View Full Version : IMAP vs POP (MobileMe & other)

Let's Sekuhara!
Jul 11, 2008, 06:22 PM
I don't know if this is the best place for this question, but there didn't seem to be any better section of the forums. It does somewhat relate to MobileMe.

IMAP allows us to access and modify our email from anywhere and have changes to the message/folder data reflected in realtime as it is all hosted on a server. In this way it is superior to POP which stores all messages on a local computer and assumes you will only ever check email from that one location. The problem with IMAP arises however when you run out of server space to host all of your emails. Then what to do? You want to back up your old emails to a local machine so you can delete them from the server, but you still want them to be browsable your mail client so you can occasionally reference older messages.

What are some possible solutions to this dilemma? What is the best solution? Are the solutions different for Mail/Thunderbird/Entourage users? What about mac.com/me.com email addresses vs. other email addresses (for businesses etc.)

Jul 11, 2008, 06:25 PM
You basically covered the pros and cons yourself, and after that it's just a matter of opinion. You can read some more responses here: http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=215330

Jul 11, 2008, 06:26 PM
In Mail.app, you can create local folders and simply drag mail from an IMAP account into them. This moves the mail from the IMAP server to your local system, but is still easily accessible in Mail.app.

I access my email from so many different devices that POP is unusable for me.

Let's Sekuhara!
Jul 11, 2008, 06:46 PM
OK, those are some good leads. Yes, pulling older IMAP messages into a local folder seems to be the answer. So then if I can delete the older messages from the server after that, it should solve the problem.

Is there a way to set up automated scheduling for this process?

Jul 11, 2008, 07:03 PM
Have you considered using Gmail IMAP (for personal) or Google Apps IMAP (if for a business)?

Given the amount of storage space they allow, you can keep a lot of old messages for a very long time. I suppose, however, that someday you may still run into the problem of running out of space.