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Old 14 May 2020, 09:30 PM   #1
bobbyb
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Trouble accessing gmail account.

Hi there,

My father uses his gmail account with Microsoft Outlook 2010 on an old laptop which still uses Windows 7. He has recently had connection issues (r.e. IMAP, Server closed connection issues) which has stopped emails coming through. I have tried every method I can think of to fix this issue, but keep getting the constant "enter password" pop up which cannot be circumvented.

I initially tried to enter different IMAP settings which did not work.

Secondly I looked at disabling the two factor authentication on his google account. However when I try log into Google using chrome and using the gmail details he uses on Microsoft Outlook 2010, it tells me that the password is incorrect (even though it works on Microsoft Outlook 2010).

So I tried to log into the email using a web browser. This lets me log in, however no emails are present and it gives a randomly generated email address instead of the correct '@gmail.com' account.

Next I looked at account recovery. I tried adding my own personal email as a recovery email, we looked at sending the code to the saved recovery phone number, and we looked at using the security questions.

Long story short, I believe I have tried everything to fix this issue. Currently, my father cannot access personal emails and during COVID19, connect to many people in the outside world. If anyone has any knowledge of how I can fix this issue and get my dad back up and running, it would be greatly appreciated.

(I believe the issue may be using Microsoft Outlook 2010 which could be an outdated program, on a laptop that uses Windows 7 as an operating system which is also outdated, in which case a new laptop which an up-to-date mail app could solve the issue. If anyone could confirm this, I would just like to make sure before recommending spending +500....)

Thanks for reading!
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Old 15 May 2020, 02:08 AM   #2
TenFour
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It sounds to me like possibly the account was hacked if when you log into Gmail using a browser you can't find any emails there. Unless, you had Outlook setup to POP all the emails from Gmail, and not leave anything there. I will assume you know the email address and you think you know the password. Each Gmail address is unique, and if you can enter it, enter a password, and log in that is your account. Be sure you are starting directly from the genuine Gmail login page. I would try it from another PC--one that you know hasn't been hacked. The first step is to establish you can definitely log in to the correct Gmail account. By the way, I would suggest just setting up your father with an inexpensive Chromebook that works perfectly to check Gmail, search the Internet, watch videos, read the news. The ideal solution unless he uses something like Photoshop.
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Old 15 May 2020, 02:12 AM   #3
emoore
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"However when I try log into Google using chrome and using the gmail details he uses on Microsoft Outlook 2010, it tells me that the password is incorrect (even though it works on Microsoft Outlook 2010)."

If he has two step verification enabled (2FA) his outlook password is a app specific password , not the normal gmail password. That would explain why the outlook password doesn't work in the browser.

https://support.google.com/accounts/...4804&ctx=topic

I don't understand why you got a randomly generated email address when you logged into webmail using a browser. However, nothing you've described seems to be due to using Outlook 2010 or Windows 7. I'd assume there is something wrong with the Gmail account. I suggest your father sign up for a new one and that he doesn't enable two step verification. That's a optional security feature if you use Gmail from a smartphone, which causes complications for every other device (since they have to use a app specific password instead). Its usually not worth it unless your smartphone is your primary computer.
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Old 15 May 2020, 07:05 AM   #4
TenFour
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Quote:
I suggest your father sign up for a new one and that he doesn't enable two step verification.
2FA may be too much for some people, including my 89-year-old father! But, it is very important if you can deal with it. The #1 threat for most people is phishing and other malicious emails that arrive looking exactly like your credit card login or your bank login, and once you put your password in they are in and off with whatever you have in the account. Same thing can easily happen with email, whether you are opening it on a PC or a phone. You get a message that looks exactly like one from Google that says for additional security you must supply your password again, and Boom! they are off with your Gmail account and everything that is tied to it. With 2FA set up they would also then need a way to intercept the code from your authenticator app or have you also enter a code from your phone, but they won't know where to send the code so without some additional work they can't get in. Yes, 2FA is not foolproof, but it does make it much harder for the bad guys to steal your login credentials and use them.
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Old 19 May 2020, 12:31 AM   #5
bobbyb
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Hi there, thanks for taking the time to reply. Sadly, I have still not resolved this.

Quote:
Unless, you had Outlook setup to POP all the emails from Gmail, and not leave anything there.
I am not totally sure what that is, but would it mean the e-mails would go into Microsoft outlook 2010 and not outlook in browser?

Quote:
By the way, I would suggest just setting up your father with an inexpensive Chromebook that works perfectly to check Gmail, search the Internet, watch videos, read the news. The ideal solution unless he uses something like Photoshop.
That's a great shout. I'm actually looking at new laptops for him, because he's pretty set on getting a new one now, even though I'm starting to worry we won't get into the gmail account.

