How to know what is the SMTP server?
You're sending an important email, but it's not going through properly. You can't figure out why because there are no error messages -- maybe your message was never received by its recipient, or maybe something went wrong during transmission. In either case, if you don't know how to test whether your outgoing mail servers are working correctly, then troubleshooting will take months longer than necessary. Fortunately, we'll show you exactly how SMTP mail server works, where to look and how to use this information to diagnose any problems with your connection to these services.
Let's say that you've sent emails to someone at work before without issue, but now they won't receive them. How would you go about diagnosing such a problem? If you were using a web-based client like WebMail, Yahoo Mail, Hotmail/Live Mail, etc., you could check their online accounts to see if all incoming mail has been delivered successfully. But since this isn't always possible, especially over a VPN, you should instead rely on other methods to confirm successful delivery. This includes checking from within Windows itself as well.
If you open up File Explorer and head into C:\Users\[your username]\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Outlook\Store.dat, you can locate the AccountName parameter associated with each individual user account. Within the.pst file corresponding to that user, you'll also see several additional fields labeled "SMTP" and "Server." These are the values used by Outlook to communicate with the remote SMTP service. Let's break down those options so you understand what they mean.
What type of email do I have?
First, let's make sure you're looking at the correct mailbox. To view your current default profile, click the Gear icon next to Home " Options " General " Default Profile set in Outlook 2010. Click Modify, select All Profiles under Show profiles dropdown menu, and choose No one. Now you should see the following window pop up.
Next, scroll down until you reach the section titled Send & Receive Email Using Other Programs. Here, you'll see a list of programs that Outlook uses to send and receive messages via different protocols. Select Internet Messaging Protocols and expand the list. Then double-click on EMLX - MS Exchange Server Message Transfer Agent. Make note of both the Client Name and Server field.
In our example above, we selected EMLX - MS Exchange Server Message Transfer Agent. However, depending upon your situation, it might display something else. For instance, if you haven't changed your default profile yet, you'd select SmtpClientProtocolTransportAgent. As long as Outlook recognizes your chosen protocol, however, you should be able to copy the Client name and Server value directly underneath.
Now, whenever you want to change your outgoing provider, just edit whichever entry you copied earlier and replace it with whatever program you chose. So far, we tested two popular providers, Gmail and Office 365, but there are more available. We recommend testing every option here first to ensure everything works as expected.
Once you've confirmed that Outlook connects to the appropriate server, it's time to start digging around. First things first, let's talk about some terminology.
Is Gmail a POP or IMAP account?
To begin, it helps to differentiate between various types of accounts. When you sign up for free Gmail, Google automatically sets up your account as a POP3 (Postal Transfer Operations Point). A POP3 account downloads new messages straight off the server once per day. It doesn't require authentication or access credentials. On the other hand, an IMAP4 account allows users to download messages multiple times per hour, while requiring login details. Once logged in, the user can read, move, delete, print, search, mark as junk, and otherwise manage folders.
This distinction becomes important later when we discuss setting up outlook.com.
POP vs. IMAP: Where does POP IMAP come from?
When most people refer to "outgoing mail servers," they usually mean SMTP servers. And while many ISPs provide these services themselves, sometimes companies offer external ones as part of their package. An advantage to using an internal server is reliability. Since it's built right into the company network, it likely receives priority treatment. External services often experience downtime for maintenance purposes, though.
Here's where Outlook comes in handy. Instead of connecting to an actual SMTP server, it communicates directly with a domain controller. This device acts as a gateway between the ISP's network and Outlook's own private network. By doing so, Outlook avoids potential delays due to traffic routing issues. Also, rather than relying solely on the ISP's DNS cache, it forces queries through its own local database. This ensures accurate results. Finally, having direct access to the company's network means you don't have to worry about security risks posed by public Wi-Fi connections.
