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email troubleshooting

There are some indications I have a problem with my host mail server:

1) There is quite a delay in sending some account verification mails according to users.

2) The notification alert emails about posts etc don't seem to be getting sent

3) Thunderbird complained about an error sending through the server once

I don't see any sign of a forum error on the 'tools-server error page'. Would an error interacting with the mail server be logged somewhere else?


XenForo developer
Staff member
Mail server errors would be logged there, but they'd mostly be connection errors. If the server appears to accept the mail, there's no error to report.

I'm assuming you're using SMTP by the wording here, so you may want to try using the "Default" handler. It's usually more stable, though yes you do lose some control.


XenForo developer
Staff member
It uses whatever settings PHP has been setup with - usually sendmail on Linux or a local SMTP server on Windows.
I believe i have a problem. In either default or smtp mode I can get account reg emails, albeit with latency. It appears to not be sending the alerts for watched threads etc. Odd.
I think there is a bug here. System is not emailing the expected alerts reliably. Some are sent. My host is bluehost.com. I don't think it is their problem.


XenForo developer
Staff member
Well, "delays" aren't possible from within XF. As soon as the email needs to go out, it's sent. We don't have anything that queues.

As for the watched thread emails, if you enable alerts for posts in watched threads, then if you receive an alert, the email was sent (well, if you chose to get it). They're added at the same time.

Also note that watch emails are only sent to people with "valid" account (ie, have confirmed their email address).
After I switched from 'default' to smtp I am not seeing as much delay. I have a test account I am testing with by having it reconfirm the email. Those emails are coming through fine. However, when I test commenting in threads with another test account I don't see the alert email in that case.
My test case was not valid. I have switched to smtp and all appears well. I was forgetting to visit the thread with the first test account so that the forum would note that I needed to be alerted to updates!