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mostly_human
Aspiring Contributor
4,233 Views
Message 1 of 11

Intermittent email password problem

Good day,

 

My girlfriend has been using her btinternet email account for a few years without issue, but about a month ago she started getting intermittent login failures to her BT Yahoo email account; Outlook pops-up the "request network password" and Thunderbird pops-up a message about the name or password being invalid. There are no error codes. However, if she uses a browser; Firefox or Internet Explorer, there is never a problem (so we know the password is correct), but if she uses an email client like Outlook or Thunderbird then increasingly, the client is unable to retrieve emails for several hours and usually whilst she is doing something else like using Excel, the emails suddenly burst into life. I work in IT as a Unix sysadmin so know my way around this basic stuff (or so I thought) but I cannot figure out what is going wrong here. We have just spent 5 hours talking to four different Indians who do not seem to understand the problem and certainly have not been able to help. Strangely enough, if we login using a browser then invariably the email clients start working, albeit for an hour or so. We have access to two computers:

 

Desktop running Windows XP and using Outlook 2003.

Laptop running Windows 7 and using Thunderbird.

 

If I use her laptop from my home then the issue is still there, which eliimates anything on her hub. If I add her email account settings to Thunderbird on my Mac I get the same issue; sometimes I can retrieve her mail, sometime I cannot.

 

Nothing has been changed on her desktop but I have tried just about every setting for SMTP in Thunderbird, some work for a short while. One of the Indians remotely checked Thunderbird on the laptop and another checked Outlook on the desktop. Of course email worked just fine as they insisted we sign on with the browser. Email failed less than 10 minutes after the first call ended today and with the operator insisting email is fixed forever!

 

It appears to me that some "rule" or setting on the BT mail server is causing the issue but as no-one seems to be able to help I am turning to the user community for something more tangible.

 

All ideas, suggestion welcome.

 

Kind regards,

Rob

 

 

 

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10 REPLIES 10
Distinguished Guru
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Message 2 of 11

Re: Intermittent email password problem


@mostly_human wrote:

Good day,

 

My girlfriend has been using her btinternet email account for a few years without issue, but about a month ago she started getting intermittent login failures to her BT Yahoo email account; Outlook pops-up the "request network password" and Thunderbird pops-up a message about the name or password being invalid. There are no error codes. However, if she uses a browser; Firefox or Internet Explorer, there is never a problem (so we know the password is correct), but if she uses an email client like Outlook or Thunderbird then increasingly, the client is unable to retrieve emails for several hours and usually whilst she is doing something else like using Excel, the emails suddenly burst into life. I work in IT as a Unix sysadmin so know my way around this basic stuff (or so I thought) but I cannot figure out what is going wrong here. We have just spent 5 hours talking to four different Indians who do not seem to understand the problem and certainly have not been able to help. Strangely enough, if we login using a browser then invariably the email clients start working, albeit for an hour or so. We have access to two computers:

 

Desktop running Windows XP and using Outlook 2003.

Laptop running Windows 7 and using Thunderbird.

 

If I use her laptop from my home then the issue is still there, which eliimates anything on her hub. If I add her email account settings to Thunderbird on my Mac I get the same issue; sometimes I can retrieve her mail, sometime I cannot.

 

Nothing has been changed on her desktop but I have tried just about every setting for SMTP in Thunderbird, some work for a short while. One of the Indians remotely checked Thunderbird on the laptop and another checked Outlook on the desktop. Of course email worked just fine as they insisted we sign on with the browser. Email failed less than 10 minutes after the first call ended today and with the operator insisting email is fixed forever!

 

It appears to me that some "rule" or setting on the BT mail server is causing the issue but as no-one seems to be able to help I am turning to the user community for something more tangible.

 

All ideas, suggestion welcome.

 

Kind regards,

Rob

 

 

 


Hi Rob. Welcome to the forums.

 

A few weeks ago, there were some serious issues with the mail servers causing the problems you are now seeing. Although I wouldn't say it has been fixed completely, it has certainly massively improved. However your case is probably something that seems to happen from time to time, and is typically a fleeting error - but may last a few days.

 

Have a look at my shortcuts, link below, option 0d/h and alter the server names. That can very often clear the problem you are seeing.

 

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mostly_human
Aspiring Contributor
4,229 Views
Message 3 of 11

Re: Intermittent email password problem

Thankyou Andy_N, I found a 7 page thread on just this issue, I'm "glad" that we're not alone, pity the call centre don't seem to be aware though, it would have saved us a wasted afternoon.

 

Kind regards,
Rob

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mostly_human
Aspiring Contributor
4,215 Views
Message 4 of 11

Re: Intermittent email password problem

Hmmm, whilst investigating my problem I found this page: http://overview.mail.yahoo.com/enhancements/mailplus. It makes me wonder if somehow some BT email accounts have been affected by this pay option to allow remote POP mail access?
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mostly_human
Aspiring Contributor
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Message 5 of 11

Re: Intermittent email password problem

Oh dear, we have now spoken to two UK technical assistants (0800 3288344 - £30 if it's your fault!), neither of which were able to fix the problem. The latest advice from the guy I spoke to an hour ago, after trying the yahoo servers and even trying an IMAP setup, was that the problem was with the Yahoo servers and there was nothing else he could do to help, we'd just have to wait until they fixed the problem! I don't know about anyone else but for £40 per month I expect to be able to receive and send simple bl**dy emails. We are going to look at alternate ISP's, with a UK call centre and with staff that won't treat us like an irritation to their day.
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BonnyToads
Beginner
4,135 Views
Message 6 of 11

Re: Intermittent email password problem

I have been having same problems, starting a few months ago with very occassional pop up boxes asking for Outlook password, but gradually increasing in frequency until I get one every 10 minutes now. Does anyone know if BT are aware of this rather fundamental problem, running an email server can't be rocket science and they clearly used to be able to do it? Anyway going to try AndyN's solution of changing to yahoo servers.