Forging a secure link to an outside SMTP server requires you to authenticate yourself. Otherwise, anyone who knows your password can log onto your system remotely. Even worse, hackers could steal your identity simply by monitoring your computer activity. With Outlook installed, however, your home computer already forms part of the company's network. Therefore, nobody needs physical access to gain unauthorized access to your inboxes.
It's worth mentioning that even if you use an internal server provided by your employer, it's still wise to keep track of where these services point. Many people mistakenly believe that an internal address is safe because they trust the IT department implicitly. Unfortunately, corporate mismanagement has led to numerous cases of leaked passwords and sensitive data theft.
That said, if you only ever need to send mail occasionally, and aren't concerned about privacy, you shouldn't care much about tracking your outgoing IP addresses. Just remember that doing so gives away your location!
Where do I find POP IMAP settings?
The settings mentioned previously are located inside the.pst files found in Users' AppData\Local\Microsoft\Outlook\ folder. Inside these files, you'll find six sections. The first three deal exclusively with POP3 functionality, whereas the last three relate to IMAP4.
Under [UserName], you'll see four parameters: AccountType, PasswordRetrievalPolicy, AutoDeleteAfterDays, and ReadOnlyLocation. If you accidentally close one of these files, don't fret too much. Simply launch Outlook again and rerun the previous steps to retrieve lost settings.
Account Type indicates whether the specified email account is a standard POP3 or IMAP4 enabled mail account. In our example below, we verified that our user had been assigned a standard POP3 account. The rest of the entries indicate what kind of access you get to the contents of that particular mailbox.
PasswordRetrievalPolicy specifies what happens if your password changes. Under the old policy, Outlook would prompt you to enter a new password after 30 days. That way, you wouldn't lose access to your account forever. More recently, however, Microsoft implemented a stricter approach. Accessing your mailbox past 90 days triggers a warning screen prompting you to update your password immediately. Afterward, you must supply proof of a valid reason for needing to recover your account. Failure to comply will result in deletion of your account altogether.
AutoDeleteAfterDays controls whether the deleted items stored locally remain accessible beyond a certain period of time. Note that deleting an item removes it permanently unless you manually save copies beforehand. Setting AutoDeleteAfterDays to 0 disables automatic cleanup entirely. Conversely, leaving it blank prevents Outlook from wiping your inbox after a certain number of hours pass.
ReadOnlyLocation determines whether you can modify the content of the specified account. If you're trying to add extra recipients, adjust settings, or perform similar operations, leave ReadOnlyLocation unchecked. Doing so lets you manipulate the inbox without worrying about losing unsaved edits.
Keep in mind that if you disable AutoDeleteAfterDays, you won't regain access to a deleted email after changing your password or another event occurs that causes Outlook to recreate the.pst file. Thus, make sure AutoDeleteAfterDays remains checked before proceeding further.
Finally, under ImapMaxSizeLimit, set this value slightly higher than the amount of space you wish to allocate to your email storage. Your maximum size limit applies regardless of whether you enable compression. Leave it unmodified if you prefer to compress your attachments yourself.
How to connect the SMTP outgoing server?
With this background knowledge in tow, you're ready to configure the SMTP server settings. Open up Control Panel " Administrative Tools " Computer Management. Switch to Services tab and browse down to Network List. Next, switch to Protocols tab and sort alphabetically by Provider. Double-click on Delivery Optimized Relay Service to open its Properties panel.
On the left side, expand Advanced Settings and double-click on TCP Input Output. From here, navigate down to Trusted Applications and double-click on Domain Controller Security Support. Check Enable Secure RPC and hit OK. Confirm that SSL Certificate Import Wizard appears on the desktop, then skip ahead to Configure SSPI.
Outlook has a handy feature that lets you choose whether your emails are sent from an internal mail service, like Exchange Server, or by emailing directly through another company's servers. This allows businesses with strict privacy policies to control who can send mails using their domain name.
This article will show how to access these options and change them if necessary. Let's start with some terminology first.
