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How To - Configure Outlook Express

One of the main requirements for Internet is Email. The most commonly used Email programs are Outlook Express for Windows XP and Windows Mail for Windows Vista. On this page we will demonstrate how to configure (add) a new email account; How to create and Send an Email; and How to add an Attachment using Microsoft Outlook Express.

This will assume that Outlook Express is already configured and is functioning. First up is how to add a new Email Account. Alternatively you can select which section you wish to jump to from the left quick access menu.

Interactive Tutorial

A sample configuration screen from a program can be difficult to interpret, especially when it comes to "What should I enter" here, so to help make this tutorial as beneficial as possible, IF you enter your information in the boxes below, this tutorial will use that information for the example pictures. You must make sure the information entered is correct. If you know your email address, then you shouldn't have any trouble.

If you are not sure what you should enter, then skip this and move directly to Step 1.

To help make this tutorial more beneficial, please enter the following information:
Your Real Name This is the name that will appear in the FROM field when you send an email. Use Capitals.
Your User Name This is the name you use to logon to check for email. It will appear before the in your email address
Your Domain Name This is what appears after the in your email address. Example I would enter It is your domain name without the www.
Click Run and then scroll down to read through the steps in the Tutorial

Adding a New Email Account

First load Microsoft Outlook Express. Find it from your Windows Start bar.

Once it has loaded, click on Tools then select Accounts


Now select Add and then Mail.

enter your name in here

Enter your name. This is what will appear in the "From" section of any email you send.

To make your emails look professional it is advisable to use Capital letters as the example shows John Smith instead of john smith

What you type here will be what everyone you send an email to will see.

Then click on Next.

enter your email address here

Enter your full email address here.

Then click on Next.

mail."your domain name"
mail."your domain name"

These settings are for connecting to the mail server at your domain.

enter mail. then your domain name.

for example the domain name for our website is so here I would enter

Note the domain name is entered without the WWW at the start. basically WWW is replaced with mail.

Make sure you don't forget the fullstop after mail, example

Use the same data for Incoming and Outgoing servers.

Then click on Next.

your logon name
Enter your password here

Account Name is your complete email address.

Password is the password configured for your email account.

Then click on Next.


Click on Finish and you're done.

Now from the Accounts page click on Close.

Now verify that it is working by clicking on Send/Receive mail.

If that test went through without errors, then try sending yourself an email to make sure you can send. To do this create another email and just enter your own email address in the TO section.

If that test goes through successfully then congratulations your account is configured and working. You have completed this tutorial.

--: That concludes this part of the tutorial :--

You will only have to continue reading if you were unable to send an email.

Problem Sending Email? Go into Advanced Settings
Select the account from this list
Account Properties

Problem sending email?

Only go through these steps if Outlook reported an error when trying to send an email.

Some Internet Service Providers (ISP) will prevent you from sending out email using Port 25.

This is an anti-spam protection scheme, so if you can not send email the first thing to try is changing the default port from 25 to 26

To do this Go back into the Accounts section again, (shown in STEP 1).

Then select the account in question from the list on the left and select Properties

We have 3 and a half suggestions that you can try.

Suggestion One - Change Port Number

Suggestion Two - Change Outbound Mail Server

Suggestion Two and a Half - Try Selecting My Server Requires Authentication

Suggestion Three - Change to SSL

Problem Sending Email? Suggestion One
Try Changing Port Number

Click on the Advanced tab.

In Outgoing Mail (SMTP) there is a box showing the port number 25 Change this value to 26

Now click on Apply then Ok, then Close to exit the accounts page, and now try sending an email again.

If this doesn't work, then proceed to the
NEXT Suggestion

Problem Sending Email? Suggestion Two
Try Changing to your Outbound Mail Server to your ISP.

Click on the Servers tab.

If your Internet Service Provider (ISP) is preventing you from sending mail through a third party server (ie your website server) then your best solution is to simply configure Outlook to use the ISP's mail server instead.

You will need to contact your ISP (or goto their website, technical details section) to identify what their mailserver name is and then you change the Outgoing mail (SMTP) to their server name.

For example if you're with Telstra then you could try changing it to

If you're with IPrimus then you would change it to

If you're with Optus then you could try changing it to

This means that each time you send an email, it is actually being sent from your ISP's mail server (and not the one for your website). This should pose no problems as anyone receiving the email will still see your normal reply address and therefore all replies will still be sent to whatever address you use. They won't be sent directly to your ISP email mailbox.

There is one issue that you may face and that is if you are using a wireless network, so if you are still having trouble sending email then proceed to the NEXT Suggestion

Problem Sending Email? Suggestion Two and a Half
Try Selecting My Server Requires Authentication

Click on the Servers tab.

If your Internet Service Provider (ISP) is preventing you from sending mail through a third party server (ie your website serve) then your best solution is to simply configure Outlook to use the ISP's mail server instead.

However if you are using a wireless internet connection, then you will inevitably find some circumstances where you still can't send email. The reason for this is as you switch between wireless connections, for example a public library or a hotel. Basically if you now use a wireless network that is not in collaboration with your ISP, once again you will find that your ISP will refuse to send email. This is because it has detected you are using a foreign internet address, and as such it is insecure as there is no way of validating who you are.

