email accounts

My OS is win 7 prof 64 bit and I have the free msn email account.  All the while for a very long time I have been using Office from versions 2003 and earlier, to the present Office 365.  But my email, which is for my home use has always been a problem at the Outlook end, frequently crashing and having to reinstall the email accounts, and in the process I think I may have lost some emails.
And I am now looking for solutions.  I have been researching and came across Rackspace to host my email and migrate my msn email account to them, so that I can, not only have technical support, but also encrypt my emails and keep them secure and safe.  And Rackspace has their own anti virus applications.  
Hope the Experts and Gurus can please give me their views on my proposal, though it will cost me a nominal monthly amount for this solution.  What do u think?
jegajothyretiredAsked:
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
Another approach in addition to your own above is to use mail.com. I use mail.com myself. I think an account is about $25 per year and this allows forwarding to an account of your choice. I do all the above.

Spam and virus control at Mail.com is very good. I get very little spam as most of it is nuked before reaching my inbox. I can easily whitelist and blacklist email addresses to tailor to my use.

I use Outlook 2013 and it never crashes on me.
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Frosty555Commented:
I'm assuming by Office 365 you mean you are using Office 2013 on your computer, licensed using the Office 365 Home / Student plan that costs $100/year or so?

There are many email services out there, they all have their pros and cons, good review and bad reviews etc.... What's important is for you to differentiate between the two major categories of email services out there:

In the past, email was primarily provided via POP3. This means Outlook (or some other client like Thunderbird, Eudora, the Apple Mail app, a smartphone etc.) goes out to the mailserver, fetches a message, and then stores that message permanently inside of a data file on your local computer. This works great so long as you only want to access mail from that one particular computer and nowhere else. The authoritative copy of all your mail resides locally in a file on your computer. In Outlook, this is a PST file. With the advent of tablets, smartphones, and the need to access your mail in multiple places, this technology is no longer sufficient.  There are workarounds, sync tools etc. that can help fill in the gaps, but they all are half broken and don't work well. The various POP3 email services provided by web hosting providers and Internet Service Providers, as well as old email services like MSN, usually work this way.

Newer email services work differently. Instead of downloading your mail to the local computer, all of your mail instead resides on their server. The authoritative copy of your mail is up on a "cloud" server, administered and controlled by a third party (the email service provider). You are usually sharing space on that server with a million other users. Your "client" does not actually store or download any emails. Instead, the client reaches out to the mailserver and presents you with a view of what is currently stored there. Most free email services accomplish this using a web interface, which is why they are called "webmail" providers. Gmail, Hotmail, iCloud etc. all work this way. The nice thing about implementing your email this way is that your email is safely stored off-site so if anything happens to your computer you don't lose anything. It also means you can easily have multiple clients that can present your mailbox to you, so devices like smartphones and tablets can seamlessly interact with your mailbox without having to "sync" anything. If you're okay with using a web interface to access your mail on a computer, a Gmail or a Hotmail account are ideal.

But in your case, you want to use Outlook. Outlook is a great product, but there is only ONE server-side technology that it is really designed to connect to that works well - Microsoft Exchange.

Microsoft Exchange is big, complicated, and expensive. It is enterprise-grade email intended to be administered by an IT professional and serves an entire business. It's unsuitable for individual consumer use. So... there are some hosted service providers that will give you a "hosted exchange" mailbox, hosted and managed by them for a fee. Rackspace is one of them. But there are lots of others, and Microsoft specifically has their own offering: Office 365 for Business.

If you really want to continue using Outlook, a Microsoft Exchange-based hosted email service is the best way to go.
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jegajothyretiredAuthor Commented:
In response to Frosty555, thank u for the information which gives me a clearer picture on this email stuff.  A good education, thank u.
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jegajothyretiredAuthor Commented:
Thank u John for the information too.  Somehow i do not seem to have enough luck with Outlook, so maybe i should move on and see what is out there.  Will keep your information in view too.  Thank u.
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
Outlook works just fine with mail.com (no issues) and with my own ISP

I know you have had issues with Outlook, but (a) keep spam and viruses out and (b) maybe just use mail.com and not forward. They provide POP and IMAP services.
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jegajothyretiredAuthor Commented:
John, thank u for your advice.  will keep it in view.
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jegajothyretiredAuthor Commented:
in response to John Hurst, I have opened an account, and since the interface is easy to use and clutter free, I will sign up for the Premium version.  Thank u for your suggestion.  Gracias.
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jegajothyretiredAuthor Commented:
thank u everyone for your advice.
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
@jegajothy  - You are very welcome and I was happy to help.
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