Frequently Asked Questions

Connecting to Gmail

Google requires email applications implement its proprietary protocol to sign in to GMail by default. Starting with Geary 0.13, if you add your GMail account using the Online Accounts panel of GNOME Settings, this will be used and no further action needs to be taken by you.

If you do not have GNOME Settings and GNOME Online Accounts installed, you will need to create an account using a standard IMAP login an password, after enabling this in your Google account. The setting to update depends on whether you have 2-Step authentication enabled for your Google account:

Not running GNOME 3?

Geary is designed for the GNOME 3 desktop, and as such depends on a number of standard desktop services provided by GNOME by default. While it is possible to run Geary under other desktop environments such as KDE, XFCE, Mate, and so on, you may need to ensure that the services Geary depends on are installed and correctly configured for your desktop yourself.

With these services installed, Geary will use your desktop's standard settings to determine your user interface language, writing direction, notifications, date and time format, GTK+ theme, icon theme, proxy settings, and so on. Consult your desktop environment's user manual for help in setting these, and Geary will pick up any changes you make automatically.

The following is the list of services that Geary expects to be present and configured correctly when you log in:

Session bus
Your login session should start or make it possible to activate a D-Bus session bus so that Geary can communicate with other desktop services, including those listed below.
Desktop address book
Folks is used to access a desktop-wide address-book for saving and looking up preferred names, contact pictures, and email addresses. While Folks supports a number of different storage backends, the most common one is evolution-data-server and we recommend installing both that. GNOME Contacts is recommended for managing the address book, and Geary provides a shortcut for launching Contacts for to add and edit the desktop address book
Spell checking
Enchant is used for spell-checking emails in the composer and works with a number of different spell checker programs. To enable spell checking, ensure a spell checker program such as GNU Aspell and appropriate dictionaries for it in your preferred languages are installed.
Password storage
An implementation of the XDG Secret Service API must be listening on D-Bus so that Geary can store and retrieve passwords in a safe manner. One such implementation of this is the GNOME Keyring daemon, which your desktop may already use. KDE is working on ksecretsservice for native KDE support.
TLS certificate pinning
The GCR library is used for pinning TLS certificate exceptions, which is particularly important for mail servers that use self-signed certificates. GCR in turn uses p11-kit for securely storing certificates, and this requires a writable PKCS#11 store configured, which could be provided by either software (e.g. GNOME Keyring daemon) or hardware (e.g. a smartcard).
Proxy support
Geary uses glib-networking for establishing connections to remote servers, which in turn uses libproxy for looking up proxy configuration. Ensure you have the correct libproxy plugin installed for your desktop.
A notification daemon is required to display notifications of new messages on your desktop. Your desktop will likely already provide a notification daemon, if not you will need to install one yourself.
Single sign-on
Geary uses gnome-online-accounts to implement both OAuth2 authentication and single-sign-on for the GNOME desktop. You do not need to have gnome-online-accounts installed for Geary to work, however you will have to log in to GMail, and other services using a standard login and password. See the FAQ entry about GMail above for more information.


Geary crashes when I run it. What I can do to help the developers?

If you can reproduce a crash, please check you are running the most recent version of Geary. If so, then get a stack trace and report the bug.


How do I turn on logging with Geary?

To enable logging, run Geary with the --debug (or -d) command line parameter:

geary --debug

This enables some basic debug output that can be used to track down what Geary is doing.

While debugging mode is active, there are several logging options to log network activity, etc. These options can be listed by running:

geary --help

Note that the logs may contain personal information like email address and the contents of your messages. Some logging options (such as --log-serializer) dump all information indiscriminantly, including usernames and passwords, so beware when using.

Under the Hood

How do I backup Geary mail?

Geary’s configuration is stored in ~/.config/geary (that is, /home/<username>/.config/geary), backing up that or (even better) your entire ~/.config directory will make a copy of Geary’s account information that can be restored later by moving it back into place.

The mail Geary pulls from your server(s) is stored in ~/.local/share/geary. Since mail is retrieved from your mail server it is safe to not back up this directory, however if it is deleted then your mail will need to be re-downloaded again.

Composer and Conversation Viewer

The composer and conversation viewer uses WebKitGTK to edit and display email message bodies as HTML documents, even for plain text email. To inspect the HTML interactively, run Geary with -i/--inspector. Right-click on an email body to open the WebKit Inspector window.

You can customize the display of message bodies in the composer and conversations via CSS. Place your custom CSS in a file at ~/.config/geary/user-style.css (in previous versions of Geary, this was called user-message.css). If either file exists when Geary starts, it will be loaded and added to composer and message web views as a user stylesheet when displaying editing and message bodies. You can use the Inspector to look and experiment with the HTML and CSS.

Note that if you have the preference Always watch for new mail enabled, Geary may already be running when you log in. If so, use geary --quit first to see any changes to your CSS.

Notice: The default HTML and CSS Geary uses in these web views is an internal implementation detail, and may change without notice between releases. We recommend you use the user stylsheet to make minimal changes to message style, for example, inverting the foreground and background colours only.

Why can’t I examine the Geary MessageSearchTable with an SQLite explorer tool (or the sqlite3 command-line app)?

Geary uses SQLite’s full-text search (FTS) feature as well as a Unicode tokenizer and stemmer to improve search performance and results. In order to examine the FTS virtual table, the stemmer/tokenizer must be loaded. Geary is linked with this tokenizer. In order to use the tokenizer/stemmer with another tool or the sqlite3 console program, you must install the tokenizer and load it into memory.

To install:

$ cd src/sqlite3-unicodesn
$ make
$ sudo make install

To use:

  • With the SQLite command-line application:

$ sqlite3 -cmd '.load unicodesn.sqlext' geary.db
  • Check other application’s documentation for instructions on loading SQLite extensions at runtime.


How is “Geary” pronounced?

Geary is pronounced with a hard G. It should sound like the word “gear” followed by a long “e” sound.

For an audio example, visit this website.

Apps/Geary/FAQ (last edited 2019-08-19 03:13:03 by MichaelGratton)