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I'm looking for an IMAP client that allows me to use other clients too. What I have searched, many store something locally and either break or require heavy syncing after other client has touched the messages.

Also, it would be nice to know which ones work when other client is connected same time.

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Thunderbird works fine as an IMAP client. No info is stored locally if you don't explicitly tell it to.

can you elaborate on which problems you faced with other IMAP clients ?

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+1, have used it in this configuration for years and it works great. – Avery Payne Jul 25 '09 at 23:47
Can Thunderbird store tags server-side by now? – Joey Sep 22 '09 at 21:23

I use claws-mail on linux, and sylpheed on windows, and both work very well with other email clients. My work machine is windows: I hate outlook (very slow for IMAP, and it can't get threads right), but occasionally have to start it up to accept meetings and stuff like that. I've got sylpheed running as my main email client, and it doesn't seem to notice when outlook starts up, even if I start reading mail in outlook. I've run them both in parallel, and I haven't seen any synchronization problems.

On my Debian machine I've got claws-mail running, connecting to the same IMAP server as sylpheed and outlook, and haven't seen any sync problems there either.

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Check out Roundcube. It's a web-based IMAP client with a clean and capable UI, and it will play nicely with other IMAP clients (e.g., no supporting files created on the server-side).

alt text

I've used it at work to connect to my Gmail account via IMAP (direct access to Gmail was blocked by the corporate firewall, but I could connect to Roundcube running on my webhost).

It's a pretty common install option on many web hosts, but can also be installed and configured manually, if you'd rather.

Here's a screenshot of the IMAP folder management interface:

alt text

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I have no experiance with Linux clients, but I have never heard of Thunderbird doing evil things like screwing up IMAP.

I have been accessing my IMAP Google account using Outlook 07 on my Windows machine, Mail on my iPod touch, Nokia Email on my Nokia E51 and finally on my Macbook for that last year without a hitch. I would reccomend it to anyone.

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I use the IMAP client built into the Opera browser with Gmail IMAP accounts. I am able to use Opera on multiple computers connecting to the same Gmail IMAP accounts without a problem. (Opera does have a Linux compatible version)

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Is using Gmail via the web an option for you? You can log into a Gmail account from multiple locations simultaneously, and of course, all locations will stay in sync as they are all working with the same data.

Occasionally you'll have to reload the page on one machine to update the UI to reflect a change made from another machine, but that's about it.

Also, Gmail does have IMAP support, and with the addition of the IMAP Labs add-on, you do have a fair bit of control over what folders show up when accessing your account via IMAP.

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No, as far as I know, it is not an IMAP client. – iny Jul 25 '09 at 20:02
@iny: Correct, Gmail is not an IMAP client, you can just access a Gmail account via an IMAP client. I'm suggesting you consider moving from an IMAP client to using Gmail via the web. Note that you can setup Gmail to collect mail from other accounts (via POP). Of course, it all depends on what your situation is. – arathorn Jul 25 '09 at 20:11
Web interface for IMAP server would be OK, but it too would need to work with other clients too. Moving emails to another server is out of the scope of this question. – iny Jul 25 '09 at 20:15

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