Windows Small Business Server 2011 installation and configuration – Part 8 Configuring “POP3 connector”

Go directly to SBS 2011 index file. With links to all articles from this serie.

After we are finished with Part 7 “Configuring Server Backup” we go to the “Network” page of the SBS console and the connectivity tab.

Right click on POP3 Connector and choose view POP3 Connector properties.

Here we choose Add… to add a the POP3 mail account(s)

Enter all information from you POP3 mail account. At the Windows Small Business Server e-mail account you choose a SBS account where the pop mail has to be delivered.
Because you have to choose an account here to deliver it is just like SBS 2008 POP3 connector not possible to use a catch all address and deliver directly to the e-mail addresses used in the header.

On the scheduling option you can configure the retrieve e-mail time, you cannot set a value lower than 5 minutes.
If you would like to force an immediate connection you can click Retrieve now.

Issue I ran into:

After I configured the POP3 connector and tried retrieving e-mail the mail disappeared from my isp but it didn’t come into my Exchange mailbox.
Some research led met to the C:\Program Files\Windows Small Business Server\Logs\pop3connector\ pop3service.log file. The following failure information was found:

[t 0] 01/22/11, 17:16:21: (SMTP) [RX] 550 5.7.1 Message rejected as spam by Content Filtering.
[t 0] 01/22/11, 17:16:21: Failure hrResult (0x800ccc69) trying to deliver message id 1:
[t 0] 01/22/11, 17:16:21: SMTPRESPONSE: * * * !Failed! * * *
[t 0] 01/22/11, 17:16:21: * * * * * *
[t 0] 01/22/11, 17:16:21: * * * 0x800ccc69 * * *
[t 0] 01/22/11, 17:16:21: Command: [SMTP_DOT]
[t 0] 01/22/11, 17:16:21: Completed: Yes.
[t 0] 01/22/11, 17:16:21: IxpResult:
[t 0] 01/22/11, 17:16:21: —> —> —> hrResult: 0x800ccc69
[t 0] 01/22/11, 17:16:21: pszResponse: 550 5.7.1 Message rejected as spam by Content Filtering.
[t 0] 01/22/11, 17:16:21: uiServerError: 550
[t 0] 01/22/11, 17:16:21: dwSocketError: 0
[t 0] 01/22/11, 17:16:21: pwszProblem:
[t 0] 01/22/11, 17:16:21: 550 is an ignorable error; will continue as if it were successful.
[t 0] 01/22/11, 17:16:21: Message saved to “C:\Program Files\Windows Small Business Server\Data\badmail\550\{908DEBAB-55D1-4048-AF50-558D65567607}”.
[t 0] 01/22/11, 17:16:21: (SMTP) [TX] QUIT

I do not know why this is caused, but I found out that when I disable Content Filtering in Exchange the e-mails come in normally.

Go to Exchange 2010 management console

Organization Configuration, Hub Transport and then on the tab Anti-spam right click Content Filtering and choose Disable.

If anyone has a clue how to fix this probably, please let me know.

Go back to Part 7 “Configuring Server Backup”
Continue with Part 9 Configuring “Add a new shared folder” will follow

Posted in Blog, Howto, SBS 2011 by ronnypot at January 27th, 2011.
Tags: , ,

47 Responses to “Windows Small Business Server 2011 installation and configuration – Part 8 Configuring “POP3 connector””

  1. Fredrik says:

    The issue regarding the pop3 connector and content filtering is the same in SBS2008. Too bad Microsoft haven’t fixed it yet since it’s a great way to “slowly migrate” companies stuck with pop3 solutions.

    Great that you noticed it and took the time to write about it!

  2. Thank you, very good article 🙂

  3. giulio says:

    thanks for the guide, really good work! 🙂
    Maybe do you know if it is possible to set a leave a copy on server for “x” days or, delete from server?
    Actually the POP3 connector of my SBS connects in mailbox stored in the main Exchange server and seems to leave alle the messages there… ??

    • ronnypot says:

      If you are looking for additional option for the pop3 connector, you need to go for a third party product. The built-in pop3 connector is really basic with no extra settings.

  4. R. says:

    Is it possible to have the SBS pop3 connector work for other domain addresses? I was asked to have “personal” email from …@planet.nl & …@wxs.nl be checked and downloaded to the server also.

