Some of us might be waited for this for a long time (but not me :p), Google finally added the IMAP functionality in Gmail! So, what exactly is IMAP and why is everyone are so excited about it? IMAP stands for Internet Message Access Protocol. It is one of the two protocols that most mail client support. Another more common and widely used protocol is POP (Post Office Protocol). But why people prefer IMAP over POP? The reason is because POP will download a copy of your email when you retrieve your mail using an email client. The email will still available in the server even though you deleted it from your client (ie: Outlook Express, Outlook) However, this is dependent on your mail server provider. For example, Gmail allow you to change the setting of POP. You can choose to either archive, delete or keep a copy (in the mail server) after you download your email to your client. But with IMAP, the client will synchronize with the mail server. So, if you mark you email as read, it will also be reflected in the mail server. You can also check the explanation/advantage of IMAP in the Gmail help page over here.
I’ll post a step-by-step guide on how to setup the Gmail IMAP account in Windows Live Mail later.