Difference between IMAP and POP.

First let us explain the difference between a mail client and a mail server.

The mail client is the computer program which accesses the server, examples of these are Microsoft Outlook, Gmail, and Thunderbird. These are the interfaces which most users see on a daily basis.

Outgoing Mail Server(smtp)- smtp.example.com, mail client will send mail via the server which is usually the same as your email account. So, if you’re are sending from test@example.com to josh@josh.com. The mail will send from smtp.example.com. Once it sends the email will probably reside on something like pop3.josh.com or mail.josh.com and be addressed to user josh on the domain josh.com. The server’s it sends from can be configured in your email client. Pop3 is just the most recent version of pop.

Incoming Mail Server (pop or imap)- Is the server where all the incoming mail resides, if you send an email to test@example.com. Example.com is the domain and test is the user who resides at the domain. A mail server can run multiple domains from one server. Just like a server can run multiple sites or domains. The Mail will be on pop.example.com, or mail.example.com, and addressed to user test. Pop.example.com is a server or protocol that runs on the domain, think of it like an extension, and the server needs to allow the port which the protocol is running on (110, 995) through the firewall.

You can check your mail via mail client which knows how to access the incoming mail server via login information. You can check mail from other accounts on other servers, for example if your email is josh@josh.com you can look at mail from test@example.com but you must know the login information for test@example.com and use pop or IMAP protocols.

Although POP can be configured to leave mail on the server once downloaded, usually pop removes mail from the webmail inbox, and just leaves it on the client. Nor are the two synced, changes in the client are not made to server, once pop gives incoming mail to the client from the server, the server deletes the mail and has no further association. This can make it difficult to check your email from multiple accounts. For example, if you have 2 different emails that both check a mail server or domain pop.example.com at a specific account say test@example.com, then neither of those two emails can completely download all the mail at test@example.com to their respective email accounts. Pop can download it to localstorage or to another inbox.

IMAP- Can download mail from server without affecting it changes made in client will by synced to webmail/server. Disadvantages- Message storage may be limited, Reading messages while offline requires use of your email program's Offline mode.

Check mail from other accounts/ incoming/ Pop: Sitevision: mail.sitevision.com use port 110 IMAP: Sitevision: use port 143

Outgoing/send mail as/ SMTP: Sitevision: mail.sitevision.com

Secured connection on port 25 using TLS.





Outlook 2016:

Outlook (2018 no Pictures):


Live Mail:


Mac Mail:


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Article ID: 68, Created On: 7/6/2018, Modified: 7/6/2018