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BT Internet: renewed problem

Michael Graubart

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I have had two email accounts for many years, both on my iPhone 7 (IOS 13.5) and on my Mac (Mojave, OS 10.14.6): a gmail.com one and an iCloud.com one. I used also to have a Btinternet.com one on each device, but abandoned the BT accounts a long time ago because of continual problems. Recently BT has modified and, seemingly, improved its email system, and I decided to reinstate the BT accounts on both devices.

As soon as I started the procedure of adding a BT account on either device, I was told that either my password or my username is wrong. Yet the identical password and username allow me to access my BT account — and my emails in the form of webmail — without any difficulty. They are therefore obviously correct.

I have had a lengthy correspondence with a very helpful technical person at BT, who confirmed that my password and username must therefore be correct and the problem must lie with my attempted settings on my two devices. I have checked and rechecked these with the help of documentation supplied by BT, with no success.

Finally I temporarily unchecked Mail and Notes in System Preferences/iCloud on the Mac so as to prevent any interaction between devices and tried setting up the BT account on each device yet again, but with no more success than before.

Any advice or help with this depressing situation would be very much appreciated.
 

NSquirrel

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While I use BT, I dropped my btinternet email address so that I could move to a move to another ISP if I felt the need at a later date. Hence I simply forward any emails, if any, to btinternet to my gmail address but have the btinternet account set up on both iPad and iPhone. (I was forced several years ago to move my email address when my ISP ‘Demon’ closed. Changing saved email addresses here there and everywhere made me make my email address ISP independent.)

1) I wonder if a mistyped or old password or username is stored somewhere. I had this recently with a log in, but to where I cannot remember - or whether PC, iPad or iPhone. Several times I typed in the proper username and password only for the stored, incorrect ones, actually to be used to attempt and hence fail the login. Eventually I tracked down where the info was stored; deleted it and, successfully, tried again.

2) I am sure that you have deleted the btinternet email account settings; restarted and tried to set it up again

3) Checking my settings on my iPhone, I think that these are the main entries:
Hostname is mail.btinternet.com
SMTP mail.btinternet.com
Use SSL is on
Authentication is set to password
Server Port 465
Under Advanced,I have
Incoming Settings
Use SSL
IMAP Path Prefix seems to be /
Server Port is 993
Under S/MIME:
Sign is set to No
Encrypt by Default is set to No
 
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Michael Graubart

Michael Graubart

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Thanks v. much, NSquirrel. I actually checked the details you list earlier and they seemed to be right, but I will check again. But the fact that I cannot get the Mail apps to access my BT mail either on my phone or my Mac still makes me think that it is not my settings that are at fault; rather, perhaps, earlier versions of my BT password and username have somehow remained stuck in the BT system and make it reject my new ones.
 

NSquirrel

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>> earlier versions of my BT password and username have somehow remained stuck in the BT system

Since posting tge above I have been wondering about that and trying to check my old records. Before BT broadband I had a username I set up to see my ordinary phone bills; the username I used was just 6 letters (not over security conscious then!). Then, when I changed to BT broadband I recall having problems with my username. Eventually BT changed the logins on both web and btinternet email to my email address.

I wonder whether it would be worth trying to change your username and password via their website at bt.com, under personal details.
 

ITGeek

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FWIW: I have set up my wife's and my iPhones and iPads on my home server (for the tech savvy: Postfix SMTP, Dovecot IMAP4), iCloud, and Gmail, and never had a moment's problem. That's three entirely different email systems/software. So my money'd be on a BT SNAFU.
 
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Michael Graubart

Michael Graubart

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>> earlier versions of my BT password and username have somehow remained stuck in the BT system

Thanks, NSquirrel. I had already done both those things! I was using the new password and username when I tried setting up in Mail (on both devices), and it was these new ones — which BT accepts as correct for webmail and 'My BT' — that are 'not found' when trying to set up the accounts.
 
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Michael Graubart

Michael Graubart

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FWIW: I have set up my wife's and my iPhones and iPads on my home server (for the tech savvy: Postfix SMTP, Dovecot IMAP4), iCloud, and Gmail, and never had a moment's problem. That's three entirely different email systems/software. So my money'd be on a BT SNAFU.

Thanks for the suggestion, ITGeek. I'm afraid I really don't want to get into anything as complex as a home server. And, just to demonstrate how ignorant I am, I haven't a clue what any of your abbreviations mean — especially 'BT SNAFU'!
 

