Hi everyone,

Would anyone have an idea how Hotmail (or indeed any email service provider) structure its database?

Particular attention should be paid to:
User name, password and email address;
Mail folders (e.g. inbox, sent items, custom folders);
Email subject header, date and sender;
Email message text.

Would I be correct for instance in assuming that there is one database of all emails, with a user id associated with each email, and that when a user clicks on the inbox, SQL (or in my case MySQL) will select from this database. This database obviously has the potential of getting enormous so how is that managed?

Looking forward to hearing your views.