Checking Your Email Ports

Filed in by Rackspace Blogger | May 24, 2006 9:13 am

We just released a Port Checker[1] inside of the [new] Email Tools section of the Customer Care[2] portion of our website. The purpose of this tool is for testing to see if an end user is able to make connections to the email system. This is useful for troubleshooting situations where it is suspected that SMTP, POP3, IMAP or webmail connections are getting blocked by a desktop firewall or a network device.
The way it works is the Port Checker opens up a connection just as an email client would to all of the various email related ports on our servers (SMTP, POP3, IMAP, and webmail) and checks for meaningful responses. If it gets responses, that means the ports are unblocked and the user can use those ports to connect into to send or receive email. If they’re blocked, the user will need to ask their network administrator to unblock them, or the user may need to use alternate ports in order to connect. The Port Checker provides advice after it runs as to which ports should be used for incoming and outgoing email, and whether or not the Email Auto-Configuration[3] tool is right for them.
Also, there is a “Submit Results” option after running the tool, which will log the results into our Master Diagnostics System for that account so that our Customer Care team can better troubleshoot problems for customers.
Thanks to Doug G. for building this—it’s been in high demand from the Customer Care guys, that’s for sure.

  1. Port Checker:
  2. Customer Care:
  3. Email Auto-Configuration:

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