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I am looking for a Windows email client (desktop, nothing cloud based):

Must have:

  • preferably gratis, but I would pay up to $30 - once; no recurring charges
  • must fetch email directly to my my PC - no passing through middleman servers
  • must support multiple accounts (I currently check 8)
  • spell checker (multiple languages)
  • good search facilities
  • filtering
  • HTML email support
  • IMAP

Nice to have

  • unified inbox view
  • encryption
  • delayed sending (I don't really care if it does not)

For reasons that I won't go into, I am switching away from Thunderbird, so please don't suggest it. I can Google, so would prefer that you recommend something that you use and are happy with.

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  • Thanks, both (upvote) - question upvoted – Mawg says reinstate Monica Dec 11 '20 at 15:56
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    Since IMAP and (presumably full) HTML are must-haves, the client I had in mind when I asked the questions won't meet your need. Should you decide that you can rethink and accept POP3 and less-than-full support for HTML, you might want to look at Agent by Forté. – Jeff Zeitlin Dec 12 '20 at 16:06
  • I am leaning now towards Claws, as old fashioned as it is. Em client looks good, but I can't find it it uses a middle-main server. I will post an answer if I find something & no one else does. – Mawg says reinstate Monica Dec 12 '20 at 17:27
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EssentialPim is a commercial email client with other personal information management features (like contacts, events, tasks etc.).

The payed version may be slightly above your budget, currently starting at 36€ for the base version (one time fee, no recurring subscriptions), lifetime upgrades go to 75€. There's also a free version with limitations.

It is privacy focused and doesn't pipe mail through their private servers, getting them directly from IMAP server. It has spellcheck and filtering/searching and tagging.

If you don't mind experimental (at the moment) software there is also Vivaldi. Vivaldi is a web browser in the vein of old Opera from the same creators of the original. It aims to have a built in email client that is at the moment in technical preview stage of development.

It also has a focus on privacy and data protection and supports filtering and spell checking in all languages Chromium does.

It is not yet ready, but will eventually be released officially.

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