Have AT&T or U-verse and email problems?

August 20, 2009 / Updated: August 20, 2009 / Lena Shore

We recently switched over to AT&T’s U-verse for our internet, phone, and cable needs. For the most part, it’s been wonderful.

With their recorder you can record four television shows at a time and watch them from any TV set in the house.  Their recorder is very Tivo like. I miss the little boop-boop-boop noises from my defunct Tivo, but aside from that, it’s been a good move. The internet speeds rival my old cable speeds, but now I don’t have to share the network with my neighbors and experience the 3:00 p.m. internet slow down.

The problem

The only really irritating problem I had was setting up my email. No one explained to me that I’d have to do something special with my AT&T account to get my personal domain (lenashore.com) to work. And, when it failed, it was giving me cryptic messages. I finally figured out the solution and wanted to post it here for anyone who needs it. Even though I now hold the answer, navigating through AT&T’s bastard yahoo page is still a challenge.

The Answer

Turns out that’s because AT&T controls what goes in and out of my computer whenever they want control of it. I understand why. If they let us all do anything we wanted, it could cause serious security issues.

So, what we need to do  is to add any personal email addresses to our AT&T account, so that AT&T knows that it is really us.

  1. Login to att.net with your AT&T information.
  2. Go to the “mail” section (for me that is in the upper right quadrant of the screen)
  3. Go to “Options –> Mail Options” (or More Options..). It’s on the right hand side up close to the top. AT&T mail options
  4. Select  “Accounts” on the left side of your screen. AT&T Accounts
  5. Select “Add or edit an account. From here you can add your personal domain email address. If you want to check your personal email from yahoo’s/AT&Ts mail interface online, you will get options to enter your account information… or you can skip it.
  6. You will get a message telling you that you will need to verify your account by responding to a message that has been sent to this newly added email address. After that, you should be set!

The Trend

It seems to be a trend to add this kind of requirement with our ISP providers. Comcast has recently systematically been requiring their login and password information attached to their SMTP. When I had Comcast, it worked for years without this authentication. One day it didn’t. They claimed it had always been required. So, I changed it and it worked fine again.

I have had the same thing happen with my friends who have Bellsouth. I assume it is because AT&T purchased Bellsouth and they are switching things over to a new system over a period of time.

So, if your email suddenly stops working, it probably has a simple fix that is only a minor inconvenience. Fortunately, it should be easy to fix and it will only have to be done once

…until the next time their systems change. 😉

Lena Shore

Lena is a full-time freelancer and nerd that specializes in web development, graphic design, and illustration. She enjoys building things, learning new things, pursuing creative endeavors, and giving free advice.


  1. jo on February 22, 2013 at 9:53 am

    I too had an awful time sending emails once I switched over. I called U-Verse tech support and they did not know anything. At one point they told me everything will switch over automatically at 8:00 p.m., not true. Spoke with oneone else and she kept having me try different things, which I told them I had already done. She switched me to someone else. She said it was a Yahoo problem and they didnot know how to fix it but said they would charge me $49 to try another option. I told them no and hung up the phone. The next morning, 4 days later by the grace of God, he gave me insight as to what to do. I can now receive and send emails. I had to reinstall my printer and all is good now BUT no thanks to their tech department.

  2. JOHNNIE RUTH GRIFFIN on January 29, 2013 at 1:59 pm


  3. Linda Mann on November 8, 2012 at 10:07 pm

    I didn’t want to switch to AT&T email when I signed up for U-Verse account after moving, and for a while I was able to access my “old yahoo” account at Yahoo.com (had for 10 years). But, after a few months every time I tried to get to this old account the URL was highjacked and I was directly connected to AT&T Yahoo.net. I found a work-around but it was very cumbersome so decided to cave in and switch to ATT email, only to find that once this was completed, I no longer had any of my previous folders (personal and business) or my Contact list. There had been no warning whatsoever from AT&T or Yahoo that I might lose my data. I went through every site I could find, including AT&T, Yahoo, and various unaffiliated support sites. Chatted with ATT and Yahoo, both of whom said the other was responsible.
    At one point I redialed one of the numbers from which I had been disconnected, and selected option for tech support, only to be informed by a robot voice that live tech support was not available and I should go to website. I was fuming by now and called a number from realhuman.com site, where I was placed on hold once again before someone from another continent came on. He said he was sorry (they always are) but there was essentially no way in h— [my phrase] I was going to be able to get my emails or contact list back through any of the “tools available” to either AT&T or Yahoo. He then gave me a direct number for Connect Tech, warning me that their help would cost money. I decided to call and at least see what they had available, and was promptly placed on hold after short interaction with robot voice. I hung up.
    During the period of trying to figure all this out I waited on hold for 20 min and longer, to find that someone had directed me to the wrong department, or to think I was probably at right dep’t only to be disconnected. Somehow I researched online and found way to get my old Yahoo email back and my contacts and folders were there.
    Then last month, I found that Yahoo was allowing multitudes of Spam thru their “filter,” when it had worked well for years. Went online and found many others with same problem, and it was well documented on a Yahoo help site. They either couldn’t or did not wish to fix, and finally I gave in and closed Yahoo and went totally with AT&T, after having to go through folders/contacts, forwarding significant email (personal and home business) etc. That was about two weeks ago and I haven’t had one piece of Spam since, not in Inbox or Spam folder.
    I’m so sorry for those who have lost their data after trusting a company or companies to protect it. Remember, we’re not talking failure of user to perform regular back-ups, but failure of service. And, I absolutely agree, AT&T’s website is ridiculous, circular and offers choice after choice rather than zeroing in on specific areas. Thanks for your blog.

