Is POP dead?

Hi there
It’s strange: I have set several mail accounts and simultaneously consult these using the webmail and from my home Mac, using POP(secure).
Since yesterday morning, and for one of these accounts, doesn’t throw any error up but it doesn’t fetch anything at all.
It appears to be ok but empty… I still have some 300 mails in the webmail…
I never changed any setting whatsoever so what’s the problem ?
I once reached over 1000 mails in all the directories (trash included) but I tidied the whole up and it has not changed anything.
And no: I won’t switch from POP to IMAP: no way. Thanks.

Webmail is an IMAP client, so if you move mail into folders via webmail, it will no longer be accessible to a POP3 client. Only the inbox is accessible via POP3.

I’m trying and trying, but I can’t think of one single advantage POP3 has over IMAP, while IMAP has a number of them over POP3 (well, the protocol itself is simpler but I suspect you aren’t writing your own mail client). I originally read this post because I thought your subject line, “Is POP dead”, was metaphorical and you were asking if anyone still used it at all.

If you want useful replies, ask smart questions.

I have not moved any file at the moment, it’s all in the inbox.
Dreamhost POP has a problem with one of my accounts and it’s making me crazy.

Concerning using imap, I have tons of tons and years of mails on my home machines and backup systems, I don’t care about not being able to access these from far away… and I don’t want some of these to fall under unscrupulous eyes.

Oh, important bit: THANKS for your reply :slight_smile:

I know exactly what you are talking about. I had it happen several times last year, and one of my mail accounts here is doing it right now.

Yesterday at 3:43PM PDT that account delivered it’s last e-mail via POP3. Even though e-mails kept arriving in the account, and even though Squirrel Mail (web mail - ugh!!!) shows the new e-mail, my POP3 client on my iBook laptop logs in, shakes hands and reports no new e-mail. It has been doing that for the last 16 hours (maybe a hunderd e-mails) since I reported it to DeramHost support.

Just to verify that once again the problem was not in my 'puter, but was at the ‘randy’ server, I fired up another machine that had not even used it’s e-mail client for over a year, started the mail application and had it look for new e-mail at my Dreamhost accounts.

That POP3 client downloaded 1500 e-mails, including over 300 from the POP3 problem account, but it, too saw nothing newer than 3:43PM PST on that account, just as had happened from my laptop.

In the past when this has happened to me (per my Dreamhost Support History) they have seen no problems even though shortly after they poke around and reply e-mail suddenly floods in via POP3…

There only suggestion of a possible problem is that it might be “server load” causing the hang-up. That is HIGHLY doubtful since the machine that hadn’t checked that account for over a year was able to rapidly download over 300 e-mails via POP3, but then stopped at the very same last received e-mail as the other machine.

There is a problem, it is at Dreamhost.

Good luck on getting the problem cleared!

So far, I have zero response from support.

Take care,

P.S. I just started a search through the problems mentioned here in the forum, and have found others where this happens, such as:

One thing that seems to stand out is even though the problem is at the Dreamhost end (since it happens with multiple, unrelated remote clients), it seems to happen to Mac OS X clients.

Maybe that will help the Dreamhost folks to narrow the problem (though they should have spotted that already themselves).


Thanks forr the kind and detailed reply.
I solved the problem myself: Here’s how I did this:

  1. go to squirrel mail and create new folder “whatever”
  2. move all the inbox mails to “whatever”
  3. go to pop client and ask for the suppression of remote messages (I usually delay this operation by 24h so that, in the event of a disc crash, I always have my nightly backup + these 24h of mail)
  4. in squirrel mail: go to folder “whatever”, then select all mails, then move these back to inbox.
  5. the pop client wakes up and just collects whatever (I know, it was a stoopid folder name) he had to.
  6. in 24 hours pop client will erase old squirrel mail.
    Fertig/Erledigt but I still DO think Dreamhost has serious POP issues.
    All the best!

Thank YOU, Mirko, for your reply detailing how you reset the server at DH, by moving all your mail from folder to folder, so it would deliver mail via POP3 again. I haven’t done that for myself, yet, but going by the response I finally got from DH (on the third day), I may have to…

[quote]“I dont see any issues with the mail service for your domain. I’m able to
login and access mail with out issue both using a local email
client(thunderbird) and webmail.”[/quote]
I replied with as much detail as I can get from this end, again, and am patiently waiting fo them to do more than try it from a different OS and mail application. sigh

If I may, I’ll post any actual results here in your thread, Mirko.

Take care,

P.S. Am I the only one slightly annoyed with being referred to as a new DH user in the header above even though I’ve been a DH customer since early 2004? I know it’s just referring to the forum, but… :o)


Ha ha, yeah, I suppose that can be pretty irritating! Those titles can be really misleading at times. It’s particularly funny when you have a user that is not even a DH customer, gets in a flame war where he makes a lot of posts, and ends up with a “DH Familiar” or other title. :wink:


Of course, please post any interesting detail here as I suspect this will occur again and some kind of howto has to be compiled for others.

All the best :slight_smile:

PS: BTW, I am a recent DH user and I have to say I hope this goes better than my first month here as it seems I arrived in the middle of some technical earthquake: my previous isp was 8 times more expensive but my servers were responsive, so was the support.

I’ve been experiencing this same issue over the last 5 days but using MS Outlook 2003. When viewing the message send/receive details, everything looks fine connecting to Dreamhost but no new emails are downloaded. I’ve set up my DH mailbox to forward to a Gmail address, which works fine. All the new email is in there.

Relying on Dreamhost’s mail service is risky and I wouldn’t recommend it.

Relying on MS Outlook 2003 is risky and I wouldn’t recommend it. :wink:

(I’m sorry, I just couldn’t resist)

Relying on pen and paper is risky and I wouldn’t recommend it.

– Moses

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hhhmmm… interesting reading. i’m a bit of a POP fan myself and am using dreamhosts POP server with thunderbird on mac OSX. i seem to be getting mail ok, or at least i DO get mail - the weird thing is that every now and then i get the blip from thunderbird that advises me there is new mail and the icon shows the green ‘flag’ that confirms it. however, when i go to my app there is nothing new there.

i wonder if this is a related issue…

Well, I got a reply from support on the 13th (POP3 mail had been down for me since the 8th):

There may be a bad message that’s jamming up your inbox and confusing
your I have assisted other customers with similar issues, and
switching to Thunderbird always solved the problem. If you’d rather stay
with, try deleting messages through webmail that seem suspicious
starting with the first one that can’t download, and keep trying to
download through again.

I normally allow mail to stay on the server for one week after downloading them to my client, but I went in and started deleting e-mail from the server one at a time. The one that cleared the logjam was about 6 after the last one I was able to download, which only left a small gap in my downloaded e-mail.

At least I finally got a response. :slight_smile:

Problem “fixed” this time and I will know how to “fix” it again the next time.


I am a new DH customer this week.
So far, nothing’s working except tech support responses. Nice to have them! Such a shame my site’s a mess with nothing parsing and my mail is sitting on the server and pop3 is ignored.

I’m on a PC, so the muse that it’s a mac thing, isn’t on target.

I’m going to try the folder thing, but that seems like it’s … um. Just dumb. Even if it works. My previous host of 9 years used squirrel mail versions, and although it is extremely cumbersome and not at all customizable, this moving folder thing I think has nothing to do with it, but rather DH.

Nonetheless, I’ll try it. Next, is someone going to suggest we reboot? Or am I dating myself.

I’m glad to find this thread, since as a new customer, it’s hard to know if it might just be me.


Thought I’d let you know that moving from folder to folder has no impact, as of the last 3 moves.