David Westerfield

Theology. Culture. Technology.


AT&T Re-Blocking Outgoing Email Port 25 for Uverse Customers?


(FYI: When I first had Uverse setup, they allowed me to open SMTP port 25. This problem started when it was inadvertently blocked again recently. Long story short, there were other reports of this happening. Below is the process of trying to get it unblocked again.)

I have come to the realization tonight that my mail server has not been sending out emails since February 17th. I hopped on AT&T’s Uverse chat support and was informed (after connecting to a second tech for a possible different answer because, you know, not all techs know the same things) that AT&T is now blocking outbound SMTP port 25 for Uverse customers. I initially had the port opened on my account to allow outbound email for my mail server. But it doesn’t work now as of February 17. And if you want to have this port opened now, you must contact their Connectech team to unblock it. The number, as of now, is 1-866-294-3464, or you can apparently connect with their chat service here: https://chatnow.att.com/. If you send me an email directly right now, I’ll try to respond another way in the mean time.

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UPDATE 1: Okay this is rich. So I contacted Connectech via the chat app (which is an exe download, similar to TeamViewer), chatted with the tech about the problem and was asked if I had purchased a support plan. I said, no, I just need my port 25 opened again. He said, I can’t help you unless you have a package purchased (paraphrasing all of the aforementioned).

So let me get this straight: I already pay AT&T Uverse a larger amount of money for their technology (okay fine, whatever) than the other guys. I pay for support too when I have a problem, support that comes with my service. AT&T decides to block outbound port 25. To get it open, I can’t just call the regular support anymore. I have to call their outsourced “professional techs” to flip a switch. And in the process, at least pay them $20 more a month. You’ve gotta be kidding me? This is a new low for AT&T customer service. Ever heard of corporate communism? With their level of bureaucracy, red tape and hoops to jump through to get something done, for the one’s they’re supposed to be servicing, I can’t think of a better term. Or how about inefficiency?

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UPDATE 2: So after having blogged and tweeted this issue, I have received two responses from AT&T techs saying they can help. They asked me to direct message them on Twitter now with my account information. And although they are still tweeting others with issues, they will not respond. I don’t get it. Still waiting though …

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UPDATE 3: A social media guy (Mike A) from AT&T contacted me directly about the issue and is getting the ball rolling. Appreciate it!

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UPDATE 4: After receiving a call, I have yet to hear anything about a possible resolution or whether it is even still being looked at. I’ve called twice, left messages, with no response. Benefit of the doubt: could be very busy.

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UPDATE 5: Received a call from Mike A a little while ago at the social media team at AT&T and they let me know they have resolved the problem, port 25 is not being blocked anymore. There were apparently other reports of this happening and they are handling it on a case by case basis. Appreciate the help, Mike A, at @ATTTeamNatasha!

 

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37 Comments

  1. robwest

    AT&T is almost as inefficient as the gov’t. They pull in enough money with what they charge, though …guess they can afford the bureaucracy. Since I’m no techie like you, what is ‘port 25?’ Obviously the one you use. Pretty weird to try to charge you for something it sounds like they messed up.

    • Port 25 is the standard outbound port for sending email. When you run a mail server like I do, you have to have that port open to send mail to other mail servers.

    • Also, this is the reason I sent email to you on Thurs/Fri about lunch and it never made it to you. 🙂

    • Steve Proctor

      @ATTTeamNatasha!no longer exits. Go figure. Oh well we just signed up and my 30 days ends next week so I have time to cancel still.

  2. Becky

    I just found your solution. I have been trying since January to get this fixed and everyone I have spoken to refuses to unblock port 25. The final straw was telling me I had to pay for the advanced help when they are the ones who have messed this up when they installed UVerse. I am cancelling the service I am so furious at them. I wish I could get contact like you did

    • Well, I actually got it resolved. I used Twitter to petition some form of AT&T tech service and was responded to by @ATTTeamNatasha and @ATTTeamTrevor … try hitting them up. They got it fixed for me. Those phone-in tech people are worthless on stuff like this (mind you, not worthless as people! 🙂 ).