  4. Jeff on November 3, 2012 at 10:43 pm

    I have also been blocked from using my AT&T email accounts for the last 4 days.
    I get the same invalid password/username msg every time I try to access my email.
    I spent an hour doing an online chat that did nothing but change my account password.
    The next day I spent about 1 1/2 hours talking to 2 customer service reps who accomplished nothing other than another password change that still wouldn’t let me access my email.
    This is absolutely ridiculous – I have had to change all my personal and business contacts over to my new hotmail and gmail email addresses.
    I’m completely amazed that AT&T has such miserable customer service and such a confusing website.
    I’m happy with the speed of my U-verse DSL, but the loss of an email address that I’ve had for over 10 years is devastating.

  5. mjzee on September 4, 2012 at 3:47 pm

    Thank you! I’m a new U-Verse customer, and spend a maddening few hours today with AT&T customer support without success (but they wanted to charge me $49!). The info above solved my outgoing mail issues. Why doesn’t AT&T tech support know this??

    • Lena Shore on September 5, 2012 at 7:32 am

      I’m with you. They should. Glad it helped. (:

  6. Dman on July 23, 2012 at 11:24 pm

    Thank you. This solved my problems. I have a large monitor and didn’t think to look for the small menu in the upper right.

  7. Clay on January 6, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    Make sure that both your incoming and outgoing email server settings are set to the following:


    Check to make sure your email client (typically outlook or outlook express) has outgoing email set to use authentication.

    Your ISP may be filtering PORT 25. More and more ISP’s are following in this trend that prevents any email other than yourisp.com from being sent from your ISP. Typically contacting them (your ISP) will get this resolved.

    Another option is to set your outgoing mail to use PORT 26.

  8. atttech? on December 13, 2011 at 10:35 pm

    Just contact att and demand they unblock your outlook default port, most likely 25, and refuse to pay their tech support fee. It is rediculous that it is such an easy fix to a problem they created.

  9. Shari Vaughn on October 2, 2011 at 12:56 pm

    I have had the same issue as everyone else regarding sending mail from Outlook. It works great for days and then all of a sudden I start getting send/receive messages and it keeps asking me for my password. I do this about 10 times and then have to login via the web or test the connections in my email account and then it starts working again. I finally decided to do the unthinkable. I am slowly migrating my mail to a new exchange account that I set up with Go Daddy. It works fabulous and I haven’t missed an email yet. Think about it. AT&T email is pretty bad if you really need reliable email. The only thing worse than changing your email address is not getting important emails or not being able to send them.

  10. Arne on July 6, 2011 at 11:43 am

    I have had huge issues with ATT Uverse and Outlook. For 3 weeks it worked fine and then (with no changes from my end) multiple pop up boxes asking for my password appeared. I made sure all ports and authentication options were accurate, but still kept asking for password and bouncing.

    3 hours on phone, then an offer for Pay support……..they suggested I log in and reset my password…..got all the way through and service box has been appearing for 10 days saying “ATT is experiencing problems with this service, cannot reset password at this time”. Yikes……terrible service!!! Thought I made a good decision switching from TWC, but this makes me regret decision. Outlook is still industry standard and ATT needs to support it. Stay with your current provider!!!!

  11. Treva Duran on June 18, 2011 at 3:03 am

    Where do I begin. My husband and I switched from AT&T DSL to AT&T u-VERSE back in Mar 2011. I was able to use my regular email address up until June 13th when I went to log into my account and it did not recognize my login or password. Then a window popped up that said my email account had been suspended.
    I tried logging into my secondary email account as well as my husbands and the same results popped up. We spent 2 evenings (3 hrs each time) trying to get answers from CSR’s and Tech’s and we were told several things like….”you had to migrate your emails from the old att account to the new u-verse account within 60 days or you lose all of your accounts and info forever” ……. After numerous conversations and no ability to regain our lost information we were left with no other choice but to create new att email accounts. We lost very important information and att tried to blame Yahoo for taking over the emails and erasing our info. Nothing but finger pointing and no resolution. Another answer was…”The sales person who sold us the u-verse pkg should have told us about the email migration”. YA THINK??? Had we recieved a call on any of our cell phones or land line or recieved an email or a letter or something about this email migration, we would have been able to keep our email addresses and all of the important documents saved in folders that we will never see again. And…..I never did get a call back from the store manager at ATT in Union City where we signed up for this in the first place. Needless to say…..we love our DVR but have poor landline connections. We are just upset that we pay for att internet & email usage but they don’t seem to care about our needs. They love getting paid on time every month but cannot resolve problems.

    • Lena Shore on June 18, 2011 at 6:39 am

      Wow. Sorry for all the problems. The customer service (in our area) when have had a technical problem has been outstanding with U-verse. They come out right away if there is a problem. I agree that they don’t seem as trained on the phone with email issues and the like. Or at least when we got U-verse. Maybe that’s improved in our area since then. Good luck!

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