Telnet to test pop3

I found an easy way to test a pop3 connection today. It is a little known tool called telnet (It’s not really little known, but I never thought of using it for pop3, so in my mind it is little known for that purpose 😉 ).

From a command line in windows:

telnet NameOfPop3Server 110

user username

pass password


You will see a list of email in your mailbox

retr msgNumber

You will see the email you requested



More POP3 commands:

stat – Returns the number of messages in mailbox and size of mailbox

dele msgNumber – Marks message msgNumber for deletion.

noop – Doesn’t do anything, just returns a positive response.

rset – Unmarks any messages that are marked for deletion.

top msgNumber numLines – Returns the header info and numLines of the body of message msgNumber.

uidl msgNumber – Returns the message number and the messages Unique ID Listing.


Note: If the telnet session ends for any reason other than using the quit command, messages marked for deletion will not be deleted.

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