SMTP stands for "Simple Mail Transfer Protocol". It is one of several protocols used to transfer electronic data over networks. For example, HTTP refers to HyperText Transport Protocol -- it defines rules for accessing files remotely across different computer systems, while FTP stands for File Transfer Protocol. Both use TCP/IP as their underlying network communication protocol.
When sending emails, two types of servers come into play: internet-facing and local servers. Internet facing means these services accept messages via the World Wide Web and forward them onto other computers. Local servers mean they're accessible only within their own network. In this case, we'll focus on finding our way around Microsoft Office 365's setup.
We've covered many things about setting up accounts, but not so much actually changing the configuration itself. Here's where those changes would take place. We'll also cover some important terms related to incoming and outgoing servers.
If you want to learn more about SMTP, read our list of essential networking terms.
How to check SMTP server settings?
To see what kind of server you have set up for yourself, go to Tools & Accounts Settings. You should see three tabs at the top labeled Home, Recipients, and Connections. On each tab, there's a field called Send From Address. That's your default SMTP server. If you don't see any entries here, then no emails are being routed through your chosen server right now.
Once you click on Send From Address, you'll see all the details about your current connection. One of the most useful fields under Connection type is Delivery Options. Under this heading, you'll find information about both incoming and outgoing connections.
On the left side, there's a dropdown box titled Use Default Delivery Option. Select either Internal Network Only or External Network Only depending on whether you want to route emails internally between office PCs or externally to third parties.
Now let's look at how to figure out what the SMTP server is.
What is Gmail's SMTP server?
Microsoft Outlook uses its default delivery option by selecting external network whenever possible. By doing so, it gives users greater freedom than Google Mail does. With Gmail, you get to decide exactly which server processes your emails.
Let's say someone sends you a message from gmail.com. When you open the message, below the sender's profile picture, you'll notice something called Received headers. These contain technical information such as IP addresses and ports involved during transmission.
The header might reveal that the message was received by smtp.gmail.com instead of smtp1.gmail.com. To figure out which server handled the email, head back to Gmail's web interface. Click More next to See original email in detail. Then scroll down until you reach Original Message Header.
Here, you'll see lots of information including port numbers and IPs. However, the most interesting piece of info lies beneath Port number. This tells you which server accepted the request and processed the email. As mentioned earlier, Gmail usually defaults to smtp.gmail.com unless changed otherwise.
You can select Other to view a full list of available servers. Once you pick one, double-click it to bring up additional stats. Scroll down to Return path section and then copy everything after Return-Path:. Now paste it into your browser window. Visit the website and search for MX Toolbar.
Next, enter the following string into the bar at bottom of page:
In the results, you should see that this particular server accepts requests on port 25. So, if you ever receive a strange error saying "Couldn't connect" or "Connection refused," it could just be because your client isn't communicating properly with the intended recipient. Check your firewall settings and make sure nothing else is blocking port 25.
Alternatively, you can try running Telnet on Windows 10 to test connecting to port 25 manually. Head to Control Panel " System and Security " Command Prompt. Type telnet [email] 25 followed by Enter. Hit Ctrl + C to end the session once prompted.
Try again using netstat -an | findstr :25 to identify the actual port number. Don't forget to replace [email] above with whatever email provider you're trying to log into!
As previously discussed, the best way to tell what email server is active for your specific account is to visit the inbox, compose a new email, and view the properties menu.
What is Gmail's SMTP server address?
Finding the correct SMTP server requires knowing which domain you wish to attach to. Luckily, you already have that information stored in your Gmail account. Go to settings & Accounts and create a New Email Account. Double-check the listed Domain Name against the domain name associated with your email address.
For instance, my primary Gmail account is linked to mydomainname.com. But my secondary email for work contains a subdomain: email@example.com. After creating the second account, I changed the registered domain to myworkaddress.com.
So, if you were wondering why there's a difference between these two domains, it comes down to how Gmail handles multiple user profiles. Since you aren't logged into the same account twice, Gmail automatically registers the second username as a separate entry.
Of course, you can always add more than one domain to your email. Just remember that whoever owns the domain becomes responsible for keeping it updated.
