Ghost Messages in Mail

Apple Mail started to indicate that I’ve got a bunch of draft messages in one of my mailboxes lately. (In my case we’re talking about Google and Exchange accounts.) When I opened the drafts section I expected all those messages to show up but the list remained empty. This bothered me a lot.

Now I finally figured out how to get rid of those ghost messages and it’s rather easy: Just delete the corresponding index file.

In detail:

  1. Quit Mail
  2. Open a Finder window and navigate to ~/Library/Mail/V2/MailData/ (⇧⌘g is your friend if you can’t find your Library directory)
  3. Delete the Envelope Index files (the regular one and the ones with the -shm and the -wal suffixes)
  4. Restart Mail

After that you might have to wait a bit before you can use mail again since it needs to recreate the index, but in my case it was worth the wait.