      • Lee

        I don’t know if this is related or not (I’m not a technical person, just a PC user). U-Verse has just become available in my area. I have not ordered it. As of last week, I can no longer receive or send email via Outlook. Two calls to AT&T have offered no support. Their only suggestion is that I sign up to pay for extra support to track down my problem. All my settings are on the ones they claim should work. AT&T tries to blame Microsoft, but I can’t find a solution from Microsoft either. Also, my AT&T Solution Tool can no longer make a connection on the Web. My Internet still works. I have to use AT&T’s email now to receive and send. I’d appreciate any information you can share with me, but it’ll have to be in layman’s terms. Thank you.

        • Donald

          Lee –

          If you have a laptop, go to someone else’s house who has a different internet provider and try it. If your email works, it’s AT&T blocking port 25. Get on their customer support line (or chat) and demand they unblock port 25. Don’t take crap about going to their pay-for-support thing. Just did that a few moments ago, and it seemed to work.

          • Lee

            Thanks for your advice, Donald. It really ticks me that they’d suggest pay-for-support. Seems to indicate they know the answer but will hold my PC hostage until I pay the ransome. I’ll do as you suggest (except, it’s not a laptop, so testing on another connection won’t be possible).

  3. Bo

    I just wanted to say THANK YOU!!! I SPENT hours and weeks trying to figure out what the heck the problem was .. come to realize it was just a telnet test failing on port 25 had at&t open it following your guide u rock

  4. ecow

    Just wanted to drop in and state how useless their Connectech support was. The web chat rep couldn’t find my account. The phone rep had no clue what I was asking but kept repeating my words back at me and only offered $15/month upgraded tech support as a solution. I guess I’m forced to try twitter to get help as well.

  5. Hank Chandler

    AT&T blocks port 25. Use port 587 for smtp instead.

    • Right. Understand that. That’s not the issue. AT&T Uverse opens up port 25 upon request. I run a mail server and it only sends mail out over port 25 to remote mail servers. For someone reason it was blocked on its own. I called and AT&T opened it back up.

      • Jessica Holloway

        Wish I could get them to open the port for me. I have called twice and both times routed to the 3rd party techs that say I can pay $49 to have the port opened. The tech last night said there is a way I can do it through the router, but I am medical, not technical, so I am not sure how to do it.

  6. Sparqee

    I just upgraded to U-verse and discovered that AT&T is blocking port 445. This was never a problem on my old AT&T DSL account. I tried their tech support chat and talked to two different people. One insisted that “AT&T doesn’t block ports” while the other offered to “unblock my SMTP port”. I wasn’t convinced that either of them had any real sense of what a TCP port even is. After hunting around on the net I found a phone number and eventually got transferred to a lady who said that she could connect me to someone who could “probably” help me but I had to pay $50. That’s right, I would have to pay $50 just to talk to someone that (hopefully) knew what a TCP port *was*. I declined to be a part of this kind of corporate distortion.

    • I would try using twitter … Try explaining this to @attteamnatasha

      • Sparqee

        I don’t use Twitter but in fact I dug around (with no help from AT&T) and I think I now have enough information on the router that I can create a custom “Service” in the firewall. This is what I think AT&T was willing to “help me with” for $50.

    • Stephen Satchell

      Why are you needing 445/tcp open to the Internet? That is a Microsoft data services port, used to run SMB over IPv4/IPv6. It’s a wonderful conduit for malware to enter into your computer.

      • David Westerfield

        To your point Stephen, it really isn’t a good idea to open that port at all, even if you could.

  7. Adam Chalifour

    Did you have to have a Business AT&T U-Verse account to get port 25 opened? They are telling me they cannot open it because I have a residential account.

