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IMAP vs POP.. which is better?

imap pop3 email outlook

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#1 Somnus

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 22:14

In today's world of mobility, which is better for email?

IMAP vs POP.

I traditionally use POP email with Outlook, but I have my domains forward to a GMail account for easy retreival through out the day. Would it be best to just use IMAP email for all my domains?

I know it would save space locally on my devices, and I have more than enough room on my server.

Thoughts?


#2 kjordan2001

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 22:17

Although most email programs have a "Leave message on POP server" setting, it's nice to have your email stored remotely since it's pretty easy with POP to lose your email if your computer dies.

#3 Bhav

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 22:19

IMAP for sure.

I don't really understand why anyone uses POP when offered the choice (perhaps someone can explain?)

#4 richardsim7

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 22:20

IMAP

#5 Another Canuck

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 22:25

IMAP, as it's a two-way communication between your email client (Outlook) and your mail servers whereas POP is only one-way.

With IMAP, everything syncs with your online mailbox. If you read an email, delete it, mark/label it, etc., it all synchronizes. With POP, nothing you do in the client synchronizes with your mailbox. So if ever you lose all your locally stored emails and have to re-import everything, all your emails will appear as unread again, uncategorised, etc.

This also means that if you have multiple clients setup (say, on your home computer, work computer and your smartphone), with IMAP when you read an email on one of your clients, it will appear as read on all of your clients.

Edit: This post on the Gmail Blog explains it pretty well: http://gmailblog.blo...versus-pop.html

#6 StrikedOut

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 22:25

IMAP. It syncs email so what you see on one device you will wee on all others. So if I send an email from my HTC then it is there on my laptop and PC too.

#7 SoyoS

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 22:35

Is this even a thing people consider? IMAP is superior is every way to POP so why would anyone actively choose it over IMAP?

#8 OP Somnus

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 22:39

Ok, I have setup all my email accounts as IMAP, but I have one further question.

In Outlook 2010, do I still need the "Outlook" folder open? Can I remove it, as to only show the configured IMAP accounts?

#9 Holey

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 22:42

How well does IMAP handle not having an internet connection at some points though? For example if a client was constantly moving between the field and their office with a laptop, would they still have offline access to their emails with IMAP?

Ok, I have setup all my email accounts as IMAP, but I have one further question.

In Outlook 2010, do I still need the "Outlook" folder open? Can I remove it, as to only show the configured IMAP accounts?


The outlook folder is a 'Personal Storage Folder'. Anything you move in to there is locally stored.

#10 TokiToki

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 22:50

How well does IMAP handle not having an internet connection at some points though? For example if a client was constantly moving between the field and their office with a laptop, would they still have offline access to their emails with IMAP?

Some email clients will download your email messages and make them available offline.

#11 Glassed Silver

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 22:55

IMAP hands down.

POP when you want one-way back it all up strategy for redundancy.
Yes, IMAP can be backuped, too. Like with TimeMachine on Macs, but POP gives you completely unmonitored capabilities...

Cause when a mail from 2 years ago was lost 1 year ago and you go seek it, with IMAP you're effed, even mostly with your local backup say in Time Machine, as it deleted that old backup of yours perhaps already.
POP is paranoia proof get-it-all-store-it-all.

I consider setting up a second mail client I'd run weekly to just grab a local copy of all my stuff without erroneous deletions synching! (Y)

Glassed Silver:mac

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#12 PGHammer

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Posted 13 February 2012 - 01:24

In today's world of mobility, which is better for email?

IMAP vs POP.

I traditionally use POP email with Outlook, but I have my domains forward to a GMail account for easy retreival through out the day. Would it be best to just use IMAP email for all my domains?

I know it would save space locally on my devices, and I have more than enough room on my server.

Thoughts?


Outlook has supproted both IMAP4 and POP3 since the 2007 (PC)/2008 (OS X) iterations - with the 2010 (PC)/2011 (OS X) versions adding autoconfig support for IMAP4 to the existing autoconfig for POP3/SMTP, therefore, in Outlook's case, it's largely irrelevant. The issue is one of *client storage constraints* (if any). Mobile clients (especially netbooks) lack the ability to store large amounts of e-mail (especially if they have large file attachments) - however, POP3 allows downloading of a *copy* of the mail (sans attachment) leaving a copy on the server. IMAP4, on the other hand, is an entirely server-side mail system - all files are server-resident (the lcient downloads nothing. The lower cost compared to POP3 has made IMAP4 ideal for cash-strapped institutions - such as colleges and universities; it also fits any organization that has storage-constrained clients (thin clients, netbooks, etc.). My ISP (Comcast) supports POP3, while GMail (the primary backup) supports both POP3 and IMAP4. Outlook 2010 x64 is the default client for both.

#13 -Alex-

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Posted 13 February 2012 - 01:26

IMAP

#14 PGHammer

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Posted 13 February 2012 - 01:30

Is this even a thing people consider? IMAP is superior is every way to POP so why would anyone actively choose it over IMAP?


Backups.

IMAP4 is entirely server-side, therefore once you delete a message in an IMAP4 mailbox, it's gone. If you need archival records - for any reason - IMAP4 is a very poor choice
It's why I have two mailboxes (with two different ISPs) - the POP3 mailbox provides no-charge archival storage, while the IMAP4 mailbox eases storage constraints and helps iwth access when NOT at my desktop.

You sound like you either administer an IMAP4 mail system and/or support a lot of mobile clients; the one thing that IS true is that mobile POP3 support is rather poor (especially in terms of Android devices); however, that isn't hte fault of POP3 (which predates IMAP4).

#15 htcz

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 21:01

None. Exchange.