How do I set up Apple Mail for OS X Mavericks?

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This page is obsolete.

It contains instructions for an old version of the Mac OS X "Mail" program that is not included with new Mac computers. Unless you have a Mac running the older "Mavericks" operating system, you probably want to read the current Apple Mail page instead.

This page explains how to manually set up the Apple Mail program to send and receive email for a mailbox that you’ve created.

Before you continue, you should enter your email address (the address you want to set up in Mail) in the yellow box at the top of this page. Entering your email address makes sure that the instructions below are correct.

Most people do not need to manually configure Apple Mail. It’s usually quicker and simpler to automatically set it up using a profile. We provide these instructions in case you have trouble with the profile method.

These instructions are for the version of Mail included with Mac OS X 10.9 “Mavericks”. We have separate instructions for the older 10.8 “Mountain Lion” and 10.7 “Lion”, and for the even older “Snow Leopard” if you’re still using those.

1. Start the “Mail” program.

If you haven’t previously added an account to Mail, a window may automatically appear asking you to choose the account type:

Choose a mail account to add

If you don’t see this window, click Mail, then Add Account:

Add Account

2. Choose the provider.

Choose the Add Other Mail Account... option:

Choose a mail account to add

Then click Continue.

3. Enter your name, email address, and password:

Enter these settings:

Full Name:The name that other people will see when you send them mail, such as George Washington or Joan of Arc.
Email Address:Enter your email address. This must be the email address of the mailbox you created in our account management control panel.
Password:The email password you chose when you created this email address. Remember that your email password is not necessarily the same as your master account password.

The window should look like this:

Add a Mail Account

After doing this, click Create.

Apple Mail will show a message saying “Account must be manually configured”, and the button will change to say “Next”:

Account must be manually configured

Click Next.

4. Enter the “Incoming Mail Server” settings.

Enter these settings on the “Incoming Mail Server” screen:

Account Type:IMAP (our servers also support POP if you prefer it, but IMAP is recommended if you also want to use other devices to read mail sent to this address)
User Name:your email address (all lowercase)
Password:your email password (this should be filled in from the previous screen)

The window should look like this:

Incoming Mail Server Info

Click Next when finished.

5. Enter the “Outgoing Mail Server” settings.

The outgoing mail server settings will be almost identical to the incoming settings:

User Name:your email address (all lowercase)
Password:your email password
Important: Even though the Outgoing Mail Server “User Name” and “Password” initially say “optional”, they are not optional if you want to send outgoing mail from this account. Be sure to enter “” as the outgoing user name, as well as your email password.

The window should look like this:

Outgoing Mail Server Info

Click Create when finished.

Setup is complete

You’re finished with the basic Apple Mail setup. It should now work for sending and receiving mail.

Setting “Sent” and “Trash” folders

Once the basic account has been set up, there’s an additional step needed to keep Mail folders in sync with other programs or devices that might connect to the mailbox. Our Apple Mail Folders page has more information.


If you’re having trouble with Apple Mail, try restarting your computer as a first step. If that doesn’t work, the Mail Connection Doctor can provide useful information that will help you (or us) troubleshoot the problem.