Setting Up Thunderbird

We recommend Thunderbird for all email needs. Please note that because there are different versions of Thunderbird these instructions might vary slightly from what appears on your screen. If that happens, take a few seconds to poke around and you'll be able to get past any inconsistencies.

Like a twelve-step program...

  1. If this is the first time you are running Thunderbird the installer will give you a chance to import your existing account settings from other e-mail clients like Outlook Express, Outlook or other e-mail programs it finds on your PC. You can always import these later. To get the ball rolling we recommend that you to select "Don't import anything" and click "Next" to proceed.
  2. If you have NO accounts already defined, Thunderbird may automatically bring up the Add Account wizard, skip to the next step if so. If the wizard doesn't run, click on Tools -> Account Settings in the menu bar at the top of the screen. Once you open Account Settings, click on the Add Account button in the lower left corner of the window to launch the Add Account Wizard.
  3. Click on Email account, then the Next button to continue to the next page.
  4. For Email Address, enter your full email address (e.g. whatever@yourdomain.com) Click Next to continue to the next page.
  5. Select POP for Incoming Server. Enter mail.yourdomain.com (i.e. your domain name with "mail." in front of it) as the incoming server name. Uncheck Use Global Inbox. If asked, enter mail.yourdomain.com (i.e. your domain name with "mail." in front of it) as the Outgoing server name. Click Next to continue to the next page.
  6. Enter your full email address as both incoming and outgoing user names. (e.g. whatever@yourdomain.com) Click Next.
  7. Name your account whatever you want. (We called ours “Larry”) Click Next.
  8. Click Finish (thunderbird might attempt to connect to the server. If so, that's fine. Almost done...
  9. Click Tools in the upper menu bar. Select Account Settings. Click on your email account in the left column of the window.
  10. The new account wizard will have set most of this up correctly for you, if this is the only email account then it is already the default (if not, you may want to make it the default by clicking Set As Default) You probably also want to turn OFF the option to "Compose messages in HTML format" (you shouldn't send messages in HTML unless the recipient has agreed that this format is preferred). If you have a signature file, you can select it here too.
  11. Click "Server Settings" under your account. Unless you know how to set it up, don NOT turn on the option to use SSL for a secure connection. (select "no") There are several other settings here you can set to your liking though. You can set most of them however you want, but we recommend that you at least: click "leave messages on server" "for at most 14 days" "until I delete them" unless you have cause to set things otherwise. Keep in mind though that if you're not careful you might set the "leave messages on server" settings so that your inbox on the server fills up with email and becomes overloaded - or if you check the same address from multiple locations/computers you might mess things up, so the suggested settings above are safe for most situations.
  12. Click Outgoing Server (SMTP) in the left pane under local folders and than select the entry for your account and verify the following selections are made. (If it's not there, click add and enter the information.) Assuming it's there though, click Edit. and Confirm the settings: mail.yourdomain.com as the server - Check "Use name and password" Enter your email address as the user name. (e.g. youraddress@yourdomain.com) Do NOT select SSL for secure connection unless you know how to set it up. (select "no")
  13. Click on your email address in the left column of the Account Settings window. Make sure that toward the bottom on the right you have the correct Outgoing Server (SMTP) selected. You're done!