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  1. #1
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    Default Email client vs Web mail. What is the difference?

    Can someone please explain the difference and pros and cons of each?

  2. #2
    amateur expert dugimodo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Email client vs Web mail. What is the difference?

    A client is a stand alone program that downloads your email to your PC and depending on settings either leaves a copy on the server or deletes it.
    Web mail just uses you browser (chrome, FF, IE, whatever) to access the mail directly on the server via a web page supplied by the mail provider.

    If you mainly use one device to read your E-mail and want to store it locally then a client is probably best, if you access it on multiple devices and/ or want to leave the mail on the server then Web mail is better. Or you can happily use both, use a client on your main PC and use web mail everywhere else. Client software can also stay running in the background and notify you as mail arrives, web mail doesn't really do that.

    I mainly use web mail myself, and I do have outlook set up on one PC as well (and never use it) but when I'm not at home the smartphone is primarily how I check my mail anyway.
    The biggest advantage to me with web mail is I don't need to set up a mail client on every PC I want to check mail on - just need to know the web address and user name and password and can read it from any PC.
    i7 6700K, 16Gb DDR4RAM, 512GB M.2 SSD, Gigabyte GTX980

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Email client vs Web mail. What is the difference?

    Also, If you are not downloading mail to your computer there is no risk of viruses and malware.

  4. #4
    bs baffles brains b....'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Email client vs Web mail. What is the difference?

    We have an outlook.com email address and use MailWasher on our main PC to view emails before downloading the ones we want with MS Outlook.
    We use the "Wash" function in MailWasher to delete any we don't want or look suspicious.
    The server is set up to not delete downloaded emails, but to shift them to a special POP folder when downloaded.

    The emails in the POP folder can be viewed with any web browser from any device. They can also be shifted back into the Inbox if required.

    This system works very well for us.

  5. #5
    Senior Member 1101's Avatar
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    Default Re: Email client vs Web mail. What is the difference?

    Quote Originally Posted by mzee View Post
    Also, If you are not downloading mail to your computer there is no risk of viruses and malware.
    not really true.

  6. #6
    amateur expert dugimodo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Email client vs Web mail. What is the difference?

    I used to use mailwasher, but I don't like the extra step. Also I switched to web mail a long time ago because using POP3 mail with xtra and setting up two different PCs with outlook express (I did say a long time ago ) meant my E-mail ended up scattered across the machines and I never knew which one had which E-mail on it. IMAP solves that issue as does setting the client to leave a copy on the server but you still end up having to download everything multiple times if you are like me and tend to check your mail on whatever PC is handy.

    Switching to Gmail and their web mail page means my inbox looks the same on any PC I use and all my mail is where I expect it to be. I also find their spam filter is pretty good and their web mail lets you set up other accounts and fetches that for you too so My spark E-mail also turns up on my Gmail inbox via the gmail web page. IT's a personal preference of course.
    i7 6700K, 16Gb DDR4RAM, 512GB M.2 SSD, Gigabyte GTX980

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Email client vs Web mail. What is the difference?

    Thanks for all your comments.
    I have used Hotmail.com via MS Outlook at home in NZ but have not been able to access my Hotmail account from overseas, they wont let me open my account. Would I be better to use Gmail at home and away?

  8. #8
    bs baffles brains b....'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Email client vs Web mail. What is the difference?

    Set up test accounts with throw away email addresses with different providers, eg gmail, outlook, etc.
    Send some test emails to and from these to see how they feel, and which one best suits your needs.

    When you have decided on the one you want, you can setup the correct address.

    You should be able to access hotmail from any computer.

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