Syncing E-Mail Accounts Via iTunes – Apple’s Tech Support Lets Me Down

As you can imagine, I have lots of Apple products. To give just a quick rundown, in my home-office at the moment are two iMacs, two MacBook Airs, an iPad, an iPod touch, an iPod classic, and sundry other devices (Magic Trackpad, wireless keyboard, external DVD drive, dock, etc.) Since I live in the country, far from any Apple repair center, I buy AppleCare contracts for all my Macs. However, I don’t buy them for the iPods and iPads, and never have.

Apple’s support has always been excellent, though they were not able to resolve a recent problem, and this disturbs me. But I’m writing now about a problem with iTunes and my iOS devices, and the fact that Apple effectively offers no support.

Before iCloud was introduced, I had a MobileMe family pack; this gave me five accounts, one for myself, one for my wife, one for my son, and an additional one I used for an e-mail address and iDisk for this blog. Since I changed to iCloud, I had to drop that latter address, and created a contact address on my own server, mcelhearn.com. However, even though I deleted that address in Mail, it still shows up in the iTunes Info tab, under the Sync Mail Accounts section. Now, it’s no big deal that I can’t remove it, but at the same time, a new account I created for a client doesn’t show up in that section.

So I first called AppleCare. They couldn’t help; they said that I should contact Apple’s Express Lane service for MobileMe support. They couldn’t help, and said I should contact iTunes support. I did so, and got a particularly clueless woman on the phone who actually told me that I have to email iTunes support to have them remove the email accounts. She clearly didn’t understand what the problem was – I made it very clear, using small words, that this is account information on my Mac, and has nothing to do with anything that iTunes controls.

I’ve actually become increasingly disappointed with Apple’s support in the past couple of years. While they’re good with hardware problems – in most cases, not in the problem I linked to above – their support for services is increasingly poor. I know that Apple has to support a lot of people using services such as iTunes, and now iCloud, but if they don’t have efficient support for these services, people will get annoyed. (To be fair, iTunes’ e-mail support for purchase problems has always been efficient, if not particularly fast.)

In any case, I have no answer to this problem. I’m guessing there’s a file to delete somewhere, but I haven’t been able to find out which one. Any ideas? Feel free to post in the comments.

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10 replies
  1. NotellinYou says:

    I too had a family pack but had no issues but you don’t give nearly enough information to even guess where things have gone wrong. You said that you had o delete the account but don’t say why or how you deleted the account. You then speak to deleting the account in mail and being frustrated is still shows in iTunes but these two things have no cause/effect relationship.

    I agree with the previous poster that you try the collective brain but please, if you want people to devote their time to helping you, please be VERY specific of what EXACTLY you did, why, where, when, and in what order.

    Good luuck!

    Reply
    • kirk says:

      The iTunes Info pane shows information on the Mac in question. The mail accounts are created in Mail, and were deleted there as well. This pane should reflect all the accounts shown in Mail on that computer. I see no other way this should work, as the iOS device is syncing with a specific Mac.

      Also, I see no reason why one newly created account appears in that list, but not another.

      Reply
      • Giorgio Piras says:

        Did you delete the account in Mail.app preferences (the email client application on your Mac) or in the website me.com?
        You should login with your Apple ID and password in your account in the me.com website and there you can manage your email accounts.
        Only alter you have deleted the mail account there, you can go on and delete that account, as well, in the preferences of Mail.app in your Mac.

        Reply
        • kirk says:

          As I said, I deleted the account in Mail, on my Mac. And the me.com website no longer works, as I’ve shifted my other account to iCloud, and there’s no such website for iCloud.

          Reply
  2. Giorgio Piras says:

    I haven’t moved yet to iCloud, and still today I can login in my Me.com account and manage / delete my e-mail accounts.
    Probably you have shifted to iCloud without deleting first the e-mail account you did not want to keep active.
    Anyway, I think there must be some way to login to iCloud in order to manage the account, for example to change personal info (change address, and so on) and of course to delete an e-mail account.
    Given that I have not shifted yet to iCloud, I have no idea about how to manage a iCloud account.

    Reply
    • kirk says:

      No, since I made the migration, there’s no way to manage accounts.

      In any case, iTunes should reflect the email accounts on my Mac; this should have nothing to do with MobileMe or iCloud. It shows all but one account that’s set up in Mail, and shows three accounts that no longer exist. None of these accounts had anything to do with MobileMe or iCloud.

      Reply
  3. Giorgio Piras says:

    Kirk, go to http://www.icloud.com and login there with the Apple ID and password that you used to migrate to iCloud.
    I can’t login there, because I have not yet switched to iCloud, but I think that there you can manage your e-mail accounts.

    Reply
  4. Rich Dothage says:

    Kirk, I had the same problem. I went into itunes and checked the box Sync Mail Accounts From. Then I changed the drop down menu from Outlook to Windows Mail, it offered these 2 on my computer. When I switched to Windows Mail, my old e-mail account was erased. I then switched back to Outlook for curiosity and it still was erased. I then Synced my iphone and it still was erased. Sometimes things are simplier than we think. Hope that works for you too.

    Reply
  5. coso says:

    Hi, I have the same problem, mail accounts info pane in iTunes greyed out, can’t even flag it, but 4 accounts on Apple Mail (2 gmail, 2 from my site host), they don’t show up.

    Reply

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