  8. We too have been stung by the inept and inefficient AT&T. Our business relies heavily on Quickbooks and subsequently Outlook, to which AT&T has taken hostage. Called today as out of the blue after 10 months with U-Verse our outgoing and incoming email ceased on Outlook. After being down for the day and no luck from our IT person, we called AT&T and dealt with a very nice lady but could not remedy the situation via remote access. Like those above, we were told that we needed to speak with Connect Tech which handled problems outside AT&T’s proprietary products like Outlook, only to be told we needed to agree to a fee based support @ $15 a month with a minimum of a year or a $49 one time fee, not guaranteed. Never thought I would say that I was switching to Comcast but this is a new low for a company like AT&T.

  9. Carl Strickland

    I too lost my email when converting to AT&T. I called AT&T and they said that it was their problem and to just sit tight. But the problem did not go away so I tried to fix it myself. After two months of no email, I was sent by AT&T to the “fix it” people. I was on the phone from 10am to 3pm working with a very nice man from some foriegn country, (He would not say which foriegn country.) In my trying to fix it, I had messed it up very badly. I had to sign up for $15 a month but I did not get the idea that the “fix it” people worked for AT&T. In fact, he was mostly looking at Microsoft Outlook. I thought AT&T was very nice in showing me how to fix the problem. I was happy with AT&T and the “fix it” people.

  10. Alex

    Had the same blocker port 25 issue. Did what everyone else did, called AT&T to request an unblock at which point they referred me to the ConnectTech support paid service center. BUT, instead of doing that, I next contacted my e-mail service provider to see if there were any other unblocked port numbers I could switch to (already tried the port 456 solution mentioned in other threads to no avail). I was given two numbers to try 27 and 2500. Tried 27 and it worked! Wish I could sticky this to the top of this thread, but this is the best I can do.

  11. Larry

    I have had u-verse for about a month now an i have had nothing but trouble with my e-mail, in receiveing an sending they tell me to change the port settings to outgoing 465, an incoming to 995 i do that an it might work for a day then im trying to find out why it wont send e-mail, i go to the att page an there is no incoming mail there so no mail from there either, sometimes the incomeing works then i cant send e-mail out after paying a big price to att it seems like they would be willing to help you but when i call i get some girl or guy in the phillippines that want me to pay for this other tech support an i am not going to do that i did not have this problem when i had DSL, i ask them if they could switch it back an they said no, but i think that it can be done, an they are just telling me that, anyway outgoing is not working again, so i am going to get on the phone an try to talk to them again, but probley with no luck.

    • John

      I just hung up on those idiots. If they are selling a service of internet access, and you can’t access your outside server from one day to the next (probably because they upgraded their own software), then they want you to pay for the fix.

  12. Larry

    I had the problem ever since i had u-verse installed here, an everytime i called i got a repesentive in the phillippines, an they did not know anything, they tried to send me to another tech that cost $20.00 a month to keep it going so the last time they kept me on the phone line for 4 hour a zip still didnt work, so i got tired an hung up but then i thought i would try again to get someone in the U.S. this has been about a week ago, but bang i got a guy in india, an he seemed to know what the problems was he told me to wait while he clicked a couple of switches, an bingo my e-mail was working, knock on wood an it has been working great since then an it only took him less then 5 mins to have my e-mail up an going so if you can get someone from india instead of the philippines, then they know what to do i have had other problems before an if i got someone from india they were able to fix the problem.

  13. shakedown2

    No email response says must remove cookies/caches etc. Did=NG.My
    Professional checked my machine=OK. Still no email. Saw their download gimmick/shakedown($$). Two friends with same service used
    my machine to log on, worked/no problem. No download($$$)-no fix
    still. All payments on time-they don’t need me-looking for new provider I will not pay shakedown fees.

