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A puzzling behavior in an IMAP account


Gene
 

I just started playing around with my Gmail account set up as IMAP in one e-mail program, the latest version of Thunderbird portable. I have it set to delete messages from the inbox when I delete messages from my computer and, as far as I can see, from the GMail inbox. But when I run another e-mail program, Windows Live Mail, the messages download there even though the GMail web interface shows the inbox to be empty. So where is GMail downloading the messages from?

Gene


Mike B
 

Doesn't Gmail store copies of messages in the Trash folder for 30 days?  If so, maybe that's the source.

Take care.  Mike.  Sent from my iBarstool.  Go dodgers!

----- Original Message -----
From: Gene
Sent: Thursday, September 17, 2020 5:07 AM
Subject: [TechTalk] A puzzling behavior in an IMAP account

I just started playing around with my Gmail account set up as IMAP in one
e-mail program, the latest version of Thunderbird portable.  I have it set
to delete messages from the inbox when I delete messages from my computer
and, as far as I can see, from the GMail inbox.  But when I run another
e-mail program, Windows Live Mail, the messages download there even though
the GMail web interface shows the inbox to be empty.  So where is GMail
downloading the messages from?

Gene






Blaster
 

Hmm, Since IMAP allows multiple devices to access and control one
e-mail account, Is it possible that Live Mail is downloading e-mail
from Thunderbird? Did Live mail download any e-mails that you
previously deleted with Thunderbird? If so, that is a concern.

On 9/17/20, Gene <gsasner@...> wrote:
I just started playing around with my Gmail account set up as IMAP in one
e-mail program, the latest version of Thunderbird portable. I have it set
to delete messages from the inbox when I delete messages from my computer
and, as far as I can see, from the GMail inbox. But when I run another
e-mail program, Windows Live Mail, the messages download there even though
the GMail web interface shows the inbox to be empty. So where is GMail
downloading the messages from?

Gene







 

Gene,

           Did you allow sufficient time for the client where you did the deleting to sync to the server first, then make certain that the other client/device had done a sync to the server subsequent to that?

            Synchronization is not instantaneous, and occurs on timed cycles (at least most of the time), and if you've just deleted messages in one client/device, it has to sync those deletions to the server so it knows the messages need to be removed, then after that happens the other client/device has to do a sync so that it knows to remove them from itself.  I just had a client the other day who could not understand why Outlook on her PC was "so slow about catching up" to changes that had already occurred, whether that was incoming mail, deleted messages, etc., on her smartphone or tablet.  It was because the sync interval for Outlook was once every 30 minutes, which is an incredibly long time between checks if you want anything like the appearance of instantaneous change.  I never use longer than 10 minutes.
--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 2004, Build 19041  

Always remember that computers are just glorified light bulbs - they rarely fail in continuous use and usually go pop when turned off and on.

        ~ Technician with the username Computer Bloke, on Technibble.com


Gene
 

I can't say it isn't but that is illogical behavior.  I may experiment by deleting the trash and see what happens.


Gene

On 9/17/2020 7:58 AM, Mike B wrote:

Doesn't Gmail store copies of messages in the Trash folder for 30 days?  If so, maybe that's the source.

Take care.  Mike.  Sent from my iBarstool.  Go dodgers!
----- Original Message -----
From: Gene
Sent: Thursday, September 17, 2020 5:07 AM
Subject: [TechTalk] A puzzling behavior in an IMAP account

I just started playing around with my Gmail account set up as IMAP in one
e-mail program, the latest version of Thunderbird portable.  I have it set
to delete messages from the inbox when I delete messages from my computer
and, as far as I can see, from the GMail inbox.  But when I run another
e-mail program, Windows Live Mail, the messages download there even though
the GMail web interface shows the inbox to be empty.  So where is GMail
downloading the messages from?

Gene






Gene
 

I'm not sure what you are asking.  I see no reason that Windows Live Mail is going into the Thunderbird program and importing messages from there.  No other messages have been downloaded than mail I read in Thunderbird before I deleted it.


Gene

On 9/17/2020 7:59 AM, Blaster wrote:
Hmm, Since IMAP allows multiple devices to access and control one
e-mail account, Is it possible that Live Mail is downloading e-mail
from Thunderbird? Did Live mail download any e-mails that you
previously deleted with Thunderbird? If so, that is a concern.



On 9/17/20, Gene <gsasner@...> wrote:
I just started playing around with my Gmail account set up as IMAP in one
e-mail program, the latest version of Thunderbird portable. I have it set
to delete messages from the inbox when I delete messages from my computer
and, as far as I can see, from the GMail inbox. But when I run another
e-mail program, Windows Live Mail, the messages download there even though
the GMail web interface shows the inbox to be empty. So where is GMail
downloading the messages from?

