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I am setting up a mailbox for a friend. She is using a desktop mail client (Outlook Express) but also would like to be able to read and write E-Mails in the webmail interface.

The webmail interface has the downside that it has no "sent" folder. According to the hosting provider, we need to change the mail box to an IMAP box to get a "sent" folder. No problem there.

I would, however, like to stay with POP3 on the desktop client, so she can maintain a folder structure locally that is in no way connected to the mail box. The provider says that is fine, only that we can't connect to the mail box using POP3 and IMAP at the same time. That obviously applies to having the web mail interface open, and the desktop client, as well. They wouldn't go into more detail as to why.

Now, we can set that up as a rule, but it can happen that you accidentally have a web interface open, and then open the desktop client. Would this have any dangerous effects? Or would access simply be denied on one of the clients?

Could somebody shed some light on this? I would be very grateful. Cheers.

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

This would depend on the mail server setup, but shouldn't be a problem.

However, POP3 clients by default usually delete mail off the POP3 server, which would make IMAP less useful. Most POP3 clients do provide a way to override this.

POP3 also only allows access to one folder, usually the inbox.

What actually might work better for you, is to use IMAP on your desktop client. If you still want to have a local folder structure most desktop IMAP clients have features to cache your mail to make it available offline.

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