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The Differences Between POP and IMAP

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An IMAP client synchronizes the e-mail on your computer with the contents of your account on the e-mail server, while a POP account simply downloads the inbox.

IMAP copies messages from the server instead of deleting them; when you use IMAP, an e-mail message is only removed from the e-mail server when you choose to delete it. Instead of moving messages from the server to your computer, IMAP synchronizes your computer with the e-mail server. With a POP account, if you download a message and move it to another folder within your Mail Client, it is still in your webmail, marked as unread.

If you were to check your e-mail from three different computers via IMAP, all three of those computers, and the e-mail server, would contain all of your e-mail. If you chose to delete a message from computer A, it would also be removed from computer B, computer C, and the e-mail server.


Common questions when using IMAP:


Why are there lines through my emails when I move an email to a folder or delete it?


When using IMAP deleting or moving an email to another folder puts the message in queue to be deleted or moved.  Therefore it places a line through the email so you know that something has been done with that particular email.  Typically this requires you to purge or expunge these emails in order to completely delete them.  This is similar to emptying the recycling bin.  Consult your software's help documentation for further assistance.


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