Gene








Gene
 

I thought synchronization would occur quickly.  I checked perhaps a minute or two after I deleted the messages.  The account where mail is being downloaded a second time is a POP3 account, though I don't think that would matter.  The inbox in the GMail account itself is empty when I check online so synchronization should have occurred before I got new mail using Windows Live Mail and my POP3 account.


POP3 meets my needs well but I'm curious about this odd behavior. 


Gene

On 9/17/2020 9:30 AM, Brian Vogel wrote:
Gene,

           Did you allow sufficient time for the client where you did the deleting to sync to the server first, then make certain that the other client/device had done a sync to the server subsequent to that?

            Synchronization is not instantaneous, and occurs on timed cycles (at least most of the time), and if you've just deleted messages in one client/device, it has to sync those deletions to the server so it knows the messages need to be removed, then after that happens the other client/device has to do a sync so that it knows to remove them from itself.  I just had a client the other day who could not understand why Outlook on her PC was "so slow about catching up" to changes that had already occurred, whether that was incoming mail, deleted messages, etc., on her smartphone or tablet.  It was because the sync interval for Outlook was once every 30 minutes, which is an incredibly long time between checks if you want anything like the appearance of instantaneous change.  I never use longer than 10 minutes.
--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 2004, Build 19041  

Always remember that computers are just glorified light bulbs - they rarely fail in continuous use and usually go pop when turned off and on.

        ~ Technician with the username Computer Bloke, on Technibble.com


Gene
 

Mike and Brian
I deleted the trash and my mail was still downloaded in my POP3 account with another program. Its very puzzling.

Gene

-----Original Message-----
From: Mike B
Sent: Thursday, September 17, 2020 7:58 AM
To: main@TechTalk.groups.io
Subject: Re: [TechTalk] A puzzling behavior in an IMAP account


Doesn't Gmail store copies of messages in the Trash folder for 30 days? If so, maybe that's the source.

Take care. Mike. Sent from my iBarstool. Go dodgers!
----- Original Message -----
From: Gene
To: main@TechTalk.groups.io
Sent: Thursday, September 17, 2020 5:07 AM
Subject: [TechTalk] A puzzling behavior in an IMAP account

I just started playing around with my Gmail account set up as IMAP in one
e-mail program, the latest version of Thunderbird portable. I have it set
to delete messages from the inbox when I delete messages from my computer
and, as far as I can see, from the GMail inbox. But when I run another
e-mail program, Windows Live Mail, the messages download there even though
the GMail web interface shows the inbox to be empty. So where is GMail
downloading the messages from?

Gene


 

Gene,

          You've nailed your problem right there.  Gmail handles POP3 and IMAP, even for the same account, pretty much as though they're entirely different servers.  I've never understood what the actual mechanics of this are in practice, but Gmail allows you to turn on options for both POP and IMAP access for a single account, and when they are both on, each access method works in "it's own little world."  In practice it is never expected that a single account will be accessed with both protocols. If Google had been smart that radio button would allow only one of those two options to be active.  And as you've now learned from direct experience, when one is, there's always a level of madness that ensues if mixed access via different clients is used.

          With any given account, if you're using IMAP, use it in each and every client that accesses the account if you want things kept in sync.

--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 2004, Build 19041  

Always remember that computers are just glorified light bulbs - they rarely fail in continuous use and usually go pop when turned off and on.

        ~ Technician with the username Computer Bloke, on Technibble.com


Gene
 

That's surprising and unexpected. Windows Live Mail is my preferred program and POP3 meets my needs well but its nice to be able to open Thunderbird and easily find something if I want to refer to it again in Trash. I can also check my spam folder in Thunderbird which is faster and more convenient than going to my GMail page online.

And I have convenient access to the GMail all mail mailbox.

Gene

-----Original Message-----
From: Brian Vogel
Sent: Thursday, September 17, 2020 1:28 PM
To: main@TechTalk.groups.io
Subject: Re: [TechTalk] A puzzling behavior in an IMAP account

Gene,

You've nailed your problem right there. Gmail handles POP3 and IMAP, even for the same account, pretty much as though they're entirely different servers. I've never understood what the actual mechanics of this are in practice, but Gmail allows you to turn on options for both POP and IMAP access for a single account, and when they are both on, each access method works in "it's own little world." In practice it is never expected that a single account will be accessed with both protocols. If Google had been smart that radio button would allow only one of those two options to be active. And as you've now learned from direct experience, when one is, there's always a level of madness that ensues if mixed access via different clients is used.

With any given account, if you're using IMAP, use it in each and every client that accesses the account if you want things kept in sync.

--


Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 2004, Build 19041

Always remember that computers are just glorified light bulbs - they rarely fail in continuous use and usually go pop when turned off and on.

