Email 101

Email Addressing

Like real mail, sending email requires that you know the address of the individual or company you wish to send email to. Unlike real mail, an email address is fairly simple, composed of only two parts.

The first part of the email address is the user's account name that you are sending the email to. For example Jane Smith has an account on her service provider. When the account was created, the service provider issued her a name, it could have been:

  • jane001
  • jsmith
  • janes
  • bubbles
  • janey
  • etc...
Some ISPs will allow the user to pick a user name, others will follow a set pattern, like the first name followed by the first letter of their last name, or perhaps even a number. But knowing Jane's account name is only one part of what you need for the address. You also need to know the name of the server.

In Jane's case she logs into the Internet via a server called Since we can't just merge the two pieces together, we need something to keep them apart, we use the "@" character to separate the user name from the server name. Hence Jane's address now becomes one of these;

Server names can be longer and more complex, such as, but basically it's safe to say that anything to the right of the "at" sign is the server name and everything to the left is the user name.

Setting up your email client for email

Before you begin setting up your program to handle email, there are certain questions which only you and your Internet Service Provider (ISP) must answer. You must have this information on hand before you begin, so talk to your ISP. The information you need is;
  • Your Email Directory.*
  • Your News Directory. *
  • Your Email Address. *
  • Your POP User name.**
  • Your Outgoing Mail (SMTP) Server Name. **
  • Your Incoming Mail (POP) Server Name. **
  • Your News (NNTP) Server Name.***

* You supply this information
** Your ISP must supply this information

For information on specific instructions for setting up your email, please pull down the support menu and select the program you wish to you use for your email client program. An email client is a program which essentially translates the email for you into a legible format.