Around the world, email is an integral method of communication and sometimes the only form of communication people can use to communicate with each other. Email is not only used in workplaces but also personal lives, with the messages carried by these emails ranging from trivial to life-saving. Especially with higher stakes messages, emails need to always be operational and constantly be able to send and receive messages when the user needs them to.
While working with technology or working as a support technician, it is always good to know what to do when your email is not working and how to troubleshoot it. There are many variables involved if an email has stopped working. There could be simple user errors such as mistyping an email address, firewalls blocking packets from being sent through, server misconfigurations, network issues or a multitude of other problems.
The first step to do when encountering email problems is to make sure that there is an active internet connection on the device. Then to make sure that the email on the device is set up correctly with the right usernames and password, with some passwords being case-sensitive.
If the problem with the email is that no new emails are reaching the inbox, it is always good to check to see if incoming mail is being sent to the spam bin or the trash bin instead of the inbox folder. If messages are being sent to the spam or trash folder instead of the inbox folder, quick reconfiguration of email settings to whitelist a sender or to stop email redirections can solve the problem. Some anti-virus or firewalls on devices can block incoming emails from being received and would need to be deactivated or a whitelist entry created for the emails to be exempted from filters.
If there is a problem with sending emails, a common issue could be an incorrectly typed email address or that the receiver’s email has been deactivated. similarly, antivirus programs and firewalls can have an impact on outgoing connections as well. Another fault that can impact the sending and receiving of emails is if users are using plugins with their emails. Deactivating plugins or reconfiguring plugins can then easily solve this issue.
Instead of a problem with the user, it could be a problem with the server. If a company email is being used, the domain name for the email may have expired and the email can no longer be used. Servers also have their own sets of firewalls and blacklists that stop connections from being made. Temporarily disabling or reconfiguring such counter-measures can be done to determine if these are causing the problems.
Finally, there could simply be an error with the network connection on the device that prevents it from communicating with the server or with the receiver of the email. Simple network diagnostic tools such as ping or tracert can be done to determine if the device has a connection to the opposing device.
Many problems can cause emails to not work properly. These are only some of the problems that could occur and how a technician or user can go about diagnosing and solving these problems.