Configuration problems with IMAP e-mail on iOS with a non-standard SSL port.

9 Feb

I have had difficulty getting my Apple iOS iPad / iPhone to work with an IMAP service on a non-standard port. The phone kept coming up with verification errors, and I could not find a way to get to a screen to configure the IMAP port. I finally got it working.  Here’s how.

The trick is to get to a screen where you can enter the correct SSL / IMAP port numbers into the iPad / iPhone (IMAP port 995 in my ISPs case, rather than the more typical ).  What I have discovered it you cannot do this while you are connected to a network!  So the work around is described below.

I first published this help on the Virgin Media help forum, as Virgin use a non-standard IMAP port.  I then reposted in the  Apple support forum, after upgrading to iOS 6.1, as it somehow corrupted my settings.  Finally, I was encouraged by the reply from MichelleL1982

OMG this worked…Camayoc you are a lifesaving genius lol…I have been at this problem all day!

So decided to share via my blog where hopefully others struggling with the issue can find a resolution.  Please like this article if the help works for you.

  1. Set the phone into Airplane mode.
  2. Go to Settings / Mail, Contacts… / Add Account
  3. Select Other / Add Mail Account
  4. Enter the account details under the IMAP tab
  5. Select “Next”.  The iPhone will grumble it cannot verify the address, select “OK”.
  6. Then ignore the warning about the account not being able to send / receive emails and select “save”.
  7. Now go back in to settings, and re-edit.
  8. Magically, there are now configuration options for all the SSL ports etc.
  9. Set the right parameters here.
  10. Select “Save”.  Once again ignore the grumbles about be able to  verify the settings
  11. The turn Airplane mode off
  12. You email account should now work

Please leave a comment, or simply like if you had this problem configuring your iOS iPad / iPhone for IMAP on a non-standard TCP port and the solution I described above worked for you.

29 Responses to “Configuration problems with IMAP e-mail on iOS with a non-standard SSL port.”

  1. f February 26, 2013 at 22:21 #

    Thank you! After wading through lots of virgin media help pages, this was the real answer – it seems to be a bug with ios.


    • carmyn October 6, 2015 at 08:06 #

      Thank you! I’m so glad I found your post!!


  2. Zadette March 11, 2013 at 16:38 #

    Thank you very much! you saved me! After two days trying to unsuccessfully get emails after updating my Iphone to new version.. I was able to get it working following your instructions… Great help! thanks again!


  3. bouldergeek March 24, 2013 at 16:33 #

    Genius. So much for Apple’s self-configuring intelligence. They should be required to have a special key for “I know what I’m doing, turn off the auto crap”. Thank you for this. As a newly subjected wielded of an IOS device this post eases my pain a little. Stuff like this is so much easier on the Android platform because you don’t have a monopoly on mail clients.


  4. John April 12, 2013 at 23:39 #

    Thanks! What an annoyance that was; this blog post is very much appreciated.


  5. Sally May 1, 2013 at 11:18 #

    Thank you so much for putting this on here. I am a bit of a technophobe, but even I managed to set up my ntlworld mail on my iphone using your instructions.
    As my ntlworld account is the primary account that I use, it was a must to have on my iphone.
    Thanks again.


  6. Mohasin May 29, 2013 at 13:13 #

    Thank you. It was simple and straight forward. I had 2-step verification ON in my GMAIL Settings. When turned-off temporarily, it worked.


  7. Keith June 19, 2013 at 10:04 #

    Wonderful. After searching through numerous websites the answer was here.


  8. Maresa September 19, 2013 at 12:15 #

    Anytime that I update my iOS I have this problem… Thanks it was really good 🙂 simple too … Many thanks to MichelleL1982 🙂


    • Kate December 15, 2013 at 09:23 #

      Didn’t work for me


  9. Barbara January 11, 2014 at 05:16 #

    Can’t belive I finally sent my emails been struggling for weeks even my provider didn’t no what to do many thanks to you for putting this on the web


  10. Al January 30, 2014 at 17:33 #

    It work! Thanks a million. I called Verizon technical support and they did have a clue as to why this occurs or how to fix it. Again thanks a million.


