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Message 1 of 5

Issues with IMAP and SMTP authentication from Outlook and other non BT applications

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Morning all,

                         a post on behalf of an exasperated father-in-law and long time BT customer regarding SMTP/IMAP access to email. From the middle of last week he has begun to experience frequent and extensive issues both receiving and sending messages via outlook and other desktop/ipad applications which use SMTP and IMAP for message sending and receiving. He's logged quite a few support  calls, performed password resets, confirmed the correct settings (only using SSL AND using the correct ports  (as per https://www.bt.com/help/email/manage-email-account/manual-settings/what-are-the-settings-for-outgoin...). However it still is not working correctly. It seems to come in fits and starts. While i was assisting him last week (and on the phone to BT support) the queued smtp outgoing messages on his machine suddenly began sending and then 60 seconds later stopped again. SMTP appears to be the worst affected service with the credentials being rejected by the SMTP server as incorrect username or password, even though they worked before without issue. Same applies to IMAP access although the authentication for this appears to be a little more stable with incoming messages appearing periodically. As an IT specialist in both infrastructure and systems (VMWARE certified, MS Certified, Dell Certified Engineer) this all points towards issues with the back-end authentication framework. It seems that whatever authentication source is being used for these services it's not getting the credential updates or not handling them  in the correct manner. Yes access works fine from the BT APP or BT WEB UI but my guess is this does not use IMAP/SMTP for message transfer. He and I have gone around the houses on this for days with zero progress. I've told him it's probably a platform update issue and that some component in the auth chain which has been patched is probably misbehaving and causing the problem. I just wish someone from BT would take note of the issues and sort it out! Hence my post on here to try and ascertain if others have seen stability/authentication issues on the IMAP/SMTP  gateways of late. 

There is clearly an issue as far as I can see but nobody within tech support seems to be able to do anything. I even asked to speak to a manager to no avail.... I'm at the point of migrating his email onto google which at least uses modern security protocols (not just plain SSL - come on BT!) and additional measures to secure the link. At least it's stable!

 

Any advice or feedback appreciated. 

 

thanks

Adam.

 

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Message 2 of 5

Re: Issues with IMAP and SMTP authentication from Outlook and other non BT applications

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So,

       73 views and zero replies. Thought a mod or admin might say something. Guess this forum is for noob answers only. It appears at least that as of this morning BT have sorted their authentication framework issue out as my father-in-law is able to receive and send email once again.  Just a shame tech support were helpless and hapless in getting a resolution.

 

 

 

 

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Message 3 of 5

Re: Issues with IMAP and SMTP authentication from Outlook and other non BT applications

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Perhaps if had bothered to read through the forum before posting you would have noticed that this has been a problem with the flaky BT mail since time immemorial and everybody is fed up answering that there is no solution despite constant appeals to BT to prove one.

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Message 4 of 5

Re: Issues with IMAP and SMTP authentication from Outlook and other non BT applications

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Fair comment... maybe I should have spent hours digging through but as I'm not a BT user and was doing this for my father-in-law (and having already spent about 2 hours going back and forth with BT) I was rather disinclined to spend even more time digging through thousands of threads. I was hoping a mod or admin might be in 'the know' and be able to advise there was an ongoing issue or something of that nature. Based on your comment it's clear BT is still truly in the dark ages from an infrastructure standpoint. Pretty much what I'd assumed from the start and clearly an accurate assumption. Appreciate you taking the time to reply nonetheless.

 

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Message 5 of 5

Re: Issues with IMAP and SMTP authentication from Outlook and other non BT applications

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Given it's problematic history I really don't know why anyone uses BT email, perhaps get him set up on Gmail? Yes it's a PITA having to notify everyone but once it's done it's done for good.

If the mail server is timing out you should be able to increase the wait time before it errors in Outlook. Might be enough to allow the hamster time to awaken from his slumbers & get on the wheel!