IMAP is a special email protocol that allows for email accounts to integrate with other third-party email clients. You can set up IMAP and change your SMTP settings to read Gmail messages in other mail clients, like Microsoft Outlook and Apple Mail. When you use IMAP, you can read your Gmail messages on multiple devices, and messages are synced in real-time.
Note: To avoid temporarily locking yourself out of your account, make sure you don't exceed 2500 MB per day for IMAP downloads and 500 MB per day for IMAP uploads. If you're setting up a single IMAP account on multiple computers, try taking a break between each setup.
Set up IMAP
Step 1: Check that IMAP is turned on
- On your computer, open Gmail.
- In the top right, click Settings .
- Click Settings.
- Click the Forwarding and POP/IMAP tab.
- In the "IMAP access" section, select Enable IMAP.
- Click Save Changes.
Step 2: Change SMTP & other settings in your email client
Use the table below to update your client with the correct information. For help updating your settings, search your email client's Help Center for instructions on setting up IMAP.
Incoming Mail (IMAP) Server
Requires SSL: Yes
Outgoing Mail (SMTP) Server
Requires SSL: Yes
Requires TLS: Yes (if available)
Requires Authentication: Yes
Port for SSL: 465
Port for TLS/STARTTLS: 587
Full Name or Display Name
Account Name, User name, or Email address
Your full email address
Your Gmail password
If you can't sign in to your email client, you might see one of these errors:
- "Username and password not accepted"
- "Invalid credentials"
- You're asked to enter your username and password over and over
Step 1: Check your password
If you have these problems or can’t sign in, first check to make sure you’re using the right password.
Step 2: Try these troubleshooting steps
- Update your email client to the latest version.
- Use an App Password: If you use 2-Step Verification, try signing in with an App Password.
- Allow less secure apps: If you don't use 2-Step Verification, you might need to allow less secure apps to access your account.
If you recently changed your Gmail password, you might need to re-enter your Gmail account information or completely repeat your Gmail account setup on your other email client.
If the tips above didn't help, visit https://www.google.com/accounts/DisplayUnlockCaptcha and follow the steps on the page.
The email client's sign-in method might be insecure. Try signing in directly on the Gmail app.
Make sure your mail app isn't set to check for new email too frequently. If your mail app checks for new messages more than once every 10 minutes, the app’s access to your account could be blocked.