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Where is my email?

Cannot find email? Read for solutions

This used to be super simple. Now I just don’t know where my email is? How can I get it back? Please help this is urgent.
Leslie Smith

These are some of the most frequently asked questions I receive. Based on the feedback I’ve got over the years, people seem to “lose” their email accounts all of a sudden. And it generally happens to users who are new to Internet or not well-versed with technology. But that’s fine. We all were new to something once and not all of us find it easy to embrace change. That’s human nature. Fear not, you can quickly find where your email account is.

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Woman worrying at a computer

Please understand that I really do want to help you, and that can only happen with a calm and clear mind. Fretting over the issue and getting annoyed at customer representatives or at the company’s online help section is not going to solve anything. We first need to understand how you used to access email. Here are the possibilities and the solutions.

  • An icon on the desktop

    Many people, especially those who are new to computers, take the assistance of others in setting up email on their computers. Generally, to facilitate access, an “email icon” is created and placed on the desktop. This way users can quickly get to their email by doubling-clicking the icon.

    An icon just points to a particular program and in the case of email, the software can be a browser or a dedicated email program. The following is a list of popular browsers and email programs that you may have used to access your account.

    • Browsers: Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Opera etc.
    • Email software: Outlook Express, Outlook, Windows Mail, Windows Live Mail, Apple Mail, Thunderbird etc.

    So if the email icon is missing from the desktop, it may have been deleted or moved to a different location. I suggest checking the Trash folder, and/or using the search on the computer. However, going through each and every folder on the computer looking for a mislaid icon is just too time-consuming. I suggest creating it again. You can either take the help of someone or do it yourself.

  • Browser used to open email, now it doesn’t

    The solution to this is, again, simple. My guess is that the email service page was set as the homepage in the browser and was removed by accident. You can set it back in the browser. All popular web browsers will let you set one or more “homepage”.

    Please remember, you may need to enter the email account username and password and make sure the browser stores this login information.

  • Email cannot be found on the computer because the program has been removed

    Most default email programs cannot be removed from the computer. Having said that, a third-party program can be uninstalled. So does this mean your email is gone for good? Probably not!

    An email account resides not on your computer but on a server. Thus, the only thing that got deleted from your computer was the program. The account is still very much on the server and you can access it typically through webmail using a web browser.
    [Depending on how email was set up, the messages may or may not be present on the server.]

    By the way, if you are sure the program has been deleted, you can install it all over again and reinstate the email account. This may require a little help from someone who knows how to do this. Though I would have loved to help you, I suggest getting an expert who will either be physically present on your computer or guide you step-by-step over phone.

Please understand that there are several ways email can be accessed using tens of different programs. Only you know exactly how email was set up on the computer and only you can troubleshoot this issue correctly.

The list above is based on the different scenarios I’ve come across and may not be complete. If you can’t find a solution to your problem, please do let me know how and where you used to access the email account and I would include it for the benefit of others.

Here is a picture of a cute puppy to make you smile…

Cute puppy

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