how does the IMAP Protocol work in emails?

Instant messaging has allowed people all over the world to send and receive messages in fractions of seconds. This favors the exchange of important information since finding better and safer ways to send emails is a priority.

With the advancement of computer technology, this messaging system has benefited a lot since the logical processes have been improved.

That is what we are going to talk to you about today and in particular about an access protocol called IMAP , responsible for improving your interface in the mail. So pay attention to the article so that you learn more about this technology, for example in Hotmail it uses this protocol.

What is the IMAP protocol?

The IMAP or “Internet protocol” for its acronym in English, is an advanced system that allows you quick access to your emails. All servers use it since with it it is easier for the user to find the messages in their inbox.

This system was designed by Mark Crispin as an alternative to POP in 1998, quickly becoming an indispensable option for servers. Since with this technology you can work directly on the server making the interaction even faster

Another advantage of this set of rules in message search servers is that it has the ability to synchronize devices. No matter what device you use to connect, with this protocol you can always access the same information in real time.

Learn a little more about this topic and discover what they are, what they are for and what are the differences between IMAP and POP3.

What is the IMAP protocol for?

We have already seen in a summarized way what IMAP is, now let’s see what it is for and what advantages it has over other protocols. It would be good to highlight that this system has many advantages for your connection, but we will only show you the most relevant ones.

Keep our session started

Unlike the other protocols that exist, IMAP allows you to remain connected to your account at all times. And thanks to the fact that it has a system that allows you to see the messages in real time, you can respond to them at the moment. This is very useful because if you need to receive an important message or want to leave the tray open, you don’t need to constantly update it.

Connect simultaneously on multiple devices

This is something that other protocols do not allow, and it is being able to have our session open on several devices at the same time. But with the IMAP protocol there is no problem, you can have your session open on your phone, computer, tablet or any device simultaneously.

Access the MIME portion of the email

Most emails use the MIME format, which is the way files are sent over the network. And this protocol gives you access to the files without having to download them first, something very useful that other protocols cannot do.

Know in what state the message is

Another advantage of this protocol is that it allows you to know what state the message you have sent is in . Since all these data are stored on the server, you have access to them at all times to check whenever you want. This is very useful as it allows you to track and be aware of the activity of the user to whom you sent the message.

How does the IMAP protocol work?

Finally, we will tell you in a simple way how this protocol works. IMAP It works on layer 7 of the ISO model both for reading and recovering your message data. Although the user does not actually have direct access to these settings, many programs depend on this access.

Thanks to this configuration we can have different services and the exchange of information between the different layers. Another peculiarity of this protocol is that it has the ability to translate other protocols such as POP or SMTP.

This gives us great accessibility to the full potential of the Internet when it comes to sending emails and messages in general.

If you want to continue learning more about the world of telecommunication technologies, we invite you to read these articles about what the Internet IP protocols are, what they are for and how they work  and, on the other hand, how the TCP / IP protocol works.


by Abdullah Sam
I’m a teacher, researcher and writer. I write about study subjects to improve the learning of college and university students. I write top Quality study notes Mostly, Tech, Games, Education, And Solutions/Tips and Tricks. I am a person who helps students to acquire knowledge, competence or virtue.

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