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Email Problems

Resolving problems with your Email
  • I'm trying to download my email, and it hangs up on one message.
    • If your email seems to stop downloading when you get to a certain message - for example, it gets to message 7 of 12 and then stops - what's probably happened is that someone sent you an very large message that's taking a long time to download. This can happen if, for example, someone sent you a lot of pictures.

      If this happens, you have a couple options:

      • Wait - If the message isn't extremely large, you may be able to wait it out.
      • Delete the offending message - You can go into Boreal's web mailer to scan through the messages waiting for you, and delete the large one so the rest of your mail can get through. To do this:
        • First you need to make sure you're not still trying to get your email. If you're trying to download it to your email software, you won't be able to access it through the web mailer. Disconnect from the Internet and wait about 10 minutes for the server to recognize that you're no longer trying to get your email. Then dial back in.
        • Next, click here to go to the web mailer. Type in your login name (without @boreal.org) and password, and click Login.
        • This will take you to a screen where you'll see all your messages listed. To the right of each message is its size. Most sizes will end in KB - if you see one that ends in MB that's the culprit. Often it will be the first message not listed in bold print.
        • Once you've found the large message(s), you can click on the subject line to see what the message is. To delete this message:
          • Click on the box to the right of the message in the list of messages. This will put a check in that box.
          • At the top of the screen, click on the arrow next to Trash or Saved and select -DELETE- from the list that appears.
          • Then click the "Move/Delete" button. Click OK. The large message will be permanently deleted.
        • Click the Logout button to exit the web mailer. Now you should be able to get the rest of your messages the same way you normally do.
  • I got kicked off the Internet while trying to download my email. Now when I go back in to get my mail, it keeps asking for my password.
    • Wait about 10 minutes and try again.

      Why? If you get disconnected while downloading your email, the server doesn't immediately recognize that you're no longer online, and it keeps trying to download your mail. While it's in this state, your mail file is locked. It usually takes about 10 minutes after you've disconnected for the system to recognize that you're no longer online and release the lock. Until it does, you won't be able to get your email.


  • Is there a limit on the size of my email mailbox?
    Boreal doesn't have a specific limit on the size of your mailbox, but in order to keep the mailboxes from getting too large, we do limit the age of the mail in your mailbox. What this means is that we won't reject mail because your mailbox is full - your mailbox can't get full. However, we will delete messages from your mailbox if they're over 100 days old. For most people, THIS WILL NOT AFFECT YOU. You will only be affected by this if
    • You are using the Boreal Web Mailer, and haven't moved your old messages out of your inbox. To preserve your old messages, you can move them to the Saved folder:
      • Click the box to the right of your message to check it
      • Select "Saved" from the drop-down box at the upper right side of your screen
      • Click the "Move/Del" button next to the drop-down box
      • Click OK on the message box that pops up
      To view messages after you've moved them, select "Saved" from the drop-down box at the very top left of your screen.
    • You haven't downloaded your Boreal email for over 3 months. In this case, your old messages will be lost.

  • Someone sent me a message, but I didn't get it.
    • Make sure they're sending it to the correct email address. A common mistake people make is to use boreal.com rather than boreal.org in the email address.
    • Are they replying to a message you sent them? Check your email settings to make sure you're using the correct return address on your emails. To do this:
      • In Outlook Express: Click the [Tools] menu, [Accounts]. In the window that opens, click the [Mail] tab, click your account and click the [Properties] button. Check the email address shown on the window that appears to make sure it's correct - if not, correct it and click OK.
      • In Eudora: Click the [Tools] menu, [Options]. Click [Getting Started] on the top left, and make sure the [Return Address] is correct. If not, correct it and click OK.
      • Netscape 4.79 and earlier: Click the [Edit] menu, [Preferences]. Double-click [Mail and Newsgroups] on the left and click [Identity]. Make sure the email address and Reply-to address are correct. If not, correct them and click OK.
      • Netscape 6 and above: Click the [Edit] menu, [Mail and Newsgroup Account Settings]. Make sure the Email address and Reply-To address are correct. If not, correct them and click OK.
    • Call the Boreal office with the email address of the person who sent you the mail and the date they sent it. If it was sent in the last week, we can check the logs and see if it was inadvertantly blocked by the spam filtering system. If so, we can whitelist that email address so it doesn't happen again. If the message was sent in the last 48 hours, we can retrieve it and send it to you.

  • I'm receiving messages saying there's something wrong with an email I sent, but I never sent an email! What's going on?
    This can be one of two things:
    • Virus activity - Almost all modern day viruses send themselves out using a faked return address. What this means is that you can receive messages like this even though you're not infected with the virus yourself. Here's what happens:
      • Joe Blow, who's got your email address stored somewhere on his computer, gets a virus.
      • Joe's virus generates thousands of email messages as it tries to send itself to every address it can find on Joe's computer. It finds your address on Joe's computer and uses it as the return address on these emails.
      • Some of Joe's virus-generated messages go to invalid addresses, or systems with automated virus checkers. The system where the message ended up sees your address in the return address of the message, so it sends you the error message.
      Receiving these types of messages does NOT necessarily mean you have the virus on your computer; however it's always a good idea to check and make sure your system is virus-free. For more information on this please go to our Virus prevention section.