AndyB

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mostly_human
Aspiring Contributor
4,096 Views
Message 7 of 11

Re: Intermittent email password problem

Well, this still going on and is actually worse because the only way to see email now is using a browser, bye-bye Thunderbird, Microsoft Outlook etc.

 

I was setting up a nice easy gmail account and it had an option to download data from another pop account, so naturally I tried. It failed with this message, "Server denied POP3 access for the given username and password." This ties ever so nicely with Yahoo Mailplus ( http://uk.overview.mail.yahoo.com/enhancements/mailplus ) which for the princely sum of £11.99 per year will allow me to "download mail into Outlook or other desktop email applications". It strikes me that an obvious cause is some kind of email account cross-contamination as BT ride the back of Yahoo mail. Perhaps a moderator would like to investigate and comment, I haven't got the patience to try and explain this to the Indian call centre (no offence intended). 

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Distinguished Guru
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Message 8 of 11

Re: Intermittent email password problem


@mostly_human wrote:

Well, this still going on and is actually worse because the only way to see email now is using a browser, bye-bye Thunderbird, Microsoft Outlook etc.

 

I was setting up a nice easy gmail account and it had an option to download data from another pop account, so naturally I tried. It failed with this message, "Server denied POP3 access for the given username and password." This ties ever so nicely with Yahoo Mailplus ( http://uk.overview.mail.yahoo.com/enhancements/mailplus ) which for the princely sum of £11.99 per year will allow me to "download mail into Outlook or other desktop email applications". It strikes me that an obvious cause is some kind of email account cross-contamination as BT ride the back of Yahoo mail. Perhaps a moderator would like to investigate and comment, I haven't got the patience to try and explain this to the Indian call centre (no offence intended). 


Hi.

 

If I may be frank, the error message you are getting from Gmail access to BTinternet doesn't seem like the one being received for general access failures.  I have still seen the odd access failure in the past couple of days (on a random one of my dozens of accounts), but nothing like the problem a few days ago.

 

The email servers have been with Yahoo for years as it happens.

 

Sorry for any inference here, but have you checked 100% that the email address and password details are correct when supplying to gmail ?

 

It could be an account specific problem in your case, which does happen from time to time, and has been masked by the recent server problems. Usually it clears itself within a few days unfortunately sometimes.

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mostly_human
Aspiring Contributor
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Message 9 of 11

Re: Intermittent email password problem

Andy,

 

There is no mistake with userid and password, forgive me but this is sounding exactly like the Indian call centre. If I hear incorrect password mentioned again I swear I'll scream. My own BT email account has experienced zero problems in all the years I've had it, likewise my Girlfriends up until November 2011. I have imported my BT email data into my Gmail account so the issue is with my Girlfriend's account on the Yahoo server. None of the published solutions work, e.g. changing to pop.yahoo.co.uk etc.

 

Siince four Indians and two UK staff tried to fix this issue the other week we have been completely unable to access email from anything except a browser login. The last guy, a UK expert, acknowledged a problem with the BT Yahoo servers and his sage advice was to keep trying every day and hopefully it will clear up soon...

 

Someone, somewhere must be able to help but it seems getting hold of that someone seems to be too hard.

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mostly_human
Aspiring Contributor
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Message 10 of 11

Re: Intermittent email password problem

Update. We sent a letter of complaint to Warren Buckley (managing director, customer services) and it did trigger a call from BT. An Indian lady from the Yahoo Macintosh support desk (!) called whilst we were at work wanting to take over the pc to check a few settings. When I asked her what settings she said something about latency and "special" settings. I left early to log on from home and catch her and after calling 0800 1114567 and asking specifically for the Yahoo Macintosh support desk I spoke to a lady called Aditi who assured me that by the end of the session my email would be fixed forever. Again. I didn't hold my breath...

 

When she started the session the Outlook pop-up asking for the password was clearly visible on the screen. After doing very little as usual, she changed the automatic download interval from 5 to 15 minutes and Outlook burst into life. This is also standard behaviour these days. She congratulated herself on a job well done until I told her that this is nothing new and it will stop again within the hour, the problem being intermittent and all...She promised to call back at 9pm and this time she actually did, so a housepoint gained there. However, after a lot more doing nothing she gave up and recommended we re-install Outlook. This is pathetic on a grand scale so what next, rebuild the entire PC? We never even touched on Thunderbird. She was unable to explain how a rebuild at our end will fix a problem at BT's end. 

 

Every time we speak to the Indian call centre they insist on taking us through the same rigmarole of checking usernames and passwords, it's like speaking to an automated robot. They also always promise that everything will be fixed during their call, but so far nobody in BT has been able to provide a sensible reason for the problem or a suitable fix for it. We are writing again to Warren and will also be contacting Watchdog for what use that will do.

 

Where is the escalation process for complaints? This is TOTALLY UNACCEPTABLE.

 

 

 

 

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