You can use Mail, the Windows 8 Mail app, to access your Office 365 or Exchange-based email account by using your email address and password. The Windows 8 Mail app is built in to Windows 8 and Windows RT.
Important You need to have a Microsoft account to use the Windows 8 Mail app. Your Microsoft account is the combination of an email address and password that you use to sign into services like Messenger, OneDrive, Windows Phone, Xbox LIVE, or Outlook.com (formerly Hotmail).
- If you are signed into Windows using a Microsoft account, the Windows 8 Mail app will be ready for you to add email accounts the first time you open it.
- If you are not signed in to Windows using a Microsoft account, Windows Mail will ask you to add your Microsoft account information to Windows 8 Mail the first time you start the program.
Note If you have an Office 365 email account see Use Office 365 on your Windows RT device for detailed information about how to use Office 365 on your phone or tablet.
For information about Microsoft accounts, Windows 8 Mail in general, or how to connect to an email account that is not an Office 365 or other Exchange-based email accounts, see What else do I need to know?.
In this article
Add your email account to the Windows 8 Mail app
Use this procedure to set up your Office 365 or Exchange-based email account. You can use this procedure whether or not you are already signed in to Windows or Windows 8 Mail with a Microsoft account.
- From Start, select the Mail tile.
- If Mail shows the Add your Microsoft account page when you start it, you need to sign in to Windows 8 Mail using a Microsoft account. Type the email address and password for your Microsoft account, and then click Save. If you don’t have a Microsoft account, select Sign up for a Microsoft account.
Note If you don’t see the Add your Microsoft account page when you start Mail, you are already signed into Windows or Windows 8 Mail with a Microsoft account. Skip to the next step.
- If Mail shows the Add your email accounts list when you start it, select Outlook to set up our first account in Mail. Then, skip ahead to step 5.
- If Mail shows the email from an account that you had previously set up when you start it, do the following:
- If you are using a touch device, swipe in from the right edge of the screen, and select Settings. If you are using a mouse, point to the lower-right corner of the screen, and click Settings.
- In the Settings menu select Accounts > Add an account > Outlook.
- On the Add your Outlook account page, type the email address and password for the email account you want to add, and then select Connect. Mail will perform an online search to find your email server settings.
- If you see the message “Your email account is successfully configured.”, select Finish. If you see the message titled Make my PC more secure, read the message, and then select Enforce these policies.
Note If Mail isn't able to set up your account, see What else do I need to know?.
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View or change Windows 8 Mail app settings
Windows 8 Mail sets up your account using default settings. The default settings may be different depending on the type of account you’re using. Most account types will let you change the settings.
To access your settings, if you are using a touch device, swipe in from the right edge of the screen, and select Settings > Accounts, and then select your account. If you are using a mouse, point to the lower-right corner of the screen, and click Settings > Accounts, and then select your account.
The following settings are available for most types of accounts:
||The name of the account that appears when you view your account in Windows 8 Mail.
|Download new email
||How often email is downloaded from the email server to Windows 8 Mail.
As items arrive
Every 15 minutes
Every 30 minutes
|Download email from
||The length of time for which you want to download email from the server.
The last 3 days
The last 7 days
The last 2 weeks
The last month
|Content to sync
||Specify what content you want to synchronize to your computer.
|Automatically download external images
||Whether you want Windows 8 Mail to automatically download images. If you set this to Off, you can choose to download external images in messages you receive on a per-message basis.
||On or Off
|Use an email signature
||Create an email signature that appears at the end of each message you send from your account.
||Yes or No
||The email address for your account.
||The password that was entered when you set up your account.
||The domain for your account. This setting will be empty if you did not enter a domain when you set up your account.
||The name that you want to appear in the From box of messages you send from this account.
||The name of your email server.
|Server requires SSL
||Whether the email service you are using requires a connection using SSL (Secure Sockets Layer).
||Select or clear
|Show email notifications for this account
||Whether you want Windows 8 to display notifications when you receive new messages in this account.
||On or Off
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What else do I need to know?
You need to sign in with a Microsoft account in order to use the Windows 8 Mail app. One way to do that is to be signed into Windows 8 using a Microsoft account. If you are not signed into Windows using a Microsoft account, you can alternately sign into the Windows 8 email app using a Microsoft account the first time you open it. For more information about Microsoft accounts, see the Help articles What is a Microsoft account? and Create a user account.
