Apple Mail account creation issues

I am attempting to migrate my email from Bare Bone’s Mailsmith to Apple Mail. Mailsmith was never converted to 64 bit – so I cannot use it beyond Mojave.

I have about a half dozen email accounts (all POP3) that I use regularly and am now trying to create these in Apple Mail. I have been able to get two email accounts to work. The others give me errors about unable to validate username, password, settings, etc. Since these are the same settings I use in Mailsmith, I know they work.

A couple of these emails use domains registered with EasyDNS along with their EasyMail service. One email is with Gmail.


Check with those mail providers’ documentation. If they require some form of 2FA, you may need to re-authenticate them for Apple Mail or create one-time passwords for it.

Also, if they support IMAP operation, I recommend using it. In addition to letting you keep messages on the server (in a non-hacky way), it is also much better supported by modern mail apps, including Apple Mail.

If you want to store messages locally when using IMAP, you can still move messages from server-folders to local folders, either manually or with mail filtering rules.

2FA is not required – and I do not use any 2FA with my current email program which works fine.

Not interested in IMAP at this time.

Next…I tried to add one of the email accounts on my iPhone with iOS 14.8.1. Worked fine.

It does not work with Apple Mail v10.3 (3273) running on Sierra or v12.4 (3445.104.21) on Mojave.


If you want to use POP3 for email, you should be able to set it up on Mojave. When you are trying to create a new account (to a host other than Google etc), initially Mojave offers an Add a Mail account screen with places for Name, Email Address and Password. Enter that information and it offers you a screen with only IMAP available. To avoid that, you should deliberately make a mistake in the password, and it will offer you a choice for Account Type that lets you select POP3. Then enter the correct password and anything else it asks for. That’s klutzy, but it will work.

I just bit the bullet and moved to IMAP, but that move has lots of pitfalls with existing Apple Mail accounts because if you delete the POP account, Apple Mail will delete all the entries for that account in the Inbox, Sent and other entries under Mailboxes. You can avoid that by moving all of that mail from the Account that you delete into a mailbox under “On My Mac.”


Because I have been able to add the accounts to my iPhone and iPad running iOS 14.8.1, I realized the problem might be with Apple Mail on macOS Sierra and Mojave.

I restarted the MacPro (Sierra) in Safe Boot mode. And adding accounts now works. Switched to the MacBook Pro (Mojave) – still failed to add account. Rebooted in Safe Boot mode and now it works, too.

Finally, rebooted both machines in regular mode and adding email accounts in Apple Mail continues to work as it should.


Very interesting. If it worked in safe mode, then some device driver or other piece of background software was interfering with the process. I wonder if it could be a firewall package of some kind.

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