On Thu, 18 Mar 2004 22:26:02 +0000
Timothy Murphy <tim at birdsnest.maths.tcd.ie> wrote:
> I've been asked to comment on an article on web-mail.
> As I know absolutely nothing about this,
> I thought I'd pick the brains of you ILUG gurus.
>> The article basically considers only hotmail and yahoo.
> Is that reasonable?
No more or less reasonable than the 'office productivity'
articles that talk about MS Office only.
> I seem to get a webmail facility from Sir Anthony.
> Is something like that provided by all ISPs?
Nope.. you'll primarily find it from the ISPs that
target the consumer/home market.
>> Also, I wondered if one has a PC attached to the internet,
> can one always download email from a web-mail server?
Nope - The original designs for the IP protocols were
such that each device on the planet would have a unique
address and could be independantly addressable ( and
hence reachable if connectivity permitted )
With the arrival of network address translation
that rule got dropped, and now we have two roles
that machines can carry - that of client, and
that of server ( and there is nothing stopping
a machine being both :-)
To achieve your needs the 'web-mail server' needs to
be setup to allow connectivity from any IP address.
Some web mail providers allow this, some don't.
The likes of yahoo & hotmail are targetting a global
market, so it is in their interests to provide that
service to the entire pool of IP addresses - but the
local/regional ISPs may only be interested in letting
people who have dialed into their modem banks get
at the webmail ( just so they get a portion of the
call revenue ).
As a general rule though, most ISPs will get it in
the neck from their customers if the web interface
isn't reachable globally.
The other issue is the assumption that just because
you can see stuff on the internet, that you are
'connected' to the internet - which isn't always true.
If you are going through a proxy server, then you
only get to see/do what it lets you. So if you have
a web-mail service that requires you to use HTTPS for
encryption of data between you and the server -
and you happen to be in a country proxies all
the web traffic ( and they happen to not like
encrypted traffic ) then you might have difficulties.
> Timothy Murphy
> e-mail (<80k only): tim /at/ birdsnest.maths.tcd.ie
> tel: +353-86-2336090, +353-1-2842366
> s-mail: School of Mathematics, Trinity College, Dublin 2, Ireland
> Irish Linux Users' Group
Chris Higgins Cisco Learning Partner
Darach Technology Ltd tel: +353-1-6204370
email: chris.higgins at darach.ie fax: +353-1-6204371
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