Custom SMTP settings

For Connection issues with Exchange 2013 or 2016

Since upgrading to PHP 5.6, Help Scout no longer allows self signed certificates. When Exchange is first installed, a self-signed called "Microsoft Exchange Server Auth Certificate" is created. It is necessary for Exchange services to work properly. Customers running into connection issues may need to follow the instructions in this guide to change the certificate to work with our system:

We send email on your behalf via our own Help Scout mail servers. When you create a mailbox, you have the option to either use our servers (by default) or specify custom outgoing settings. If you're using Gmail, see Send messages using Google oAuth instead.

Why would I use this?

Using customized outgoing settings allows you to save all of your outgoing replies to your email provider for archive or backup purposes. It's worth mentioning that if you go this route, you will not need to add Help Scout to your SPF record.


You'll need to grab the outgoing server name, mailbox username/password, port, and security details from your email provider settings, and copy/paste them into your Help Scout mailbox's outgoing Connection Settings.

Common questions

Can I use my own server settings?
Absolutely. If you have access to your own mail server and would like to use custom settings, just plug in the appropriate information. Note: If you're using your own settings, replies sent via Help Scout will not be synced to your Sent folder. The Sent folder syncing only works when Gmail settings are in use. 

I received an email from Help Scout support regarding connection errors. What gives?
We probably contacted you about an Authentication failed error. Double check your connection settings and your mail server. If your username or password has changed, don't forget to update that information in Help Scout!

What happens if my custom connection fails momentarily, or for an extended amount of time?
Not to worry! First and foremost, we'll let you know if there's an issue. And your emails will still be sent, since we default to our own mail server if we detect problems on your end.

Still stuck? How can we help? How can we help?