Ben has a twelve-year-old Mac that runs Entourage for his email client with AOL. But it has stopped working. Then it started working again a month later on its own, then stopped receiving mail a month later. Leo suspects that AOL may be the culprit. But also, Entourage hasn't been updated in years because it was discontinued by Microsoft in favor of Outlook. But Leo doesn't like that option either because both store email in one giant file, forcing Ben to rebuild it when it gets corrupted. It's a terrible way to do email.
Kathy is blind and Comcast changed her email settings. She had a friend come over and reconfigure it for her, but there's still errors happening. Leo says that Comcast isn't really supporting POP3 access anymore. They allow it, but they prefer she'd use IMAP. So if her friend set it for POP3, have him come back over and change it to IMAP. One way to check is to use her browser. She can also verify if her email is there. If it is, then she'll know it's IMAP. If they aren't, it's POP.
Mark has a Samsung Galaxy S8 and he wants to know how he can download all his email at once. Leo says that the ISP that hosts his mail throttles downloading of email, so he can only download a portion of the email at one time. It's designed to cache email, not download it. If his mail server supports POP3, however, that means it is designed to download the mail. That's really how he'll want to do it. But even then, he probably won't be able to download it all at once.
Jeff is about to close down an old email account and he wants to be able to delete all the old email at once. Leo says that if the email system is POP, he can set the email client to delete from the server once it has downloaded to it. If it's IMAP, that email is kept on the server after downloading. So he'll have to do it the hard way. If he can turn on POP3, he can then just download it and it will delete all at once afterwards. If not, he'll need a third party app, and there are plenty. Google makes one.
Mike uses Thunderbird with POP3 and wonders if he should use IMAP. He doesn't know anything about it, though. Leo says that Thunderbird is the best email client out there and Leo uses IMAP with it. POP (post office protocol) will download his email and then remove it from the servers. IMAP, by contrast, will allow him to see the email and keep copies of it on the server. This is beneficial because people use more than one computer and mobile phone.
Pauline is concerned that with Verizon buying AOL, her Yahoo Mail will go away. How can she back it up? Leo says that using POP3 mail is essentially backing up her email to her hard drive because it downloads the email directly to her computer. So it's already backed up.
The way your email client is set up on your phone or tablet can determine how email is handled on your desktop as well. For instance, you may find that after downloading all of your email to your phone, the email disappears on your desktop. This behavior can be changed by either using IMAP (Internet Message Access Protocol) or POP3 (Post Office Protocol version 3).
Alan would like to delete all the emails at once on his iPhone. Leo says if that email is on an IMAP server, then the messages are on the server and not on his phone.
Frank is ready to finally get rid of AOL and wants to know what's a better alternative; especially for email. Leo likes Gmail because he can sync all of his devices thanks to the IMAP email protocol which keeps all email at the server level. Frank can just use the webmail version or he can use an email client like Outlook. Mozilla has one called Thunderbird.