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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > iPhone, iPad & iPod > Cannot Send Mail - AOL account SMTP error? Please Help!

Cannot Send Mail - AOL account SMTP error? Please Help!
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Quinnrobot
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Nov 13, 2008, 12:14 PM
 
hi everyone,

no doubt this has already been touched on before but i'm new here and not entirely sure where to start with looking!

I've set up my aol account and am successfully receiving emails to my iphone 3G but everytime i try to reply or send a new email im getting the foolowing as an error message.

"Cannot Send Mail. the connection to the outgoing server 'smtp.aol.com' failed."

Has anyone got enough experience to help out somebody as helpless as me, i've had a look through the settings but not sure what to change before ruining what i can do!!

Many thanks in advance!

Quinn
     
64stang06
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Nov 13, 2008, 01:20 PM
 
Settings-->Mail, Contacts, Calendars. Tap on the account having the problem. Scroll to Outgoing Mail Server and tap on the server. You should now see Primary Server and then Other SMTP Servers. If you have others that work fine, tap on one to turn it from Off to On. Exit to the home screen and try sending a test message.
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Quinnrobot  (op)
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Nov 13, 2008, 02:57 PM
 
this is my first and only account and it's not setting up, i've tried looking in the advanced settings but don't know what i'm doing!
     
seanc
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Nov 13, 2008, 03:43 PM
 
Is AOLs email still active? I know they're discontinuing some services such as XDrive and web hosting.
     
danangdoc
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Nov 14, 2008, 02:56 PM
 
If this is not a business e-mail address, then rather than trying to swim upstream, why not just switch to Yahoo? I say this only because they have a nice client application for the iPhone/iPod Touch, which neatly formats text, displays photographs, etc. If or when AOL comes out with an app for your phone, then switch back. At least try it out for a while and see if you don't like it a whole lot better. Maybe not the answer you want, but its an option to consider. You can still use the AOL "AIM" chat on your phone. I do.
     
tooki
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Nov 14, 2008, 08:31 PM
 
This isn't an email account problem, it's an ISP problem. Almost all ISPs block you from using any SMTP server that isn't theirs. Often you can get around this by changing the port number on the SMTP server from the default to 587.
     
CorpITGuy
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Nov 15, 2008, 09:06 AM
 
Yep. If that doesn't work, call your ISP. Sometimes they can unblock that port for your account.
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Spheric Harlot
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Nov 15, 2008, 09:24 AM
 
Originally Posted by tooki View Post
This isn't an email account problem, it's an ISP problem. Almost all ISPs block you from using any SMTP server that isn't theirs.
What, really?

I've *never* seen this, with any provider here in Germany over the last ten years.

That seems anti-competitive to the extreme, since it effectively bars users from keeping their e-mail address independent from their ISP (after all, the only reason ISPs offer free email service is to bind customers - switching ISPs will now mean switching e-mail addresses, which is a bitch).
     
Cold Warrior
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Nov 15, 2008, 11:13 AM
 
I've seen it a lot in the US, although like tooki said sometimes there's an alternative port or SSL/TLS SMTP usually works (e.g., gmail or my company's SSL SMTP server+port have always worked from anywhere).
     
CorpITGuy
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Nov 17, 2008, 11:59 AM
 
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
That seems anti-competitive to the extreme, since it effectively bars users from keeping their e-mail address independent from their ISP..
Well, not really... as the PP mentioned, there are ways around it. Using the standard SMTP port (which isn't necessarily secure) is how most spammers sent out their junk via zombie or unsecured SMTP servers. By forcing one to use port 587 you generally take a lot of spammers out of the equation. It's not an all-together terrible idea. You can also be exempted by most ISPs (AT&T included, here in the states) if you just call them. I think AT&T now has a thing where you can set that up on the web.

It is a bit of a pain, but it's also solid network management.
"A fanatic is one who can't change his mind and won't change the subject." - Winston Churchill

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Big Mac
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Nov 17, 2008, 06:32 PM
 
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
I've *never* seen this, with any provider here in Germany over the last ten years.

That seems anti-competitive to the extreme, since it effectively bars users from keeping their e-mail address independent from their ISP (after all, the only reason ISPs offer free email service is to bind customers - switching ISPs will now mean switching e-mail addresses, which is a bitch).
I don't know how common it is here in America. A few years back ISPs stopped allowing the sending of messages through their SMTP servers with From headers that were not from their domain name. That was annoying, especially when your web server's SMTP was flaky, but it was manageable and made sense from a spam combating standpoint. But if my ISP started prohibiting the use of outside SMTP servers, I'd cancel my account in a heartbeat. Of course, I have two (and hopefully soon, three) high quality broadband providers available to me; others aren't so fortunate.
( Last edited by Big Mac; Nov 17, 2008 at 06:38 PM. )

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Spheric Harlot
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Nov 18, 2008, 03:17 AM
 
Blocking unauthorized return addresses from your SMTP server is prudent and completely standard.

But blocking outside SMTP servers!?

As you say: I'd switch providers in a heartbeat if they considered such idiocy.
     
CorpITGuy
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Nov 18, 2008, 09:11 AM
 
Again, folks - we aren't talking about blocking entire SMTP servers - just one port on those servers, port 25. Use 587 instead.

A separate issue is blocking email from being received if sent from a different SMTP server than domain in the header information... that is called a failed RDNS lookup, and it's also solid network management.
"A fanatic is one who can't change his mind and won't change the subject." - Winston Churchill

MacBook Pro 17" 2.33 GHz - (mine)
MacBook Pro 15" 1.83 GHz - (wife)
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