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I use several different email addresses that all get automatically forwarded to my one "real" account. I have each defined in Outlook as a different account, so that I can send "from" the appropriate account just by selecting the account I want to use in the account drop-down list. When I go to send/receive, each account is checked for new mail - the problem is that since they're all the same "real" email account, only the first will actually get any email, the rest are just wasting time checking that same account. Can I get Outlook to only check one account for new email without wasting all that time on the others?

I have the exact same situation here. I have many "logical" email addresses that all forward to my "real" email account. The good news is that Outlook does have a way to control what accounts are checked, and when. It's not obvious, and not terribly simple, but it is there.

First let me explain the situation in a little more detail.

Let's assume that your "real" email address is "joebloe@example.com". That's the account that really and truly sends, and receives, all of your email.

Here's how that account might be configured in Outlook:

Joe Bloe's default Outlook mail configuration

"...'E-mail Address' in the configuration is only used to fill in the 'From:' field on email you send using this account ...

Now, if you own the domain "example.com", you can define as many email addresses on that domain as you like, and have them all automatically forward to your "real" account. For example you might create "amazon@example.com", and use that email address as your Amazon.com contact address. When Amazon sends email to you at "amazon@example.com", it's automatically forwarded to "joebloe@example.com". When you download your email (through your "joebloe@example.com" account), you'll see the "amazon@example.com" address in the "To:" line of those messages, so you can see what email address was used. It's a nice way to track who's using your email address and how.

The nice thing is that no re-configuration is needed in Outlook. Email forwarded to your account simply shows up like any other email.

But so far, every email you send will come from "joebloe@example.com". What if you want to send email From: "amazon@example.com"? Then some Outlook reconfiguration is needed. To do this, you'll create a second, additional email account in Outlook:

Joe Bloe's Amazon Outlook mail configuration

Note that there are only two changes:

  • Your Name has been changed to something a little more descriptive. This was optional.
  • E-mail Address has been changed to "amazon@example.com".

Note also the things that didn't change: your mail servers, of course, and the User Name and Password. It's the User Name and Password that really identify you and your account to your mail server. "Your Name", and "E-mail Address" in the configuration is only used to fill in the "From:" field on email you send using this account - exactly what we wanted to change. Everything else remains the same.

At this point it's also nice to go into the More Settings dialog and change the name of this account:

Joe Bloe's Amazon Outlook mail account name

Now, when you compose or reply to an email message, the Accounts dropdown will list "amazon@example.com" in addition to the previous, default account. To send from this account, select is in the Accounts dropdown before pressing Send:

Joe Bloe's Outlook Account Dropdown

Now notice what happens when you press Send/Receive ... Outlook sends mail from each account, but then it checks mail from each account. Remember, it's the same "real" account as defined not by the email address, but by the User Name and Password, that are defined the same for both. So the same account gets checked twice for new mail.

That seems a waste of time. Let's fix it.

On the Tools menu, select Options and then click on the Mail Setup tab. Now click on the Send/Receive button. In the resulting dialog there should be one Group Name defined, "All Accounts". Make sure that is selected, and click on the Edit button. This long journey of clicks and selection should have you looking at something similar to this:

Joe Bloe's Send/Receive Configuration

This dialog allows you to control which accounts are included in the Send/Receive operation - exactly what we set out to do. In our example, we'll click on the amazon@example.com item on the left, and then uncheck Receive mail items:

Joe Bloe's Send/Receive Configuration

(You can OK your way back out at this point.)

Now this account will no longer be included in the default Send/Receive action. All email will be downloaded using the default account, and you can send using this other email address by selecting it when you send.

Article C2459 - November 15, 2005 « »

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Leo Leo A. Notenboom has been playing with computers since he was required to take a programming class in 1976. An 18 year career as a programmer at Microsoft soon followed. After "retiring" in 2001, Leo started Ask Leo! in 2003 as a place for answers to common computer and technical questions. More about Leo.

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14 Comments
Lisa
January 3, 2006 11:13 AM

Is it possible for someone to access another user while I am logged in as myself? We have a shared network, and it appears that someone is accessing another users Desktop while I am logged on to my own desktop.

