Tag Archive for 'Linux'

Using Google Apps as default mail client in Linux (Gnome)

Ok, pretty simple. I had a couple of machines where I wanted to keep the installation base to a minimum, so WebMail was a natural choice.

I neded to be able to send mails when clicking mail links everywhere in Firefox or other application, so we need to tell Gnome that Firefox is it the default mail client.

So I created the following shell script, which I placed in /usr/local/bin:



if [[ "" != "$1" ]]; then


if (pidof $FIREFOX); then
  $FIREFOX -remote "openurl($URL, new-tab)"

You must replace “example.com” with your own domain.

This script opens a new tab in Firefox, loading Google Apps Mail directly. If Firefox is not yet running, it starts a new instance. If you provide a mailto: URL in the command line, it opens the mail composition section. If no URL is provided, it opens the regular Inbox view.

Now, we must tell Gnome to use this script as the default mail client. Simply open the Preferred Applications dialog in the System/Preferences menu. In the Mail Client section, select Custom and type the name of the script we just created in the Command field, followed by “%s”.

Preferred Applications window

Preferred Applications window

That’s it. It should be working now.

One last warning, tough. If you’re not logged in Google Apps, you will get the username/password dialog, and then you must click the e-mail address link again, in order to send a message.

Edit: you must verify if Firefox is running or not and start a new instance if it’s not. Changed the code accordingly.

Fedora 9 goodness

Fedora 9 is looking awsome!

I’ve been trying it for a couple of weeks, and it’s getting better by the hour.

Two niceties:

  • Encrypted system volume with LUKS, at install time;
  • 3G connections (with my Vodafone 3G card) just works; it just really works; I just clicked “Auto GSM network connection” on NetworkManager and it worked; pure magic here, people.

I used Ubuntu for everything until now, but I’m seriously considering going back to Fedora.