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Stopped receiving plusnet emails on android tablet

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michael91
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Posts: 6
Registered: ‎08-11-2021

Stopped receiving plusnet emails on android tablet

I have been using plusnet email for years on a laptop, with a pop3 connection and Thunderbird.  Earlier this year I also connected a Samsung tablet and got plusnet emails with an IMAP connection via Gmail until recently.  Then I found I was only getting titles, not the body of the messages.  I tried deleting the plusnet account from Gmail and putting it back.  Since then I just get a message saying there was a problem syncing, please try later.

The laptop continued to get emails ok until, during investigation of the problem, I tried to update from its old, insecure server connections to the currently recommended ports and security settings.  After that it stopped receiving emails.  When I clicked 'get new messages' there was a long pause, then a message saying it had timed out.

What has gone wrong and how do I get connected securely on both devices?

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Gandalf
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Re: Stopped receiving plusnet emails on android tablet

Thanks for your post @michael91 and welcome to our Community Forums.

I'm sorry to see you're having issues with your emails.

Can you try setting them up without using Gmail using the details found Here?

Let us know how it goes.

From 31st October 2022, I no longer have a regular presence here as I’ve moved on to a new role within Plusnet.
 Anoush Mortazavi
 Plusnet
michael91
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Posts: 6
Registered: ‎08-11-2021

Re: Stopped receiving plusnet emails on android tablet

The Gmail app is the only way I know to get plusnet mail on the tablet.  It came with a microsoft outlook app, that says it works with Gmail etc but does not list plusnet and seems to need a microsoft account that I don't want.  I had already checked the settings Gmail used against the details you suggested, and as I said, it worked OK for several months.  If you can suggest a different app for emails I'll try it, but the problem seems more likely to be plusnet than the app, given the failure on my pc as well when I try to use secure connection (again using settings from the page you suggested).

The pc uses Thunderbird, not Gmail, and gets mail OK since I reverted to the original settings (ports 110 and 25 with no security) but won't get mail with the currently recommended settings, so I'm concerned about security.

I've tried using webmail on the tablet and the pc.  That seems to have problems too - several failures to display any messages, telling me the inbox is empty when it obviously isn't, and showing a random selection of messages in sent items dating back many years when I expected it to delete old ones, but not showing the most recent ones.  On the pc a few minutes ago, it showed no sent items since July.

Gandalf
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Re: Stopped receiving plusnet emails on android tablet

@michael91 wrote:

The Gmail app is the only way I know to get plusnet mail on the tablet.  It came with a microsoft outlook app, that says it works with Gmail etc but does not list plusnet and seems to need a microsoft account that I don't want.  I had already checked the settings Gmail used against the details you suggested, and as I said, it worked OK for several months.  If you can suggest a different app for emails I'll try it, but the problem seems more likely to be plusnet than the app, given the failure on my pc as well when I try to use secure connection (again using settings from the page you suggested).

If Thunderbird works as you've suggested below and there's no mass reports of a problem then I highly doubt there's an issue our end because we'd be hearing a lot of noise if that were the case. When you say you're setting your Plusnet emails up on the Gmail app, are you manually doing it using our mail servers or using Google's?

 

@michael91 wrote:

The pc uses Thunderbird, not Gmail, and gets mail OK since I reverted to the original settings (ports 110 and 25 with no security) but won't get mail with the currently recommended settings, so I'm concerned about security.

What settings in particular are you using? Can you post up screenshots of the steps you go through?

Just make sure you hide any account sensitive information like a username or email address if you post screenshots.

 

@michael91 wrote:

I've tried using webmail on the tablet and the pc.  That seems to have problems too - several failures to display any messages, telling me the inbox is empty when it obviously isn't, and showing a random selection of messages in sent items dating back many years when I expected it to delete old ones, but not showing the most recent ones.  On the pc a few minutes ago, it showed no sent items since July.

We have issues with webmail we're aware of. Try the steps Here or use basic webmail Here.

From 31st October 2022, I no longer have a regular presence here as I’ve moved on to a new role within Plusnet.
 Anoush Mortazavi
 Plusnet
michael91
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Posts: 6
Registered: ‎08-11-2021

Re: Stopped receiving plusnet emails on android tablet

Thanks for your help.

The Gmail app uses plusnet servers.  It tries to set up automatically after I give it the email address and password, but doesn't get everything right.  It does test the incoming connection before moving on to outgoing, allows me to correct the settings and then says it has connected to the server OK.  Similarly, I have to correct outgoing and it then confirms the connection is OK.

It enters my full email address instead of my plusnet username, which I think plusnet says is OK, but I've tried changing to the username with no effect.

