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SMTP Send Problem

Discussion in 'Web & Email' started by msilvers, Aug 12, 2006.

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  1. msilvers

    msilvers Thread Starter

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    I'm suddenly having sporadic problems accessing my ISP's SMTP server when sending mail. I can fail one minute and work 10 minutes or an hour later. It has been doing this now for a week. I have used Netscape email for years, currently on version 7.2 for some time now. My ISP is Comcast, so my outbound mail server is smtp.comcast.net, standard port 25 as always. I have made no changes to mail settings, login names, etc., no changes to my Norton settings (which yes include inbound and outbound mail scanning, but why should that suddenly start causing problems after being installed for months?) The only error message I get is from Netscape mail, which says a connection to the SMTP server failed (and of course then works 10-60 minutes later). Any ideas on why this would suddenly start being an intermittent problem? Thanks.
     
  2. datamonger

    datamonger

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    When the error occurs, can you ping the smtp server?
     
  3. eeor3

    eeor3

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    I can't send or receive email with outlook. I have gone through all of the motions to set this account up and it is not working.

    I get this error message:

    The connection to the server has failed. Account: *myincomingservername*', Server: *myoutgoingservername*, Protocol: SMTP, Port: 25, Secure(SSL): Yes, Socket Error: 10060, Error Number: 0x800CCC0E
     
  4. datamonger

    datamonger

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    Right. The first step in any kind of connectivity issue is to see if you can ping the server at the same time you are having the problem. This will help in determining if there is a server problem, a network problem, or an application problem. But, it is just the first step. It helps in determining the next step. Open a command prompt and type ping smtp.comcast.net.

    You should see something like:
    If there is a problem you will get Request timed out.
     
  5. msilvers

    msilvers Thread Starter

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    Datamonger,
    I am Msilvers50, the poster of the original problem. Notice Eeor3 posted the second entry. He has a related but different problem which perhaps should have been put in a separate thread.

    Anyway, thank you for your suggestion. I understand why you have suggested ping and am familiar with the output it produces. Good idea to see if I can reach Comcast's SMTP server to help narrow down the problem. I have been able to send emails today without problems (could Comcast have finally fixed it after a week???). I am watching for the next time it occurs. If and when it does I will try to ping the server and will report back here.

    Eeor3,
    The only help I can offer is I've seen other posts with problems similar to yours. Disable Norton Anti-Virus or Norton System Works inbound and outbound email scanning if you currently have it enabled. I had the problem in the past where that disrupted by email. I will leave up to the Windows BBS administrators if your problem should be placed in a separate thread.

    Msilvers50
     
  6. datamonger

    datamonger

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    msilvers,

    Woops, I didn't even notice. I peruse many messages so it is easy for me to overlook this. Eeor3 should have searched the forums for a similar problem because, yes, it is a common problem.
     
  7. msilvers

    msilvers Thread Starter

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    Finally had the mail sending, and this time also mail receiving problem again. While it was happening, I pinged both mail.comcast.net (for outbound) and smtp.comcast.net (for inbound) mail. Both pings timed out, where normally I get 50-75 ms response times. While this occurs accessing various web sites completed with no problems.

    Obviously I can't send or receive mail if I can't ping my ISP's mail servers. Strange it is intermittent though, and not affecting other sites, so it sounds like it's their mail servers, not my general network connection. Sounds like something I have to call into their less-than-stellar tech support unless you have a different suggestion. Thanks.
     
  8. datamonger

    datamonger

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    If you can contact other sites but not Comcast's mail servers then the problem lies with those servers. I would contact them in some way EVERY time you experience the problem. "The squeeky wheel gets the oil" technique...
     
  9. rhynes

    rhynes

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    when both working and not working:

    tracert mail.comcast.net
    tracert smtp.comcast.net

    They may have a router that's up and down like a yoyo and don't know it. I've seen a few isp's with that happening. If it is, they probably would appreciate the heads up.

    I can trace both of them from here... trace both servers once and keep a record of the hops. When it goes down, locate the router that it stops at and let them know :)
     
  10. kunchi

    kunchi

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    its better to telnet to your smtp server

    in the RUN

    telnet smtp_server 25
     
  11. kunchi

    kunchi

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  12. datamonger

    datamonger

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    Doing a telnet will not be effective if you cannot access it with your client on an intermittent failure. Doing a ping will check to see if you can reach the server (even if the mail service has died) and a tracert will give a clue as to where the disruption could be. Telnetting to your mail server can be seen as an attempt to hack into it.
     
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