In many cases this is very useful behavior, but it's good to know that Windows Mail and Outlook Express can also download only the headers, not full messages, or not synchronize automatically at all.
Fortunately, this setting can be tweaked per folder, so you can have your Inbox synchronize in full while Windows Mail or Outlook Express only fetches the headers of new messages in some shared IMAP folders, for example.
Tweak Synchronization Settings per Folder in Windows Mail or Outlook Express
To change the synchronization settings for a folder in Windows Mail or Outlook Express:
- Click with the right mouse button on the folder of an IMAP or Windows Live Hotmail account whose settings you want to change.
- Select Synchronization Settings from the menu.
- Choose the desired action:
- Don't Synchronize if you want no automated synchronization at all.
- All Messages if you want Windows Mail or Outlook Express to download all messages completely.
- New Messages Only if Windows Mail or Outlook Express should only synchronize unread mail.
- Headers Only to download only the message headers automatically. (You can download the complete message upon request later.)