What is IMAP4 Protocol in Networking? – IMAP4 (Internet Message Access Protocol 4) is the protocol used to retrieve Mail from a Mail server. IMAP4 is defined in RFC 3501.
What is IMAP4 Protocol in Networking?

What is IMAP4 Protocol in Networking?

What is IMAP4 Protocol in Networking?

IMAP was developed at Standford University in 1986. IMAP uses the TCP 143 port by default. For a more secure connection, it uses the TCP 993 port. IMAP4 is the latest version of the improved IMAP protocol.

Another protocol used to receive the email from a server is POP3. In the previous article, we have given detailed information about POP3. In this article, we will talk about IMAP4, another email retrieval protocol.

Emails downloaded by a client using the POP3 protocol are not deleted from the server when deleted in the mailbox. And therefore, the computer needs high storage space. However, according to the IMAP4 protocol, emails downloaded are deleted from the email server when deleted from the mailbox.

IMAP4 is recommended for small businesses. Because e-mails are backed up at a central point. Therefore, after an employee deletes an e-mail from their personal mailbox, it can not see the e-mail that they deleted when they accessed their account from their other devices.

This provides many advantages over POP3. As a result, Email control is provided with IMAP4.

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IMAP4 Features

Let’s talk about IMAP4 features in turn.

1. A user can create, delete, and rename customized mailboxes in the mail server.
2. Before a user downloads an email, they can check the Mail header.
3. A user can change email attributes. For example, Email messaging, flagging, and so on.
4. A user can partially download Email content. For example, if Email contains multimedia items, Email may be partially downloaded due to a bandwidth issue.
5. The user can create an Email box hierarchy in the mail field.

Difference Between IMAP4 and POP3

You can compare the difference between IMAP and POP3 from the following table.

RFCRFC 3501RFC 1939
Default Port143110
Mail BackupServerUser
Email Okuma YeteneğiOnlineOffline
Connection TimeHigh ConnectionLow Connection
Server Resource UsageHighLow
Multiple MailboxesYesNo
Mailbox BackupBy ISPBy User
Mobile User ExperienceYesNo
User Control over DownloadYesNo
Partial Email DownloadsYesNo
Simple UseYesNo
General SupportGrowingYes

  Final Word

What is IMAP4 Protocol in Networking? – A user uses the SMTP protocol when sending an email. SMTP also establishes a connection between the two servers. However, when the user wants to receive Email from the Email server, he uses IMAP4 and POP3 protocols. Today, the IMAP4 protocol is widely used.

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