How do I find out what my SMTP server is?
After determining which SMTP server is handling your emails, you can proceed with adding it to your account. First, return to tools & accounts settings, click Add a contact form, and choose Edit Form Preferences. Next, navigate to Advanced Features and expand Customize Your Contact Forms.
Under Deliveries, locate the textbox labeled Delivery Method and hit Save Changes. Choose Manually configure deliveries. A popup window will appear asking you to verify your choice. Accept the certificate and continue onward.
Select Manual Configuration. A new window will pop up allowing you to customize your settings further. On the General tab, tick Automatically detect SSL certificates. Then, switch over to Authentication tab to specify what credentials must authenticate your connection. Make sure to include the appropriate domain names here. Finally, you can tweak authentication methods and security levels under TLS Encryption.
Click OK to save your choices. Congratulations! You've successfully added your new SMTP server to your account. Feel free to edit the settings anytime you want.
You're trying to send an important message via your Hotmail, Yahoo! Mail, AOL Mail, etc., but nothing happens. What's going wrong? Is it possible that some of your emails have been set to go through another server than their current one? Or maybe they went through just fine the last time, but now something has changed with them? If so, then this article will help you figure out exactly where these messages are being sent from -- and why they aren't working as intended.
First off, we should discuss how e-mails work. E-mail servers receive mail either by connecting directly into the Internet itself, using a "POP" protocol, or by connecting through a network, such as the company intranet, using an "IMAP" protocol. When someone sends mail over the Net, his computer connects with the receiving server and downloads all the information about the sender and the recipient(s). Then, he can delete any unwanted material before forwarding the rest onto its destination. In other words, once the mail reaches the final receiver, there's no further action needed from the part of the sending party.
But sometimes people want to take more control over delivery. They might wish to delay certain recipients until later, or perhaps even not deliver at all. This sort of thing requires special software installed on each machine. For example, many companies use corporate mail systems like Exchange Server, which allows users to specify who gets mail when. It also lets administrators create rules that apply only to specific accounts. Users don't see those rules, however, since the system takes care of everything behind the scenes. But if you've ever tried downloading a file attachment from a particular person within your organization, you've probably noticed that the download was blocked because of security concerns. That's what happens here.
In order to get around this restriction, people often resort to setting up incoming mail servers known as "SMTP." These allow e-mail clients to access the full range of features available in modern mail programs, including filtering and delaying. Of course, most normal home computers already contain built-in versions of such tools, called "pop3" and "imap," respectively. However, newer operating systems make it easier to configure third-party pop/smtp services. And while most people won't need a dedicated smtp service, knowing how to locate and identify a smtp server is useful knowledge.
Next let's look at several ways you can tell whether an outgoing message is coming from a POP or an SMTP server.
What are Gmail POP and SMTP settings?
When you log into Gmail, the first page you'll see after entering your address contains details about your inbox. At top left, you'll see two icons labeled Settings & Preferences, followed by Account Info at bottom right. Clicking the More button opens the Account Details menu, which lists various categories of options. One of them is labelled Accounts. Here, click See All next to Deliveries, and you'll see three tabs appear at far right: Received, Sent and Draft. Each tab shows recent activity related to that category. You can filter content displayed in each tab based on date ranges. Also listed under Delivery Options is Protocol, which tells you whether e-mails were delivered using POP or SMTP. A green checkmark means POP, whereas a red X indicates SMTP.
Below the list of protocols, you'll notice a dropdown box titled Connection Type. Its contents reflect the type of connection used to retrieve the data contained in the headers of each received message. Three types exist: Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (which uses SMTP), Post Office Protocol version 3 (POP3), and User Data Protocol (UDP). POP3 provides a way for you to move files between different machines without opening up your mailbox to outsiders. UDP, meanwhile, serves mainly to transfer large amounts of text, images and video.
