Is your email working properly? Is there an email address that you can’t send or receive email? You can’t troubleshoot an email problem unless you know how email works.
There are a couple of different types of email accounts available for the average computer user. Do you have a free email account like aol, yahoo, Hotmail, or outlook.com? It might seem like a good deal until you have a problem. Did the free service supply a telephone number to call if you have a problem? Probably not… Don’t expect service if you didn’t pay it. The service was free. What did you expect?
Do you have email with your ISP, Internet Service Provider? The major players provide technical service as part of their package. If your ISP provides your email, you can call them to resolve an email problem. Consider how you read your email. Do you open Internet Explorer and navigate to the ISP webpage? This is a pretty simple setup. All you need is the ISP webpage to access your email. Any problems with your email are usually a problem for the ISP to resolve.
Do you use a program such as outlook, not to be confused with outlook.com, to access your email? The program connects with email send and receive servers to access your email. When you set up the program, your ISP will provide the proper settings. If you entered the settings correctly, everything should work. ISPs do make changes to their servers that will cause email problems unless you keep up with notices from the ISP.
Did you know that you have a password for your email? Many people forget that they have a password because it is set once in the email program and forgotten. Making sure the correct password is being used is the first step to diagnosing an email problem. The next step is to confirm your send and receive server settings. Email servers consist of a send and receive server. You need both to send and receive. The fact that you can only send or receive will usually isolate the problem to the correct server.
If you can send and receive an email from yourself, that is a good indication that your email settings are set correctly. Are you able to send and receive an email from a friend? Does your friend have an email at another email provider? Do only email addresses from a particular domain fail to be sent or received? Is there an error message received to indicate the problem? Email error messages might seem cryptic but they do contain helpful information.
Email might seem like black magic but it does adhere to common rules and practices. Make sure you understand the rules before you attempt to resolve any email problems.