How to Download Yahoo Email using Desktop Email Client

Sharninder 30-01-2009

download yahoo email with yahoopops clientThere was a time when Yahoo used to provide free POP3 access to Yahoo Mail service and life was all sweet. Then one day their evil overlords decided to pull the rug from beneath our feet and made the POP3 service a premium offering, which meant that us poor users had to pay to use it. So users were no longer able to download emails from Yahoo Mail using desktop email clients like Outlook or Thunderbird.


For people like me who had hundreds of emails in our Yahoo inboxes (and no money in our pockets) that was a sad day. Letting Yahoo take care of our emails and not having access to important emails when we wanted them was a big disappointment. I lived with the fear of losing my emails for a long time and then one day I came across this wonderful utility called YahooPOPs!

YPOPs lets you use an offline email client to download and send emails from your Yahoo account, just as it used to be. In other words, YPOPs acts as a POP3 and SMTP proxy for your Yahoo mail account.

To get started, download the YPOPs installer and install it on your Windows machine. The installer will ask you if you want YPOPs to start automatically when Windows starts. If you want that option, say yes or leave it alone. I like to leave programs out of the start up routine, so I’ll pass on this one. I’ll manually start YPOPs when I want to.

Now, comes the configuration part.

YPOPs, when started, will quietly settle down in the task bar and to configure it, you’ll just have to right click the icon and click on “configure”.


yahoopops download

You can leave pretty much all the settings as it is except the Network settings.

The only thing in the Network settings that I had to change for YPOPs to work on my box were the POP3 and SMTP ports. For some reason, YPOPs refused to work with the default POP and SMTP ports, so I changed the POP3 port to 5110 and the SMTP port to 5125. That’s it!

yahoopops setup


To read emails offline, I use the excellent open source program called Thunderbird.

When you start Thunderbird for the first time, it’ll ask you to set up an email account to work with. Move along, enter your name and the email address that you want to work with <> and enter localhost as the POP server and localhost as the SMTP server name. Click next and finish.

how to access yahoo mail in thunderbird

When you’re finished, Thunderbird will offer to download emails from the account that you just started. If you let it download emails right now, Thunderbird will fail with an error saying it couldn’t connect to the server or something to that effect. This is normal since, by default, Thunderbird would have chosen port 110 for POP3 and port 25 for SMTP, which is not what we set in YPOPs.


To change the port settings for Thunderbird, go to Tools -> Account Settings, and under Server Settings, change the port to 5110 from the default of 110.

How to Download Yahoo Email using Desktop Email Client thpopport

To change the SMTP port, on the same window, go to Outgoing Server (SMTP) and click on Edit and change the SMTP port to 5125 from the default of 25.

email client for yahoo


That’s it. Go back to the main Thunderbird window and click on Send/Receive. You should now be able to send and receive all your Yahoo email from within Thunderbird and no one will ever come to know the difference. Plus, you never have to see those ugly advertisements on the Yahoo mail website :-)

You don’t even have to use Thunderbird to use YPOPs. You can continue using your favorite emailing client and add a second account to be used for Yahoo mail. Just make sure that you change the POP3 and SMTP ports to match the ones you set in the YPOPs configuration window.

If you have any problems setting it up, leave a question in the comments and we’ll try and help you out.

Related topics: Desktop Email Client, Email Tips, Yahoo Mail.

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  1. bert
    February 15, 2018 at 11:15 pm

    I tried every setting but cant connect to the Yahoo servers...

  2. Uzair
    December 28, 2014 at 6:38 am

    I followed the steps. I am receiving my yahoo mails. but when I want to send the mail, it fails and I get the following message:

    "Sending of message failed.
    The message could not be sent because connecting to SMTP server localhost failed. The server may be unavailable or is refusing SMTP connections. Please verify that your SMTP server settings are correct and try again, or contact the server administrator."

    Please advise.

  3. Deepal
    February 4, 2010 at 11:51 am

    i followed everything in exact order.But Thunderbird says "connection to server localhost timed out"....


  4. Klench
    December 22, 2009 at 1:11 pm

    So much stress trying to connect to yahoo mail, i suggest you switch all important emails to gmail like I did. Ever since then I've slept peacefully.

  5. jacob
    November 9, 2009 at 12:56 pm

    why when i finish everything up it is telling me that it could not connect to server localhost. the connect was refused

  6. John
    July 1, 2009 at 5:06 pm

    I've also tried Thunderbird following the above instructions with the result of:

    "Can't connect to localhost"

    I would really rather use Outlook 2007 though.


  7. John
    July 1, 2009 at 4:03 pm

    OH, I've followed all the instructions above with no results.



  8. John
    July 1, 2009 at 4:01 pm

    I am also having problems getting the Outlook 2007 to download Yahoo! emails.

    I have two yahoo! accounts one paid for, one free and I don't seem to be able to download either using YPOP.

    I am more interested in using YPOP to download all Yahoo! email folders not just the Inbox. I've been wanting to do that for ever!!!

