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A common problem for many Outlook users is that new emails seem to be stuck in the outbox. To get the emails sent,  you then have to press Send/Receive (F9) button. Most users (me included) prefer to have the emails delivered as soon as we press Send, not collect them and send all later on.

Here are some things to try if your sent mail is getting stuck in the outbox (depending on our Outlook version, these may vary):

In Pre Office 2007:

  1. In Outlook, click Tools > Options > Mail Setup.
  2. Check “Send immediately when connected.”
  3. Click on the Send/Receive button on the Mail Setup General tab.
  4. Make sure both options to “Include this group in Send/Receive” are checked. Make sure that your account is included in the Group to send.

In Office 2007/2010:

  1. Click The File-Tab (orange one) and choose Options in the left pane
  2. Open the Advanced Menu (from the left pane)
  3. Scroll down a bit in the right pane, and find “Send and Receive”
  4. Make sure “Send immediately when connected.” is checked.
  5. Click OK
  6. Click the Send/Receive Tab in the Ribbon
  7. Click Send/Receive Groups
  8. Choose “All Accounts Group (1)”.
    Alternatively you can customize which accounts to be sent automatically by choosing “Define Send/receive Groups”

Other Options

  • Try registering the Outlook Send/Receive Library Manually: Click Start > Run and type regsvr32 inetcomm.dll
  • Check to see whether an antivirus email check is slowing down the sending and receiving process. Try disabling AV and sending to decide whether this is the problem.
  • Check to decide whether other programs running in the background are interfering. Disable them one at a time. This includes the firewall, anti-spyware, anti-spam, and all anti-malware programs.
  • In the account settings, Advanced settings, change the server timeout time from 1 min to 5 min.
  • Check to see whether outgoing mail server authentication is required. Try selecting that option in account settings and use same setting for the incoming server.
  • If all else fails, create a new Outlook profile.


About Thomas

Computer geek from the age of 7, which amounts to 30 years of computer experience. From the early days (when every computer company had their own OS) of DOS, Windows 1.0 through Seven...

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4 thoughts on “Outlook: “Stuck in the outbox” problem”

  1. Me says:

    The other problem is that large emails get stuck in the outbox and never send. You can’t delete them while Outlook is try to send them. To remedy, switch Outlook to offline mode then delete the mail.


    1. Thomas says:

      Thank you for your tip.

    2. Thomas says:

      Thank you for your tip.

  2. Rob says:

    What seems to work for us is dragging the message to drafts, then opening it and hitting send. We haven’t figured out the cause but it seems to happen only for our users with laptops connected to both wifi and ethernet. I’ve been able to reproduce it (sort of) by switching between wifi and ethernet. I think what happens is that their connectivity to the server is “flapping” and if a message is trying to go out during a flap it gets stuck and can never go out.

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