View Full Version : How does IMAP email works?

27-02-2004, 07:31 PM
I know how pop3 email works but not sure how Imap email works.I heard that its kinda the same.

Can anyone tell me with using about 3 to 4 sentances on how it works?

27-02-2004, 07:40 PM

29-02-2004, 05:21 PM
So..Imap is like hotmail?yahoo mail?Sounds a bit the same as pop3 just that the email is not deleted if u were to download the messages

29-02-2004, 06:51 PM
If you're referring to Yahoo Mail through an email client such as Outlook/Eudora/etc then that is POP.
You can't compare webbased services with POP/IMAP services and hope to get a clear definition.

Think of it this way - with POP Mail, the entire email is delivered to you when you check your emails, and then it's cleared from the mail server once that has been done. It's a bit like the postman putting mail for you in your letterbox and then once it's been given to your 'letterbox' he no longer holds onto the mail - what you do to it is up to you.

Whereas IMAP, the postman just gives you the senders name/address and what they want to talk about (the subject) and he holds onto the rest of the message. Should you wish to view the entire message he holds onto it while you read it and then you can decide whether to keep it or delete it. Should you keep it, the mailman will just hold onto it again and next time you receive some more mail he gives you the old message info. along with the new stuff. (subject/sender/etc)

IMAP is useful in corporate environments where you have users logging in on different machines all the time - instead of assigning a user to one machine, or getting each machine to download the new mail for the signed in user (which would result in being stuck on one machine or having multiple machines with all your mail scattered between), IMAP keeps the mail on the server, so when you change machines Outlook/Eudora/etc just get the sender and subject information then display that for you - when you want to view more of the email, IMAP sends it across as needed - the mail stays on the server at the end of the day. This enables users to use multiple machines without having to scatter their mail amongst all of them.