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Cannot send mail

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Revision as of 18:57, 4 March 2005
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(Basic Troubleshooting)
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Revision as of 20:56, 4 March 2005
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(move ISP blocking port 25 to advanced users)
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==Basic Troubleshooting== ==Basic Troubleshooting==
-====Firewalls and Antivirus====+===Firewalls and Antivirus===
Verify that your firewall or your antivirus program is not blocking Thunderbird. If you recently upgraded Thunderbird, verify that the firewall is not blocking the new version. Verify that your firewall or your antivirus program is not blocking Thunderbird. If you recently upgraded Thunderbird, verify that the firewall is not blocking the new version.
-====Offline mode====+===Offline mode===
Verify Thunderbird is in ''online'', not in ''offline'', mode: Click ''File'' > ''Offline''; ''Work Offline'' should be unchecked. If you send a message while in offline mode, it goes to the ''Unsent Messages'' folder in ''Local Folders''. See below for Advanced tips. Verify Thunderbird is in ''online'', not in ''offline'', mode: Click ''File'' > ''Offline''; ''Work Offline'' should be unchecked. If you send a message while in offline mode, it goes to the ''Unsent Messages'' folder in ''Local Folders''. See below for Advanced tips.
-====Outgoing mail settings====+===Outgoing mail settings===
First, get the correct outgoing mail (SMTP) settings from your service provider, usually your Internet Service Provider (ISP): Try their website, search Google for your ISP plus the word ''smtp'', or call them. First, get the correct outgoing mail (SMTP) settings from your service provider, usually your Internet Service Provider (ISP): Try their website, search Google for your ISP plus the word ''smtp'', or call them.
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Also, click ''Tools > Account Settings > [account name] > Server Settings > Advanced > Smtp'' and verify the correct SMTP server is selected there. If you see "Relay access denied" or "Relaying denied" errors, be sure to verify this setting. Also, click ''Tools > Account Settings > [account name] > Server Settings > Advanced > Smtp'' and verify the correct SMTP server is selected there. If you see "Relay access denied" or "Relaying denied" errors, be sure to verify this setting.
-====ISP's blocking port 25====+==For Advanced Users==
 +* If you installed Thunderbird without offline support: Close Thunderbird and go to your [[Thunderbird : FAQs : Profile folder | profile folder]]. Backup the prefs.js file, then open it with a text editor (e.g. Notepad); delete '''only''' the line containing the "network.online" preference. (Be careful editing prefs.js; if you make a mistake -- you'll notice many settings changed -- close Thunderbird and restore the backup copy.)
 + 
 +* For a [[Thunderbird : FAQs : Multiple SMTP Servers | non-default/secondary outgoing server]]: go to ''Tools'' > ''Account Settings'' > ''Outgoing Server (SMTP)'', then click ''Advanced'', select the appropriate server, and click ''Edit''.
 + 
 +* Follow [http://www.mozilla.org/quality/mailnews/mail-troubleshoot.html these instructions] for logging and advanced troubleshooting. (The log will include your username, password and possibly other private information -- be sure to remove the private info if you send the log to anyone else.)
 + 
 +===ISP's blocking port 25===
In an effort to stop spam, many ISP's (Comcast, Cox, many others) block all traffic to port 25 on anything except their own SMTP servers. This plays out like this: In an effort to stop spam, many ISP's (Comcast, Cox, many others) block all traffic to port 25 on anything except their own SMTP servers. This plays out like this:
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Now take the laptop home and try sending mail. Everything looks normal, no errors or anything. But that mail simply vanishes. Comcast drops it because it was addressed to port 25 and not to Comcast's SMTP server. Now take the laptop home and try sending mail. Everything looks normal, no errors or anything. But that mail simply vanishes. Comcast drops it because it was addressed to port 25 and not to Comcast's SMTP server.
-The fix is simple but may not work for all servers. In Thunderbird's "Outgoing Mail Server" panel, replace the default 25 with 587. Request for Comments: 2476+The fix is simple but may not work for all servers. In Thunderbird's "Outgoing Mail Server" panel, replace the default 25 with 587. [http://www.ietf.org/rfc/rfc2476.txt RFC 2476] explains why this works for newer SMTP servers.
-http://www.ietf.org/rfc/rfc2476.txt explains why this works for newer SMTP servers.+
If this doesn't work, it may be possible to solve this with ssh tunnels and/or router changes. If you work out the details, please update this accordingly. If this doesn't work, it may be possible to solve this with ssh tunnels and/or router changes. If you work out the details, please update this accordingly.
- 
-==For Advanced Users== 
- 
-* If you installed Thunderbird without offline support: Close Thunderbird and go to your [[Thunderbird : FAQs : Profile folder | profile folder]]. Backup the prefs.js file, then open it with a text editor (e.g. Notepad); delete '''only''' the line containing the "network.online" preference. (Be careful editing prefs.js; if you make a mistake -- you'll notice many settings changed -- close Thunderbird and restore the backup copy.) 
- 
-* For a [[Thunderbird : FAQs : Multiple SMTP Servers | non-default/secondary outgoing server]]: go to ''Tools'' > ''Account Settings'' > ''Outgoing Server (SMTP)'', then click ''Advanced'', select the appropriate server, and click ''Edit''. 
- 
-* Follow [http://www.mozilla.org/quality/mailnews/mail-troubleshoot.html these instructions] for logging and advanced troubleshooting. (The log will include your username, password and possibly other private information -- be sure to remove the private info if you send the log to anyone else.) 

