Using FastMail with AppleMail 5.2 (OS X 10.6 - Snow Leopard)

What you need to know

Apple Mail 5.2 (sometimes referred to as Apple Mail.app) is bundled with Apple's OS X operating system. Version 5.2 appeared after OS X 10.7 (Leopard) and is included in Lion (OS X 10.7.x).
Apple Mail can easily be configured to utilize the folder features that are part of FastMail.

Note: If you already know how to set up your client, and you already understand the information below, see this help page for the server information you need to set up your e-mail client. The Troubleshooting Issues section at the bottom of this page may be helpful if you have problems.

In order to use Apple Mail with FastMail, you'll need to enter the following information:

  • username - When you signed up for FastMail, you chose a username which is also your e-mail address. You must use the full username, including the name and the domain part, which is the part after the '@' symbol. For example, a user named John Doe might have chosen a username of "johndoe@fastmail.fm". Make sure that you specify your username in lowercase only.
  • password - When you signed up for FastMail, you chose a password to go along with your username. You will need the password to access your account. The password also keeps others from being able to access your e-mail. Your password is case sensitive, so be sure that you type it in correctly. "PASS123" is different to  "pass123". Often, users forget about the CapsLock button and mistype their password.
  • incoming mail server (IMAP or POP) - This is the server that you get your e-mail from. Internet Message Access Protocol (IMAP) and Post Office Protocol (POP) are retrieval methods used to move e-mail messages from the server to your e-mail client so that you can read your messages. POP access is not available for all service levels, please check the pricing table for details. Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) is required for your protection as well. SSL keeps people from reading your e-mail as it is transmitted between the e-mail server and your computer.
  • outgoing mail server (SMTP) - This is the server that sends your e-mail. Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP) is the method that your client uses to move e-mail messages from your client to the server so that it can send your messages. The FastMail SMTP server is not available for all service levels, please check the pricing table for details. If your service level does not allow use of the FastMail SMTP server, you must use the SMTP server provided by your Internet Service Provider (ISP).

    The FastMail SMTP server requires SMTP Authentication. This keeps people who are not users of the FastMail service from using the SMTP server to send spam messages on the Internet. SSL is required for the FastMail SMTP server. If you don't use the FastMail SMTP server, you may have different options or requirements. You will need to get that information from your ISP.

Incoming/Outgoing Server Setup

  1. First Time Startup
    If you have never utilized Apple Mail before, you will be presented with the New Account window. Proceed to Step 2.
    If you already have Apple Mail setup for other email accounts, use the menu and choose Mail / Preferences... Go to the Accounts Tab and press the + button at the lower left of the page to add a new account.

  2. Add Account
    The Add Account page appears. Enter your own name, your FastMail user name and password and press Continue.

  3. Set Incoming Servers
    Apple Mail will attempt to connect to our servers but it will require additional information.
    Complete the incoming server information.
      Description: Anything you would like, in the example photo, we entered FastMail
      Incoming Server: mail.messagingengine.com
      Username: Your complete FastMail username and password

    Press Continue to complete the page.

  4. Set Outgoing Servers
    Complete the following information to set the outbound delivery.
      Description: Anything you would like, in the example photo, we entered FastMail Outbound
      Outgoing Server: mail.messagingengine.com

    Be sure to Check the Use Authentication checkbox. This is required to use our servers.
    Note: If you utilize a FastMail guest account, you must enter your ISP's outbound servers.

    Press Continue to complete the page.

  5. Confirm Account Details
    You will be presented with a summary page.
    Press the Create button to finalize your new account within Apple Mail.

  6. Identify Special Purpose Folders
    Your FastMail account contains several special use folders. These include: Junk Mail, Sent Items, and Trash. The next step is to configure Apple Mail to use these folders for their intended purpose.
    The new Apple Mail window will appear. On the left will be the folder hierarchy.
    You should see something similar (excluding the Humor and Contracts folders in this example).


    First define the folder used to store your Sent messages.
    Highlight the Sent Items folder in your FastMail account. Using the menu, choose Mailbox / Use this Mailbox For / Sent.
    After choosing, the Sent Items folder will disappear from its original location and is accessible using the Sent icon inside the folder list.


    Next perform a similar action to define the folder used to store your Trash (deleted) messages.
    Highlight the Trash folder in your FastMail account. Using the menu, choose Mailbox / Use this Mailbox For / Trash.
    After choosing, the Trash folder will disappear from its original location and is accessible using the Trash icon inside the folder list.


    Finally, perform a similar action to define the folder used to store your Junk Email messages.
    Highlight the Junk Mail folder in your FastMail account. Using the menu, choose Mailbox / Use this Mailbox For / Junk.
    After choosing, the Junk Mail folder will disappear from its original location and is accessible using the Junk icon inside the folder list.

  7. Confirm Configuration
    At this point, your account should be properly configured.
    Your folder list should look similar to the following:


Shared folders

If you have shared folders in your FastMail account, you need to configure Apple Mail further to get the shared folders to display. You should be able to see the 'user' namespace displayed, though without any subfolders. To display the folders, you need to to 'subscribe' to them. Here's how you can do it:

  1. Right click on the 'user' namespace
  2. Click 'Get Account Info'
  3. Click on 'Subscription List'
  4. Select the shared folders under the 'user' namespace
  5. Click 'Subscribe'

The screen should look like the following:

Special Notes

By default, this version of Apple Mail will attempt to connect to the Outbound (SMTP) servers using ports 25, 465, and 587. It will automatically determine which ports are open to faciliate connections when specific ports are blocked by ISPs.


Last modified on: Wed Jan 27 18:00:00 UTC 2010