    While I was thinking about it, I thought I would just be able to add them just like the other email accounts (thanks for all your previous help!!). The more I thought about it, the more I think that it will all be shown as …@companydomain.nl instead of the …@planet.nl and …@wxs.nl.

    • ronnypot says:

      It will just download the email to the given mailbox and if you look in the TO: field you will see the “personal” email address. Only thing is when you send mail it will be send with the company domain address.

      • Vito A. Smaldino says:

        I remember that with Exchange 2003 acting as a front-end, it did not delivery mails downloaded via pop3 connector from other domains (i.e. user1@remotedomain.com) to the specified local mailbox (user1@local_exchg.lan) , until you specify that the source domain (remotedomain.com) should be managed somewhere in the system (sorry, i don’t remember more details). With Exchg 2010 is the same?

  5. George says:

    Is there anyway to configure the pop3 user settings via PowerShell? I am trying to create a script to automate new user creation

    • ronnypot says:

      What do you exactly want to set, because the article is about the SBS Pop3 connector, do you want to add an user to the Pop 3 connector, as far as I know there are no powershell commands for this feature. The same goes for creating user for a SBS server, the SBS server is designed to use the SBS console wizards to create and maintain users, this is because creating users with the wizards will set all kind of rights for the users. If you want to create multiple users at once there is even a wizard for that, so you can create fast multiple users. Use User Roles to give a set of users the same rights and configuration at once.

      So if you want to use powershell keep in mind that you cannot use the easy management tasks of the SBS console to control your server. If you persist using powershell take a look at this article.

  6. Spaski says:

    My clients upgraded from SBS 2003 to SBS 2011, they used to have pop3 connector with a catchall email account?

    Is this still possible in SBS 2011? or is only single accounts allowed?


    • ronnypot says:

      As said in the post, the catch all (global mailbox) feature is not available anymore within SBS 2011 (or 2008) so you can only configure single accounts.

  7. adrien says:

    The content filtering is a very nasty aspect, i found no reference to it in any forums when looking for “missing email”

    the user is given no mention of the email being passed into bad mail, AND there is no reference to it in the search for messages facility

  8. Wolfgang says:

    I am still having problems with the POP3 email collection from my ISP despite having disabled the ‘Content Filtering’ option as suggested. Which other POP3 connector could I use more successfully or does anybody know any other options to collect email from a remote account?

    • ronnypot says:

      It is indeed the pop3 connector that is not the best part of SBS and once an email isn’t downloaded it will keep all others stuck at the provider.

      To be sure why it is stuck you could check the pop3service.log that can be found in c:\program files\windows small business server\log\pop3connector.

      At our company we don’t use the sbs connector because of this problems, if we need to use POP3 we use the gfi pop2exchange function that is included within the gfi mailessentials product which we use for anti spam filtering.

      Another product I hear good some good stories about is popcon both are not free but at least GFI has a trial possibility so you can try I thought for 30 days before you have to activate the product.

  9. George says:

    Do you know of a way to configure the settings on the log file? I would like to see daily logs instead of one giant log file

  10. Ron says:

    I’m setting up a POP3 connector for a friend and via Google I found this tutorial. Thanks for telling that a catch all isn’t possible. What a drawback! Unbelievable.

    But does anybody know how SBS works with third party POP3 connectors. I’ve quite good experience with E.F.S. in combination with Exchange 2007 and 2010. Will it work with SBS?
    (See: http://www.chimera.co.nz/)

    By the way: this is no commercial for EFS, this a genuine question!

    • ronnypot says:


      Yes SBS will just work fine with a third party POP3 connector. It is just the same Exchange server software you are working with, only configuration is made much easier. I did not work with EFS, but I have used some other products.

    • Mike Cleator says:

      Hi All
      I had EXACLTY the same problem which almost drove me nuts. The first thing to check in the POP 3 connector, is that the user is user@domain.local, rather than it being .co.za or .com etc. Then make sure that the reply address in the EMC for the same user is set to .co.za, or .com

      Hope this helps

  11. Dave says:

    Just set up the pop3 connector I can send email from user accounts on exchange, and retrieve mail that was stored in the webmail account. But when I try to send an email to the user from another account I get Delivery Status Notification Failure

    • ronnypot says:


      Can you please clarify the problem, if I got you right you can email between all local users? But when you try to send to a user outside your domain you get a NFR failure? what exact NFR message did you receive? Do you have the same problem sending to all kind of email addresses or just to one specific?

