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Can receive but not send e-mail in outlook

by Trevor 42 / May 18, 2005 6:15 AM PDT

A problem with a computer (running xp pro without any anti virus)in a small network of 4 pcs. I am sorry that I cannot provide much system or network information but the guy who had the problem would not let me examine his network/PCs physically so much of what I know I gleaned as best I could whilst being pressured to solve the problem in 10 minutes he allowed me. I did not get time to do a virus scan - which would have been my first action usually (but I would reiterate they have no anti virus !) .

They are using microsoft outlook as the e-mail system

E-mails are being received but cannot be sent(for around the last 2-3weeks). When you try to send an e-mail the login screen appears the username / password details are in the dialogue box but when you click on
enter an error message appears a few seconds later saying could not be logged on due to incorrect username and/or password. These guys did not know what a username was !! which is why I suspect they saved the details in the box.

Also an error message appears saying a file could not be found (not sure which file as this guy kept leaning over me hitting the keys ! but it was definately a .dll file)

I'm really sorry that I cannot be more specific but these were not the easiest of folks to try and help.

Other than that the PC boots up fine and has no problem in recognising usernames/passwords for login to the system or to get to connect to the internet.

All other applications appear to work o.k (as much as I could test in the very brief time allowed)

Any help would be appreciated - once again my apologies for the lack of information to work with.


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"running xp pro without any anti virus"
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 18, 2005 6:32 AM PDT

Are you ^&ts?

All versions of outlook are a bit too easy to exploit if someone previews an infected email.

Can I ask this?

With Free AVG being "free", why go without?

-> Here's my thought. It's too possible a virus/trojan/other invaded the system, a few million emails sent out and the ISP shut off their ability to send emails.


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Thanks Bob
by Trevor 42 / May 18, 2005 6:50 AM PDT

Thanks Bob,
I really appreciate your help.

This is not my system and I agree entirely with your comments regarding anti virus.

Personally I use AVG (and your suggested anti spyware tools) and my own PC runs well as a result.

I managed to put AVG onto this guy's system (and update it) before he booted me out of the office. I have suggested he goes in early tomorrow and runs a scan (I've shown him how to) before doing anything else.

I am very surprised that he has managed to operate his business effectively for 3 weeks without the need to send an e-mail.

He commisioned a comprehensive IT audit in mid april (not by me) and apparantly the guy who did it said he had to install anti virus NOW! but (he said)he didn't like being told what to do. I suspect he will rue his decision.

I will update you as to what AVG finds.

Once again - thanks for your help.


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Sorry about that.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 18, 2005 6:55 AM PDT
In reply to: Thanks Bob

But it is my initial reaction. In spite of what AVG finds, this scenerio is all too common and a call the ISP has to be made to find out what's up.

I know that better ISPs install software to shutdown accounts that send too many emails. And running without AV is just asking for this to happen.

Today's pets are far too smart and could sneak in, and self delete leaving someone looking for nothing. The call may have to be made.


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I think that is what has probably happened
by Trevor 42 / May 18, 2005 7:13 AM PDT
In reply to: Sorry about that.

Thanks for that advice.

I will tell him to 'phone his ISP first thing a.m( UK time). He is with British Telecom broadband (who used to be the state telecom provider) and they are a major provider of online/telecom services. Therefore it is entirely possible if not very probable that this is precisely what has happened.

The problem I have is that no one believes me when I tell them of the need for anti virus software.

I had this guy yesterday who said "you will not find any viruses on this PC I just use it for surfing the web and chatrooms"!!!!! (which I discovered were of the adult variety when I checked his cookies)

Well he had 5 trojans and 1 backdoor - worm.

I just wish I could communicate the risks to people without being seen to be alarmest. I guess all I can do is try my best, install AVG etc. and get them to run it.

Anyway I will get him to scan and call his ISP.

Thanks for the advice - I've certainly learned something new.

Kind Regards,


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Did you consider ...
by Kees Bakker / May 18, 2005 7:29 AM PDT

the possibility that the username or password simply were wrong? Bob's story certainly makes sense and is probable, of course, but I would start with re-entering the account. Or try to configure any other email-client like Outlook Express, or even use telnet to check the logon.
Wouldn't the ISP send a mail regarding the shutting off? Anyway, contacting the ISP helpdesk is the obvious thing to do if no problems are found locally.

The missing dll is rather mysterious. After the virus check (and removal!) a repair of MS Office seems in place.

And I wonder why a client like you describe does hire somebody to solve a problem and then not trust him to do the job. But that's another story, of course.


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Thanks Kees
by Trevor 42 / May 18, 2005 9:31 AM PDT
In reply to: Did you consider ...

Hi Kees,

Yes I did consider that (but thanks anyway).

I would have deleted and re entered the login details but the guy did not know his password!

However, the details appeared to be the same in system login and internet login and both of those worked ok, (although his home page seems to have been hijacked)
The password had the same number of dots so I don't think it had been inadvertantly changed. They saved all the details in the login box so you just clicked on enter. An intruder could have a field day on all aspects of the system and as they provide financial and other services I think this is a real issue - I wonder what their clients would think!!!!

I agree with your comments about people but this is typical in my experience. The person with the problem always thinks he knows more than I do (I'm the first to admit when I don't know something -hence this thread).

Well I will post an update when I know how the virus scan and call to the ISP goes.

Thanks for your help - much appreciated.


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Thank you
by Trevor 42 / May 18, 2005 8:02 PM PDT

The virus scan was run this morning

AVG virus scan detected:-



From what he says it would appear that AVG did heal these, although I still have some concerns.

The guy 'phoned his ISP and they have been blocking his e-mail - some convoluted story about ownership of his website not being recorded in his name ?!Anyway he wants to wait and see if their actions regarding this restore normal service.

Personally I think he has a number of (computing) issues -particularly with regard to security.

Why configure usernames/passwords that you don't know and then save them so all an intruder needs to do is press enter? It kind of defeats the point, particularly in a commercial finance environment!

Computing has come a long way in the last 20 years or so, sadly humans nature remains the weak link in the chain.

Anyway Bob and Kees - a big THANK YOU for your advice and help, it is appreciated.

Kind regards,


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