Admins eHow SysAdmin Tips & Tricks

March 31, 2010

Check e-mail on a pop3 server using telnet

Filed under: General — Tags: , , , , , , , , , — admin @ 9:44 am

These steps show how to check your e-mail on a pop3 server using a telnet client.

Telnet to the pop3 server.

telnet pop3.somedomain.com 110

You should recieve a reply to this effect.

Trying A.B.C.D...
Connected to pop3.somedomain.com.
Escape character is '^]'.
+OK (rwcrpxc13) POP3 server

if you want to connect to a pop3 SSL server use the following command on a linux shell :

openssl s_client -connect FQDN:PORT

for instance for gmail it is :

openssl s_client -connect pop.gmail.com:995

You will get a response like this :

CONNECTED(00000003)
depth=1 /C=US/O=Google Inc/CN=Google Internet Authority
verify error:num=20:unable to get local issuer certificate
verify return:0
---
Certificate chain
 0 s:/C=US/ST=California/L=Mountain View/O=Google Inc/CN=pop.gmail.com
   i:/C=US/O=Google Inc/CN=Google Internet Authority
 1 s:/C=US/O=Google Inc/CN=Google Internet Authority
   i:/C=US/O=Equifax/OU=Equifax Secure Certificate Authority
---
Server certificate
-----BEGIN CERTIFICATE-----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==
-----END CERTIFICATE-----
subject=/C=US/ST=California/L=Mountain View/O=Google Inc/CN=pop.gmail.com
issuer=/C=US/O=Google Inc/CN=Google Internet Authority
---
No client certificate CA names sent
---
SSL handshake has read 1703 bytes and written 300 bytes
---
New, TLSv1/SSLv3, Cipher is RC4-MD5
Server public key is 1024 bit
Compression: NONE
Expansion: NONE
SSL-Session:
    Protocol  : TLSv1
    Cipher    : RC4-MD5
    Session-ID: AF09D6024039D1F70D7A6518034EF3B2E1B949C15A71ED3D0E85BC89F7D4ADC2
    Session-ID-ctx:
    Master-Key: 58D4202B16256CA5715C45B2CDDDFDDC16ABCAEF2A0993D23F3817193AE3F4A4E5531EF13CA970BADD1F8EA273FD6871
    Key-Arg   : None
    Start Time: 1270025037
    Timeout   : 300 (sec)
    Verify return code: 20 (unable to get local issuer certificate)
---
+OK Gpop ready for requests from a.b.c.d q9pf826547gve.29

Enter your username for the pop3 e-mail account using the “user” command.

user username_here

You should recieve the following reply.

+OK

Enter your password for the pop3 e-mail account using the “pass” command.

pass password_here

You should recieve the following reply.

+OK Maildrop ready

Stat your mailbox using “stat” command.

stat

You will get response showing the number of messages on the server and total size of them.

+OK 2 9141

List the mail on the pop3 e-mail account using the “list” command.

list

You will see the list of messages on the server.

+OK scan listing follows
1 1489
2 7652
.

To see one of the messages issue the retrieve command “retr” and the message id.

retr 1

You will see the whole e-mail headers and all.

+OK 1489 octets
Return-path:
Received: from blah (blah.somedomain.net [a.b.c.d])
by blah2.somedomain.net
(iPlanet Messaging Server 5.2 HotFix 1.16 (built May 14 2003))
with ESMTP id <0HHF00C6KK6NXJ@blah2.somedomain.net> for
me@here.net; Wed, 02 Jul 2003 23:54:23 -0400 (EDT)
Date: Wed, 02 Jul 2003 23:52:59 -0400
From: Me
Subject: test
To: you@there.net
Reply-to: me@here.net
Message-id: <200307022352.59679.me@here.net>
Organization: Pantz.org
MIME-version: 1.0
Content-type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
Content-transfer-encoding: 7bit
Content-disposition: inline
User-Agent: KMail/1.5.1
Original-recipient: rfc822;me@here.net

test

If you would like to delete the message issue the dele command with the message id.

dele 1

You will then see a delete confirmation.

+OK message deleted

To finish issue the quit command.

quit

Response :

+OK
Connection closed by foreign host.
  • Giovanni

    wow thank you! it works like a charm

  • Hugo Probo

    can i get attachments of my inbox

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