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503 valid RCPT command must precede DATA


Why do I receive error "503 valid RCPT command must precede DATA" when attempting to send email?


This usually is a result of the mail server requiring authentication.
If you are using Outlook 2003, here are the steps to enable authentication:

  1. Open Outlook
  2. Go to Tools | Email Accounts
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  4. "View or change existing e-mail accounts" should already be marked
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  6. Click Next
  7. Select the Account with the trouble and click Change
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  9. Click on More Settings
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  11. Click on the Outgoing Server Tab
  12. Click "My outgoing server (SMTP) requires authentication" and make sure "Use same settings as my incoming mail server" is selected
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  14. Click on the Advanced Tab
  15. Set "Outgoing server (SMTP):" port to 26
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  17. Click OK and then Test Account Settings
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  19. If everything is fine and reports no errors,
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    • Click Close.
    • Click Next.
    • Click Finish.
  21. If an error does occur, it will switch to the Errors tab and display the error
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