I have three computers which I need to have in sync; my Mac Pro at work, my stationary iMac at home and the portable MacBook. Except from those excellent tools of the 21:st century, I also have my cellphone which address book needs to be synchronized.
At work, we use Google for mail & calendar. My own business (or: private setup) uses IMAP and has no centralized calendaring system.
Being the OS X lover I am, using the Google Mail html interface is a royal pain in the ass. Alot of files being attached, often larger than permitted so I have to send through my private mail. Text area dows not work like rest of OS X, gmail fails to read <url in brackets>’s, and so on.
The solution was pretty simple: Use gmail POP-access with the (new?) option “Archive” and have Apple Mail retrieve and store everything on central server over IMAP.
Gmail is one-way; we can pull stuff out if it, but never put them back (into it’s current state). The central server is based on IMAP which is a synchronizing protocol. Good for us. We use it as the central storage, with clients having their own local cache.
This setup fits me well and deploying a new Apple Mail client on a new (or old) computer is as easy as tar-ing and scp-ing a folder from A to B. I can as well seamlessly combine my different accounts.
…will be to do the POP import directly on the central server and setup a separate account (which will be a proxy-like “[email protected]” account) for retrieving mail.