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Networks

Monday, September 20, 2004

What is POP3?

At school, we have a subject on Networking. One of the most important aspect of it was "Mail Protocols". Suddenly my Prof, goes insane and starts askin questions on POP3, most of which we couldnt answer.. After that lecture, it became a challange to give him a assignment on "What the hell is POP3?".. So here is the answer to it..


POP3 (Post Office Protocol):
The most recent version of a standard protocol for receiving e-mail. POP3 is a client/server protocol in which e-mail is received and held for you by your Internet server. Periodically, you (or your client e-mail receiver) check your mail-box on the server and download any mail. POP3 is built into the Netmanage suite of Internet products and one of the most popular e-mail products, Eudora. It's also built into the Netscape and Microsoft Internet Explorer browsers.

This method is designed primarily as an off-line mail reading solution, POP3 e-mail clients require you to "download" all your e-mail before you read it. Basically, POP can be thought of as a "store-and-forward" service.

Advantages:
1.) POP is the Simpler protocol; much easier to implement.

2.) More client software currently available.

3.) Copies all messages to your local machine every time a connection is made to the server.Thus, if the connection goes down while you're working, you will still have your messages.

Disadvantages:
1.) You must synchronize your local inbox with the server's mailbox.This can result in downloading new messages over and over (if you save your messages on your server), each time you connect, or can result in messages residing on computers you've previously used but to which you may not currently have access. The end result is you are sometimes unable to access all your messages when you need to.

2.) Slow compared to new protocols.

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