Reliable webmail service?
May 7, 2012 10:12 AM   Subscribe

Can you recommend a reliable webmail service provider that I can use my domain name with?

I currently use for my DNS and webmail services. While happy with the their DNS service, in my experience the webmail service has been subpar and I am looking to switch.

Can you recommend a reliable webmail service that supports IMAP I can switch to? Is this even possible while staying with for the DNS service, or do I have to move everything? Lastly, I would like to avoid using any of Google's services.

Also, is there a good "how-to" on switching email service providers?

Thank you.
posted by helios410 to Technology (14 answers total)
I've been using Zoho for about 6 months with no problems. I'm just using the free service and forwarding my domain mail to there. They've got what appears to be good instructions on how to use them for domain mail. Essentially, you set up an account at Zoho, then at you simply point mail services for your domain to the DNS addresses provided by Zoho. I think you can do it even if you are using their free service. If not, it's fairly cheap, $24 a year for a 10 GB account. The free account is 1 GB.
posted by COD at 10:25 AM on May 7, 2012

Correction, it appears as though Zoho has increased the free accounts to 5 GB since I signed up.
posted by COD at 10:26 AM on May 7, 2012

I can highly recommend Fastmail
posted by Mwongozi at 10:33 AM on May 7, 2012 [1 favorite]

Is there a reason why you don't want to use google? I've have no problems with Google apps for a few of my domains (for 5+ years) and have moved a few small businesses there with no issues or complaints.
posted by wongcorgi at 10:46 AM on May 7, 2012

I can understand he doesn't want to use Google's web frontend to GApp/Domain hosted email, but are there independent front-ends he can use while letting Google run the IMAP backend?

Nothing I've found so far beats Google's spam filtering.
posted by JoeZydeco at 11:03 AM on May 7, 2012

Any IMAP client can be used with Gmail. However, some people are understandably skittish about letting Google's algorithms mine their email.
posted by COD at 11:16 AM on May 7, 2012

Any of these services will have access to the contents of your mail. Is there a good reason to trust any of them more than Google? If you want privacy, you need to host it yourself.
posted by twblalock at 12:44 PM on May 7, 2012 [1 favorite]

I thought only Google's frontend web client looks at the inbox to decide what ads to show. Are you telling me it also mines every mail in storage whether you are using the web or not?
posted by JoeZydeco at 1:41 PM on May 7, 2012

If you don't find something to your liking you may just wait it out. is part of the Dotster family of companies which was acquired by Endurance International last year. Generally speaking they will transition acquired brands to a new platform.

Whether you would consider that more reliable or preferable at all I cannot say. Just something to consider.
posted by FlamingBore at 1:51 PM on May 7, 2012

Response by poster: Thanks for all the answers everyone — I ended up caving and going with Google.
posted by helios410 at 2:04 PM on May 7, 2012

Also, turn on 2-factor authentication. You'll be glad you did.
posted by JoeZydeco at 2:15 PM on May 7, 2012

Even though you made your decision with Google, I'll chime in with my recommendation. I recently just switched from Gmail to Tuffmail and couldn't be happier.

The reason I wanted to get away from Google was the fact that I didn't like the idea of them using the contents of my inbox for their advertising gain (at least I'm sure that's how it worked). I also didn't like the idea of getting all the other Google services when I just mainly wanted email. I didn't want to bundle with anything else. (I know you can disable all the other services from within your Google account, but I just felt like my email was in the social spectrum, and I just wanted email. Also, the new interface I didn't care for either. It was too choppy and felt bloated, also a little bright for the eyes. That's just me, though.

I actually began searching around on previous threads for hosted email solutions and finally made the decision to go with Tuffmail. Their control panel may be a little advanced, but it seems to give you complete control over everything associated with your mailbox(s) (logs, quotas of inbound and outbound mail for each month, etc.). I haven't used it much, but it's still pretty nice.

They also do IMAP nicely. I haven't used Tuffmail with an email client because I mainly use their online webmail clients to access my email (Roundcube I like the best). It's email that just works for me. I log in, check whatever I have, log out, and that's it. It doesn't get in the way. And another big thing is their ridiculous uptime. I've never heard of them being down for longer than an hour in years (at least that's what I heard, and what I've read on their status page). Also, their spam is unbeatable. I always thought Gmail had awesome spam filtering, but I have never gotten one spam email into my mailbox since I've been with them (February 2012). And even if you do get a spam message here or there, you can train it with something called the Bayes Classifier. Apparently it learns and makes the spam filtering in your inbox even more rock-solid.

Yes, it's a paid email service, but for $40 bucks a year, I think it's a great bargain. $30 for a single 512MB mailbox with the extra Sophos anti-virus scanning, and $10 for the domain name from Namecheap. You get a selection of multiple webmail clients (SquirrelMail, IMP/Horde, Roundcube, or if you want to use your own email client). It's fast, reliable, always up, and feels pretty secure. Their email is all I need, and I'm happy.

posted by jwmollman at 4:29 PM on May 7, 2012

*Sorry about the italics. I must have missed the closing tag.
posted by jwmollman at 4:31 PM on May 7, 2012

Google will give you temporary email addresses for each account you create. I usually forward all mail at the old domain to the corresponding temporary email address, which should prevent any mail getting lost in the switch.
posted by backwards guitar at 5:06 PM on May 7, 2012

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