Work with POP3 messages on multiple computers

By default, when you download new messages on a POP3 (POP3: A common protocol that is used to retrieve e-mail messages from an Internet e-mail server.) e-mail account (e-mail account: The server name, user name, password, and e-mail address used by Outlook to connect to an e-mail service. You create the e-mail account in Outlook by using information provided by your administrator or Internet service provider (ISP).), the messages are deleted from the POP3 server. If you check your POP3 e-mail account from different computers using the default Microsoft Outlook POP3 settings, the computer that downloads a new e-mail message is the only location where the message is stored. The message would no longer be on the POP3 e-mail server when you connect from another computer.

You can choose to download a copy of new e-mail messages and not delete items from the POP3 e-mail server. This can be useful if you check your POP3 e-mail account from multiple profiles or computers. For example, you can download a copy of the messages on your work computer, and then on your home computer, you could download the e-mail messages and delete them from the POP3 server.

ShowDownload a copy of the messages and leave them on the POP3 server

  1. If you have not already added the POP3 account to the Outlook profile, add it now.

ShowHow?

  1. On the Tools menu, click E-mail Accounts.
  2. Click Add a new e-mail account, and then click Next.
  3. Click POP3, and then click Next.
  4. In the appropriate boxes, type the information given to you by your Internet service provider (ISP) (ISP: A business that provides access to the Internet for such things as electronic mail, chat rooms, or use of the World Wide Web. Some ISPs are multinational, offering access in many locations, while others are limited to a specific region.) or e-mail administrator.
  1. Set up up your POP3 account to retrieve messages, but not delete them from the server.

ShowHow?

  1. On the Tools menu, click E-mail accounts.
  2. Click View or change existing e-mail accounts, and then click Next.
  3. Under Name, select the POP3 account you want to change, and then click Change.
  4. Click More Settings.
  5. Click the Advanced tab, and then under Delivery, select the Leave a copy of messages on the server check box.

You can also select whether to automatically remove messages from your e-mail server after a specified number of days, when you delete the item on your computer, or when the Deleted Items folder is emptied. These settings may help prevent you from exceeding the mailbox size limit amount your ISP has set.

  1. Do one of the following:

ShowManually get new messages

  • On the Tools menu, point to Send/Receive, point to the account, and then click Inbox.

ShowAutomatically get new messages

  1. On the Tools menu, point to Send/Receive, point to Send/Receive Settings, and then click Define Send/Receive Groups.
  2. Under Group Name, select a group that contains your POP3 account, and then under Setting for group name, select the Schedule an automatic send/receive every x minutes check box, and then enter a number between 1 and 1440.

 Note   If you have not created any custom Send/Receive groups, select the All Accounts group.

Your POP3 e-mail server will be checked and new messages downloaded according to the schedule you specified.

 Note   Most ISPs have a size limit on your POP3 mailbox. If you do not remove items from the server, your account will eventually exceed the amount allotted by your ISP, therefore, preventing additional messages from being received and possibly incurring additional charges. For more information, contact your ISP.

ShowDownload messages and remove them from the POP3 server

  1. If you have not already added the POP3 account to the Outlook profile, add it now.

ShowHow?

  1. On the Tools menu, click E-mail Accounts.
  2. Click Add a new e-mail account, and then click Next.
  3. Click POP3, and then click Next.
  4. In the appropriate boxes, type the information given to you by your Internet service provider (ISP) (ISP: A business that provides access to the Internet for such things as electronic mail, chat rooms, or use of the World Wide Web. Some ISPs are multinational, offering access in many locations, while others are limited to a specific region.) or e-mail administrator.
  1. Do one of the following:

ShowManually get new messages

  • On the Tools menu, point to Send/Receive, point to the account, and then click Inbox.

ShowAutomatically get new messages

  1. On the Tools menu, point to Send/Receive, point to Send/Receive Settings, and then click Define Send/Receive Groups.
  2. Under Group Name, select a group that contains your POP3 account, and then under Setting for group name, select the Schedule an automatic send/receive every x minutes check box, and then enter a number between 1 and 1440.

 Note   If you have not created any custom Send/Receive groups, select the All Accounts group.

Your POP3 e-mail server will be checked and new messages downloaded according to the schedule you specified.

ShowTip

If you want to access new messages on any computer, an alternative is to use the steps for "Download a copy of the messages and leave them on the POP3 server" on all computers. When you select the Leave a copy of messages on the server check box, also select the Remove from server after x days check box. This allows you to check your mail from any computer in any order within the number of days specified. Mail is removed from the POP3 server when the time limit is exceeded.

 Note   If your profile does not contain a Microsoft Exchange Server e-mail account, your messages are stored on your computer in a Personal Folders file (.pst) (Personal Folders file (.pst): Data file that stores your messages and other items on your computer. You can assign a .pst file to be the default delivery location for e-mail messages. You can use a .pst to organize and back up items for safekeeping.). However, if your profile contains both an Exchange Server and a POP3 e-mail account and you use the default setting to deliver all new messages to the Exchange mailbox, your downloaded POP3 messages are stored in your Exchange account on the Exchange server. Any profile you use, on any computer, with access to the Exchange server mailbox would be able to see the previously downloaded POP3 e-mail messages. You can use Outlook rules to deliver POP3 messages to a .pst file when the profile also contains an Exchange e-mail account.

 
 
Applies to:
Outlook 2003