Sending authenticated Email

The preferred way to send Email from outside of WHOI

Print version
Text Size: Change text to small (default) Change text to medium Change text to large


Increasingly, Internet Service Providers (ISPs) have been restricting the ways in which Email messages can be sent over their networks.  This is being done as part of their efforts to fight spam. As a result, it is becoming harder and harder to reliably send Email from outside the WHOI network using the standard mail configurations that we have successfully used for many years. 

CIS has setup some alternative methods to send Email from outside WHOI that will work in the more restrictive environments that the ISPs are creating.  These new methods will also work from within WHOI but you are not required to change to them to send mail either internally or externally.  The additional advantages of these methods are that, once setup, they will work internally or externally, with or without a VPN connection and will let you send to anyone (in or out of WHOI).

Existing solutions

Prior to describing how to use the new methods, it is worth noting that there are several existing options to avoid having mail that you send from outside WHOI blocked.  Each of these methods has various advantages and disadvantages, but none are as universal or easy to use as the new procedures.  Still they have been in place for sometime and will prove adequate for many people.
  1. Webmail (
  2. VPN connection
  3. Using your ISPs mail server
Additional details on each of the methods can be found on the Existing Solutions page to the left.

Authenticated Email

WHOI allows people to send Email through our mail server ( without authenticating (logging in) to the server.  The standard mail transfer protocol (smtp) operates over port 25 and does not use authentication.  This is the type of mail transmission that some ISPs are now blocking.  The alternative is to configure your mail client to use a different port and a secure protocol for transmitting your username and password information as well as the mail message itself.  The ISPs do not block this.  There are two different port and protocol methods that are used.  Most Email clients support one or the other of these protocols but unfortunately there is no single protocol supported by them all.  CIS has prepared our mailservers and firewall to handle both protocols so you can use whatever works for your Email client. 

Generic Settings

The many varieties of Email clients are all slightly different but all  have a method for setting the properties of the SMTP server to be used by your mail account.  The settings to use are:
  • Outgoing Server (SMTP) Servername ->
  • Port -> 587
  • Check -> 'Use name and password' or "authentication"
  • User Name: WHOI Email name (without the - ex. jdoe)
  • For SMTP authentication and SSL encryption, use secure connection TLS or SSL "Always", or "Required"

If you have a client that gives you the choice between SSL and TLS, choose TLS. You want to use port 587 for SMTP. TLS is preferred because it is a more recent standard.

If you have trouble finding or setting these parameters see the additional pages for client specific directions.


WHOI logo

Last updated April 14, 2007
© Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. All rights reserved