The corrected settings are

Incoming

Server  imap.plus.net

Port     993

Security type    SSL/TLS   (I've tried other options.  The app says the server does not support STARTTLS, which surprised me as it's the recommended choice for the outgoing server.  The app accepts SSL/TLS (accept all certificates), with a security warning, but that doesn't let me get emails either.)

 

Outgoing

SMTP Server   relay.plus.net

Port   465

Security type   SSL/TLS   (As above I've tried the other options, using port 587 with STARTTLS)

 

On the pc in Thunderbird, based on the message from Gmail I changed the security setting on the incoming port from STARTTLS to SSL/TLS.  That is now working OK on port 995, so long as I choose 'normal password', not 'encrypted password'.  STARTTLS works OK on the outgoing port 587, again with 'normal password'. (I'm not sure if this has really been used as the pc is on a plusnet broadband connection.)

Should STARTTLS work on port 995?  Should encrypted password work?

 

In case it helps your investigation of webmail, I've never re-ordered messages there (though I have in the pop3 downloaded set in Thunderbird).

michael91
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Registered: ‎08-11-2021

Re: Stopped receiving plusnet emails on android tablet

A further thought- I've just checked on the Gmail app again.  It can't sync the inbox, but it can send mail and sync the sent items box.

Gandalf
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Re: Stopped receiving plusnet emails on android tablet

Thanks for getting back to me @michael91

Ah really odd. Not all mail clients support STARTTLS but you should be able to use secure authentication for both incoming and outgoing. Incoming server would be imap.plus.net and port 993 (or 995 if you set it up as POP using mail.plus.net). 

For the outgoing server you'd use relay.plus.net and port 465 although looks like that's not an issue as you can send mail.

The username won't be your full email address, for first/default mailbox it'd just be your account username, for additional mailboxes it'd be in the format of username+mailbox then the relevant password for it. 

Could you private message me screenshots showing the settings you're using?

From 31st October 2022, I no longer have a regular presence here as I’ve moved on to a new role within Plusnet.
 Anoush Mortazavi
 Plusnet
michael91
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Posts: 6
Registered: ‎08-11-2021

Re: Stopped receiving plusnet emails on android tablet

The mail client (Gmail app) does support STARTTLS.  It was telling me the plusnet incoming server on port 993 doesn't, but will work with SSL/TLS.  Should I be able to connect to port 993 (or a different port, as for outgoing) using STARTTLS?  Does STARTTLS have significant advantages over SSL/TLS?

Townman
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Re: Stopped receiving plusnet emails on android tablet


@michael91 wrote:

A further thought- I've just checked on the Gmail app again.  It can't sync the inbox, but it can send mail and sync the sent items box.


A number of things...

  1. If the app is connecting to the IMAP server (incoming sever) with reporting an error, then look at the root folder setting and try "inbox" as the root folder - some mail clients get confused with the folder setting, which manifests as the subfolders (trash / sent / drafts) syncing but not the inbox
  2. Inbound IMAP is on port 993 with SSL/TLS not STARTTLS as inferred by the poorly formatted Plusnet page
  3. Outbound SMTP should be on port 587 using STARTTLS - port 465 is deprecated and should not be used - similarly port 25 is for MX to MX message relay, not mail client message submission

Superusers are not staff, but they do have a direct line of communication into the business in order to raise issues, concerns and feedback from the community.

michael91
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Posts: 6
Registered: ‎08-11-2021

Re: Stopped receiving plusnet emails on android tablet

Thanks.  I think the problem was mostly the general one affecting everyone recently.  It's working OK now but I was confused by the help page saying use STARTTLS with incoming port 993.  I got it working with SSL/TLS on port 993.   It also works with STARTTLS on port 143 (selected by the Gmail app when I choose STARTTLS).  Please can you advise which is better?  Is STARTTLS more secure?  Is there a reason to prefer port 993 to 143?

Townman
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Re: Stopped receiving plusnet emails on android tablet

Fix

That support page is unhelpfully confusing, an issue raised on several occasions.  The reference to STARTTLS refers only to SMTP - not IMAP / POP3.

Port 143 is IMAP without encryption (regardless of other settings)

Port 993 is IMAP with encryption

Port 993 uses SSL/TLS and (IIRC) gives no option for anything else.

STARTTLS on port 143 is either ignored, or after attempting to start with TLS encryption falls back to none.

 

So in a nutshell "better" is port 993 with SSL/TLS.

For completeness SMTP (outbound) should be port 587 with STARTTLS.

Superusers are not staff, but they do have a direct line of communication into the business in order to raise issues, concerns and feedback from the community.