which is G Suite Business for example), I have yet to find such an easy-to-use multi-user management approach with this much flexibility.

The list goes on for things that are special that you get with FastMail, although you may personally not have any interest in these features -- such as CalDAV, CardDAV, WebDAV, FTP, etc... all included with your FastMail account. And they are all pretty nimble... not hobbled, sluggish features at all... they are indeed "fast."

6) Lastly, IMO, and this may have NO value whatsoever to you, but for me it means something. When you pay FastMail, you are supporting a tiny little company that is a dying breed on the Internet, made up of (from what I can tell) decent guys and gals trying to provide a simple, honest, excellent service for my money, instead of trying to wrangle out of me a profile they can sell (or leak) to the highest bidder. There are so few companies left like FastMail, that it's frankly a breath of fresh air that there is a company providing services this way with a solid track record. To me, I don't want an Internet where companies like this are all gone. With Facebook and similar services hemorrhaging private information left and right (go look up Cambridge Analytica), it's nice to know there's a service that keeps things very simple, with no shady motivations behind the scenes. You may trust Google and Microsoft more than Facebook of course, but seriously, go read the privacy policies and compare them to FastMail, if that means anything to you.

For me, FastMail adds up to be a very powerful, useful service with some unique features that perform very reliably, like a swiss army knife that is great to have around -- all for a reasonable price, with a good policy and track record in my experience. And when I calculate the extra goodies that I would have to pay for elsewhere, it turns out to be a really good value too.

What do I give up by using FastMail? NOTHING. Because I can also STILL get a GMail account (which I also have) and an Outlook account (which I also have) so I can use those extra tools, which are very helpful in some other situations as needed, while spending far more time inside FastMail.

So each person just has to do an assessment of whether or not there's any real "value" in paying FastMail, but for me, it's totally worth it.
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Old 7 Apr 2018, 06:52 AM   #28
pjwalsh
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Originally Posted by InquiringMind View Post
What I like about them most is that they do NOT put your ip address in outbound emails that are sent from the webmail interface.
FastMail will mask the IP for email clients as well if the SMTP port is set to 565.
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