Email is an essential part of modern communication. It allows people to send messages, files, and other information from one computer to another over the internet. But how exactly does email work? In this article, we will explore the basic workings of email.
At its core, email is a way to send messages from one computer to another using the Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP). When you send an email, it is broken down into small packets of data, which are then transmitted over the internet to the recipient's email server.
The email server then uses another protocol called the Post Office Protocol (POP) or Internet Message Access Protocol (IMAP) to retrieve the email and store it in the recipient's mailbox. The recipient can then access their mailbox and view the email.
To send an email, you need an email client, such as Microsoft Outlook or Gmail. This program connects to your email server using the SMTP protocol and sends the email to the recipient's email server.
When you send an email, you enter the recipient's email address, which consists of two parts: the username and the domain name. The username is the name of the recipient's mailbox, while the domain name is the name of the recipient's email server.
For example, if the recipient's email address is firstname.lastname@example.org, "john" is the username, and "example.com" is the domain name. The domain name is used to locate the recipient's email server on the internet.
Emails are typically sent using the Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP) port 25. However, there are alternative ports for sending email, such as port 587 and port 465, which are more secure.
Email servers use anti-spam filters to prevent unsolicited or unwanted emails from reaching their mailboxes. These filters use a variety of techniques, such as content analysis and IP address blacklisting, to identify and block spam emails.
In addition to sending and receiving messages, email can also be used to send and receive files, such as documents and images. Most email clients have a feature called attachments, which allows you to attach files to your emails.
Attachments are encoded and sent as part of the email message. The recipient's email client then decodes the attachment and saves it to their computer.
Email also allows you to send messages to multiple recipients at once. This is called a distribution list or a mailing list. To create a distribution list, you simply enter the email addresses of the recipients and give the list a name.
When you send a message to the distribution list, the email server sends a copy of the message to each recipient on the list.
Email has revolutionized the way we communicate, allowing us to send messages quickly and easily to anyone in the world with an internet connection. With its ability to send messages, files, and distribute lists, email remains an essential tool in our digital age.