Switching from IMAP to POP

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Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
My friend has got 3 email accounts in Outlook 2010, all being accessed via IMAP. She wants to change them all to POP.

She is concerned about losing what she has stored in the accounts. What is the best way to back them up? If I copy the Outlook files before deleting the accounts, will I be able to open them later and copy the necessary parts to the POP file? Or should I just do an import from the copied files?
Or can I just create the POP accounts before I delete the IMAP accounts, and copy what is needed?

Or is there a better way to make the transition?

One of the accounts is a Cox account, the 2nd is Godaddy I think, not sure about the third. Will the IMAP files be OST files, I am not too familiar with working with them.

You can export to a pst file but nothing will be lost - imap stores mail on the server and switching to pop3 will redownload all of the mail (into the POP3 pst file).

While Outlook 2010's IMAP pst can be opened in other profiles, if the full message body isn't downloaded, you won't be able to access the email. Export is better - it insures the full message is downloaded.
I noticed that she has a lot of subfolders created under the Inbox of the Gmail IMAP account, and I had concern about that. So on a different computer I configured a POP3 account for her email. It did not create the subfolders which is no surprise, but the Inbox in the POP3 Outlook account has lots of emails that are not actually in the Inbox. It appears that it is taking the emails from those subfolders and moving them into the Inbox when accessing it with POP.

Have you ever seen that happen?

Would I be better off to export from Outlook to a pst file? Would I then have to delete all those subfolders (or even completely empty the Inbox) to make the Gmail account POP-friendly?

BTW if on the 2nd computer I create the account as IMAP, it does indeed correctly recreate those subfolders in the Inbox.

Gmail s weird. :) The "folders" are created from labels which is google-speak for Categories. When you use pop3, you download All Mail, which is everything in the mailbox. When you use imap, the labels are turned into folders.
This is what the mailbox should look like using imap - it is possible in gmail to nest labels - look in Settings > Labels, select the label then Edit to see if that is what she did.

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