The latest major update to the macOS released earlier this week has already started to cause some weird issues and behavior. Users who rushed to update their macOS to the 10.15 Catalina version, were instantly greeted with a rather aggressive User Access Control or UAC prompts. While the invasive and disturbing UAC prompts may not be problematic, several users have faced a rather troubling phenomenon.
According to an increasing number of user accounts, the latest macOS 10.15 Catalina Update could delete a few emails randomly. Evidently, the issue appears to be within the way mails are synchronized. In certain cases, macOS Catalina users are having issues moving and syncing their messaging. Some users have claimed an attempt to sync emails results in erratic behavior, while others claim messages are being partially synced. In other words, only a small portion of the mail is being synced, and opening the messages reveal they weren’t backed correctly. Needless to say, the issue is quite serious to warrant a warning from experts urging macOS users to refrain from updating their computers until Apple is able to address the issue.
— José Simán (@jfsiman) October 15, 2019
Improper Mail Sync After macOS 10.15 Catalina Update Due to Mail Service And Plugin Providers?
Michael Tsai, developer of the EagleFiler and SpamSieve plug-ins for Apple Mail published a blog post mentioning the issue in detail. He claims to have experienced first-hand data loss in Apple Mail. He adds that one of the bugs he has encountered is the inability to delete messages via AppleScript. Tsai insists that the issue lies within Apple’s latest update to the macOS operating system which powers Apple desktops and laptops. According to him, the two most prominent issues being faced by users are as follows:
- Updating Mail’s data store from Mojave to Catalina sometimes says that it succeeded, but large numbers of messages turn out to be missing or incomplete.
- Moving messages between mailboxes, both via drag-and-drop and AppleScript, can result in a blank message (only headers) on the Mac. If the message was moved to a server mailbox, other devices see the message as deleted. And eventually, this syncs back to the first Mac, where the message disappears as well.
Tsai adds the issue compounds the already complex act of backing up emails. The issue is serious simply because users are likely to remain oblivious about the improper backup until they look up a particular message and realize it wasn’t correctly synced. Moreover, as the data is synced to the server, problems can quickly and persistently propagate to other Macs and iOS devices.
— NUS Trivia | tech news (@NusTrivia) October 14, 2019
Interestingly, some users are facing even more serious issues with Apple Mail, apparently after updating to macOS Catalina. Apparently, the Mail platform becomes completely unstable and unusable. Users are randomly greeted with the message, “Mail cannot save information about your mailboxes because there isn’t enough space in your home folder.” There’s no observable pattern or time duration, but the pop-up message has only one option: Quit. The users who experienced the issue claims that none of the previous fixes work with the new issue.
Reverting Back To macOS Mojave May Not Be A Temporary Fix To The Disappearing Mails Issue:
Experts have issued a warning not to update the macOS installation to the latest Catalina Update that started arriving this week. Those who have experienced the mail deletion or incorrect sync issue within macOS 10.15 Catalina are recommended to use Time Machine to get at previous versions of the folders in Mail’s data store.
After the weird but concerning mail issue cropped up, several users advised reverting back to macOS Mojave as a possible solution. However, going back to the previous version of macOS is a bad move, claims Tsai. This is because as soon as the user will launch Mail it’s going to delete all the messages that were deleted on the server, leaving the issue unresolved.
— Paul Förster (@paulrfoerster) October 9, 2019
It is quite likely that the bug is affecting a small portion of macOS users. This is because the macOS Catalina was available in beta for the last four months, and despite obvious extensive testing, such a serious bug wasn’t discovered. Apple Inc. is yet to officially comment or acknowledge the improper mail sync issue.