Secure SSL Connections for Windows Mail for Vista
This page is obsolete.
It contains instructions for a discontinued program called “Windows Mail for Vista” that has not been updated in many years. If you’re looking for a free mail program to use instead, Mozilla Thunderbird is a good choice.
With Windows Mail, it's possible to use secure SSL connections for added security. Doing so ensures that if another person somehow has the ability to eavesdrop on your Internet connections, that person won't be able to view your password or the contents of your email.
This page assumes that you have already followed the basic instructions to set up Windows Mail.
Enabling secure SSL connections
To enable secure SSL connections, you will:
- Open the Advanced settings window for your mail account
- Turn on both This server requires a secure connection (SSL) checkboxes
- Change the Outgoing mail (SMTP) port number to 465, and the Incoming mail (POP3) port number to 995
1. Start the Windows Mail program from your Start menu.
When Windows Mail opens, click Tools, then Accounts from the menu bar.
2. The Internet Accounts window appears.
Highlight the email account you wish to change and click Properties.
3. The Properties window appears.
Click the Advanced tab, then:
- First, check both boxes marked This server requires a secure connection (SSL)
- Change the Outgoing mail (SMTP) port number to 465
- Make sure that the Incoming mail (POP3) port number is 995
4. Close the setup windows.
Click OK to close the Properties window, then click Close to close the Internet Accounts window.
Windows Mail setup for secure SSL connections is complete
You're finished! Try sending yourself a test email message to make sure it works.
(For advanced users: you can check that your messages are actually being encrypted by viewing the headers of the test message and looking for text that says something similar to "using TLSv1" in one of the "Received" lines.)
Troubleshooting secure SSL connection problems
We've occasionally heard reports of computers where normal Windows Mail email works properly, but secure SSL connections do not work. This appears to be a problem with Windows Mail or Microsoft Windows on those computers.
If you have trouble after turning on secure SSL connections, try turning it off again to see if that solves the problem:
- Open the Advanced settings tab, using the instructions above
- Uncheck both boxes marked This server requires a secure connection (SSL)
- Change the Outgoing mail (SMTP) port number back to 587, and make sure that the Incoming mail (POP3) port number is set to 110.
If this fixes the problem, then either Windows Mail or Microsoft Windows is not working correctly on your computer. It may be possible to solve the problem by deleting the email account completely in Windows Mail and creating a new one — but if that doesn't help, there isn't much you can do, unfortunately, short of reinstalling Windows Mail or Windows.
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