~ Technician with the username Computer Bloke, on Technibble.com


Blaster
 

That totally makes sense. I was following this thread, because if I'm
correct, I believe Gene was going to use Thunderbird to cut through
the bulk of the lists e-mails, deleting the ones he didn't want and
leaving the ones that he did want on the server where he could
download them with Live mail for archival purposes. At least that's
what I thought was intriguing .

On 9/17/20, Brian Vogel <@britechguy> wrote:
Gene,

You've nailed your problem right there. Gmail handles POP3 and IMAP, even
for the same account, pretty much as though they're entirely different
servers. I've never understood what the actual mechanics of this are in
practice, but Gmail allows you to turn on options for both POP and IMAP
access for a single account, and when they are both on, each access method
works in "it's own little world." In practice it is never expected that a
single account will be accessed with both protocols. If Google had been
smart that radio button would allow only one of those two options to be
active. And as you've now learned from direct experience, when one is,
there's always a level of madness that ensues if mixed access via different
clients is used.

With any given account, if you're using IMAP, use it in each and every
client that accesses the account if you want things kept in sync.

--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 2004, Build 19041

*Always remember that computers are just glorified light bulbs - they rarely
fail in continuous use and usually go pop when turned off and on.*

~ Technician with the username Computer Bloke, on Technibble.com






Gene
 

No, I delete most messages, saving this or that one in a different folder.  But all the messages I deleted were downloaded again in Windows Live Mail using a POP3 account.  I have no idea why this happens, but according to Brian, this sort of thing or other oddities are to be expected when you use two different protocols, if that is the right term, with the same account.


Gene

On 9/17/2020 1:38 PM, Blaster wrote:
That totally makes sense. I was following this thread, because if I'm
correct, I believe Gene was going to use Thunderbird to cut through
the bulk of the lists e-mails, deleting the ones he didn't want and
leaving the ones that he did want on the server where he could
download them with Live mail for archival purposes. At least that's
what I thought was intriguing .

On 9/17/20, Brian Vogel <@britechguy> wrote:
Gene,

You've nailed your problem right there. Gmail handles POP3 and IMAP, even
for the same account, pretty much as though they're entirely different
servers. I've never understood what the actual mechanics of this are in
practice, but Gmail allows you to turn on options for both POP and IMAP
access for a single account, and when they are both on, each access method
works in "it's own little world." In practice it is never expected that a
single account will be accessed with both protocols. If Google had been
smart that radio button would allow only one of those two options to be
active. And as you've now learned from direct experience, when one is,
there's always a level of madness that ensues if mixed access via different
clients is used.

With any given account, if you're using IMAP, use it in each and every
client that accesses the account if you want things kept in sync.

--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 2004, Build 19041

*Always remember that computers are just glorified light bulbs - they rarely
fail in continuous use and usually go pop when turned off and on.*

~ Technician with the username Computer Bloke, on Technibble.com







Gene
 

I should add that it isn't clear to me whether this is a characteristic of GMail or of using two different protocols in general with providers.


Gene

On 9/17/2020 1:33 PM, Gene via groups.                     wrote:
That's surprising and unexpected.  Windows Live Mail is my preferred program and POP3 meets my needs well but its nice to be able to open Thunderbird and easily find something if I want to refer to it again in Trash.  I can also check my spam folder in Thunderbird which is faster and more convenient than going to my GMail page online.

And I have convenient access to the GMail all mail mailbox.

Gene
-----Original Message----- From: Brian Vogel
Sent: Thursday, September 17, 2020 1:28 PM
To: main@TechTalk.groups.io
Subject: Re: [TechTalk] A puzzling behavior in an IMAP account

Gene,

         You've nailed your problem right there.  Gmail handles POP3 and IMAP, even for the same account, pretty much as though they're entirely different servers.  I've never understood what the actual mechanics of this are in practice, but Gmail allows you to turn on options for both POP and IMAP access for a single account, and when they are both on, each access method works in "it's own little world."  In practice it is never expected that a single account will be accessed with both protocols. If Google had been smart that radio button would allow only one of those two options to be active.  And as you've now learned from direct experience, when one is, there's always a level of madness that ensues if mixed access via different clients is used.

         With any given account, if you're using IMAP, use it in each and every client that accesses the account if you want things kept in sync.


 

On Thu, Sep 17, 2020 at 02:34 PM, Gene wrote:
That's surprising and unexpected.
-
Gene, what follows is not meant as argumentative, but, no, it's not.  If you are using IMAP or Exchange then it's expected that you will use that protocol for all access.  One of the primary reasons for both coming into being was so synchronization was an automatic and seamless part of the protocol, no matter how many devices and clients were connected to the same account.

POP3 has always been a nightmare to keep synchronized when its default settings are used, and a challenge even when tweaked.  It really should not be used by anyone who intends to access the same account from multiple devices or on the same device but using multiple e-mail clients.  It is that simple, and if you want to web search you'll find this is not a matter of personal opinion.