John Dogan
February 1, 2007 5:45 AM

I have a rather strange problem, when i send and recieve in outlook 2003 it shows three accounts sending and recieving. This would be ok but I only have two accounts setup (very odd) Outlook trys to recieve from this non-existent account and comes up with errors (obviously as the account does not exist) its rather more an annoyance than a serious problem and i have looked every where for a solution, if you could help it would give me a little peace of mind as i keep thinking i am going mad..... Thanking you in advance

John Dogan
February 1, 2007 5:46 AM

I have a rather strange problem, when i send and recieve in outlook 2003 it shows three accounts sending and recieving. This would be ok but I only have two accounts setup (very odd) Outlook trys to recieve from this non-existent account and comes up with errors (obviously as the account does not exist) its rather more an annoyance than a serious problem and i have looked every where for a solution, if you could help it would give me a little peace of mind as i keep thinking i am going mad..... As mentioned there are definatley only two accounts setup in outlook.

Thanking you in advance

Chris Bland
March 26, 2007 10:46 PM

I have been following this process for a number of years but have just upgraded to a hosted Microsoft Echange account and the Outlook 2007 'E-mail Accounts' dialogue no-longer offers this functionality (as it does for POP/SMTP). Is there a way around this problem for Exchange Accounts as my host company (fasthosts.co.uk) have been unable to help?

Kelvin
May 27, 2007 12:14 AM

There is a problem on my Outlook 2007. When I try to send an email from 1 account and press Send and Receive, the lower-right corner shows "Sending 1 of 1...Sending 2 of 2...Sending 3 of 3..." It seems that there are several emails are being sent out. There are four email accounts configured in Outlook. What is really happened on my PC? PLease help.
Thanks.

Andrew
February 15, 2008 9:23 PM

An entry was posted by John Dogan 1/2/07 which I cannot see has been answered. I have the same issue in Outlook 2007 whereby when I send and receive email it shows two accounts sending and receiving. However, I only have one account set up. Outlook trys to recieve from the non-existent account and comes up with errors. The account it is attempting to receive email from is an old email account I removed from outlook when I setup my new email account. I have gone into my email account settings and cannot see the old email account setup. The annoying part about the issue is that it keeps requesting a password for the old email account.

Kevin
April 22, 2008 3:22 AM

i have 3 email accounts set up in Outlook, one from my own server, one a Hotmail account and one for my Son's Bigpond account. I have removed my Son's Bigpond account settings but I am still getting his emails. (He is getting them too) How can I stop his email landing in Outlook? This appears to be related to the above posts.

abilash
July 5, 2008 11:31 PM

why microsoft Outlook ask for username and password when press send and receve

Jasond
September 1, 2008 10:19 PM

I have a different problem hope you guys can help me...

I have recreated my windows profile for some reason and i was forced to reconfigure outlook express which is using POP3. Now when i have migrated all dbx files and started to send and receive mails, it began to download old mails as well. How can i avoid this things to happen, since i have a huge mail data and will take a while to complete the downloading process.

Thanks!

Jen
March 14, 2009 9:51 AM

I am wondering: I have 2 accounts, sending & receiving. One is personal, one is business. My default sending is personal. I have figured out how to get my business emails to go directly to my 'business' folder which I created, now I am wondering, is there anyway to create a scenerio where the default sending account changes? Like if I am currently in my 'business' folder, looking at emails and decide to send an email, it automatically sends from business without having to use the drop down list provided (I so very often forget to do this and end up sending business emails from my personal email.)?

Rob Boucher
April 28, 2009 12:48 PM

I have Outlook 2003.My wife and me ech have our own profiles with shortcut when pc fires up. My email address as far as Iknow is the default e-mail address. When my wife clicks on her Outlook icon on desktop she gets her mail but my mail also if there is any waiting for me. We are sure this never happened before. Where did Igo wrong in listing defalt mail. I was told you cant have separate e-mails and must have had her account as Outlook Express but don't think so as never was a Outlook Express icon anywhere.Does anyone have the proper fix? Huge thanks!

anil dhangar
September 18, 2009 10:21 PM

i want only recent mail to download in outlook express what can i do for that please help me

Jim Peto
March 15, 2010 1:25 AM

I have almost the same problem as above but I have a pc & a laptop. I need to receive emails from one logical address under my real account to the pc and receive emails from my other logical address, under the same real account, to my laptop
I have done what you said above but whichever computer that runs outlook first ends up with all the emails from both logical addresses
Hope you can help. Thanks Jim

Aamir Patel
April 21, 2010 11:51 AM

I have recreated my windows profile for some reason and i was forced to reconfigure outlook express which is using POP3. Now when i have migrated all dbx files and started to send and receive mails, it began to download old mails as well. How can i avoid this things to happen, since i have a huge mail data and will take a while to complete the downloading process.

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