This guide shows how to configure your mail account in Outlook Express on Windows XP. It assumes you already have a mail account setup in our Plesk Control panel and know your mail password.

1. Open Outlook Express

Outlook Express can be opened by clicking on the start menu, choosing “All Programs” then choosing Outlook Express. It can often be found right in the Start menu second from the top, as well as beside your Start button in the taskbar or directly on the desktop. If a dialog box pops up asking you to enter a display name please skip to step 3.

2. Add a New Account

Now that Outlook Express is open, you will need to add your mail account to it. To start this process, click on the Tools menu and then choose Accounts. This will open a window labelled “Internet Accounts”, from here click on Add and Mail.

3. Completing The Internet Connection Wizard

You should now have the Internet Connection Wizard open asking to enter a display name. This is the name that will appear in the “From” field when you send emails. Entering your full name will do the trick.

The next screen will ask you for your email address. Enter your full email address in here.

Next, it will ask you for your incoming and outgoing mail servers. Keep the mail server type as POP3 and enter for the incoming and outgoing mail server.

The last information that needs to be entered is your username and password. The username needs to be your full email address, not just the prefix. ie. not just adam. Your password will show up as black dots so be sure you entered it correctly.

On the last window, just click Finish, but don’t close the internet accounts window. If you already did, see step 2 for details on how to get it back open.

4. Configuring The Outgoing Server

Although you have already provided Outlook Express with the outgoing server address, it will also need to be configured to allow your account access. To do so highlight the account in the internet accounts window and select properties. This will open a new window, on which you will click on the “Servers” tab. You will notice the info that you provided during the wizard is shown here. Looking at the bottom of the pane, check the box that says “My server requires authentication” underneath the Outgoing Mail Server title. Now choose the Advanced tab. At the top of the window you will see “Outgoing mail (SMTP)” with the number 25 beside it. Change the number 25 to 587.

Note: If you later discover that you are not able to send any mail, then your ISP is blocking all outgoing servers except their own. In that case you will need to follow the directions for this step once again, and change the 587 back to 25 and under the Servers tab, change the Outgoing mail server setting to their server address. You will need to call your ISP in order to obtain this address. You will also need to ask them if their server requires authentication or not: if it does, check the box near the bottom of the Servers tab, click Settings and fill in your account information for your ISP. If it does not require authentication, uncheck the box.

5. Leave Messages on Server for Webmail

When Outlook Express downloads a message from the server using POP3 it will then remove the message from the server. If you wish to keep a copy of your messages on the server – so that you can view them in webmail – we will need to configure it specifically to do so. Please remember that the storage of your mail also counts towards the total storage of your web hosting account.

To ensure mail is left on the server for access via webmail, you will see an option to “Leave a copy of messages on server” at the bottom of the currently open “Advanced” tab. Check this box as well as “Remove from Server after [ ] day(s)”. Enter the number of days you wish to have the mail remain on the server for. We recommend up to 30 days. Now click okay and close the internet accounts window.

6. Send and Receive

Your mail account is now added to Outlook Express. To download your messages, click the “Send / Recv” button on the top tool bar. If you encounter any errors please double check your username and password for the incoming and the outgoing server as well as the spelling of the mail servers before contacting support. If you find you are unable to send email, but can receive it fine, please read the second part of step 4 – it outlines how to solve this problem.

About Jordan Schelew

Jordan has been working with computers, security, and network systems since the 90s and is a managing partner at Websavers Inc. As a founder of the company, he's been in the web tech space for over 15 years.

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