Simple Mail Transfer Protocol defines how your client communicates with the remote host. As mentioned above, the term "protocol" refers to the language used between two parties to conduct business. Thus, SMTP comprises both the format of commands spoken between the client and the server, along with the grammar structure used in response. Basically, SMTP consists of four main parts:
The initial greeting ("ehlo") identifies the server responsible for handling the request. Next comes the command name ("help"), indicating what kind of assistance is required. After that come optional parameters. Finally, the closing sequence ("quit"). Although technically separate components, these four sections together comprise a complete sentence.
Now that you understand what SMTP does, let's explore how to distinguish between POP and SMTP.
What is the server for SMTP?
If you're simply wondering whether an e-mail came from a particular provider, you must ask yourself where the message originated. Was it sent from a private domain, or did the user sign up with a free account offered by a public ISP? To answer that question, open the header of every received message. If you scroll down past the subject line, you'll see a section containing From:, Date: and Message-ID fields. Since these values change whenever anyone views the message, they serve as permanent markers identifying the source. By looking at these numbers, you can easily trace the path taken by each piece of correspondence.
To spot a message originating from a POP server, examine the field named Return-Path. On Windows XP and earlier versions of OS X, this value begins with [your_username]@[provider].com. Later versions of Mac OS X replace the brackets with @ signs. Note that although this differs slightly depending on which provider you signed up with, the return-path always ends with.com. Therefore, if a message starts with [hotmail], it traveled through a hotmail POP server. Conversely, if the same message appears with a return-path beginning with gmail, it passed through a Google SMTP server.
As stated previously, some providers offer multiple levels of online storage space. So if you've got a personal account with yahoo!, chances are good that messages sent from within that program end up stored somewhere else. Before deleting anything, though, consider copying it elsewhere. You could back up your entire hard drive, for instance, or upload it to a cloud computing site like Dropbox. Another option would be to copy the message to an external device like flash memory stick. Even better, instead of deleting it outright, try moving it to a folder marked Read Only. Doing this keeps sensitive materials safe but prevents others from tampering with the item.
On older versions of Linux, you'd typically recognize an SMTP server by finding entries ending with :lmt. Newer ones begin with :smtp. Be aware that these names differ somewhat across distros and vary according to preferences chosen during setup.
Finally, if you're interested in pinpointing the exact location of an individual message, search for keywords like "[name]" inside the body. Your results might include references to addresses, phone numbers, dates, locations and similar bits of information unique to that particular message.
How do you know if you are in POP or IMAP?
One trick you can play on friends and family members is to forward them an e-mail containing a short message. Once they read it, press Ctrl + P to bring up the Print Screen key combination. Copy and paste the resulting photo into Paint or Photoshop, and voilà -- you've created a quick little map showing where the original message originated. Unfortunately, this method doesn't work well on mobile devices due to differences among browsers and differing screen resolutions.
Fortunately, there's a much simpler solution. Open up your web browser and head to mxToolBox.net. Scroll down until you reach the heading saying Select Toolbox. Now select the country code closest to yours, and you'll arrive at a page listing countries' corresponding POP vs. IMAP status. Click on the appropriate link under whichever nation you live in, and you should soon learn what port number your router assigns to your modem. Enter that info into a website like http://www.whatismyipaddress.com/, and you'll discover the IP address assigned to your house. Using this information, you should be able to figure out whether an e-mail came from a local provider or a distant one.
How do I know if my email is POP or IMAP?
While it isn't difficult to discern whether an e-mail arrived via POP or SMTP, figuring out if it actually landed in your inbox depends largely upon the client application running on your desktop or laptop. Most popular applications provide easy-to-find menus and options that show whether the current message originates from a POP or SMTP server. Look for labels like Send & Receive, Mail Folders, Messages, Downloads or Junk, and you shouldn't have too much trouble determining whether the sender's identity matches the return-path of your own messages. If not, it likely didn't originate locally.
For additional tips on locating and managing your mail, consult our previous articles How to Use Gmail Like a Pro and 10 Ways to Make Yourself Faster With Gmail. We hope you found the answers to your questions helpful. Good luck with your new mail adventures!