Outlook Express Configuration for Windows 98

Outlook Express is meant to be a universal e-mail and messaging client, offering access to standard Internet e-mail and usenet services, but also proprietary services on a Local Area Network. As a result, it is much more complex and slower for many tasks than a dedicated e-mail program such as Eudora Light or even the e-mail component built into Netscape Communicator. If you have used Outlook at work, Outlook Express will work much the same, but it will be much slower. Both were optimized for a LAN, not dial-up access. If you have not used Outlook before, you may be happier with Eudora.

The information on this webpage will only be useful to you if you have followed all the steps of the Windows 98 Internet Connection Wizard Configuration. Specifically, if you did not answer Yes to the question Do you want to set up an Internet mail account now?, you will need to run the Windows 98 Internet Connection Wizard again. Outlook Express e-mail will not be set up to work if the wizard hasn't done it.

If you did enter your e-mail information in the wizard, but you got some of your settings wrong, you may be able to change them from the Accounts dialog box.

Sending and Receiving E-mail

To send any mail you have written and receive whatever e-mail is waiting in you mailbox, click on Send and Receive on the Tools menu:

To compose a new message, click on the Compose menu:

Of course, you can always use the buttons on the toolbar below the menu
(look under File and Go).


Outlook Express has an immense number of options, mostly because it is meant to be used with many types of e-mail system and other services. Your e-mail account is set up to use standard internet e-mail, so many of the options will not apply.

To change your options, click on Options on the Tools menu:

There will be six tabs on the dialog box: general, Send, Read, Security, Dial Up, and Advanced.


The first tab is called General. As a convenience, you may want to click the square box beside Automatically put people I reply to in my Address Book


The second tab is called Send. In the top section, Mail sending format, click the round button beside Plain text. Yes, this means that you will not be able to put formatting on your message, but if you sent mail in HTML format, many people will get gibberish instead of what you meant them to see. You should do the same thing for News sending format, unless you are absolutely certain that you will only ever send messages to places where everyone can read HTML format message


The settings on this tab are mostly for News (usenet) reading. If you find the font used to display your messages to be too large or small or illegible, you can click on the [Fonts...] button near the bottom right to change it.


The Security tab has three parts, Security Zones, Secure Mail, and Digial IDs.

In the Security Zones section, you will want to click on the down-arrow at the right-hand side of the Zone: box, and then click on Restricted sites zone. This will prevent any Javascript or ActiveX scripts from running when you read HTML-formatted messages, protecting you from automatic running of trojan horse programs.

The middle and bottom sections can be ignored unless you want to be able to send encrypted and authenticated mail. You will need to set up an identity Certificate (called here a Digital ID) with a Certification Authority. This will only be of use to you if the people you send you mail to also have Certificates. If you are interested, click on the [More Info] button at the bottom right in the Digital ID section.

Dial Up

You have three basic choices for how Outlook Express handles your dial-up connections.

You can click the round button beside Do not dial a connection if you want to work offline or use an existing connection (i.e., if you are already dialed in, don't hang up to dial in again).

You can also click the round button beside Dial this connection: and select the connection you want to dial from the list to the right. Warning: if you select this, that is exactly what will happen, even if you are already dialed in!

You can also click the round button beside Ask me if I would like to dial a connection if you want to be able to choose whether to dial in or not each time you start Outlook Express.

The best setting is probably the first of these three.

You should probably also click on the square box beside Warn me before switching dial up connections, even if you only have one internet account, unless you choose the first option above. Outlook Express will happily hang up your existing connection and dial you right back in with the same connection if you let it!


You will probably not need to change anything on the Advanced tab.



To adjust the settings for your e-mail account or accounts, click on Accounts on the Tools menu:

You will see a dialog showing All of the accounts, including some that are for directory services. Click on the Mail tab to view only your mail account(s).

Now double-click on the mail.albedo.net account (you might have named it differently), or click on it and then on the [Properties] button.

The Properties dialog will appear showing the General tab.

Make sure that the Name: and E-mail address: are correct. Your e-mail address will resemble username@mail.albedo.net, where username is the name you enter along with your password to connect to the internet. (It will be eight characters long at the maximum, and all lowercase and/or numerals.)

The next tab will be Servers.

Under Server Information, both Outgoing mail (SMTP): and
Incoming mail (POP3): should be set to mail.albedo.net.

Just below, you should see My incoming mail server is a [POP3] server -- if it does not say POP3, you will need to create a new account.

Under Incoming Mail Server, the round button beside Log on using should be filled in. Your username should be filled in beside Account name:. If you don't want to type your password every time you get your mail, you can fill it in beside Password: -- but be aware that if you do that anyone who can access your computer will be able to impersonate you via e-mail.

The next tab will be Connection.




If you wish to use SSL for your email, set the SMTP port to 465.

Adding a New Account

New instructions for creating a new account go here.

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