    That would be absolutely excellent if I can do that.

    So, if there is a way to get this to work I want to know!


  9. eugen
    June 21, 2009 at 8:10 am


    Is there someone who knows if there is a Microsoft Outlook 2003 connector for yahoo email retrieving or other yPOPs gateway ?



  10. picus
    June 8, 2009 at 11:00 am

    i succesfully downloaded and installed ypops. i tried running the application and i got this error
    "The application failed to initialize properly (0x0150002). Click on OK to terminate the application" i need help on this pls!!!!

    • Sharninder
      June 8, 2009 at 11:21 am

      This sounds like a windows problem. If you have access to another windows machine, can you please try installing on that ? Or run windows update and see if that solves your problem.

    May 22, 2009 at 3:12 am

    thank you so much. it worked like a a charm..please do the following

    1. download the latest [Broken Link Removed]

    2. then use the above screen shot method. modify the SMTP and POP port both in yahoo and outlook

  12. Sharninder
    May 3, 2009 at 11:28 pm

    To all those who haven't been able to make ypops working, could you all please download and try the latest version. It was released on the 9th of March and probably fixes most of these issues.

  13. Crystal
    May 3, 2009 at 12:40 pm

    Same error about not downloading message 1 and not getting anymore email. it sometimes gets mail but then gets stuck, wondering if you figured out what causes it?

  14. jaxun
    April 10, 2009 at 1:27 pm

    Having used YPOPS! for a long time with no issue, then experiencing the "no new mail" situation out of the blue (in spite of the several new messages awaiting download), I am fairly convinced that Yahoo made a change to purposefully block or render YPOPS! useless.

    Yahoo, your service actually sucks more than AOL. And that's saying something!!!

  15. lahiru
    March 31, 2009 at 1:09 pm

    Hello everybody..hp you can help me on this. I'm using Microsoft Outlook 2007 and I need to get yahoo mails in this - I followed all the instructions provided here but it fails to connect to yahoo server and ypop is running [tray icon]....and when i made the yahoo account in outlook it doesn't show in the left hand panel,so what should i do??

  16. mirajdhk
    March 16, 2009 at 6:29 am

    The error message coming is given here:
    “Sending of password did not succeed. Mail server localhost responded: Bad Login. YPOPS was unable to login to Yahoo! Mail with the given credentials.”
    But my credentials were correct. Can you help me what is the problem?

    And the following lines from the ypops.log:
    [03/16/09 17:19:26] Sending POP3 response to socket 224
    [03/16/09 17:19:26] Unknown AUTHORIZATION state command: CAPA
    [03/16/09 17:19:26] Sending POP3 response to socket 224
    [03/16/09 17:19:37] Sending POP3 response to socket 224
    [03/16/09 17:19:37] Starting POP3 session for "mhasnaine".
    [03/16/09 17:19:37] Password received from client.
    [03/16/09 17:19:37] INBOX added to list of folders to analyze
    [03/16/09 17:19:37] Bulk Mail added to list of folders to analyze
    [03/16/09 17:19:59] Unable to connect to Yahoo! Mail
    [03/16/09 17:19:59] Sending POP3 response to socket 224
    [03/16/09 17:19:59] closing POP3 socket 224
    [03/16/09 17:19:59] Login to Yahoo Mail failed.

  17. es
    March 7, 2009 at 2:06 am

    hi, can I get some advice?

    Getting the same error as daydream.

    “The RETR command did not succeed. Error retrieving a message. Mail server localhost responded: message 1 could not be downloaded.”

    I've checked the instruction settings, are ok.

  18. Bill
    March 1, 2009 at 9:35 am

    Hi, I have a question? After installing ypops and thunderbird. I set both up as stated in your setuo information. When I try to get my mail from yahoo thru thunderbird. I get a message that say cound not connect to server local host. the connection was refussed. Can some tell me whats wrong. Thanks in advance
    Bill :)

  19. Rhino42
    February 23, 2009 at 4:53 pm

    Where do I find that in YPOPS? I looked put couldnt put my finger on it. Thanks for all your help

    • Sharninder
      February 24, 2009 at 3:16 am

      The settings pane for ypops has something called an activity log. That is what you need to enable.

  20. Rhino42
    February 22, 2009 at 11:10 pm

    I cant seem to get Thunderbird to work either. I followed you directions to the word , but it still didnt work any suggestions

    • Sharninder
      February 23, 2009 at 12:20 am

      Can you send us the logs generated by YPOPs. It worked for me and I also used thunderbird so there must be some other problem.

  21. Steve
    February 13, 2009 at 10:57 pm

    Chetan, I'm having the same problem and it started today, 2/13, was working fine until today.

  22. Chetan Sachdev
    February 13, 2009 at 9:51 am

    For me also the same, I have 100's of mail in Yahoo but none of them gets downloaded and I din get any error. It simply tries and then nothing happens. Does anybody else facing same issue ?

