ASU Email with Thunderbird 3

5 03 2011

To use Thunderbird with ASU’s email, I found the guide on ASU’s webpage both outdated and filled with problems, so I thought I’d throw my own together.

Step 1: Enable IMAP. On, go to Settings -> Forwarding and POP/IMAP. Then enable IMAP.

Step 2: Set your IMAP password. On, go to Settings -> Accounts -> Google Account Settings -> Change your password. Then set a password.

Step 3: Clear your capcha. This one’s important, if you don’t do this you’ll likely get an error saying “Login to server failed” and an alert saying web login is required.

To do so, go to and prove you’re human by typing the capcha.

Step 4: Configure Thunderbird.

IMAP server:


Port: 993

Connection Security: SSL

Authentication type: normal password

SMTP server:

Port: 587

Connection Security: STARTTLS

Authentication type: normal password


After that, you should be able to send/receive email with Thunderbird. The downside is that I haven’t figured out a way to make use of ASU’s address book feature with it. On the web interface, you can start typing the address of anyone at ASU and it will show up on the auto complete list. Thunderbird will import in your own contacts if you set it up right, but not the complete email directory of ASU. In fact, I found using Thunderbird rather disappointing. The main reason I tried it was to get desktop notifications when I get email. However, I’ve since found that the Google Talk desktop client does this and works well enough. What I’m not sure about is if the Google Talk client will work with an ASU gmail account before you do Step 2 and Step 3 above, since I already did it and you can’t really undo it.



2 responses

31 03 2011
G Jordan

Thanks a lot for posting this. After trying (and failing) 50 times to connect to Thunderbird and Mac Mail using ASU’s help guides, I finally found this and got connected.

You will be rewarded in the kingdom.

11 08 2011
RoTimi Waddy

I also greatly appreciate you posting these suggestions in connecting to the ASU Mail Server settings. I was finally able to connect as well but finally had to contact the ASU Help Desk office (Tempe loc.) in order for it to finally work. There is a step that the technician had me do which is not included anywhere that I have seen which is to go to a special ASU website & login to “enable” access to your Gmail account outside of the school’s login page.

I just found the page to save people time & frustration:

Please note: after you login via the link, you can choose to use your current password that you use to login to or you can change the password to a different one which will be used for connecting this email account, externally.

Without doing this step, everything else WILL NOT WORK. Hopefully, this proves as helpful as it has for me.


RoTimi W.

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