Testing POP3/IMAP4 Permissions for MainBoss Service

This help file applies to an out-of-date version of MainBoss.
The most recent version of MainBoss is MainBoss 4.2.4.
This help file does not exist in MainBoss 4.2.4, but the index for that version can be found here.

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The MainBoss Service module needs to obtain mail messages from its mailbox using either the POP3 or IMAP4 protocols (techniques for accessing a mailbox). Some sites configure their systems to prevent POP3 and/or IMAP4 from being used. Therefore, it's useful to test whether these protocols are usable on the computer where you've installed MainBoss Service (see Setting Up MainBoss Service).

If you intend to use POP3 or POP3 with SSL, and if you have the Telnet client installed on your system, it's easy to test whether POP3 is enabled. (If you do not have the Telnet client installed, you can install it by opening the Programs and Features entry of the Windows control panel. Click Turn Windows features on or off, and checkmark Telnet Client in the resulting window.)

With Telnet client installed, you can test whether POP3 is enabled by opening a command prompt window and entering

telnet SYSTEMNAME 110

where SYSTEMNAME is the name of the computer that handles your email (e.g. mailhandler.ourcompany.com). If the answer begins with the characters +OK, then POP3 or POP3 with SSL is enabled. (Type quit to end the telnet command.)

Similarly, if you intend to use IMAP4 or IMAP4 with SSL, enter the command

telnet SYSTEMNAME 143

If the answer begins with the character * OK, then IMAP4 or IMAP4 with SSL is enabled.

Unfortunately, this approach won't work if you intend to use POP3S or IMAP4S. In that case, the easiest way to check is to try to create a POP3S or IMAP4S mailbox. (This approach will also work to test normal POP3 and IMAP4, with or without SSL.)

Different mail software products have different ways of creating mailboxes. If you have Microsoft Outlook or Outlook Express, you can do the following:

  1. In Outlook's File menu, click Add Account.
  2. Click Next.
  3. In the resulting window, click Add.
  4. Click either POP3 or IMAP (whichever you're using for MainBoss Service).
  5. Click Next.
  6. If you have configured MainBoss Service to use POP3S or IMAPS (which is recommended), checkmark Log on using Secure Password Authentication (SPA).
  7. Continue to fill in information as the wizard requires. Make sure that you use the same port numbers that you specified when configuring MainBoss Service.
  8. When you've finished creating the account, send mail to it and see if the mail arrives.
  9. When you're finished testing, delete any unneeded test accounts.

As noted, some sites have set up their email systems to prevent POP3 and/or IMAP4, since these protocols can create security holes if used in the wrong context. This has led some sites to ban the protocols entirely, even though they are safe when used in the right context. If your site has banned the protocols, the information in


may help convince your IT department that the protocols can be allowed for MainBoss.

On Windows 7 and Vista, if you don't have Outlook, you can use the built-in Windows Mail software. The process for adding a new account isn't exactly like the procedure above, but it's similar.

Odd Processing by Outlook/Exchange: Several MainBoss customers have encountered an odd behavior in Outlook and/or Exchange where HTML messages are mistaken for plain text. As a result, Outlook/Exchange tells MainBoss that a message is plain text, when it's really HTML; the result is that MainBoss displays mail messages as raw (hard-to-read) HTML, rather than processing them correctly. For help in fixing this behavior, see our online FAQ article at:


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