Each new Windows Live Hotmail account comes, by default, with five standard email folders. Hotmail also enables you to create your own folders, which will be covered in a later tutorial.
Likewise, when you setup your Hotmail account in an email program that supports the service (like Outlook Express or Windows Live Mail), these five standard folders will be automatically created.
Windows Live Hotmail's standard folders cannot be deleted (even if you use Hotmail in an email program), since each performs a function specific to the webmail service.
Your Hotmail Inbox is the special folder in which all new emails arrive; unless the email is flagged as spam, and unless you have setup filters, this rule is absolute. The inbox is called this way in reference to the wooden inbox in offices, used to collect information to process.
The Junk folder (as in "junk mail", or "spam") performs the same function as the Inbox, but only for emails perceived by Hotmail to be spam ("junk mail"). This folder is also used as receptacle for emails you manually mark as spam.
Hotmail automatically puts saved unsent emails to the Drafts folder; this allows you to later return to any unsent emails you saved, to finish typing them and send them (or save them, once more, in the Drafts folder.) Unlike some desktop email programs like Microsoft Outlook, Hotmail does not have an "outbox" folder as temporary storage for emails queued to be sent. Once you send an Hotmail email, it is sent right away (unless you are sending emails from your Hotmail account using an email program, in which case that process is handled by the email client itself.)
The Sent folder contains, by default, all emails sent from a web browser, using a particular Windows Live Hotmail account; emails sent using the same Hotmail account, but from an email program, will not be saved in the live Sent folder.
The Deleted folder contains all emails that you deleted from any other Hotmail folder, like the Inbox or a custom folder. Emails deleted from within the Junk folder are the exception: these emails are permanently deleted, without going through the Deleted folder.