XF 2.2 contact us: smtp and php not working


Email to info@himalayan-tools.com from info@himalayan-tools.com failed: Connection to tcp://alfa3211.alfahosting-server.de:465 Timed Out
I have configured the smtp exactly like in my own email program Thunderbird, it works fine in Thunderbird (send and receive)
still I am getting this timeout - although my forum and the smtp server are on the same physical machine.

Connection type SMTP
Host alfa3211.alfahosting-server.de:465
Username web2834xxxxxx
Encryption TLS

before that I tried the php method - that did nothing.
I have switched back to php and now the message is "mail sent" but nothing actually gets sent - plus there no errors logged as well.
what am I missing here?
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