If, like me, you have numerous email addresses spread over a different accounts, different servers & different technologies, you need something to bring them into one manageable place. However this isn't as easy as it might seem especially if you have email accounts with both Yahoo! & Hotmail (2 infact!), which I do.
First of all you need an email client. This is a piece of software that collects your email from the servers and downloads the information onto your PC.
Microsoft Outlook Express was my first email client. It was good to start off with as it received both my Yahoo! and Hotmail accounts perfectly fine. The exception is that it duplicated the hotmail emails. This got extremely annoying after a short while.
Since 2002 (I think), Yahoo! Mail stopped being freely available to email clients without a fee. The account is still free, but means checking their website with their sponsors everytime you want to check an email. Needless to say I only really use this account for spam/junk nowadays.
The second email client I tried was Microsoft Outlook. There is a lot more to this client than just emails as it handles a very comprehensive diary aswell (but I don't have a use for it!). I got extremely annoyed quite quickly as it would only receive one hotmail account.
I would like to point out that only Microsoft products, Outlook & Outlook Express, are able to receive Hotmail accounts "out of the box". This means without extra software, your only choice is to visit the horrible MSN website.
Finally I come to my current email client, Mozilla Thunderbird. With my move away from Microsofts Internet Explorer to Mozilla's Firefox, I felt I'd try the companies email client. This is a nice client on its own, a lot like Outlook Express in look and feel.
Until today I had to visit Yahoo! mail and one Hotmail account everyday (as Outlook only liked one Hotmail account). However with a two small programs you can receive both your Hotmail AND Yahoo! accounts in one email client (whether it be any of the mentioned above or another). These programs are:
A small program that turns your Hotmail account into a service called POP3 which is universal across email clients. More information about Hotmail Popper on its official website.
The program that turns your Yahoo! account into the manageable POP3 service. You can find out more information about YahooPOPs.
Just run these little applications in the background, and point your POP3 server to "localhost" with your correct email address, username & password.
I now have four different email addresses (2 Hotmail, 1 Yahoo! and my university address) all pointing to my favourite email client Mozilla Thunderbird. Sweet.
Note: At the present time Mozilla Thunderbird is only considered a beta release, with current version 0.6, it's only two build points behind the very popular browser, Mozilla Firefox.