How to Check your Hotmail using Mail.app

This tutorial will guide you through setting up Mail, the default email application that comes with OS X, so that you can send and receive your Hotmail messages from directly within Mail.

Start out by launching Mail, and selecting Mail -> Preferences… from the top drop-down menu.

Select the Accounts tab and then click the plus sign ( + ) in the very bottom left corner.

Enter your name, your Hotmail email address, and your Hotmail password in the spaces provided. Click the Continue button.

On the Incoming Mail Server screen select POP as the Account Type:. Enter a descriptive phrase as the Description: (eg. Hotmail) and in the Incoming Mail Server: field enter pop3.live.com. Enter your full @hotmail.com email address as the User Name: and once again enter your Hotmail password in the Password field. Click Continue.

On the Outgoing Mail Server screen once again enter a descriptive name or phrase in the Description: field (again, Hotmail or something similar is a good idea). In the Outgoing Mail Server: field enter smtp.live.com. Make sure Use only this server is not checked. Make sure Use Authentication is checked, and enter your full @hotmail.com address as your User Name. Yet again, enter your Hotmail password in the Password field. Click Continue.

You should now be presented with an Account Summary screen similar to the one below (except your @hotmail.com email address and name will be displayed instead of mine). Click the Create button.

You’ll be taken back to the Accounts tab of the Preferences. Close the Preferences window.

Your Hotmail email will now begin downloading.

A few things to note – it can take some time to download all of your Hotmail messages the first time. Depending on the size of your Hotmail account (how many messages you have etc) you may want to go grab a cup of coffee. When you open one of your Hotmail emails using Mail, it will remain “unread” if you visit Hotmail and check your mail through the web interface (http://mail.live.com). Also, if you delete a message in Mail, it will not be deleted when you visit Hotmail through the web interface.

If you have any questions, by all means leave a comment below. Happy Hotmail’ing!

Comments [36]

  1. Hey, Ross

    Nice post and clear guide on setting a Hotmail account into Mail.

    Have you heard any rumours / fixes / work arounds for not being able to fully synch with the online Hotmail account? ie: deleting e-mails in Mail actually get deleted in Hotmail?

  2. i can't send e-mails using these settings, it says, cannot send e-mail using server smtp.live.com

    The sender address philipengland@hotmail.com was rejected by the server smtp.live.com.

    Select a different outgoing mail server from the list below or click Try Later to leave the message in your Outbox until it can be delivered.

    Sending from: Philip England

    can you please help

  3. I'm getting the same message: cannot send message using server smtp.live.com.

    Any suggestions????

  4. i replaced "smtp.live.com" with "smtp.hotmail.com"……worked for me

  5. very cool stuff..have been try various tricks n tips.. but nothing wazz working…now this tutorial ways really good..working gr8..thanz mite…

  6. When i delete the e-mails from my Hotmail account using Mail.app, it will remain … in Mail, it will not be deleted when i visit Hotmail through the web.

    So could you help me please?

  7. I have recently set up Apple Mac Mail email client to access my Hotmail email via a pop3 connection. Whilst I am able to send and receive email at the present time I cannot find how to delete messgaes on the Hotmail server when deleted on my local machine email client.

    I want the messages to only be deleted on the server when deleted on my machine. In other words I want the hotmail server and my email client to have exactly the same messages saved at any one time.

  8. I CTRL-Clicked on the account name under the SENT section, and chose `Edit "MAILBOXNAME".

    Under `outgoing mail server' choose `EDIT SERVER LIST', then select the account you are trying to send from.

    Make sure PASSWORD is selected for authentication, and that the full email address and password is entered in the boxes beneath.

    I used default ports, had SSL ticked, and used smtp.live.com as the outgoing server.

    Hope this helps.

  9. thanks for the great instructions, ross!

    anyone have any response to graycat's question about deleting mail in Mail and having that same message deleted in hotmail? i'm running in the same problem and haven't found any solution(s) yet. 🙁

    @cristiano — if kris' suggestion didn't work, i ran into the same thing and set the port for smtp to be 587 instead of whatever default, and that helped.

    thanks, everyone!

  10. Thanks for the great tutorial!

    Also Thanks to MLUK – enabling the password for authentication under the "advanced" tab of the "EDIT SERVER LIST" option fixed my unable to send problem.

  11. I've been using my Mac mail program to access my hotmail. When I first switched, I didn't want all the old hotmail messages in my Mac mail, so I deleted them all. That was weeks ago. This morning when I signed into Hotmail via the web, my inbox was empty. I've lost every message, there were 1000. Anyone know why this might happen?

