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how to troubleshoot outlook email client

How To Troubleshoot Outlook Email Client

General Email not Sending and/or Receiving

So, your emails are stuck in the outbox and mails are neither being sent nor received. Not to worry, this troubleshooting guide will get you back up and running in no time.

We’re writing this with the assumption that you understand basic computer terminology and techniques, and that you’re using Windows 7, 8, 10 or 11 paired with Microsoft Outlook 2016+. If that’s not the case, we’ve still got you covered. Follow the prompts and you’ll be good to go.

Step 1: Determine if you have a working internet connection.

The first thing you want to check is if your computer has a working internet connection. Try searching:


If you can connect to these sites, move on to Step 2.

If you cannot reach these sites, open Command Prompt in Windows: hold Windows key + S, type cmd in search box. Then paste the following:


You should get the reply below

Pinging with 32 bytes of data:
Reply from bytes=32 time=7ms TTL=60
Reply from bytes=32 time=6ms TTL=60
Reply from bytes=32 time=6ms TTL=60
Reply from bytes=32 time=8ms TTL=60

Ping statistics for
    Packets: Sent = 4, Received = 4, Lost = 0 (0% loss),
Approximate round trip times in milli-seconds:
    Minimum = 6ms, Maximum = 8ms, Average = 6ms


If you do not get the above reply, please contact your Internet Service Provider to fix your internet i.e. Cool Ideas, Vox, etc.

If you do get a reply, then manually set your DNS resolver to by following these steps:

  1. Open your Network & Internet settings by right-clicking on your internet icon located in your taskbar (at the bottom-right of your screen, should be close to your battery and volume icons).
Windows network & internet setting

2. Click Change adapter options

Windows network setting window

3. Double-click on your internet adapter that should be working, it will be named Wi-Fi or Ethernet (if you have a wired connection). It will open the Status window below.

Windows ethernet status

4. Click Properties

5. Double-click on Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4)

windows ethernet properties

6. Change Preferred DNS server: to, then click OK.

Windows IPv4 properties

7. Now, test your internet connection again by visiting or

or use Command Prompt in Windows or terminal emulation software like MobaXterm to ping mail.domainname / hostname / domain_name

For example:


Check that there’s a response: reply as below

ping internet connection test

Step 2: Determine if your IP is blocked on the servers Firewall.

Next, check if your public IP address is blocked on the server.

Find your public IP by going to or by Googling “What is my IP“.

Check if your IP is blocked on our firewall: Unblock IP Address From Our Firewall

Step 3: Troubleshooting from Outlook

Assuming that your IP isn’t blocked, and mails are still not being sent or received, move on to Outlook client troubleshooting.

Open up Outlook.

Navigate to File

outlook menu file tab

Navigate to Account Settings

outloook account information

Select the problematic account

Click on the Change button to bring up the email account in question

outlook account settings

Check the Email Address, Incoming mail server, Outgoing mail server, User Name, and Password. Insert the correct details if the credentials are wrong.

Ensure that there are no blank spaces in front or behind the email address.

outlook pop and imap account settings

If you unable to remember your password you can reset it by following our article: How to change the password of your email account

NB: Multiple failed login attempts will result in your IP address getting blocked on the server’s firewall. Refer to knowledgebase article Unblock IP Address From Our Firewall if you need help with that.

Once you’ve finished confirming the credentials click on the More Settings… button to continue troubleshooting the email client.

Navigate to the Outgoing Server tab and ensure that My outgoing server (SMTP) requires authentication box is ticked. Then choose the setting that says: Use same settings as my incoming mail server.

outlook internet e-mail settings

Navigate to the Advanced tab.

advanced tab outlook internet e-mail settings

Ensure that the Incoming server (IMAP/POP3) and Outgoing server (SMTP) ports are correct and that Use the following type of encrypted connection is set to SSL or Auto for both.

Use the relevant values below:

  • SSL (secure) Ports
    1. IMAP Port: 993
    2. POP3 Port: 995
    3. SMTP Port: 465
  • Non-SSL (unsecure) Ports
    1. MAP Port: 143
    2. POP3 Port: 110
    3. SMTP Port: 465

Once you’re done confirming the ports, click on the OK button and then the Test Account Settings… button.

outlook account settings test

If the test failed, revert to POP and IMAP Account Settings and troubleshoot again. This time, however, test with the non-SSL ports listed above.

If you completed the configuration and the client is working fine but the problem persists, read on for further troubleshooting configurations.

Other email settings and configurations to troubleshoot if the mail client works 100%.

SpamExperts lock

  1. Navigate to cPanel
  2. Under emails, navigate to Track Delivery
  3. Select deferred and/or Show Failures
  4. Click on the blue I under actions to see if you have been blocked by SpamExperts
  5. If you are blocked by SpamExperts: please create a ticket with HOSTAFRICA

Check MX/DNS records and email routing

  1. Navigate to cPanel.
  2. Under domains, navigate to Zone Editor.
  3. Click on the Manage button
  4. Check the MX record as well as your mail.domain_name A record and if it’s pointing correctly.
    1. If your MX record is pointing elsewhere, like MS Exchange or another 3rd party provider, then you need to ensure that your email routing is changed to Automatic Detect Configuration or Remote Mail Exchanger.
    2. Once you’ve confirmed and/or corrected the pointing, you need to check that the email routing is correct.
  5. Navigate back to the cPanel home page
  6. On the home page, navigate to Email Routing under emails.
  7. Select the relevant domain if you’re hosting more than one domain or sub domains on the account.
  8. Select Automatic Detect Configuration if you’re unsure whether your emails are hosted with HOSTAFRICA or a different service provider/3rd party mail provider.
    1. If you’re sure that your emails are hosted with HOSTAFRICA then select Local Mail Exchanger.
    2. If you’re sure that your emails are not hosted with HOSTAFRICA then select Remote Mail Exchanger.

Email delivery

Email deliverability or the SPF, DKIM, and PTR record is another record to look at when facing email deliverability issues.

  1. Navigate to cPanel.
  2. Click on Email Deliverability under the email’s menu
  3. Ensure there’s a green tick with the word Valid present. If not, click on the Repair button. This should repair the SPF, DKIM, and PTR records.
  4. Test your emails.


Anti-viruses also play a factor in email deliverability, sometimes the email client is being blocked by your computer’s anti-virus.

  1. Turn of your Anti-virus and test your emails
  2. Whitelist/allow the email client on anti-virus

Turn it “off and on again”

Close Outlook completely and re-open it. Sometimes cached data prevents updated credentials from taking effect.

Telnet test

Perform a telnet test to the email ports using to our knowledgebase article: How To Run A Telnet Test.

If all else fails…

If all else fails, log a ticket via your client area and our support staff will gladly assist you.

Happy Hosting!


The Author

Michel L.

Part of HOSTAFRICA's Marketing Team, Michel is reponsible for creating visual content such as graphics and video tutorials for the company's YouTube channel. In her free time, Michel loves to travel, learn new things, improve herself, and be physically active.

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