August 14th, 2013

LuxSci Tips and Tricks to Dazzle your Coworkers and Friends

Or Cool Things We Like, this is the blog post we have written for the winning suggestion in our blog contest.

There are many cool and interesting features of LuxSci that can help you improve workflow, get things done, and accomplish tasks not easily done elsewhere.  Some of these are not well known.  Below, we present a brief overview of some of these tricks and features we at LuxSci most like and use.  We hope some of them make your life easier, too!

1. Quick Keys to Access Anything, Anywhere

LuxSci’s web interface is extensive with many sections for WebMail, configuration, reporting, administration, help, billing, calendars, contacts, tasks, file storage, and much more.

Invariably, there are things that individual users like to access frequently and on-demand and such access would be best done without interrupting whatever else they may be doing on the site.  This is simple using Widgets and Quick Keys: you create a Widget containing the information that you want to access frequently (e.g. you INBOX, your notes, you calendar, etc.).  Then you assign a quick key to it.  From then on, you can press the quick key on any page and that widget will pop-up as an overlay so you can see and interact with that information on the fly and dismiss it when done, returning to where you left off.

For more detail and some example of this, see: Case Study: Quick Access To Do Lists and Notes.

LuxSci staff commonly use this technique for:

  1. Pulling up a particular INBOX folder on demand
  2. Pulling up a self-saving notepad to make/update notes on the fly
  3. Managing daily to do lists

2. Viewing Multiple INBOXes at the Same Time

LuxSci staff do this all the time.  We have some users who share email folders with other users.  E.g. a “sales” inbox that is shared with the members of the sales team.  Our sales team can then, in LuxSci WebMail, see all of their personal email folders and the shared INBOX (and other folders) shared with them by the “Sales” user.

The sales staff can easily

  1. Check for new messages in any folder
  2. Drag and drop messages from one folder into any other folder … even if that target folder is one that is shared with them by a different user.
  3. Forward, Reply, and Manage the folder

Folders shared “read-write” with you behave just like your own folders … you can perform all of the same operations on them and the messages in them.

For more detail and examples, see:

  1. Best Practices: Accessing and Monitoring Staff Email
  2. Access Multiple Inboxes and Other Folders from a Single Account

Note that you can similarly share calendars, task lists, notes, address books, files, passwords, and other things with users.  E.g. see Shared Calendars: Web, Desktop, and Mobile.

3. Password Management

We have so many passwords and we have to update them periodically.  Besides that, we have to allow groups of staff members to be able to access and manage selected passwords, while restricting access from other staff members.

LuxSci’s Password WebAide tool, which is free with all new accounts, solves this problem for us by

  1. Providing central online encrypted storage of our passwords and other information related to each one (e.g. links, usernames, attachments, notes)
  2. Providing one password database that can be shared among all users that need it — so there is only one place to look up things and make changes.
  3. Providing fine grained access control on a per-password basis — so we can control exactly what users or groups or users can access that data.
  4. Providing access audit trails.

The Password WebAide makes it quick and simple for us to manage corporate passwords, access controls, and personal password databases all in one place … the same place we are already logged in to for email.

See also:

  1. How can I remember all these ##@! passwords?
  2. Protect Your Passwords from Theft

4. Email Management

We use a number of particularly cool features for managing our email, beyond shared email folders.

Drag and Drop Messages

Just like in a desktop email program, you can select multiple messages with control and shift and you can drag and drop these into any email folder to move them there.

Defer Messages for Later

If you like to keep your INBOX clean, you can do that by “hiding” email messages that you do not need now.  Select them and use the “Defer” command.  This will hide them for a specific amount of time or until a specified date/time when they will be brought back into view.  In the interim, you can always find them in your “Deferred” email folder.  See: Deferred Email: Get those messages out of my sight, i’ll look at them later!

Annotate Messages

When I am not ready to deal with an email now but I have some thoughts to jot down about it for myself (or maybe for someone else who will be handing it), I like the “annotation” feature.  I can add some content of my choice to the top of the message that is then visible to anyone looking at it in WebMail or IMAP or from a mobile device.  See: Please Note: Message Annotation for your Email.

Tag and Color Code Messages

For organizing and prioritizing the messages in my own INBOX and for sorting and delegating messages in shared folders, I find tagging extremely useful.  It allows you to have multiple text tags added to a messages that are visible in the webmail and in supporting IMAP programs. These messages can also be color coded for fast visual processing and prioritization.  See: Tag, you’re it! Productivity through tagging and color coding.

Move or Delete messages in Bulk

It happens — you have a folder with lots of messages that you would like to get rid of or move to another folder…. but those are only some of the messages.  With LuxSci, you can perform a simple or advanced search to match the messages in question.  Then you can use “Message > Delete All” command and choose “All Search Results” to delete all matching messages in the folder … no matter how many there are.  Or, chose “Message > Move” and then  “All Search Results” to move all matching messages in the folder to a new or existing email folder.

5. Other productivity tips

  1. Use LuxSci custom email filters to manage your inbound email flow by sorting messages into folders, tagging messages with colors, rejecting unwanted messages, sending text message notices of the arrival of particular messages, etc.  See also: case studies
  2. Use the Luxsci File Manager to securely upload and download files from your web site for FTP space without needing an FTP program
  3. Use email folder properties to have messages auto-delete from them after a certain period of time or have the folders auto-archive themselves into dated archives.  Great for folders that get a continuous stream of messages.
  4. Use LuxSci Custom Firewalls for fine grained access control over who can access what services in your account from where.
  5. See LuxSci Delivery reports to find out if that message you sent was delivered. See How do you know if they got your message?

There are many, many other cool things you can do with LuxSci, especially as you start tying our features together.  We hope you enjoy them!


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