How to Troubleshoot MSN Email

By Joshua Duvauchelle

Microsoft, the creator of the ubiquitous Microsoft Windows operating system, operates a paid Internet browser and email service called MSN Premium. As of 2009, individuals who pay the monthly fee of $9.95 receive premium email service and syncing through the MSN Explorer browser or Microsoft Outlook. Individuals using this service may occasionally encounter problems with the MSN email service and must troubleshoot it in an attempt to resolve these issues.

Things You'll Need

  • MSN Explorer
  • Windows XP
  • Microsoft Outlook (optional)

Step 1

Check to be sure your computer is connected to the Internet when experiencing problems with downloading new emails from the MSN email server. If you're using dial-up, disconnect the modem and reconnect. If using a high-speed, always-on Internet connection, reset your router by pressing the small recessed button on the front or back of the router. Hold down the button until all the status lights on the front of the router flash; then release the button. Wait until all the status lights are lit before trying to reconnect to your MSN email server.

Step 2

Verify that your firewall is allowing access for the MSN Explorer browser or Outlook, if you are using the latter to access your MSN email. The firewall may be blocking data packets, causing connection errors. Double-click the firewall icon in the Windows system tray, located in the lower right-hand corner of the screen. Access your firewall options or preferences and check that "MSN-E," "MSN Explorer" or "Outlook" is listed as being allowed to access the Internet.

Step 3

Ensure your email address and password are entered correctly in the "Mail" tab of MSN Explorer. Email addresses should be formatted as "username@msn.com", "username@hotmail.com" or "username@live.com". Passwords are not case sensitive, and should not include spaces or special symbols. If using Outlook to access your MSN email, click "Tools" in the top menu bar in Outlook and select "E-Mail Accounts" to verify and change your email details.

Step 4

Turn off MSN's email filtering if you are experiencing issues with missing emails or messages not arriving in your inbox. Both Outlook and MSN Explorer are simply front-ends to the main Hotmail server. Navigate to the Hotmail homepage (see Resources) and sign in with your MSN email credentials. Click "Options" and select "Filters." Click "Mail Handling." Disable all email filtering to allow all incoming messages to reach your inbox. However, this may increase the amount of unsolicited email advertisements that you receive.

Step 5

Reinstall MSN Explorer. Navigate to the Windows Control Panel in your Start menu. Double-click the "Add/Remove" icon and locate the MSN Explorer program in the ensuing dialog box. Click "Remove." Download a new installation package for the software from the Microsoft website (see Resources). Depending on your Internet speed, this may take up to an hour to download. Double-click the downloaded file and follow the on-screen prompts to reinstall MSN Explorer. Click the "Mail" tab to reinput your MSN email details and begin syncing your messages once again.

Tips & Warnings

  • Turning off email filtering for your MSN email may ensure that you receive all your messages, but may also increase the amount of spam you receive each day.