Hot Topics

How to change account password in Thunderbird

  stlucia2 11:39 07 Dec 2015

I've been using Outlook Express for my emails for many years now, and am currently trying to migrate over to Mozilla Thunderbird. I've got three email accounts running in Thunderbird (and deleted from my OE list), but I'm having a problem with one of them, a hotmail account:

When I was abroad recently I accessed that particular account from a friend's computer and, for some reason I can't remember, changed its password. Now when I start Thunderbird it gives an error message that it can't access that account, and inviting me to input a new password. I've done that several times now, but Thunderbird still asks for a new password every time I start up. I've also had a message from Microsoft about suspicious activity on the account, giving me a new security code to use with the account, but Thunderbird isn't asking for any security code. By the way, I'm confident I've got the correct password, for I wrote it down in my phone when I changed it.

I then looked for an option to change the password for the account in Thunderbird, hoping to do it manually, but I can't find any such option. Can someone help me with that please?

  AroundAgain 12:00 07 Dec 2015

Have you tried to access your email account on the web mail site first? That would be the best place to start. If you can access there, then you know your password.

Then go to Thunderbird and try sending an email. If the password isn't correct, you get a small dialogue box asking for the correct password, with a tick box underneath to tell the program to remember it.

That's the way to change your password generally, having changed it on webmail beforehand.

You can get to view your passwords quite easily by going to Tools - Options - Security (tab) - Saved Passwords - Show Passwords (bottom right of new window)

Hopefully you will now be able to access your emails on Thunderbird :)

  stlucia2 12:20 07 Dec 2015

I can access the account, with my new password, by going straight to hotmail with my browser.

So, I've just followed your instructions and found the passwords in Thunderbird, and the password for the imap-mail.outlook entries for the address in question are the new password, but there's another entry for an smtp-mail.outlook entry for the same email address, and it's showing a password that is incorrect (and is not my previous one).

Guessing that's what's causing the problem, it seems the only solution is to delete that wrong password from the list, and hope that Thunderbird will save the correct one next time it prompts me.

  Secret-Squirrel 12:20 07 Dec 2015

I've also had a message from Microsoft about suspicious activity on the account, giving me a new security code to use with the account, but Thunderbird isn't asking for any security code.

It sounds like your Hotmail account may be blocked and that's why it's not working in Thunderbird. The security code needs to be entered on the Hotmail webpage so AroundAgain has given you good advice about trying to access your mail from there first. If there is an account issue then you'll be issued a new security code and you can type it in there. When that's done Thunderbird will hopefully start working again.

  AroundAgain 12:22 07 Dec 2015

Yes, you can delete the wrong password and entry, or delete both, then add the new password.

I'm sure that should work. Give it a try ... Post back with your results?

  stlucia2 13:37 07 Dec 2015

When I logged into the Hotmail web page I was able to access my email account without inputting the security code they gave me -- there was no option on the page to input it.

Anyway, what I've done now is delete the entry which has the wrong password from the list in Thunderbird, sent myself a test email from another account, and all is well regarding that particular account .... but I still get the "Enter a new password" prompt when I open Thunderbird. Going back to Thunderbird's Saved Passwords screen I see that there's another incorrect entry against the imap-mail.outlook email entry for another of my accounts (call it a/c #2), alongwith a correct password for the smtp-mail.outlook entry for that account. Why an imap-mail and an smtp-mail entry for the same account, and why does the imap-mail entry show the a different, incorrect, password, as it did in the first example?

So I've deleted that wrong entry for a/c #2, sent a test message to that account, and when I start Thunderbird again I get the "Enter a new password" prompt, and the test message doesn't show up. Even worse, when I go direct to the Hotmail page and try to log in with a/c #2 name, it reports the account doesn't exist!

It's beginning to look like I need to clear out Thunderbird and start from scratch, as well as re-creating a/c #2 in Hotmail.

  AroundAgain 13:50 07 Dec 2015


It sounds like your computer has remembered your password for your web mail.

Re Thunderbird, I think those 'other' entries are to do with the servers but maybe someone else will be able to explain. I don't think they are anything to worry about. I have 'duplicate' entries too.

Sometimes, T'b keeps asking for passwords and, in that case, delete ALL the passwords (but be sure you are able to put them in when asked) and then, when you send an email to an account that doesn't have a password saved, enter it and remember to tick the box for Thunderbird to remember it. That will usually solve the repeated request for a password. Certainly, it sounds a bit drastic but it has worked for a long time ;)

See if you can send and receive emails from your account in Thunderbird and, if so, I suggest you're back in business. :)

  stlucia2 20:06 07 Dec 2015

Thanks AroundAgain. Deleting all my passwords and then re-entering them when prompted, and ticking the "remember" box, has sorted the initial problem.

Now I've just got to sort out that "missing" email address.

  AroundAgain 22:01 07 Dec 2015

Well done! You've really worked hard on this. :)

I don't have an answer re your 'missing' email acount so, when you finally solve it, I'd be very interested to know what it was about so hopefully you'll be able to return here and post again.

It may be worth getting in touch with your ISP and see if they can offer an explanation, perhaps.

If you're happy that your original issue is solved, would you click on one of the green ticks next to the solution/most relevant solution so that others know it's solved and also, if a similar problem, can see what solved your issue

Cheers Julie

  stlucia2 08:04 08 Dec 2015

The missing mail account is an odd one, but it's sorted now. I went direct to to access it, and first of all it told me the email account doesn't exist. Then I got another email (on my "main" account) from saying there was suspicious activity, and I should log in again and input the code they gave me. Sure enough, this time I logged in direct to and it accepted my email address and prompted me for the code. It also said something about this being a periodic extra security check. Somewhere in the process I had to change my password too, so Thunderbird then asked me for a new password, and everything's working smoothly now.

  AroundAgain 09:51 08 Dec 2015

Brilliant news. Thanks for posting back. Well done for sorting that 'strange' one ;) Please 'green tick' where appropriate J

This thread is now locked and can not be replied to.

1x1 pixel
Elsewhere on IDG sites

Asus ROG Zephyrus Duo 15 review

Landscape Illustration tips from leading illustrators

Woz is 70 tomorrow and you are invited to his party!

Comment connecter une Nintendo Switch à un pc portable ?