How to Set Up Thunderbird for IMAP Email Connection


This document describes the use of Mozilla Thunderbird to access your LSE email account via an Internet Service Provider (ISP) or from a School laptop plug-in point on campus and in LSE halls of residence. The instructions are for Windows but Macintosh version is similar.

Please be aware that Information Management and Technology recommend Outlook and Exchange email connection|; Thunderbird is only an alternative solution for advanced users who do not have Microsoft Outlook. The most recent version of Thunderbird is available at|.


You should be familiar with Windows and Thunderbird before following the steps below. You will need a computer with access to the Internet via dial-up, broadband, wireless or wired network.

Configuration and Connection

The steps below are for Thunderbird version 12.0.1. You may have a slighly different experience with other versions but the settings are still the same.

  1. The first time you start Thunderbird, the account setup wizard will start.

    If the wizard does not start:

    a. Click Tools | Account Settings...

    Account Actions

    b. Click the Account Actions drop-down list on the left and select Add Mail Account...
    The Mail Account Setup dialog box will be displayed.
  2. Enter the following settings:

    Your name: enter your full name, e.g. Ian John Smith
    Email address: Enter your full LSE email address, e.g.
    Password: Enter your LSE password

    Account settings
  3. Click Continue

  4. Click Manual config
  5. Select or enter the following settings for the Incoming: server:

    Ensure that IMAP is selected as the type of incoming server you are using - this step is very important
    Server hostname:
    Port: 993
    Authentication: Normal password

  6. Select or enter the following settings for the Outgoing: SMTP server:

    Server hostname:
    Please note that this server will only send mail from your LSE account
    Port: 25
    Authentication: Normal password

  7. In the Username textbox, enter your LSE account name in the form lse\yourLSEusername\email_alias where yourLSEusername is your LSE username and email_alias is your LSE email name without; e.g. lse\smithij\i.j.smith
  8. Click Create Account
  9. Click Outgoing Server (SMTP) on the left
  10. Click Add
  11. Select lse\yourLSEusername\email_alias and click Edit...
  12. Enter the following:

    Description: enter a friendly name (e.g. LSE SMTP server)
    Server Name:
    Port: 25
    Connection security: STARTTLS
    Authentication method: Normal password
    User Name: ensure that your username is in the form lse\yourLSEusername where yourLSEusername is your LSE username (e.g. lse\smithij)

    SMTP server
  13. Click OK on the SMTP Server windows to save your SMTP settings
  14. Click OK to save your changes and close the Account Settings dialog box

LSE Address Book Configuration

  1. Follow the steps below to connect to the LSE LDAP address book (directory server)
  2. Click Tools | Options | Composition | Addressing

  3. Ensure that the checkbox Directory Server is ticked and click Edit Directories...

    Directory server

  4. Click Add

  5. Fill in the following information:

    Name: LSE Address book
    Base DN: dc=lse,dc=ac,dc=uk
    Port number: 389
    Bind DN: Your LSE username preceded by LSE\, e.g lse\smithij

    address book
  6. Click OK on the Directory Server Properties window to save your new directory
  7. Click OK on the LDAP Directory Servers window
  8. Select your new directory (LSE Address book) from the drop-down list, and click OK

  9. To test the directory searching, click Tools | Address Book and select LSE Address book from the list on the left
  10. Enter a name into the Name or Email search box. Wait a few seconds and your results should show up.
    Thunderbird should prompt you for a password for the username (e.g. lse\smithij) you entered above with an option to remember the password.


If you have previously set up mail folders in your account and do not see them:

  • Right-click on your account name (above your Inbox) and select Subscribe
  • Tick the checkboxes next to the desired folders and click Subscribe
  • Click OK

If you are unable to set up an IMAP connection, use Web access to Email| or visit the Laptop Surgery|.