Update on OSU Email
Listen to this Reading
Last night I wrote the post “Forwarding BuckeyeMail” and tweeted it to 8Help, OSU’s IT service desk. In just a few short hours, I got a tweet from 8Help, a comment from Chuck, and a detailed email from 8Help, which is included at the bottom of this post.
From the email, we see there is actually an article about forwarding BuckeyeMail, but it’s not listed on the main FAQs. Instead, it’s listed on a page of a huge number of other articles, which is why I missed it.
I’m a bit confused because they say BuckeyeMail isn’t required, but if they’re getting rid of WebMail, what other choice do you have? I guess it’s not required in the same sense that WebMail isn’t required: You can forward your email to another account, so you don’t have to use it?
What I Learned
From the feedback, I’ve gathered some insight on this whole process.
- OSU still uses your firstname.lastname@example.org address for all mailings. Whew!
- Setting up BuckeyeMail changes your osu.edu email redirect policy, and forwards all @osu.edu mail to @buckeyemail.osu.edu automatically. I really wish they would have an option to keep this from happening when you’re actually setting up BuckeyeMail, or at least a more apparent notification that this user-given value will be overwritten.
- Forwarding BuckeyeMail isn’t as clean a process as I thought it was.
- There’s still hope, because we can avoid most of that mess by just changing where our @osu.edu address forwards.
What To Do Now
So here’s a list of new steps to take:
- Again, forward @osu.edu email to another account of your choice. This re-establishes the forwarding you may have had before. It bypasses the BuckeyeMail system all together.
- Since there is a chance someone could decide to email your BuckeyeMail address, there’re a few options.
- Have Gmail check your BuckeyeMail. Since there won’t be much mail going here, it’s okay that Gmail only checks once an hour.
- Set up an autoresponder in BuckeyeMail to tell the sender you’re not using that address. This feature only works in IE though, which is stupid. (I hate MS and their IE only garbage. It doesn’t even “degredate” to other browsers. It just doesn’t work.)
- Send your BuckeyeMail to another account. There are a number of caveats with this method that I didn’t know before:
- Forwarded email is sent as a “Fwd:” from your BuckeyeMail account instead of transparently passed along, as I’ve come to expect Forwarding to mean. This archaic “Forwarding” is automating you opening up the email, hitting Forward and typing in the other address – so it comes from your @buckeyemail.osu.edu account. Addresses from the original email are in the body of the email, but it kills the work flow of just hitting reply, since it’s sent from your buckeyemail.
- Redirected mail completely kills the email headers, so you can’t tell if it was sent to anyone other than yourself. Not sure why this would even be useful since it modifies the original message by killing the headers.
Why I Screwed Up
I thought forwarding from BuckeyeMail was a transparent process, because before I set up the inbox rule I had resubmitted the @osu.edu forwarding form, and then tried sending test emails to my @osu.edu address. I thought this form was obsolete, however, meaning I thought all OSU mail went to BuckeyeMail regardless. Since this isn’t so, the test emails never actually reached the BuckeyeMail servers, so I didn’t see the wonky forwarding setup there.
Here’s the email I got from 8Help. Very detailed and concise – These guys rock!
The Email from 8Help
Thanks for sharing your blog post with instructions on forwarding Buckeye Mail. We have a similar article we’ve had available for just under two weeks at http://8help.osu.edu/4093.html that goes into a little more depth and includes some warnings.
Just to clarify – students are not required to use Buckeye Mail – all official university communications should be going to your email@example.com address for you to read, and from there forwarding to @gmail.com.
If someone (another student, perhaps, or someone you e-mailed from Buckeye Mail hitting reply, etc.) “guesses” and tries to mail you directly at firstname.lastname@example.org, however, that wouldn’t be forwarded using that process. There are a couple options for taking care of messages that might be missed due to this.
One is setting up Gmail to POP your messages from Buckeye Mail, per http://8help.osu.edu/4070.html
Another is to set up an Automatic Reply in Buckeye Mail basically saying “I don’t use this address, make sure to mail me at email@example.com (or even Gmail directly if you prefer).
Another is to setup Inbox Rules that automatically forward or redirect all incoming mail to another address, per http://8help.osu.edu/4093.html
The warnings for this are spelled out in the article – but because of your blog post, I just want to make sure you’re aware that messages *forwarded* int his manner will appear “From” your Buckeye Mail address – NOT the original sender, so you won’t be able to just hit This option behaves just like hitting forward on a message from an e-mail client. The Subject is also appended with “FW: ”
If you choose to Redirect instead of Forward, there are other issues – the original sender and subject are preserved, so that you can hit reply and have it go back to the sender … BUT… if there were other recipients on the message (other To or Cc addresses), those are NOT preserved – so hitting reply-all would only reach the original sender – you won’t be aware of other people who may have been a part of the conversation.
That’s a lot to digest, so hopefully it all makes sense – let me know if you have any questions.
IT Service Desk, OSU Office of Information Technology
Request forms and knowledge base articles are available on the web at http://8help.osu.edu
Service hours are available on the web at http://8help.osu.edu/1691.html