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iOS: Troubleshooting Mail

Symptoms

You can try these basic steps to troubleshoot Mail on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. If you see a specific error message, follow the basic steps, then the steps for that error message. For example, you might see one of these messages:

  • Cannot get mail
  • Unable to move message
  • Username or password is incorrect
  • Relaying denied
  • Email address rejected by the server

Resolution

First, try these basic troubleshooting steps:

  1. Tap Safari and load a webpage. If you can load a webpage, then your device has Internet access. If you can't load a webpage, check your Wi-Fi connection or try a different Internet connection:
    • Try a different Wi-Fi connection.
    • If your iOS device has an active cellular data plan, tap Settings > Wi-Fi and turn off Wi-Fi.
    • If the affected email account is provided by your Internet provider, see if your issue is resolved while connected to your home Wi-Fi network.*
  2. Log in to your email provider's website to make sure that the account is active and the password is correct.
  3. Make sure your settings are correct using Mail Settings Lookup.
  4. Restart your iOS device.
  5. Delete the affected email account from your device.
    1. Tap Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars.
    2. Tap the affected email account.
    3. Tap Delete Account.
    4. Add your account again.

* If you can only use your email account while connected to your home network, this might be a limitation put in place by your email service provider. For help, please contact your email service provider.

Follow the steps below for specific alerts.

"Cannot get mail"

Make sure you entered the correct password. If you enabled two-step verification through your email service provider, contact them to see if you need a special password for your iOS device.

"Unable to move message"

  1. Tap Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendar, then tap your email.
  2. Tap Account.
  3. Tap Advanced.
  4. Tap Deleted Mailbox and make sure it's set to Trash.
  5. Tap Advanced > Account, then tap Done.
    Note: If you see the issue again, repeat steps 1 through 3, tap IMAP Path Prefix, then Inbox. After you make your changes, tap Account, then Done.

"Username or password is incorrect" with POP3 account

Before you check your email on your iOS device, close it on your computer and other devices.

To see if your account is a POP3 account use the Mail Settings Lookup tool or:

  1. Go to Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars and tap the account.
  2. Look for the label POP ACCOUNT INFORMATION.

If your email provider offers IMAP, remove the POP3 account, then add the account with your provider's IMAP settings. POP3 communicates with one mail client at a time. If more than one mail client tries to connect, you might see a username or password error.

"Relaying denied" or "Email address rejected by the server" when you try to send email

This error indicates that either an email address is incorrect or your settings aren't correct for your current connection. Make sure the email address is correct for messages in the Outbox or try a different port:

  • If you're on a Wi-Fi network connected to the same network as your email domain, such as your Cable or DSL provider, try port 25:
    1. Tap Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars.
    2. Tap your email account, then tap Account.
    3. Scroll down and tap Outgoing Mail Server.
    4. Tap Primary Server, then tap Server Port.
    5. Delete the current port and enter 25.
    6. Tap Done.
  • When you connect to a cellular data or a different Wi-Fi network, you need to use an alternate port and authentication, if your email provider supports it. The most common alternate ports are 465 and 587. Check with your email provider for specific settings.

If you still can't send email, you can set up an alternate SMTP server.

Get help troubleshooting iCloud Mail.

Last Modified: Jul 14, 2014
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  • Last Modified: Jul 14, 2014
  • Article: TS3899
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