  23. jlreed
    February 5, 2009 at 9:50 am

    Today,I tried to download messages from yahoo and got the message there was no mail. I went to the site and there were 27 messages. I use YPOP reinstalled it and nothing happened. What's the problem?

  24. Michelle
    February 1, 2009 at 6:48 pm

    Mine keeps timing out...I changed the settings in both as recommended and nada....HELP I can't afford to pay Yahoo anymore and I hate to have to go anywhere else...

    • Sharninder
      February 2, 2009 at 12:25 am

      Michelle, the timeout usually happens if the client is connecting to a different port than the one ypops is listening to. Have you changed the network settings by any chance ? Are the port settings the same for both the client and ypops ?

  25. Lindsay
    February 1, 2009 at 12:19 pm

    I downloaded YPops and tried using it with my Outlook. However, Outlook keeps on asking me for my password which is already saved and when I click OK it happens over and over. What can be wrong? I manually configured my POP and SMTP settings to match YPops' already. :'(

    • Sharninder
      February 2, 2009 at 12:24 am

      @Lindsay: Can you have a look at the logs that ypops generates for your connection failures. If you can't make anything out of them, send them to us and we'll see what we can do to help you. This should work without too much effort. Also double check the pop3 and smtp settings in both ypops and the email client.

  26. Will
    February 1, 2009 at 9:41 am

    Oh my gawd... I've been trying to do this for three months, but it hasn't worked. Thank God for makeuseof! (:

    I have to give you a cheers on this one.

    I had been using Yahoo for about 10 years, and then a year ago I switched to Gmail because I could use Thunderbird. Now I can use both. (:

  27. pjcalafi
    January 31, 2009 at 12:59 pm

    I agree with Transcontinental. Is there a way of letting yahoo now that we moved to Gmail due to the pop access?

    • pjcalafi
      January 31, 2009 at 1:00 pm

      I meant "....of letting yahoo know that....


  28. Transcontinental
    January 31, 2009 at 8:41 am

    YPOPs is certainly an excellent product (I've heard many excellent comments about it already) but the very idea of having to use a workaround to get free pop access to one's emails seems to me incompatible with modern life, philosophy and attitude.

    As far as I'm concerned, I moved from Yahoo! Mail to GMail for that sole reason. I'll consider opening a new Yahoo! Mail account the day my dear Yahoo! will have made pop access free, again and, like GMail and many others.

  29. Ricky999
    January 31, 2009 at 5:35 am

    Thanks very much for the tip Sharninder.

  30. Shreela
    January 31, 2009 at 2:02 am

    I used YahooPops at one time, then switched to FreePops because it also DL'd Hotmail and Gmail (before gmail setup pop3/smtp, and also before Hotmail took away their imap, which annoyed me anyway).

    But since Yahoo and Hotmail have such lousy mail filters, and since Gmail gives pop3/smtp and has much better internal spam filtering, I quit 'popping' my webmails at Yahoo and Hotmail, and use Gmail on the web until there's something I want to DL, then have Thunderbird do it's thing on demand.

  31. Shantarra
    January 30, 2009 at 8:50 pm

    Is it possible to make a secure connection so my 'username' and 'password' is not transmitted in the clear, unencrypted ?
    When using yahoo mail via browser, the connection is secure (https). Is there a way ?

    Thank you.

    • Sharninder
      January 31, 2009 at 12:38 am

      If you're running ypops on the same computer, then you don't have to worry about encrypting your username/password, since the credentials never leave your system unencrypted. ypops communicates with yahoo's servers in the same way that a browser would, so that is already encrypted.

  32. daydream
    January 30, 2009 at 6:27 pm

    Can't download my emails. I keep getting the error message:

    "The RETR command did not succeed. Error retrieving a message. Mail server localhost responded: message 1 could not be downloaded."

    Help anyone? :(

    • Sharninder
      January 30, 2009 at 11:45 pm

      @daydream: Have you followed the instructions correctly ? By default, ypops collects logs about the operation its performing. If you can send the relevant part of the logs, we might be able to tell you what's going on.

      Also, are you by any chance using any other yahoo domain other than the .com one ?

  33. alfredwesterveld
    January 30, 2009 at 5:53 pm

    Hehe I guess thank you for blogging users about this :P but I guess it was better to tell them to move there e-mail to gmail because YAHOO e-mail but that just is my opinion :)

  34. Sascha
    January 30, 2009 at 5:35 pm

    Is the lack of free POP3 availability a matter of the country you're in? Because here in Germany, this is all free officially from Yahoo.

    • Sharninder
      January 30, 2009 at 11:42 pm

      @Sascha: Yes, it looks like yahoo mail has different policies for different sites. So, the german yahoo mail site probably gives free pop3 officially.

  35. Henk
    January 30, 2009 at 5:16 pm

    Only or as well?

    • Sharninder
      January 30, 2009 at 11:41 pm

      YPOPs works with domains.