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Webmail advice requested

N/A

Webmail advice requested

I wonder if someone could give me some advice on the best way to use webmail when away from home. I use 3 standard Plusnet email addresses (not proper mailboxes) for the 3 people in the house, and use the basic filtering in Outlook Express to sort incoming mails into folders for them. I prefer to use OE rather than web-based mail because of its speed and ease of backup.

We are going away for a couple of weeks, and planned to keep an eye on our mail while abroad. Rather than set up diverts, I was going to let the mails stack up on Plusnet's server, and look at them via webmail, then do an OE send/receive when I got back.

But I'm not sure about the distinction between using webmail POP and webmail IMAP. The help is a bit vague, alluding to IMAP allowing for folders where the POP one doesn't etc.

What I'm worried about is whether either method would delete the mails just because I'd read them through webmail before I'd got the change to download them to OE when I got home. Or whether mail I sent from webmail would appear in my OE 'Sent Mails' folder when I did the OE ‘Send and Receive’ when I got home. Basically, I want to let the mails stack up, maybe send a couple and deal with the odd urgent one, then come home and sort it like I hadn’t been away.

I think maybe the webmail help could do with something like ‘Use POP if you want to do this <list>, and use IMAP if you want to do this <list>’ - I suspect I wouldn't need to ask if there was one.
5 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,469
Registered: 30-07-2007

Webmail advice requested

When you read email in webmail nothing happens to it other than being marked as read. When you subsequently download the emails into your OE client, you will still get them but they will be marked as read as well. The only exception to this is if you delete emails in webmail, these will not be downloaded to your OE client.

Sending/ replying to email in webmail will be a problem because the sent emails will not be downloaded to your OE client, but will remain within the webmail system's sent mailbox.

As you indicated, IMAP does allow folders to be created whereas POP3 does not. The other difference is that with POP3, when you download the emails, they are deleted from the plusnet mail servers so only exist within your OE client, with IMAP, all mail remains on the plusnet webservers and you just see a copy of it in your OE client. This allows OE to see any folders you created in webmail and for the folders you create in OE to appear within webmail. With IMAP, you will also see your sent emails because OE will be able to see the sent folder.

It is possible to configure OE to use IMAP instead of POP3 (as you have currently got it set) for any mailbox, which will allow you to see the sent folder and any other folders you create but it is a different way of working which may take a while to get used to. If you think about it in this way... POP3 downloads and stores your email on your own PC, IMAP stores you email on Plusnets mail servers and you just see a copy of it on your OE client If anything changes in IMAP mode (via webmail or on your client) a synchronise is performed to mak both see the same info.

I hope that explains things well enough..
N/A

Webmail advice requested

That's very helpful, thank you. I think if I use POP3 webmail, and take care to copy any mails I send from webmail to myself, I should be able to sort it out when I get back.

I think there's IMAP in use in the household, as our OE has a Hotmail folder in use, and there's a Lycos addin installed, which lets it do the same sort of synchronisation as Hotmail in it's own OE folder structure.

Are you saying that I can set OE up with IMAP to synchronise a Plusnet mailbox, such that it would do the same? That is, at 'send and receive', synchronise the contents and structure of all the folders visible from webmail (including Sent Mail), with the local copy in OE? I always assumed that would need an addin like Lycos does, so I never tried.

cheers

Alan
(also a Grid user) :-)
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,469
Registered: 30-07-2007

Webmail advice requested

Quote
Are you saying that I can set OE up with IMAP to synchronise a Plusnet mailbox, such that it would do the same? That is, at 'send and receive', synchronise the contents and structure of all the folders visible from webmail (including Sent Mail), with the local copy in OE? I always assumed that would need an addin like Lycos does, so I never tried.


Basically yes. The Lycos plugin may be necessary to communicate with Lycos mail server in the same way IMAP does (they may use a propriatory interface and not the normal IMAP).

Quote
(also a Grid user) :-)


Another happy cruncher - There is an unofficial plusnet team if your interested (I'm not a member as I'm a mod on the grid forum) - see this plusnter thread for details.
shermans
Rising Star
Posts: 1,053
Thanks: 28
Fixes: 1
Registered: 07-09-2007

Webmail advice requested

But beware ! Trying to use Plusnet webmail from abroad is really not practical; the access is far worse than when you are connected to PN directly in the UK. See the thread on this subject on the main Feedback forum, where someone else reports twenty minute delays. I used to use it from France regularly and used to have to sit and wait several minutes. And I used it in Canada recently in any internet cafe: I had to stop because I could not afford the coffee bill anymore ! It really is a diabolical service but PN does not realise just how bad it is from abroad. So now I make other arrangements.

Why don't you redirect your mailbox to your hotmail account and access it through hotmail, which should work much better from abroad. You can leave a copy on the PN pop3 server and download copies when you get home, but for communication on the trot, I seriously recommend that you do not rely on the PN webmail but use hotmail instead, or another ISP as I do.

Nick Sherman
N/A

Webmail advice requested

Thanks both - I assumed Webmail would be OK from abroad. Maybe I will redirect to Hotmail instead.

Alan