So what you can try is now selecting the My Server requires authentication checkbox, then click on SETTINGS.

Here you will be shown another screen for Outgoing Mail Server. You need to enter the username and password that has been assigned by your ISP. Then when you goto send email Outlook will actually logon and authenticate you with your ISP and then your ISP should allow the email to be sent.

If you are still unable to send email after trying all these suggestions, then you will need to contact your ISP and either ask them to allow port 25 for your account, or ask them for some additional suggestions because the issue of being able to send email is directly relating to what they allow or refuse to allow.

Still can't get it working? Then proceed to the final suggestion LAST Suggestion

Problem Sending Email? Suggestion Three (final)
Try Changing to SSL

Click on the Advanced tab.

Next solution is to try sending using SSL (Secure Socket Layer). Change the port to 587 then click on the checkbox This Server requires a secure connection (SSL). *note* you may get a prompt each time you send a message about using the certificate accept this, Move mouse over image to see an example

The Port number that you may need to enter can vary depending on how your website server is configured. If you have access to your Cpanel then in the mail section it will provide you with a list of all the manual settings, including the SSL Port Number. You can also try port number 465.

Also depending on how the security certificate is configured, you may or may not receive the warning that is mentioned above. This warning is usually only shown if the security certificate details don't exactly match the name of your domain. This can easily happen if your website is being hosted on a shared server, instead of a dedicated server. It just means the certificate is configured for the server and not specifically for your account.

If this doesn't work, then your only solution is #2, by sending the mail via your ISP's mailserver.

Email Account already Configured, but you need to make Changes ?
Name of the mailserver (or account) is here
Your Name
Your Email Address
your login name
If your account is already configured but you wish to make changes, then in Microsoft Outlook Express, click on Tools then Accounts (as show in Step 1 earlier in this tutorial) then click on the account in question from the list on the left and select Properties.

The first two "tabs" are the main ones General and Servers.

How to Send Emails ?
Outlook Express
How to Create and Send an Email

Once Outlook has loaded, click on Create Mail.

This will open up a new window.

Outlook Express
Creating an Email ?

You are now presented with all the options required to send an email. In this sample picture everything that is in RED is Required. Items that are in BLUE are not, but can be used if needed.

To ensure your email is received successfully make sure you enter the recpients email address in the TO field and make sure you enter a subject. Some Mail servers can reject emails that do not included a subject or they could get classified as spam and not delivered.

CC and BCC. These are used if you wish to send the one email to numerous people. CC is Carbon Copy and BCC is Blind Carbon Copy. Both work the same, except BCC ensures that no-one else knows who you sent the email to. CC on the other hand lists everyones address in the email. To help combat spam it is strongly suggested to use BCC.

Outlook Express
Sending Email from a Different Account

If you have numerous email accounts configured, then you would need to select which account appears in the FROM field of this email.

To do that click on the down facing arrow as highlighted by the red box. This will present you will a pulldown list of all accounts currently configured.

Simply select the account you require by clicking on it and now the From field will change to this account.

Outlook Express
Outlook Express
Sending an Email with Attachment

This is really easy to do. Simply create your email as per normal and then click on the paperclip Attach Icon as highlighted by the red box.

You will now be presented with a browse folder from Microsoft Windows. Simply look through the folders for the file you require and select it.

See next image sample. You can see now there is an attach line displayed under the Subject. This will list all the files you have selected. You can select more than one file.

*CAUTION* Notes about sending attachments.

Make sure the files are not too large. To be safe do not send anything larger than 5MB (5 MegaBytes) without contacting the recipient first. Anything you send that is too large will get rejected and your email will not be received.

Make sure the file type you are sending can be read by the recipient. For example if you are using the latest version of Microsoft Office and you send a .DOCX file. Does the recipient have that same version of Office? It is advisable to check first, or send a more compatible format such as .DOC

Microsoft Email programs like Outlook have an annoying "Feature" where they interpret your attachment and then imbed it in the email. This can cause problems for the recipient if they are not using Outlook. So to prevent this from happening it is always advisable to send a compressed version of the file (such as ZIP or PDF).

Certain file types can be deemed harmful to the recipients computer (such as .bat, .exe, .com, .dll) and as such they can be deleted, or worst case not even delivered. So to prevent this from happening it is advisable to send all files in a compressed format like ZIP. The only items not requiring this are images ( such as jpg, gif, png). Compression has two other benefits.

BENEFIT 1 Compressing files usually makes them smaller, making them quicker to email and to download.

BENEFIT 2 Compressed files need to be uncompressed by the recipient. If the file was damaged in transit then the recipient will be alerted to this when they goto open the compressed file. If a file was not compressed (such as a word document) but got damaged it may still open however the recipient would not know it was damaged and could be looking at a document containing incorrect data!

How to Compress a file It's easy. Microsoft Windows can do that, Go into my computer, look through the folders until you find the file in question, Right Mouse Button Click on the file, select Send To then Compressed (zipped) Folder and bingo in the same folder now will be a file with the same filename, but .ZIP extension. Then use that as your attachment instead of the original file.

Outlook Express

Once you have finished creating your email, simply click on Send and you're done.

If there are any errors sending your email Outlook will display a notification box informing you of what went wrong.

--: That concludes this tutorial :--
This Page was last updated on
21st of September 2012

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