Written by on

A business man usually has more than one email account ( i.e personal or business mail ). But....

  • How can he have a single point of access for all his email accounts ? 
  • How can one easily setup his email accounts to be received and synchronised on all his devices?
  • What are the email account basic terms i should know and understand so that email setup does not have to be that difficult?

 

Free email services | Paid email services

Usually one has the choice of free email services ( Gmail, Outlook.com,Yahoo, GMX, Mail.com, AOL, Zoho, Icloud, and many others) or paid email subscriptions ( OTEnet, Forthnet, Wind, Vodafone e.t.c in Greece and CYTA, MTN, Primetel in Cyprus). Paid email subscriptions usually come as part of your monthly internet access subscription.

Email accounts in business

In business it is custom to create emails for employees as part of their internet domain. For example for my company providing internet services the domain is www.kataskeviwebsite.com and therefore for my personal email address in business i chose prod@kataskeviwebsite.com. This setup is part usually done as part of your webpage setup buy the company's site administrator.

Email Setup | Email basics

In this article I will share with you the basics behind setting your email accounts on your PCs or MACs. We will go on to describe an easily configured, open source email client that will give you easy and quick single point of access for your emails.

Email clients

An email client / reader is a software program that will allow you to access and manage your emails. Email clients can be web based ( like Google, yahoo, G mail ) or installed on your computer or device. In the first case your emails reside on a web server on the internet and you can not have access to them unless you have access to the Internet and on the second case your emails can be viewed and managed while off line ( of course you still need an internet connection to download your emails or send emails but emails can be prepared while offline and sent when an internet connection becomes available). Email clients installed on your devices will enable you to have access to multiple email accounts from different email service providers and that is why these are considered essential for any business man nowadays.

Basic terms to Set Up email clients

But Let us consider some basic terms in order to setup email clientse before examining a popular,easily installed and configured open source email client.

Incoming Server email Protocols

IMAP ( Internet Message Access Protocol) - A protocol that stores your mail on an internet server much like our physical house mailbox. It allows for messages to remain on your web mailbox even when these are downloaded locally by an email client. If after downloading your mails while at work you need for the messages to remain available on your web mailbox so you can also download them from your PC at home then this is the obvious choice for you. It also provides a backup for your messages since if your computer crashes and your email client with it then your emails are still available on your incoming server. This off course posses disk space limitations set by your email service. 

POP3 ( Third version of the post office protocol) - A protocol similar to IMAP but which by default will delete messages from your web mailbox when these are downloaded locally by an email client. This is the most popular and easy to use protocol for an incoming server so if you want to escape from the additional complications of IMAP this is the best choice. POP3 still gives you the option to leave messages on the your internet server but this will cause it to become slower when managing your emails.

Outgoing Server email Protocol

SMTP ( Simple Mail Transfer Protocol)- This is the protocol used on the outgoing server to send your mails to the specified recipients.

Authentication

Most paid email subscriptions require a security protocol that will encrypt your personal data ( password and other communication) while communicating with them with your email client. The most commonly used authentication protocol used is called SSL ( Secure Socket Layer).

Set up email Client

But let us dive into some real stuff. An email client that will take all the complications of email setup and give you an easy to use single point of access to all your email accounts. Did i forget to tell you…. It is absolutely free ( an open source project) and available to both PCs and MACs. It is called Thunderbird and is part of the applications offered by Mozilla a non profit organization dedicated to promote openness innovation and opportunity on the Web. So If you want to give it a try go ahead and download Thunderbirdand I will walk you thought its trivial configuration setup.

Thunderbird Setup ( See this quick video to setup your email accounts using Thunderbird)