NSquirrel

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SNAFU Situation (or Status) Normal: All F***ed Up - a military acronym slang (USA)

Does sound very much as though the problem is within BT. The only other thing I can think of trying is to try the BT email app in the App Store on the iphone or perhaps something like outlook on your Mac. (Something that is not the Apple Mail app or web-based as that works.)
 

ITGeek

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@Michael Graubart, oh, I wasn't suggesting you should set up your own mail server
lol.gif
That's tech geek stuff :) I simply meant to point out why I feel the problem is not likely with iOS' mail app.

Huh. I would've thought "SNAFU" was widely-known throughout the English-speaking world. "BT," of course, refers to the ISP under discussion.

The tech acronyms, in case you're interested: SMTP: Simple Mail Transport Protocol: The networking protocol used to send email client-to-server. IMAP4: Internet Message Access Protocol, version 4: One of the networking protocols email clients use to read and store email on email servers. "Postfix" is a version of server software that implements the former, "Dovecot" a version of server software that implements the latter.
 
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Michael Graubart

Michael Graubart

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SNAFU Situation (or Status) Normal: All F***ed Up - a military acronym slang (USA)

Thanks again, NSquirrel — for advice, and for translating that useful and elegant American military acronym for me. I shall remember the latter. As far as the former is concerned, I have got the 'My BT' app on my phone. It is elegant and quick to use (I have activated finger-print validation) and gets me into my BT webmail very smoothly. So why am I spending so much of my time, and that of kind advisers like you, ITGeek and even a very helpful BT technical expert whom I contacted through the BT Community forum in trying to make my Apple mail apps work with BT? There are two reasons, a good one and a bad one.

The good one is that I want, on both my devices, to have all my email inboxes together in one place and be able to select 'All inboxes', so as to see everything anyone has sent me by whatever route, in one operation, with one app, at one time. The bad one is pure annoyance: my telephone line and my landline-and-broadband package are BT ones for which I pay plentifully; BT assures me that I should be able to access its emails through the mail apps on my phone and my computer, so I expect to be able to do so.
 
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Michael Graubart

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@Michael Graubart, oh, I wasn't suggesting you should set up your own mail server
lol.gif
That's tech geek stuff :) I simply meant to point out why I feel the problem is not likely with iOS' mail app.

Huh. I would've thought "SNAFU" was widely-known throughout the English-speaking world. "BT," of course, refers to the ISP under discussion.

The tech acronyms, in case you're interested: SMTP: Simple Mail Transport Protocol: The networking protocol used to send email client-to-server. IMAP4: Internet Message Access Protocol, version 4: One of the networking protocols email clients use to read and store email on email servers. "Postfix" is a version of server software that implements the former, "Dovecot" a version of server software that implements the latter.

Thanks for that. I had come across SNAFU before, but never knew what it meant., though I should have done because my former wife is American.
 
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Michael Graubart

Michael Graubart

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3) Checking my settings on my iPhone, I think that these are the main entries:
Hostname is mail.btinternet.com
SMTP mail.btinternet.com
Use SSL is on
Authentication is set to password
Server Port 465
Under Advanced,I have
Incoming Settings
Use SSL
IMAP Path Prefix seems to be /
Server Port is 993
Under S/MIME:
Sign is set to No
Encrypt by Default is set to No

NSquirrel, may I crave your indulgence a little more and ask you how you accessed these settings on your phone? My phone is an iPhone 7 and yours may be different in this respect; at any rate I have tried various places in Settings and cannot find all the corresponding details. Thank you in anticipation.
 
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Michael Graubart

Michael Graubart

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SNAFU Situation (or Status) Normal: All F***ed Up - a military acronym slang (USA)

Does sound very much as though the problem is within BT.

I have SOLVED THE MYSTERY - at least partially. Quite recently I had changed my password for My BT, BT email, etc. On my phone, I now started the account setting-up procedure once more, but I put in my previous password instead of my new one. Lo and behold, the account was set up and my BT emails arrived in my phone’s Mail app. (When I then tried the same on my Mac, I was told ‘This account already exists’, and I could go no further, though the allegedly pre-existing account could not be set up on the Mac).

The procedure I used for changing my password recently should have changed it for my devices' Mail apps as well as for webmail etc. It clearly did not. Bringing the password for Mail apps stored by BT up to date and into agreement with that for webmail, though now not necessary, would be useful for reasons of simplicity, memorability and so on (and might perhaps solve the ‘This account already exists’ problem for my Mac), so I should be very grateful for further advice.
 

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