Mail server woes and relief

Anyone using an or email address has probably noticed the issues with the mail server which got pretty bad toward the end of April. The most common issue was getting timeout errors when trying to log in to check or send messages, which would prompt Outlook to ask for the password again.

UPDATE: May 9 –
This is the set of instructions which seem to work best for updating Outlook:

  • With Outlook running and in the foreground, press Ctrl-Alt-S
    You should see the “Send/Receive Groups” dialog, with the “All Accounts” line highlighted
  • Hit Edit, then select the account and hit the “Account Properties” button.
    You should now be on the “Internet E-mail Settings” window.
  • On that first tab, make sure that both mail servers are set to “”, and that the username shows as
  • Click on the “Advanced” tab, and make sure that the “This server requires an encrypted connection (SSL)” under the incoming server is checked on.
    The incoming server number should now be 995 for POP or 993 for IMAP
  • Also make sure that the “Use the following type of encrypted connection” under the outgoing server is set to either “TLS” or “SSL/TLS” – whichever of these options is available.
  •  Then click OK, OK, and close. Now, when you send and receive, it should work normally.

There were some log files which had swelled over the years, and there were some other huge configuration files which were inducing delays during most login attempts. We have fixed those problems, and updated the mail server and its Operating System version, and it appears to be working better than it has in years. That’s the good news…

The bad news is that some settings have been changed, and this seems to be causing an issue with Microsoft Outlook for some subscribers. It seems that phones and tablets are typically not having the issues, just Outlook.

In order to fix Outlook, you might need to get into the Account Settings in Outlook. Older versions, up through Outlook 2010, have this accessible from the File Menu under Account Settings, while newer versions of Outlook hide that information under the Control Panel. Here is a link to a Microsoft Support page, explaining how to access this on the newer versions:

Once there, you’ll need to turn encryption on for both Incoming Mail and Outgoing Mail – it should look something like this for POP*:

You may also need to add the domain name to the email address if you had previously only used the first part as your User Name, like so:

*: For IMAP, the advanced settings should look like this:

5/4: UPDATE: Some people have been running into a issue where Outlook complains that it cannot save the settings. Here’s what Tom figured out:

We had problems trying to make the changes to Outlook to use SSL on the incoming POP mail server.

Outlook said “ something went wrong – could not save new settings”

We found a fix:

If you’re trying to make your changes from File -> Account settings, try doing it from Send & Receive settings instead.

1. From inside Outlook, Press Ctrl+Alt+S
2. Click Edit
3. Select/click the account you want to update, then click “Account Properties”

Make your changes from there and you should avoid the “Something went wrong…” message and be able to save your changes and access your email again. 

This worked!

Doing the changes from File > Account settings did NOT work.
Doing the changes from Control Panel did NOT work.

The above process worked immediately. We did not have to reboot, or even restart Outlook.