September 01, 2022 Outlook

9 Ways To Troubleshoot the Outlook Cannot Connect to Server Error

Posted By Michael Davis
9 Ways To Troubleshoot the Outlook Cannot Connect to Server Error

Outlook has cemented its position as an efficient information management application. It is an emailing platform that both companies and individuals can use. It facilitates seamless email communication and helps you keep up with your upcoming events and appointments. However, sometimes users complain that their Outlook cannot connect to server.

When the service doesn’t connect to the server, it renders you unable to send and receive emails. For regular Outlook users, it can certainly pose a serious problem. However, there are various workarounds to fix it. In this article, we’ll go through all the different ways you can fix this error and carry on with your email exchange. 


Why Is Outlook Not Connecting to Exchange Server?

There are various reasons why authentication fails in Outlook. You will see this error message because of the following:

  • There are network connectivity problems.
  • Errors in OST synchronization.
  • Your OST file is damaged.
  • There’s a disabled mailbox from the server.
  • Your MS Outlook profile is damaged.
  • You have installed incompatible add-ins. 

Related Post :- Why Outlook Showing Disconnected


Troubleshoot the Outlook Cannot Connect to Server Error

The first thing you must do when facing this error is to restart your computer simply. Sometimes, it’s enough to troubleshoot the issue as it flushes out the various processes and fixes many issues. If restarting doesn’t work, proceed with the fixes below. 


1. Check the Status of Outlook

One of the standard reasons for Outlook not connecting to the server is when it is being in an offline mode. Open the application and go to the ‘Send/Receive‘ tab. If you see Work Offline written at the bottom, it means the application isn’t linked to the server. Toggle this setting and bring it online. Now, check if it connects to the server.


2. Disable Extensions

Have you enabled an extension and are finding Outlook not connecting to the server? A simple step would be to disable the extension and then attempt to connect to the server. 

  • Head to the ‘File‘ tab in Outlook.
  • Now, go to ‘Options‘ followed by ‘Add-ins.’
  • Hit the ‘Go‘ button and remove the check from every extension.
  • Now, press ‘OK‘ and restart the Outlook application.


3. Examine Your Outlook Credentials and Account Information

Another relatively simple fix for this error is to verify your Outlook credentials and account data. It is vital to ensure that you are typing the right credentials to log in. 

  • Open Outlook on your system. 
  • Click the ‘File‘ option. 
  • Now go to ‘Info.’
  • From here, choose the option of ‘Account and Social Network Settings.’
  • Lastly, choose ‘Account Settings.’
  • Now, click your current account title.
  • Remove it and then input the credentials again. 


4. Employ SSL to Link to the Exchange Server

You can also employ SSL to link to the Microsoft Exchange server. It is a good fix when you find that your Microsoft Outlook cannot connect to the server. 

  • Launch Outlook and tap the ‘File‘ button. 
  • From here, choose ‘Info‘ followed by ‘Account and Social Network Settings.’
  • Then click the option of ‘Account Settings.’
  • After that, choose your Microsoft email account and hit ‘Change.’
  • Now tap ‘More Settings‘ followed by ‘Advanced.’
  • Lastly, choose ‘SSL‘ as a kind of encrypted connection and tap ‘OK.’


5. Use the Latest Version of Outlook

You must be utilizing the latest version of Outlook in order to benefit from its smooth working. Microsoft sends updates periodically so that the bugs in the application can be patched. If you are complaining about Outlook not connecting to the server issue, try updating it. It is quite simple to get the latest version. 

Just head to Office account from the ‘File‘ tab. Tap the ‘Update Options‘ tab, and Windows will download and install them on your system. After updating Outlook, upgrade your Windows operating system as well.

6. Make a New Profile

A damaged or corrupt profile prevents Outlook from connecting with the Exchange server. The steps to form a new profile are as follows.

  • In the ‘Control Panel‘, look for ‘Mail‘ and tap its option.
  • Next, tap ‘Show Profiles.’
  • Now, click ‘Add.’
  • Input your profile name and hit ‘OK.’
  • Set the new profile with your email account.
  • Afterward, tap ‘Finish.’
  • Launch Outlook and configure the new profile.
  • Now, see if you can use Outlook and all the mailbox items.


7. Install Microsoft Office Again

You’ll encounter connectivity problems if you have a corrupt or damaged Office or Outlook app. Reinstalling Office again is a good way to fix this glitch. 

  • Launch ‘Control Panel‘ and tap the option of ‘Uninstall a program.’
  • Choose ‘Microsoft Office‘ and tap ‘Change.’
  • Choose ‘Repair‘ followed by ‘Continue‘ to begin the repair of Office. 
  • Now, open Outlook. In most instances, this measure is enough to fix the issue. 


8. Rebuild the Data File in Outlook

If you still find that your Outlook cannot connect to the server even after implementing the fixes above, try rebuilding the Outlook data file. This is an external file in which all Outlook data is saved. When you delete this file, all the data in Outlook is lost. It leads Outlook to rebuild the data and, in the process, fix the corruption problem. 

  • Launch ‘Account Settings‘ in Outlook.
  • Tap the tab of ‘Data Files‘ and select the email account that’s causing problems. 
  • Now click ‘Open File Location.’
  • After that, you can rename this file. 
  • Open Outlook again. This action will make Outlook automatically rebuild your data file. 


9. Set a Connection to a Proxy Server

Are you employing a proxy server to access the web? If yes, you will need to configure a connection to it in order to connect your Outlook to the server.

  • Tap ‘File‘ in Outlook.
  • Now, go to ‘Info‘ and then to ‘Account and Social Network Settings.’
  • Click ‘Account Settings.’
  • Now, choose your account and hit ‘Change.’
  • Choose ‘More Settings‘ and then go to the ‘Connection‘ tab.
  • Now, select ‘Connect to Microsoft Exchange using HTTP‘ below ‘Outlook Anywhere.’
  • Hit ‘Exchange Proxy Settings.’ Now, input a URL to link to the server.
  • Choose ‘Connect using SSL only‘ followed by ‘Only connect to proxy servers that have this principle name in their certificate.’
  • Now input ‘must:URL.’ Below ‘Proxy authentication settings‘ opt for a type of authentication. You can choose between basic or NTLM authentication.
  • Lastly, tap ‘OK.’

Read Also:- Why Is Outlook Inbox Not Updating


Final Thoughts

Now you will not struggle when you find that your Outlook cannot connect to the server. The measures above will fix the issue in your account settings and allow Outlook to link to the server. You can also connect with an email technical support expert to find more information about the resolution of this problem.

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