Quote:
I don't understand why you got a randomly generated email address when you logged into webmail using a browser. However, nothing you've described seems to be due to using Outlook 2010 or Windows 7. I'd assume there is something wrong with the Gmail account. I suggest your father sign up for a new one and that he doesn't enable two step verification. That's a optional security feature if you use Gmail from a smartphone, which causes complications for every other device (since they have to use a app specific password instead). Its usually not worth it unless your smartphone is your primary computer.
I have no idea either, and i've never seen it before.I guess now I'm worried that if the account is hacked then someone else might be using it. I just don't understand why the IMAP settings in Outlook 2010 just randomly stopped working..
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Old 19 May 2020, 01:00 AM   #6
TenFour
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Are you going directly to www.gmail.com to log in when using a web browser on another computer? Then enter the known email address and password. If you get a message that the password is no good, have you followed the directions there to recover access? There is an option to click on there if you "Forgot password." Click on that and you can enter the last password you remember to begin the account recovery process.
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Old 19 May 2020, 02:38 AM   #7
bobbyb
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Quote:
Are you going directly to www.gmail.com to log in when using a web browser on another computer? Then enter the known email address and password. If you get a message that the password is no good, have you followed the directions there to recover access? There is an option to click on there if you "Forgot password." Click on that and you can enter the last password you remember to begin the account recovery process.
When I try log in to gmail directly, it says incorrect password. I have the answer to the security question, as well as the right phone number where the access code is sent. Even when this is entered and I put in a recovery e-mail, I either get the message that the account cannot be verified to be mine, or I get the message that the activity needs to be reviewed by gmail and that they will contact me later, which doesn't happen.

The password works when I log into outlook, in browser, with the gmail credentials, but produces no emails.

The more we go through with this the more i'm starting to believe the account has been hacked..? No idea what step to take next.
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Old 19 May 2020, 02:57 AM   #8
TenFour
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Be sure to go through the entire Google Account Recovery process before giving up. They should ask you for things like when the account was first used, the last password you remember, etc. https://accounts.google.com/signin/v...y=ServiceLogin
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Old 19 May 2020, 06:57 PM   #9
bobbyb
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I've just tried again there, entered my own e-mail as the recovery e-mail, when it asks me to type in the code to verify my e-mail as the recovery it just says that i've had too many attempts and the account could not be verified as mine, and has no other options.

I'm sorry if this sounds like blatant whining at this point, but i'm not used to having computer problems for my dad that I can't fix, and I have no idea what else to do at this point.
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Old 19 May 2020, 07:13 PM   #10
TenFour
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I'm sorry you've encountered that problem. Unfortunately, there is no option other than the automated system, which is the biggest disadvantage of free Gmail. Read this blog for more information: http://gmailaccountrecovery.blogspot.com/?m=1

I have read of people who received the "too many attempts" message getting back in after waiting some time, like weeks. Is there any chance your father's email was used on a cell phone or another computer? You might be able to get back in that way.

Just guessing here, but I have found that my father (89 years old) has had other people "help" him with his Gmail account, which included resetting the password for some reason. I wouldn't have known except my father had forgotten this had happened, when I tried to help him I couldn't get in, and eventually I found a scibbled password on a piece of paper that turned out to be the new one. The moral of the story is everyone must use a password manager, plus keep backups of everything printed and stored safely somewhere.

Last edited by TenFour : 19 May 2020 at 07:20 PM.
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Old 20 May 2020, 03:02 AM   #11
bobbyb
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The real thing I'm confused with is why the gmail had even worked in the first place with Microsoft Outlook 10, for 5+ years.. only for the IMAP settings to screw up totally out of the blue?

Is it possible that the gmail account is linked to this google account with another e-mail address?
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Old 20 May 2020, 05:09 AM   #12
TenFour
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Quote:
Is it possible that the gmail account is linked to this google account with another e-mail address?
I'm not sure what you are asking. Each Gmail address has an associated Google account. You can have multiple Gmail addresses and multiple Google accounts to go along with them.
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Old 20 May 2020, 07:07 AM   #13
bobbyb
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I'm not sure what you are asking. Each Gmail address has an associated Google account. You can have multiple Gmail addresses and multiple Google accounts to go along with them.
Sorry, terribly worded. I thought for a second maybe I had created another e-mail address for him and associated that gmail account with the second address, but I know what you mean that this isn't possible.

The issue is my dad used Microsoft Outlook 10 - and that email - every day. It has his calendar, how he mainly keeps in touch with old colleagues, and some fam across the world. It's tech he's comfortable with and never really wanted to change. So the fact he's just been randomly locked out is totally out of the blue and frustrating.
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Old 20 May 2020, 07:47 AM   #14
TenFour
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Looking back through this thread I think it comes down to this. You are not entering the correct Gmail password that matches up with the Gmail address. Because you had 2FA enabled on Gmail, the password entered in Outlook 2010 was an "app password," not the regular Gmail password. That app password will only work for the Outlook 2010 app, and not for logging into Gmail using a browser. Why the login of the Outlook 2010 email app failed I don't know, but it may have to do with Google making some changes that disallow insecure apps from being connected to Google accounts.

In any case, you should be able to reset the main password for Gmail by the automated process if you are supplying the correct information for the account: the backup email address had to have been set previously, as did the phone number for the code. If those things are correct, be sure to use a computer that previously logged into Gmail from the same location--Google checks for that with password reset attempts.

Going back to Outlook 2010, you might want to read this about app passwords: https://support.google.com/accounts/answer/185833?hl=en
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Old 21 May 2020, 08:21 PM   #15
TenFour
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Found this web article on the Gmail account recovery process, and it includes good screenshots of what you will see along the way. Clear explanations too: https://cleanfox.io/blog/gmail-tips/...gmail-account/
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