Messages fail to download from mail server

From today’s mail bag

I’m having problems with Apple Mail on my Mac Pro running OS X 10.6.8. Often times I find that one or more of my e-mails will not download from the server. I check my messages daily to be sure it is still happening. I first log into my Earthlink account from a browser to view my mail, delete unwanted mail, open Apple Mail from the dock and then hit Get Mail. Sure enough, I noted earlier today that a message that was sent to me from an Apple Store employee didn’t get downloaded to my Mac. I have emptied my trash, but it still won’t download. Please help!

My response

When I encounter situations when I can’t download a message from my mail server, that usually means that it’s stuck in the queue. The usual culprit is an email message that has a large file attachment like a digital photo or Acrobat PDF. The common solution is to log into your email account from a browser (in your case,, locate the troublesome message and delete it AFTER you determine the nature of its contents. If it contains valuable data such as a sales receipt in the form of a PDF, be sure to download the attachment first before you delete the message.

My other suggestion is to contact Earthlink support to see if they can clear up the email glitch from their end.

Email and EarthLink Software Support

Click here to access Earthlink’s Live Chat system



Filed under Apple Software, Mail Bag, Troubleshooting

2 responses to “Messages fail to download from mail server

  1. Rick

    We are having exactly the same problem on a new iMac with OS X Lion. Some messages download and some don’t from earthlink. Even a couple of messages from Apple which verify our support account numbers will not download to the iMac!! If we cannot resolve this tomorrow on the phone we are taking the machine back. We finally broke down and bought a Mac, thinking we could avoid problems like this, having been PC users for over 20 years. Not being able to get emails from Apple is beyond belief!

    • admin

      Rick, I assume you’re using Apple Mail to access Earthlink emails. If so, try running Connection Doctor (Mail > Window > Connection Doctor) to solicit feedback from Mac OS X. My guess is that you’ll encounter an error message associated with your POP or IMAP setting for this account. Also, are you running an anti-virus program like Norton or McAfee? As a test, you could see if the mail downloads work normally if your antivirus program is temporarily disabled.

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