    Thanks

  12. Right on Ross. I've finally got Hotmail working in Apple Mail again. Not that I missed all the spam, but it's still nice to have.

  13. Have tried everything above, plus some other random ideas in desperation, but still no luck sending hotmail. can receive fine though!

    am on os 10.4.11.

    mail version 2.1.3

    any other ideas?

  14. thank you very much …..it works nowwwww 🙂

    you are amazing !:)

  15. How do I stop my hotmail messages going straight to the deleted folder? They don't show up in inbox in Mac Mail as they are in deleted folder!!!!

  16. I am having the exact same problem as: Marla Jane on February 24th, 2010 6:37 am. Anyone have suggestions?

  17. When I first downloaded my e-mails on Mac Mail these were automaticlly deleted from the Hotmail server and now I can only access to my old e-mais via Mac Mail..

    Do you know if there is a way to get all my e-mails back to the Hotmail sever?

    Thank you very much!

  18. I am also having problems moving over to Mac, I have tried all the replys in this thread but nothing seems to work. I have the latest snow leopard os. I get all my incoming messages okay but the sent ones just have the smtp.live.com rejection message.

    can anyone help me !!!

  19. I have tried using outgoing server as smtp.live.com and smtp.hotmail.com and both are not working, anyone have any other idea's???

  20. This is the easiest and best explanation of this I've found, thanks!

  21. I can check my Hotmail in Mail.app, but it doesn't always work properly. Sometimes messages show up, sometimes they don't. And replies will suddenly disappear. What is wrong?

  22. I can send email from my mac mail. when i try to recieve email it asked for my password. I type my hotmail password in but it keeps saying i dont have the right password How can i fix this

  23. When I open mail in Apple it automatically gets all the incoming mail from Hotmail. How can I keep it on Hotmail or a copy of it or stop apple mail from importing it?

  24. Dude, your site is the bomb! I checked out 1/2 a dozen sites lookin' for directions on how to set up my Mac mail to receive my Hotmail emails, and you'd have thought I asked for directions on how to perform brain surgery. Your directions/screen shots/commentary were perfect! And easy to follow. Thank you.

  25. I installed the mac mail, but didn't know it would delete my Hotmail messages from the server. I changed the settings. Is it possible to retreive the mail back in my Hotmail mailbox? Thanks.

  26. Hey, I am having that common problem that my messages have been removed from the server, have changed the remove from server setting now, but is there any way I can retrieve the messages back to the hotmail server?

  27. I have already switched my hotmail account to mail one time before. Unfortunately my mac broke down this past month and I am having to redo the whole process. If I remember back I just had to wait an extra week or so before all my old emails from hotmail downloaded onto mail. I'm not sure whether it is a process that is sometimes delayed with mail but it has now been a week and only 75 of my probably hundreds of emails have shown up. Some of those that I had received in the summer just after switching to mail do not show up on my hotmail account now. I really need some of those emails for reference, will they eventually download onto mail or do I have to go change something? cheers.

  28. i got all my e-mails in my hotmail inbox disappear too.

    All of my e-mails were stored in a folder called POP on the left hand side under Deleted folder.

    Click on POP and follow the instruction, you will be able to restore your e-mails back to Inbox in hotmail.

    It appear to be some setting issue.

    But once I click GET MAIL in MAIL, it start over by downloading all my e-mails again…

    ….who can get me out of this?

  29. Hello!!! I have a problem with my Mail account: i can't send email, but i can receive them and when i check all the preferences, it says that everything is okay. I have an hotmail email, and when i try to send a message, there is a message that says: "your adress have been rejected by smtp.live.com" It's driving me crazy, please give me some help asap!!! Thx a lot

  30. I would like to know how to change the setting on the incoming server so automatically synchronizes with the blackberry and msn.com at the same time/?

  31. Hellu 😀

    Does anyone know how to get all the saved mails in my folders from my hotmail to my Mac mail? I have only received the mails in my hotmail inbox.. I would like to have all my folders as well.

    Have a great day!!! 😉

  32. Hello all,
    it’s a really useful web / info for me. but I am facing a different situation here. It is ok for me to send and receive emails (using hotmail in Mail) but it took me very long to receive any emails into my Mail (I’ve already changed the time to every 1 minute, but it always took me more than an hour to receive the mail from hotmail website mail box to Mac Mail).

    Thanks a lot and have a great day.

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