Why is my smtp server offline in apple mail

Apple Mail, the email application included with MacOS, has some confusing account setup screens. If the emails you send appear to be coming from the wrong address, for example, emails you send from your home address are sent from your work address, or vice versa, you can modify your email account settings to fix this problem .

how to correct outgoing mail settings

To fix this problem, you will first need to open apple mail and click mail > preferences.

(do not click on the “accounts” option in the menu. the accounts option will take you to the system-wide internet accounts screen where you cannot modify your email account settings).

now click the “accounts” icon at the top of the preferences window. select the email account you are having the problem with here.

click the account’s “server settings” tab. you’ll see two different account settings here: incoming mail server and outgoing mail server.

outgoing mail server settings can be misleading. If you have multiple accounts on the same domain, for example, multiple Outlook.com or Gmail.com accounts, it may only say “Outlook” or “Gmail” in the Outgoing Mail section. this may look good, but it’s not.

click the “account” menu under outgoing mail and select “edit smtp server list” to see more information about your outgoing mail servers.

smtp stands for “simple mail transfer protocol”. the list you see here is a list of your outgoing email accounts. an incoming email account address may be associated with the wrong outgoing email account.

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In the screenshot below, we can see that one outgoing account (in the left column) is being used by two incoming accounts (the right column). In this example, this means that both our personal and work accounts are sending email as our work address. that’s not what we want.

so the first thing we need to do is rename these outgoing accounts; right now, both are called “outlook”, which is confusing. click the first one and look at the “username” box at the bottom of the window. then click the “description” box and give it a description that matches the account it is. in our case, we change one to “perspective – work” and “perspective – personal”.

(If you only see one account in this box instead of two, you need to add an outgoing address for the account that doesn’t have one. Click the “+” button here and add the smtp server and account details. you can get them from your organization or email provider).

When you’re done renaming the descriptions here, click OK.

now when you click on the “account” box under the outgoing mail (smtp) server, you will be able to tell which is which. choose the correct outgoing server for your account and repeat for any other accounts in the left panel if necessary.

what does “offline” mean?

If you see the text “offline” next to an account in the outgoing mail server (smtp) box, it indicates that your smtp server account settings are incorrect. You may have changed the password and forgot to update the outgoing smtp server password when you updated the incoming email account password, for example. if it’s an old account, it may have been closed and removed from the server.

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click the “edit smtp server list” option in the menu and provide the appropriate account details, for example updating the account password in the smtp server list.

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You can also remove all your email accounts from the mail app and add them back. mail should set things up correctly if you start over. however, if you have any popup email accounts, you will lose emails stored offline. that’s why imap is generally a superior solution for accessing your email in a desktop application.

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