Critical diffence between Pop3 and IMAP

baabaa_nl used Ask the Experts™
Hi Experts,

I recently purchased an HTC desire phone and i am planning to check my emails via the phone. and in that i get an option asking if i am going to use a pop3 or an imap.

I did read through the internet for the differences between them.

But my only question is that i need a protocol POP3 or IMAP that will not delete my emails from the mail server.

Because years ago i tried using outlook and at that time i didnt  know the difference between pop3 and imap, and due to that i lost all my emails from my yahoo mail server, which was a big loss to me, and the harddrive crashed, so i just want to make sure that i want to check my mails from the phone, but also make sure that the protocol does not delete my mails from the mail server.

because i want to check my email around the world from diffenet devices, and make sure that all my mails are stored centrally rather than in a single device which will make it very difficult.

Thanks  in advance

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Ishaan RawatDesigner | Developer | Programmer

Both protocols will not delete from the mail server unless you mark an option for it ....
But I advice you to use POP3


1. Login to GMail.
2. Click “settings” at the top right corner
3. Go to “Forwarding POP/IMAP” tab
4. Select the “Enable POP for all mail”
5. When messages are accessed with POP “mark GMail’s copy as read”
6. Enable IMAP.
7. Hit the “save changes” button.
8. In your Android phone, run the “EMail” application.
9. Select “POP3/IMAP”.
10. Insert your username “<username>” and password
11. Thats all. The remaining settings is done by the phone automatically. Your emails will start coming in.
12. Alternatively, while the emails are loading, hit the menu button in this e-mail application, and select “manage accounts”. Tap your account and edit the settings to your preferences (sync time interval etc.)
2nd Line Engineer
POP3.  think of a post office. someone sends you a letter, it goes to postoffice, postoffice sends it to you and don't keep a copy of whatever the letter is it. that how POP emails are. Once your device downloads them you don't have them on the server.

IMAP: The server has a your emails on it.



So imap is the right protocol for me, cos i dont want to remove the emails from my mail server unless i purposefully delete the email my self.

is that right innocentdevil???


Also, i have got about 1000s of mails in my mail account, will that whole email will be downloaded to my phone, cos i dont want that to happen, i prefer the one similar to the webmail system
I've had instances with POP3 accounts where the option to save the messages on the ISP's mail server was ticked, and the server paid no attention. It's down to the ISP's policies, and terms and conditions, so you would be wise to check with your provider as to the exact policy on this point.

Providers who do allow you to keep your original emails on their servers will have a mailbox size limit, and this will force you into doing some housekeeping from time to time, because if your mailbox becomes full, you don't get any more emails until you've made some space...

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