Use POP or IMAP to connect to Office 365 for business or Microsoft Exchange accounts

You can connect to your Office 365 for business or other Microsoft Exchange email account with programs that use POP3 or IMAP4 Internet protocols. Connecting to your Office 365 for business or other Microsoft Exchange email account using either protocol only lets you send and receive email. You can’t connect to your contacts, tasks, or calendar when you connect to your account using POP3 or IMAP4.

Tip    For the best experience, we recommend that you connect to your Office 365 for business or other Microsoft Exchange email account using Outlook on the web, or through an email program that supports Exchange ActiveSync access such as Outlook 2013 that ships in Office 365 ProPlus or Office Professional Plus, Outlook 2010, Outlook for Mac 2011, Apple Mail 10.6 Snow Leopard, Apple Mail 10.7 Lion, or Entourage 2008, Web Services Edition.

In this article

Instructions for setting up email for your Office 365 for business or Microsoft Exchange account

What are POP3 programs?

What are IMAP4 programs?

Common POP3 and IMAP4 connection options

Email programs that support POP3 and IMAP4

Find POP or IMAP server settings

Instructions for setting up email for your Office 365 for business or Microsoft Exchange account

Use the following resources to set up email for your Office 365 for business or Microsoft Exchange account:

  • To set up email on some of the most frequently used desktop email programs (for example, Outlook, Mozilla Thunderbird, Mail for Windows, Apple Mail, and more), see Email program setup reference.

  • To set up email on your mobile phone or tablet (for example, iPhone, iPad, Surface, Android, and Windows Phone), see Phone and tablet setup reference.

  • To set up email on a desktop version of Outlook (for example, Outlook 2013 that ships in Office 365 ProPlus or Office Professional Plus, Outlook 2010, and Outlook 2011 for Mac), see Connect Outlook to this account.

What are POP3 programs?

By default, when POP3 email programs download email messages to your computer, those downloaded messages are removed from the server. This means you can only access the messages on the computer where you downloaded them. Some POP3 email programs, however, can be set up to keep a copy of your message on the server. A message kept on the server can be accessed from more than one computer.

POP3 email programs can only be used to download messages from the server to a single folder (usually the Inbox) on your computer.

What are IMAP4 programs?

Email programs that use IMAP4 are more flexible and usually offer more features than programs that use POP3. By default, when IMAP4 email programs download email messages to your computer, a copy of each downloaded message stays on the server. This means you can access the same message from more than one computer. With IMAP4, you can create multiple email folders on the server, which lets you access any message from any folder from more than one computer.

Most IMAP4 email programs can be set up to keep a copy of your sent items on the server so that you can view them from more than one computer. IMAP4 supports additional features that aren't supported by most POP3 programs. For example, some IMAP4 programs include a feature that lets you view only the headers of your email messages—who the message is from and the subject—on the server. Using that IMAP4 feature lets you download only the messages you want to read.

Common POP3 and IMAP4 connection options

POP3 and IMAP4 email programs let you choose when to connect to the server to send and receive email. There are some things to consider before you decide which option to choose.

Three of the most common connection options are:

  • Send and receive messages every time you start the email program With this option, email is sent and received only when you start the program.

  • Send and receive messages manually With this option, messages are sent and received only when you choose "send and receive" in the program.

  • Send and receive messages every set number of minutes With this option, your email program connects to the server at a set number of minutes to send messages and download new ones.

For information about how to set these options for your email program, see the Help documentation for that program.

Tip    If your device or computer is always connected to the Internet, you may want to set the email program to send and receive messages at a set number of minutes. Connecting to the server frequently helps keep your email up to date. If your device or computer isn't always connected to the Internet (for example, if you connect to the Internet by using a dial-up connection), you may want to set the email program to send and receive messages manually. Sending and receiving messages when you connect using dial-up can help reduce the time you're connected to the Internet.

Email programs that support POP3 and IMAP4

If your email account supports POP3 and IMAP4, you can use many different programs to connect to your account. These include Outlook, Windows Mail, Entourage, Apple Mail, Thunderbird, and Eudora. The features supported by each email program vary. For information about the features offered by specific POP3 and IMAP4 email programs, see the documentation included with each program.

Note    If you don't know whether your email account supports POP3 and IMAP4, contact the person (sometimes called an email administrator) who manages your mailbox.

The following table lists some email programs that support POP3 and IMAP4. For more information about setting up a POP3 or IMAP4 connection with your account, see Instructions for setting email for your Office 365 for business or Microsoft Exchange account.

Email program

Supported operating systems

Microsoft Outlook 2013 that ships in Office 365 ProPlus or Office Professional Plus

Windows

Microsoft Outlook 2010

Windows

Microsoft Outlook 2007

Windows

Microsoft Windows Live Mail 2011

Windows

Microsoft Windows Live Mail 2012

Windows

2009 version of Windows Live Mail

Windows

Microsoft Windows Mail

Windows

Microsoft Entourage 2008

Windows

Microsoft Outlook for Mac 2011

Apple Macintosh

Mail (Apple Mail)

Apple Macintosh

Thunderbird

Windows/Apple Macintosh

Pine

Windows

Alpine

Windows

Eudora

Windows

iPhone Mail

Apple iOS

Amazon Kindle Fire Email

Kindle Fire

Windows Mobile Mail

Windows Mobile 5.x or higher

Windows Phone Mail

Windows Phone 7.x or higher

Find POP or IMAP server settings

If you’re connecting to your Office 365 for business email, you don’t need to look up your settings. For Office 365 for business, use the following settings.

Server name

Port

Encryption method

POP3

outlook.office365.com

995 implicit

TLS* v1-1.2

IMAP4

outlook.office365.com

993 implicit

TLS* v1-1.2

SMTP

smtp.office365.com

587 explicit

TLS v1-1.2

*Some clients refer to implicit TLS as SSL.

If you’re using Microsoft Exchange-based email but aren't using Office 365 for business, do the following to look up your settings.

  1. Sign in to your email account. For help signing in, see Sign in to Outlook on the web for business.

  2. On the Outlook nav bar, choose Settings Settings icon > Options > Accounts > POP and IMAP.

  3. On the POP and IMAP settings page, you can review the POP, IMAP, and SMTP settings that were set up automatically and can choose to set up other options.

    POP and IMAP settings page showing POP, IMAP, and SMTP settings and POP and IMAP options

  4. Under POP options and IMAP options, you can select one or both of the options for sending event invitations in an iCalendar format or for not sending receipts for a message you've read.

  5. If you selected any check box, choose Save Create group button to apply the changes, or choose Discard discard if you've changed your mind.

    Depending on your choice, there may be a request to confirm your actions.

    Confirm changes made to options by choosing Save or Discard, or Cancel.

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Applies To: Outlook Web App for Office 365, Outlook Web App for Office 365 Small Business, Outlook on the web for Office 365 Business, Outlook Web App, Outlook on the web for Exchange Server 2016



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