    • Joe-Jobs: If you have your own domain name, spammers can find it and use it in the return address of the spam they're sending. This way they send the spam but you get the error messages when the spam goes to an invalid address, and you probably get the complaints, too. This is called a Joe Job, and unfortunately there's no way to prevent spammers from abusing your domain name in this way. What you can do:
      • Limit your virtual addresses: This is probably the easiest and cleanest way to deal with this. By default, mail sent to anything@yourdomain.com will go to you. The Joe Jobbers usually use odd email addresses like ajjekdy@yourdomain.com. If you only have a few email addresses for your domain that you actually use (ex. info@yourdomain.com, you@yourdomain.com), contact the Boreal office with those addresses, and we'll limit your mail so you only receive messages sent to one of the addresses you gave us. (NOTE: We can only do this if we're hosting your web site. If your site is hosted with someone else, you'll need to contact them with this request.) This will drastically reduce the number of bounce messages you're seeing due to a Joe Job.
      • Wait it out: Joe Jobs don't usually last more then a few weeks - then the spammer moves on to another innocent victim.
      • Filter it out: If you look at the body of the messages that are being returned you'll probably see some similarities. You may be able to set up mail filters to filter these messages out. See our Mail Filters section for more information.

      For more information on spam and spammers, see our Dealing with Spam section.

  • I can't send email! It either asks for a user name and password or gives me the message Relaying denied. Proper authentication required.
    This can happen for one of two reasons:
    1. Your email software is set up to do email authorization, but it isn't correctly configured, or
    2. You're not using Boreal to access the Internet (ex. you're on a satellite) but are trying to send mail through Boreal's server.

    There are a few solutions:
    • The cleanest way to resolve this is to configure your email software for SMTP Auth, or outgoing email authorization. To do this:
      • Netscape 6.0 or above:
        • Open Netscape Mail, then click the Edit menu, and click Mail and Newsgroup Preferences.
        • On the left side of the screen, click Outgoing Server (SMTP).
        • If "Use name and password" is not checked, click it to check it.
        • In the "User name" field, enter your Boreal username. (This is normally the same as your Boreal email address, except without the @boreal.org.) Click OK.
        • The next time you try to send email you'll be prompted for your password. Enter your Boreal password (remember it's case-sensitive) and you'll be done!
      • Outlook Express:
        • Open Outlook Express, then click the Tools menu and click Accounts.
        • In the window that appears, click the Mail tab. You'll see an account listed named "mail.boreal.org" or your email address or something similar - click it to highlight it and then click the Properties button on the right.
        • In the window that appears, click the Servers tab. At the bottom of the window is a line that says "My server requires authentication" - if it isn't checked click it to check it.
        • Click the Settings button and in the window that appears click "Use same settings as my incoming mail server" to select it.
        • Click OK, OK, and Close to close all the open windows.
      • Outlook (2000 or later):
        • Open Outlook, then click the Tools menu and click Email Accounts.
        • Select "View or change existing email accounts" and click Next.
        • You'll see an account listed named "mail.boreal.org" or your email address or something similar - click it to highlight it and then click the Change button on the right.
        • In the window that appears, click the "More Settings" button at the bottom right.
        • Another window will opem - in this window click the "Outgoing Server" tab.
        • Make sure that "My outgoing server (SMTP) requires authentication" is checked - if it isn't, click it to check it. Then click "Use same settings as my incoming mail server" to select it.
        • Click OK, Next, and Finish to close all the open windows.
      • Eudora
          Please note - Eudora doesn't work well with our authorization system, so the following instructions may not help!
        • Open Eudora. Click on the Tools menu and click Options.
        • On the left of the window that appears, click "Sending Mail".
        • Click "Allow Authentication" to select it, then click OK. The next time you try to send mail Eudora should prompt you for a username and password - enter your Boreal username (without @boreal.org) and password and you should be done!

    • Another option is to turn authorization off - only do this if you're using Boreal to access the Internet! Follow the instructions above, except UN-check the boxes that the instructions tell you to check.


    • If you're not using Boreal to access the Internet, another option is to put your Internet provider's outgoing mail server name in your email settings under "Outgoing mail (SMTP) server". To do this:
      • Netscape 6.0 or above:
        • Open Netscape Mail, then click the Edit menu, and click Mail and Newsgroup Preferences.
        • On the left side of the screen, click Outgoing Server (SMTP).
        • Change "Server Name" to your provider's outgoing mail server and click OK.
      • Outlook Express:
        • Open Outlook Express, then click the Tools menu and click Accounts.
        • In the window that appears, click the Mail tab. You'll see an account listed named "mail.boreal.org" or your email address or something similar - click it to highlight it and then click the Properties button on the right.
        • In the window that appears, click the Servers tab. Under "Outgoing Mail Sever (SMTP)" enter your provider's outgoing mail server name.
        • Click OK and Close to close all the open windows.
      • Outlook (2000 or later):
        • Open Outlook, then click the Tools menu and click Email Accounts.
        • Select "View or change existing email accounts" and click Next.
        • You'll see an account listed named "mail.boreal.org" or your email address or something similar - click it to highlight it and then click the Change button on the right.
        • Under "Outgoing Mail Sever (SMTP)" enter your provider's outgoing mail server name.
        • Click Next and Finish to close all the open windows.
      • Eudora
        • Open Eudora. Click on the Tools menu and click Options.
        • On the left of the window that appears, click "Sending Mail".
        • Under "SMTP Server" enter the name of your provider's outgoing mail server. Click OK.
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