Windows 8 Mail feature information
- Accounts of the type Outlook in Windows 8 Mail use Exchange ActiveSync to connect to your email server. An Exchange ActiveSync connection supports the synchronization of email, contacts, calendar, and other information. All of the Windows Communications apps in Windows 8 (Mail, People, Calendar, and Messaging), can use the information that is synchronized when you set up an Exchange ActiveSync connection with your account. Adding an account in Mail will make your contacts and calendar data appear in the other Windows Communications apps.
- Learn how to sync Google services with Windows 8 or Windows RT, see How to sync Google services with Windows 8 or Windows RT.
- Learn how to manage your Windows 8 Mail App notifications, see How to manage notifications for Mail, Calendar, People, and Messaging.
- Windows 8 Mail currently supports connections to Office 365 and Exchange-based email programs using Exchange ActiveSync connectivity (in Windows 8 Mail, labeled the type Outlook account), and IMAP connectivity (labeled Other account). POP connections are not currently supported. For information, see Using email accounts over POP on Windows 8 and Windows RT.
- Windows 8 Mail does not support the S/MIME message format. If you are sent a message in the S/MIME message format, Windows 8 Mail displays an email item with the following message body: “This encrypted message can’t be displayed.” To view email items in the S/MIME format, we recommend that you open the message using Outlook Web App, Microsoft Outlook, or another email program that supports S/MIME messages.
If your email account requires registration, you must register your account before you can set up your account in Windows 8 Mail. If you are a Microsoft Office 365 user, you register your account when you sign in to Office 365 for the first time. If are not an Office 365 user, you register your account when you sign in to your Microsoft account or Outlook Web App.
You will see the following message in Windows 8 Mail if you haven't registered your account: “We couldn’t find the settings for <email address>. Provide us with more info and we’ll try connecting again.”
For information about how to sign in to your account or the Office 365 Portal, see Sign In to Outlook Web App. If you have trouble signing in, wait a few minutes and try again. If you still can’t sign in to Outlook Web App, contact the person who manages your email account.
After you sign in to your account using Outlook Web App, sign out. Then try to connect using Windows 8 Mail.
Troubleshooting Windows 8 Mail account setup
If Mail won’t start or you are unable to successfully connect to your account, do one or more of the following:
- Verify that you are using the latest version of Windows 8 Mail. To check for updates to the Windows 8 Mail app, from the Start screen, go to Store > Settings > App updates > Check for updates.
- Wait a few minutes and try to again.
- Review Microsoft troubleshooting articles. You can review Windows 8 support articles by category at the Windows Support web site.
- Review a list of top solutions to Windows 8 email and collaboration apps at the Email and Communication page of the Windows Web site.
- View answers to Windows 8 email questions and post your own questions to the Microsoft Community at the Windows 8 Email and Communications community.
- If you know the name of the person who manages your mailbox (sometimes called an email administrator), contact them and report the error you're getting when you try to connect with Windows 8 Mail.
Other ways to connect to your email
If you can’t connect to your Office 365 or Exchange-based email account using Windows 8 Mail and the steps in this article, consider the following:
- Try connecting to your account using Outlook Web App. For information about how to connect using a web browser, see Sign In to Outlook Web App.
- Try connecting to your account using Microsoft Outlook. If your device is running Windows RT 8.1 you can use Outlook 2013 RT, a version of Outlook 2013 optimized for touch, to connect to your account. For detailed steps, see Set up email in Outlook 2010 or Outlook 2013.
- Try connecting to your account with Windows 8 by using IMAP4. To set up an IMAP connection, select the Other account option rather than the Outlook option during Windows 8 Mail account setup. When you set up an IMAP connection using Office 365 or other Exchange-based account, you need to manually enter your IMAP and SMTP server settings. If you’re connecting to your Office 365 email, the IMAP server name is outlook.office365.com and the SMTP server name is smtp.office365.com. If you’re not connecting to Office 365 email, see Settings for POP and IMAP access.
- Try connecting to your account by using a different program that supports POP or IMAP.
Note Connecting to your account using IMAP lets you send and receive email for your account. IMAP and POP don’t let you synchronize your contacts and calendar information. For more information about POP or IMAP, see Use IMAP or POP Email Programs.
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