  12. Raoul says:


    This might be a silly question but I don’t see a simple way of turning off the POP3 connector.

    If I don’t want to retrieve via the connector anymore but have configured the MX records at the email service providor to point at my SBS 2011 server, do I need to turn the POP3 connector off “somewhere” or will deleting all accounts in the POP3 connector have the same effect and not interfere with the MX setup?

    Thanks for a superb area to find solutions

    • ronnypot says:


      Turning off the SBS Pop 3 connector is nothing more or less than stopping the Windows SBS Pop3 connector Service. After that change the startup type to disabled so it will never startup after a server restart.

  13. Dylan says:


    Quick question, as the pop3 connector is not the most robust solution for 25 users +, how do i set up exchange to pull the email from our external mailserver via other means other than pop3? Thanks

    • ronnypot says:


      If you do not want to use a pop3 connector, you need to configure the MX record on your external (public hosted) DNS server to point to an A record that points to your router / firewall ip address. And configure your router / firewall to accept port 25 (SMTP) and route it to your SBS server.

  14. Greenstair says:

    Is there any way of configuring this if it wasn’t initially configured by the company that installed the server? – They didn’t use any of the wizards and did it all through AD and the different MMCs (leaving all users on Internet mail to .pst’s!!) – now if I try and run it via the ICW it fails and won’t complete. There has to be some way surely???


    • ronnypot says:

      Don’t think there is a way working around using the wizards they have to be used, if bot microsoft support won’t even help you. Ofcourse you can use a third party pop3 connector or use direct mail delivery by using SMTP.

  15. Paul says:

    Although this is not pertaining to the subject at hand I must tell you Ron you have done an excellent job here. I’m sure I speak for many others who want to thank you for your efforts here. A very nice job indeed.

  16. Adam says:

    By default the Mailbox size is 2gb, can this be increased safely? Is there a max limit say 5gb or 10gb that we can allow for users?

    Or should some sort of archive solution be setup? If yes what do you recommend?

    • ronnypot says:


      It is safe to increase above 2GB but to how big it all depends on the version of outlook you are running and the hardware of your client, server and network. There is this kb article about troubleshooting performance issues in outlook which give some good information. This is the article for outlook 2010: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2695805

  17. Adam says:

    Thanks for that info. Is there an automatic archive solution that can be installed on the server that you know of and would recommend?

  18. Mark says:

    We’ve been using the POP connector but now want to change across to SMTP delivery. I can change the DNS MX record to point at our server IP. After I can stop the POP connector service and change to disabled.

    Is that all I need to do?

    Thanks for a great resource.

    • ronnypot says:

      If you have setup your router to accept port 25 and send it through to your sbs server, this indeed is just changing the mx record to the internet ip address of your router.

  19. Justin Keen says:


    Is there any settings to delete mail from an external pop3 server once an email has been downloaded?


    • ronnypot says:


      this is exactly what the pop connector does. It downloads the mail from the external source and removes it overthere, only if there is a problem and it could not download it will leave it behind.

  20. david says:

    i am getting spam email from fax@mydomain it appears to originate from internally is there a fax option that i need to turn off?

    • ronnypot says:

      Is the spam realy originated from inside or does it look like the email address but if you view the header information it will come from outside. You could use the built in anti-spam option within Exchange to block the message.

  21. david says:

    i have install a pop3 test account it receives email ok
    where do i find the configuration for outgoing mail?
    when used in pop3 in outlook it use port 587 for outgoing
    would i use a smarthost? for outgoing mail?

    • ronnypot says:

      Hi, not to be rude, but I think it would be wise to hire a local IT service to help you with all your questions and configuration issues.

  22. Thanks for the great guide. My question relates to users needing more than 1 exchange email address in outlook. I have setup their multiple email addresses in the pop3 connector and set the email to go to the same user but it wont let me setup more than 1 exchange account in outlook 2010 or 2013 as when i go to add the 2nd exchange user it says “the action cannot be completed. The name cannot be matched to a name in the address list.”
    I have tried adding the name as a distribution group as well and in exchange management console but cant see where i am going wrong.

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