POP3 and IMAP/Exchange are from two very different eras of e-mail access.  POP3 being the earliest and from a time where it was never anticipated that people would be looking at the same account in multiple locations and using multiple clients and devices.  It is an anachronism at this point in time.
 
--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 2004, Build 19041  

Always remember that computers are just glorified light bulbs - they rarely fail in continuous use and usually go pop when turned off and on.

        ~ Technician with the username Computer Bloke, on Technibble.com


 

On Thu, Sep 17, 2020 at 02:50 PM, Gene wrote:
I should add that it isn't clear to me whether this is a characteristic of GMail or of using two different protocols in general with providers.
-
The latter.  Mixed access methods invariably lead to "unexpected results."  And even using POP3 and only POP3 on multiple devices often leads to a complete mess with regard to keeping things in sync if used with the default settings, which immediately removes a message from the server after download.
 
--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 2004, Build 19041  

Always remember that computers are just glorified light bulbs - they rarely fail in continuous use and usually go pop when turned off and on.

        ~ Technician with the username Computer Bloke, on Technibble.com


Gene
 

The reason I say its surprising is that both methods access the same server.  If I use IMAP in Thunderbird, delete all messages from the inbox of the program, then look at the GMail web interface, the inbox is empty.  But the POP3 program is downloading the same messages from somewhere. 


Also, the reverse doesn't happen.  If I look at and delete mail with my POP3 account in Windows Live Mail, then open Thunderbird, no messages I've already looked at are downloaded. 


Gene

On 9/17/2020 2:07 PM, Brian Vogel wrote:
On Thu, Sep 17, 2020 at 02:50 PM, Gene wrote:
I should add that it isn't clear to me whether this is a characteristic of GMail or of using two different protocols in general with providers.
-
The latter.  Mixed access methods invariably lead to "unexpected results."  And even using POP3 and only POP3 on multiple devices often leads to a complete mess with regard to keeping things in sync if used with the default settings, which immediately removes a message from the server after download.
 
--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 2004, Build 19041  

Always remember that computers are just glorified light bulbs - they rarely fail in continuous use and usually go pop when turned off and on.

        ~ Technician with the username Computer Bloke, on Technibble.com


 

Gene,

          They do, but they don't.  Gmail does have its own "in house method" for allowing an account to be set up for POP3 and IMAP access.  It makes perfect sense that if you delete mail under POP3 it would disappear under IMAP with Gmail, as POP3 will, when you exit a client, send a purge request for whatever you've deleted as part of shutting down.  It will even do this on the next send/receive request when you're not shutting down.  The messages are literally removed as part of that process, so if you open up something else using IMAP they're already gone.

           IMAP marks messages for deletion, and leaves it up to the server exactly when it purges them.  They won't be downloaded again by an IMAP server to other devices using IMAP if they've been marked for deletion but not purged.  But I would presume, since POP operates under the presumption that, "If it's there, and I haven't yet snagged it, I need to snag it," that it will for as yet undownloaded messages that were marked for an IMAP purge but not yet purged, as POP has no conception of a message marked for removal by IMAP but not yet actually purged.

            All of the above interactions are why no single account should be using two different access methods.  What can and does occur just gets weird.
--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 2004, Build 19041  

Always remember that computers are just glorified light bulbs - they rarely fail in continuous use and usually go pop when turned off and on.

        ~ Technician with the username Computer Bloke, on Technibble.com


Gene
 

That's very interesting.


Gene

On 9/17/2020 2:22 PM, Brian Vogel wrote:
Gene,

          They do, but they don't.  Gmail does have its own "in house method" for allowing an account to be set up for POP3 and IMAP access.  It makes perfect sense that if you delete mail under POP3 it would disappear under IMAP with Gmail, as POP3 will, when you exit a client, send a purge request for whatever you've deleted as part of shutting down.  It will even do this on the next send/receive request when you're not shutting down.  The messages are literally removed as part of that process, so if you open up something else using IMAP they're already gone.

           IMAP marks messages for deletion, and leaves it up to the server exactly when it purges them.  They won't be downloaded again by an IMAP server to other devices using IMAP if they've been marked for deletion but not purged.  But I would presume, since POP operates under the presumption that, "If it's there, and I haven't yet snagged it, I need to snag it," that it will for as yet undownloaded messages that were marked for an IMAP purge but not yet purged, as POP has no conception of a message marked for removal by IMAP but not yet actually purged.

            All of the above interactions are why no single account should be using two different access methods.  What can and does occur just gets weird.
--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 2004, Build 19041  

Always remember that computers are just glorified light bulbs - they rarely fail in continuous use and usually go pop when turned off and on.

        ~ Technician with the username Computer Bloke, on Technibble.com