To be frank, these days, we use email as a standard communication medium. Even Sometime years back, We used it as an instant messenger but now for official or private message sharing. Till today this is one of the fastest & easiest mediums of sharing important message or data. So, here lies its worthness among us. For that part, its values are bouncing up from higher to higher point over the time.
From clicking on the send button to arriving the mail in your friend’s inbox, We are explaining the steps for you throughout this whole article. However, you can imagine that this is nothing but easy, but believe me, it’s not so easy what we see. Behind the screen, there are a lot of complicated processes are to be passed.
If I give you some time can you imagine how does email works? If don’t then without further a do read out this article & comment your own thought below.
Let’s initiate the article about What is email?
Email stands for Electronic Mail. This is a process of exchanging message (as a form of mail) between sender & receiver through the internet. And, you know that the internet can’t run without electricity.
Generally, all of you know that our conventional or years’ old mailing system is offline based & it is done through the post office. Else apart, for the modern generation, it becomes online & electricity based. This happens to be much easier to create & send a mail. For this purpose, Email stands apart from normal mailing.
Which protocol does email use?
Email transmission stands on four protocols. They are HTTP, IMAP, POP, SMTP. The description is incomplete without discussing Protocols, works as a prominent part of it.
What is the HTTP protocol?
This stands for standard protocol. HTTPS full form is Hyper Text Transfer Protocol. It helps Webmail to work properly. When we use any browsers like Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, the HTTP protocol then comes in work.
What is IMAP & its ports?
IMAP is the Internet Message Access Protocol, mainly used by email clients for accessing incoming & outgoing messages from the email server.
This is one of the most important protocols to initiate the mailing procedure. Currently, all the email providers (outlook, Gmail etc.) servers use IMAP protocol.
It helps you access your mail from different locations at any time. This protocol is mainly used for teamwork.
Simple Mail Transfer Protocol is SMTP. It only works as a mail transferring agent from each operating system & makes it possible to forward the mail to another server. This connects the users to the main email serves by working as user-level client mail application.
The POP server stands for Post office protocol. The current name is POP3. It downloads email from the main server to the client-mail storage which we see in our phone or computer in the email inbox.
Domain Name Server works secretly from behind. When a user completes the formality of sending mail over the phone or computer, it starts working.
Another prominent part of the mailing process is email Client. This is MUA (Mail User Agent) in short. Gmail, Yahoo mail, Outlook etc are MUA.
MUA is the Mail home ground. However, it is our Mail homepage or the mailing application itself. Here, we get to access from composing to checking emails in mail inbox.
After that, it creates a connection to the POP server & helps in downloading the incoming or uploading the emails to the SMTP protocol.
Composing mail, Receiving mail, Reading emails & all the incoming & outgoing mails go out & comes in here in the inbox.
*We access it through our Web browser or application.
How Does email work?
From sending to reaching an email into the desired client’s account is generally a simple process in our view. But, it requires a lot of winding ways for an email to transfer to another place. Read out the tracking record of email’s long journey through different protocols. And, lastly, it pops out as ‘an email received’.
The journeys of an email step by step methods.
- We open up our logged in mail account in browser or application > Compose a mail to send > Here, we send the mail. Now the journey begins. The email directly reaches MTA. Then, SMTP protocol handles the transferring the message to the mail server.
- Secondly, DNS takes the charge. So, let the DNS search for the recipient’s MTA. In its huge listed database, DNS firstly takes the recipient’s mail id & partly searches for it. ‘[email protected]’. the mail id as an example.→ i) It takes the username, ‘abcd1’. → ii) searches for gmail.com in the host list by the IP. And, confirms the destination server, ‘@gmail.com’. → iii) Rest of the duties go to the SMTP server. *In this process, DNS searches into the different type of Domain record that is MX record(Mail Exchanger). This only comes to use for email or message transmission purpose.
- And, you see that SMTP protocol handles this step of communication between sender’s mail server & receiver’s mail server. »It leaves the message in receipient’s mail server (MTA) to do the further activity.
- Now, the email client confirms its user(receiver mail address) to whom the email is sent. And, notifies into mailbox with the new mail. POP3 server generally does this process.
- All the mails are sent from the sender, come to the queue of SMTP server.
- If a user sends mail to an unknown or unidentified mail (using wrong server), it gets chocked at the DNS. DNS have the whole database of all the Mail Client. After trying for several times to find out the receipient’s mail address, it sends failure message to the sender’s inbox.
- A user can download each mailusing both POP3 & SMTP protocol.
- Pop3 downloads the mail attachment or file from mail server to our local computer or phone. Else, SMTP helps in keeping the mails in the server without downloading them.