How can I fix an error with too many IMAP connections in Mac Mail?

2012-02-04 7:48 pm EST

Hits: 5,376
So, basically I found out the hard way today, two days after transferring my mail and websites to you guys, that for "business class" hosting there is a user connection limit for email?

I have 8 employees in my small business with two websites and each user has a 2 or 3 imap email accounts hosted, so at any one time I'll need to have 8 mail browsers open on the network seeking to connect to about 25 mail accounts. On our previous mail server (Xserve running OSX Server) this was no problem. Not so with inmotion "business class."

With inmotion, if I have more than 4 or so mail browsers open (total of about 10-12 email accounts), anyone else is shut out and the inmotion mailserver will refuse the connection.

After three unhelpful calls to customer service today, I basically figured this out on my own and when I told the customer service rep was advised I had to upgrade to a VPS, which I reluctantly agreed to do.

Not happy. Hoping I can get this running before Monday when everyone shows up and wants to check their mail . . .

EDIT: Same issue with or without SSL imap

You must login before you can ask a follow up question.

You must login before you can submit an answer.



Tim S.
9,967 Points
2012-02-06 10:35 am EST
Hi robre,

Thanks for posting your question. I'm more than happy to assist you today. Please keep us updated on your progress. We've seen this issue, specifically with Mac Mail. It has to do how Mac Mail handles idle connections and opens connections for individual mail. You'll want to make sure to disable the imap idle setting in mac mail.

Also, it may help if you change the frequency in which Mac Mail checks the server for new mail. Also, switching to POP3 would resolve the issue, as the email would be downloaded and stored on the local computer.

I did want to take the time to explain the issue a little further using a post office analogy. POP3 email is like you going to the post office once, and getting the mail. The post office (the server in this example) only has that mail until you pick it up. Once you have picked it up, it's no longer at the post office.

IMAP, is like you having a post office box at the post office (again this is the server). It would be like you going to the post office, opening the PO Box, reading your mail, and putting it back into the PO box, for storage. The mail is still on the server or post office.

Now, what's happening in your case, is you have multiple users trying to stick their hands in the post office box all at once and get the mail. If one user has all their hands on all the mail, at one time, it makes it harder for others to access the mail.

With that being said, have you thought about setting up email forwarders and having the specific emails you need to check to forward to one email account. That way, you don't need to have 25 mail accounts open at once. Emails would be forwarded to the appropriate person/ people and they would check the one account. This would reduce the number of IMAP connections, and be easier to manage.

I hope this helps! If you need further assistance please feel free to contact us.


Tim S

You must login before you can post a comment about this answer.

Like this Question?

Related Articles

It looks like there are no related articles.
Would you like to ask a question about this page? If so, click the button below!
Ask a Question

Need more Help?


Ask the Community!

Get help with your questions from our community of like-minded hosting users and InMotion Hosting Staff.

Current Customers

Chat: Click to Chat Now E-mail:
Call: 888-321-HOST (4678) Ticket: Submit a Support Ticket

Not a Customer?

Get web hosting from a company that is here to help. Sign up today!