Why do people use email programs like Outlook and Thunderbird? (14)

1 Name: 4n0n4ym0u5 h4xx0r : 2006-04-23 07:25 ID:OIp5PILF

I never understood why people would go to the work of configuring and using a POP program when most email services have a web interface. I myself never bothered to try one... is there a reason I should?

2 Name: 4n0n4ym0u5 h4xx0r : 2006-04-23 11:23 ID:DBL76VWe

  • Web "applications" can be slow and cumbersome, and may not work with all browsers.
  • Some webmail services have size limits, and start bouncing mail when your inbox is full. Regularly downloading and clearing it prevents this.
  • Mail stored locally can be read even when you're not connected to the internet.

That's all I can think of. There's no really pressing reason to change, if you're happy with it.

3 Name: Albright!LC/IWhc3yc : 2006-04-23 20:05 ID:ixGK/Aex

Personally I don't like Outlook and Thunderbird as I think they both do too much. I use OS X's plainly-titled Mail program, but not before telling it to use plain text for as much as possible (as opposed to HTML or RTF email… neither of which belong in email).

Anyway, it's just the whole thing about using the right tool for the job. Web interfaces can be very versatile and will become even more so, but dedicated clients are still better suited to the task. Would you rather use Yahoo! Chat than an IRC client? Google's start page thingie instead of a dedicated RSS reader?

In addition to what >>2 said, email clients also have better filtering controls. I have a filter set up that automatically trashes forwarded mail, because it's almost always either spam or stupid chain mail things my sister or mother sends me.

4 Name: dmpk2k!hinhT6kz2E : 2006-04-23 23:45 ID:Heaven

We don't use a webmail interface at my work, for obvious reasons. Email is used for more than personal life.

5 Name: 1-san : 2006-04-24 04:35 ID:Heaven


I guess I don't get enough email to make it worth it.
Thanks for the responses.

6 Name: 4n0n4ym0u5 h4xx0r : 2006-05-04 07:31 ID:F7MpILxw

Downloaded mail gets indexed by beagle, google desktop and whatever desktop search software you may use.

7 Name: 4n0n4ym0u5 h4xx0r : 2006-05-05 01:03 ID:Heaven

Downloaded mail can be searched with "grep".

8 Name: 4n0n4ym0u5 h4xx0r : 2006-05-06 11:53 ID:XrTJ+NoZ

and possibly the most common reason its used:
They provide an interface where they may not be one.

such as a mail server with dos only communication

9 Name: Redhatter : 2006-05-08 00:31 ID:Heaven

I've used webmail in the past, but I prefer a desktop app.

Largely due to the clunkiness and latency associated with a webapp. HTTP is lousy at maintaining a session. And once your browser has downloaded a page, there's no way of keeping in touch until the browser requests another page.

I've also found them to be less featureful than the desktop clients. I require a mail client that supports GPG well, can thread-sort messages, and I need it to be efficient. SquirrelMail does this quite well, but it's not as nice as a proper client.

10 Name: 4n0n4ym0u5 h4xx0r : 2006-05-08 16:09 ID:aPUyclwV

I've been wondering why people bother with configuring complicated interfaces like Outlook and Thunderbird when they could be using simple, effective programs like mutt.

11 Name: 4n0n4ym0u5 h4xx0r : 2006-05-08 17:34 ID:R4RuVZmu

How are the interfaces of Outlook and Thunderbird in any way complicated?

12 Name: Redhatter : 2006-05-09 00:21 ID:Heaven

I do use mutt-ng when I'm not at home... but I've found navigation in mutt-ng a little awkward.

I can't seem, for instance, to copy a set of tagged emails between folders... a useful function.

13 Name: 4n0n4ym0u5 h4xx0r : 2006-05-24 01:12 ID:5HK7i5nC

I use PC-Pine at work. It predates Mutt and has a similar text-based interface, but works fine in a Windows environment even though it's a port of the University of Washington's Unix-based Pine email client.

It lacks an integrated spam filter like that included with Thunderbird, but it's much faster, and the keyboard interface lets you manipulate your mail more rapidly once you've learned the keystrokes (but you can still use it with a mouse).

14 Name: 4n0n4ym0u5 h4xx0r : 2006-06-04 21:27 ID:7O0s/er8

I prefer webmail. I can access it from any computer that has internet, unlike outlook or something, which I don't think I can just open up from school computer. And if my entire computer just up and explodes, at least I'll still have my emails.

Plus, outlook doesn't work on my computer. Used to work, and I used and hated it, but then my dad was 'fixing' my computer and ever since then it hasn't worked. Not that I care, I really hate it. I use both Gmail and Yahoo instead.

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