  14. Mitrekol

    I had success clearing up the outlook outgoing server response on SMTP port 25 by contacting ATT online chat support. I clearly identified that I was accessing email servers other than .att and that I wanted port 25 unblocked and to disable SSL encryption. The online chat contact said that he/she had made a few changes from their own expertise and to see if it worked. This was followed by a “canned” response that said it was not an ATT problem if I wanted more help I should call. I was then disconnected.

    It worked.

  15. Wade Hyde

    I’ve only been a customer for a day, and these bastards want to charge me a fee for using their stupid paid technical support service. Dumping Uverse for Time Warner. I don’t want to do business with a company that is so damn greedy and provides such lousy customer service.

  16. robwest51

    This is off port 25 topic, but illustrates AT&T’s poor customer service.

    Had AT&T DSL for several years w/ few issues, but decided to upgrade to UVerse for faster fiber optic. Had nothing but trouble for months with the signal to modem dropping once a day or more. Countless calls to AT&T yielded excuses and lack of knowledge. Techs came out several times and accomplished nothing. Months later, after months of frustration, a knowledgeable tech came out and explained that the overhead copper wire at my location was somewhat corroded and that the distance to the fiber optic node connection greatly exceeded AT&T’s own specs! So the slower DSL signal could get through consistently, but the wire couldn’t handle the faster mbps I was paying more to get. AT&T was selling a product their own specs said it couldn’t deliver. Tech volunteered he was dropping his own company’s internet service and changing to Charter. I did the same, have consistent 30 mbps downloads, and have had no issue now for almost a year.

    My advice is not to fight with AT&T over any issue if it’s become painful. Drop ’em and go elsewhere…their bureaucracy and poor customer support rivals the gov’t.

  17. Jessica Holloway

    Called twice and both times got routed to the outsourced people and they want me to pay $49 to unblock the port. One guy last night said I could make a change in my router, but I am not sure how to do that. Any thoughts would be appreciated.

    • Lee Byrne

      I periodically lose my Outlook email. This time I got it working again by signing back into Yahoo.com. Crazy!

  18. Larry Folds

    Yes i had ATT UVerse installed in Febuary, an when it first started off was great, but then the e-mail issue, well i called an like some of you said they wanted $20.00, to fix the problem, but i did not pay i thought i would try an call someone else, so i did the 1st call i made was to the philippines by the way, now the 2nd call i got a guy in India, an he fixed it right away, well i allowed him access to my computer which he changed the port setting to 465 outbound an 995 inbound, well this worked for about a month an it went out again, so i call them an got lucky an got someone in Arizona, an i had to have a new password to get my e-mail working again, so he gave me a new password, an bingo it went to working again, now this happens about every month maybe a little longer that i have to get a new password when my e-mail will not let me access it, so last week i called in an the computer gave me a password, an i use windows mail, but it still would not work on windows mail this time but ATT site it worked so i called an i got someone that could speak english, lucky me,,,,, an he explaned that ATT was connected to yahoo mail also so i go an try to access yahoo mail also an no go so i enter the new password in yahoo, an it started working then i go back to windows mail an it worked there then also, from what i see after you get the new password you have to enter it into all 3 e-mails to get windows mail or yahoo or ATT to work.

  19. Larry Folds

    Yes i just left a message about getting a new password every time that your e-mail stops working but however i did not give you the phone number to call to get a new password from the computer so here it is im sorry i did not list it in the reply i sent the other day good luck, an listen to what the computer says an it will give you a new password to enter then you can change it to what you want after you access ATT the # is 1800-288-2020, good luck an have a great day.

  20. Linda

    We switched to AT&T uverse and began having the same problems where many emails weren’t be delivered. Inconsisent, but about every 6th email. We have been AT&T customers for over 25 years, 2 phone lines, smart phone cell service for 5, Internet service and now even tv on uverse. Connect Tech refused to fix this problem without my having to sign up for their service. Outrageous! So I pay a fortune to At&T every month for service, they cause us problems and I have to pay them to fix it. Ridiculous!

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