Revision as of 20:56, 4 March 2005

If you've followed instructions for configuring Thunderbird and still cannot send mail for one or more of accounts, the following may help:


Contents

Basic Troubleshooting

Firewalls and Antivirus

Verify that your firewall or your antivirus program is not blocking Thunderbird. If you recently upgraded Thunderbird, verify that the firewall is not blocking the new version.

Offline mode

Verify Thunderbird is in online, not in offline, mode: Click File > Offline; Work Offline should be unchecked. If you send a message while in offline mode, it goes to the Unsent Messages folder in Local Folders. See below for Advanced tips.

Outgoing mail settings

First, get the correct outgoing mail (SMTP) settings from your service provider, usually your Internet Service Provider (ISP): Try their website, search Google for your ISP plus the word smtp, or call them.

Verify the settings in Thunderbird exactly match what your ISP provides -- No typos (e.g. "smpt"), extra spaces, punctuation mistakes (e.g. no commas instead of periods) or capitalization errors (e.g. lowercase instead of Caps).

Click Tools > Account Settings > Outgoing Server (SMTP) (at the bottom of the left pane -- you may need to scroll down), and double-check:

  • Server Name
  • Use name and password: Your username might be your full email address (e.g. "johndoe@domain.com") or only the part before the "@" ("johndoe"), depending on your service provider. Also, try unchecking this box; your email service provider might not support it.
  • Use secure connection: Unless your service provider supports SSL connections for outgoing mail, select No.
  • Port: Some service providers use non-standard ports (25 is standard). If you're having problems, ask them which ports they support for SMTP or outgoing e-mail.
  • (For help with multiple servers, see Advanced tips, below.)

Also, click Tools > Account Settings > [account name] > Server Settings > Advanced > Smtp and verify the correct SMTP server is selected there. If you see "Relay access denied" or "Relaying denied" errors, be sure to verify this setting.

For Advanced Users

  • If you installed Thunderbird without offline support: Close Thunderbird and go to your profile folder. Backup the prefs.js file, then open it with a text editor (e.g. Notepad); delete only the line containing the "network.online" preference. (Be careful editing prefs.js; if you make a mistake -- you'll notice many settings changed -- close Thunderbird and restore the backup copy.)
  • Follow these instructions for logging and advanced troubleshooting. (The log will include your username, password and possibly other private information -- be sure to remove the private info if you send the log to anyone else.)

ISP's blocking port 25

In an effort to stop spam, many ISP's (Comcast, Cox, many others) block all traffic to port 25 on anything except their own SMTP servers. This plays out like this:

Say you configure your laptop's Thunderbird's "Outgoing Mail Server" to use smtp.mycompany.com port 25. When you test mail, it works, because you're not subject to Comcast rules on your company's network.

Now take the laptop home and try sending mail. Everything looks normal, no errors or anything. But that mail simply vanishes. Comcast drops it because it was addressed to port 25 and not to Comcast's SMTP server.

The fix is simple but may not work for all servers. In Thunderbird's "Outgoing Mail Server" panel, replace the default 25 with 587. RFC 2476 explains why this works for newer SMTP servers.

If this doesn't work, it may be possible to solve this with ssh tunnels and/or router changes. If you work out the details, please update this accordingly.