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Why does Outlook (and Outlook Express) work so much more quickly than my web mail interface?

Posted on 2006-11-22
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Last Modified: 2010-04-08
Where I work we host our own email.  All employees can access their email using the Web.  The company that made the software we use (Merek) makes available an interface users can use if they want (instead of Outlook or OE).

I understand that when you use this interface, you are actually "looking" at your emails on the server ... as opposed to having your emails downloaded to you PC.

Here's the rub:  when we use the interface, it takes a long time before you can see your emails.  But if we use Outlook (or OE) it comes up almost instantly and new email download quickly.

This seems counter-intuitive.  In the first scenario, we are just looking at emails residing on the server.  In the 2nd scenario we are actually asking new emails to be sent to our PC.  Shouldn't this take longer?

What am I missing here?

-Jay
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Question by:JayMulkey
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Expert Comment

by:war1
ID: 17998204
Greetings, JayMulkey !

Does other websites on your browser load slowly also?  If so, the problem is the browser, not the website.

Webmail access is usually slower because all the other data it has to download, like the HTML code and advertisements.

Best wishes!
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Author Comment

by:JayMulkey
ID: 17998287
Happy Thanksgiving!

No.  Other websites seem to load normally.

What kind(s) advertisments must download when using webmail?
Are you aware of anything I can do to improve the performance?

What does Outlook do with all this "extra" stuff?  Why can it work so much more quickly?

-Jay  
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war1 earned 250 total points
ID: 17998353
>> What kind(s) advertisments must download when using webmail?

Webmail interfaces from Yahoo and Hotmail have lots of advertisement.  If you have a paid service, webmail download goes as fast as your webmail service.

>> Are you aware of anything I can do to improve the performance?

Webmail download goes as fast as your webmal service. You may want to check with your Internet Service Provider to determine if your access can be faster.

>> What does Outlook do with all this "extra" stuff?  Why can it work so much more quickly?

Outlook download directly from the SMTP server. The protocol is fast if not too many users are accessing their mail at same time.
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Author Comment

by:JayMulkey
ID: 17999549
War1,

I may have given a wrong impression.  If so, I apologize.

We do webmail inhouse.  The unusual slow behaviour occurs inside the network as well as outside (using the Internet).  I've been making the assumption that accessing my email using the interface from the author, would allow me to see my account (and the emails sitting there) pretty darn quick.  I'm not even using an ISP at that point.  There is no Yahoo or Hotmail involved.  Just   MyName@DomainName.com

Does this information help at all?

-Jay
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by:war1
ID: 17999742
Jay,

So you are accessing your webmail inhouse.  That should be fast.  Do you have an antivirus program or other program slowing you down?
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Expert Comment

by:war1
ID: 18014474
Jay, any update?
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Author Comment

by:JayMulkey
ID: 18020881
War1,

The anti-virus program we use (eTrust, by C.A.) makes it easy to temporarily turn it off (called "snooze") for a number of minutes.  I'll try that myself as well as ask several others to test this for me.

(we've got snow!)

Jay
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