  11. Matt b January 30, 2014 at 20:37 #

    Brilliant! Worked for me too. Took ages searching. Didn’t even need to change settings just turning network off worked fine!


  12. John February 23, 2014 at 00:23 #

    Thanks. A lifesaver. Fortunately, there was a link to this post in the first item on my Google search, so I didn’t spend as much time mystified as some others seem to have done,

    The problem was with an iPad Air we just purchased yesterday. I’m wondering why Apple hasn’t fixed this.


  13. Juan February 25, 2014 at 01:27 #

    Great tips !!!!! Working off-line allowed me to set up the mail account and it works !!!!
    Thanks much ………..


  14. belinda April 22, 2014 at 23:25 #

    by changin gmy password lost recent added Yahoo Phone contacts in my iphone. followed your instrucetions but only was able to retrieve Mail, Notes… not Mail, Contacts, Calendar and Reminders… help


  15. Andrew May 7, 2014 at 14:11 #

    Another thanks. Was seriously struggling converting my POP accounts to IMAP on my Mac, iPhone and iPad. Not only did the airplane mode let me access the SSL and port info on the iPad and iPhone but it automatically told me the correct port to use with Iprimus which I could then use on the Mac! I had spent more than an hour on the phone with Iprimus techs earlier and they couldn’t get it going… asked them if the port needed changing from 110 but was told no! Funny about that works now with a different port!

    Been stuffing around with this all day but now have two providers linked up to all three devices and syncing fine. Delete one and they all go… yeah! Thanks again!


  16. Ashley May 29, 2014 at 08:23 #

    Thanks mate only needed go as far as steps 1,2 & 3 I believe due to the iOS 5 softwear updates they must have removed the IMAP tab as there was no tab to open. All is well now tho, thanks a million 🙂


  17. Stelios October 11, 2014 at 12:29 #

    Hi guys, thanks for the tips. I’ve tried it on mine but it still doesn’t work. Been on it all day!


  18. julianbryant December 20, 2014 at 13:27 #

    Hi Colin
    Thanks for your hints – I was having similar issues with Virginmedia (UK) since upgrading to Yosemite on the MBP. The port, on the laptop, kept getting reset after accessing mail on the iPad.

    On iOS8.1 step 6 doesn’t work, as the Save is greyed out. However, the good news is that without Airplane setting on, I managed to fix it. By going to Advanced setting on iPad Mini, and switching SSL on / port set to 995 instead of the default 110, it now seems to have stuck. Fingers crossed.

    Liked by 1 person

    • julianbryant December 31, 2014 at 15:28 #

      Oops! Spoke too soon.


  19. yehezkel January 2, 2015 at 16:00 #

    It worked,verry nice job,thanks verry verry much….


  20. Liam July 30, 2015 at 15:14 #

    Genius! Thank you! Worked perfectly, been getting very frustrated that I couldn’t input the appropriate settings to get my emails on my phone!


  21. Corinne August 17, 2015 at 22:03 #

    Amazing! I have been trying to get my mums new iPhone 6 to get emails from her Virgin account for weeks! Googled and this post came up! Easy to do and it works!!! Thank you!


  22. Frank August 19, 2015 at 19:13 #

    Thank you, thank you, trying to get working for two weeks until i saw your post then …..magic it works ,


  23. Tony November 23, 2015 at 18:49 #

    Brilliant fix. Thank you very much


  24. Angad Bhui February 7, 2016 at 12:04 #

    no luck at all! it says cannot get mail the mail server “” is not responding. verify that you have enterede the correct account info in mail settings.
    how should i go about this? have tried everything possible!! HELP!!!


    • Paul Zdepski April 26, 2016 at 15:13 #

      I’ve been fighting with this same issue for the last day and a half… I broke down and asked my IT guy. He replied “Are you connected to the WIFI? Shut it off” – I disconnected the WIFI, and the mail worked! No reasoning… just results.


  25. Rolly66 April 9, 2016 at 19:28 #

    Thanks for this, worked first time. Why can’t Virgin have this on their Help pages?!


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