A Guide to Access Outlook.com via POP in An Email Program

Enable POP Access on Outlook.com to Read Your Email Offline

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Outlook.com on the web works like an email program in most ways, and better in some ways. However, it isn't an actual email program you can use offline from your desktop. In order to do so, you have to configure your Outlook.com account to allow for POP email downloads.

A POP email server lets an email program download your Outlook.com messages. Once your Outlook.com email is configured in the email client, the POP server can be reached in order to download the messages from your Outlook.com and display them in your offline, desktop/mobile email client.

All of this is necessary if you want to download and send email in a dedicated email program instead of through Outlook.com.

Tip: As a flexible alternative to POP that offers access to all folders and synchronizes actions, Outlook.com also offers IMAP access.

Enable POP Access on Outlook.com

To allow email programs to connect to and download messages from an Outlook.com email account using POP, you have to access the POP and IMAP section of your Outlook.com account's settings:

  1. Click the settings gear icon on the top right side of the menu on Outlook.com.
  2. Select Options.
  3. In the Mail section, find the Accounts area and click POP and IMAP.
  4. On the right side of that page, under POP options, choose Yes for whether or not devices and apps can use POP.
  5. Once enabled, a new question appears below it that asks about whether apps can delete messages from your account.
    1. Choose Don't allow... if you'd rather Outlook.com keep a hold of messages even after the client downloads them.
    2. Choose Let apps and devices delete messages from Outlook if you do want messages removed from the server whenever the email client downloads them.
  6. When finished, click Save at the top of that page to confirm the changes.
  7. Once you refresh the POP and IMAP page, Outlook.com's POP server settings will appear along with the IMAP and SMTP settings. There's more information on how to set up POP below.

How to Connect to Outlook.com Email With POP

If you happen to use Postbox or Sparrow to access your Outlook.com email, follow those links to learn how to connect to your email account. Otherwise, use these general instructions that work with any email client:

Outlook.com POP Email Settings

These are required in order to download the messages to the client program:

  • Server: pop-mail.outlook.com
  • User name: Your full Outlook.com email address (e.g. example.outlook.com or example.hotmail.com, not an alias)
  • Password: Your Outlook.com password
  • Port: 995
  • Encryption method: TLS
  • TLS/SSL encryption required: yes

Outlook.com SMTP Email Settings

Use these server settings so that you can authorize the email client to send mail on your behalf:

  • Server: smtp-mail.outlook.com
  • User name: Your full Outlook.com email address
  • Port: 587 (try 25 if it doesn't work)
  • Password: Your Outlook.com password
  • TLS/SSL encryption required: yes
  • STARTTLS: yes (try SSL or SSL/TLS if it's not available)