IMAP support


“dovecot imap-login aborted login” error – Top 5 causes and solutions

Being unable to send emails can have a negative effect on your business.

You want to send an important business email, but it end up in an error. Quite frustrating, right?

And, one such error often received by website owners is “dovecot imap-login aborted login“.

At Bobcares, we help our website owners resolve these common email errors as part of our Dedicated Support Services for web hosts.

Today, we’ll discuss the top 5 reasons for this error and how we fix them.

 

“dovecot imap-login aborted login” error – Causes and Fixes

Customers usually get this error when they attempt to access the email account from their email client or webmail. The complete error message looks like this.

dovecot: imap-login: Aborted login (auth failed, 1 attempts in 3 secs): user=xxxx, method=LOGIN, rip=xx.xx.xx.xx, lip=xx.xx.xx.xx, TLS, session=<xxxxxxx>

 

Now let’s see the main reasons for this error and how our Dedicated Support Engineers fix them.

 

1) Firewall restrictions

One of the common reasons for this error is firewall blocking connections from an IP address or an IP range. We’ve seen cases where the IP address of the customer was blocked for abnormal activities.

Similarly, the default IMAP port is 143. And, if this port is not opened in the server firewall, customers will receive this error.

Here, our Support Engineers ensure that the IP address of the customer is not blocked on the server. Fox example, we use the following command to verify the rules in iptables.

iptables -nL

 

And, if we find that the IP is blocked, we’ll immediately unblock the IP address and finally identify the reason for the block. In addition to that, we use the telnet command to check the IMAP port connectivity.

telnet xx.xx.xx.xx 143

 

And, if there are connectivity problems, we’ll remove the hampering firewall rule. Moreover, we modify the firewall settings to accept valid connections on port 143.

[Need help in configuring the firewall rules on your server? One of our experienced Server Administrators can help you here.]

 

2) Wrong username/password

Similarly, another common reason is that users use incorrect username or password in their email clients to access emails. A typo in the username or password can lead to this error. Also, we’ve seen cases where customers miss to provide complete email account name(user@domain.com) in the email client. This can also block the email connection.

Our Support Experts get the login details from the customer and try to login to the email account via webmail. So, we can confirm whether the provided credentials are correct or not. If we find a typo in the username or password, we’ll correct it immediately.

 

3) Incorrect password encryption type

Another possible reason for this error is the encryption method set in the server. Most web hosts enable password encryption on the servers. For example, web hosts enable password encryption in Dovecot configuration file /etc/dovecot/conf.d/10-auth.conf like this.

disable_plaintext_auth = yes

 

So, if password encryption is enabled on the server, but users use incorrect encryption methods like PLAIN text to pass passwords, Dovecot will abort the login and throws this error.

In this case, our Support Experts check the encryption type set on the server. After that, we check the encryption type used in the email client. If customer uses no encryption, we help them set the email client to use encrypted login.

[Need help in finding out the Encryption set on your mail server. Click here, one of our Experts will check this for you.]

4) Connection type

Similarly, some email servers only permit emails via secure IMAP port 993. If users fail to use secure connection on their email client, they will be blocked from accessing emails.

So, our Support Engineers help users navigate and select the correct connection encryption type like SSL or TLS. Modern mail servers and email clients such as Thunderbird support STARTTLS  to upgrade unencrypted connections to encrypted ones, so that connections on the IMAP port 143 get automatically encrypted.

 

5) Mail server configuration issues

Similarly in Postfix servers, misconfiguration in the mail server settings can sometimes lead to this error. We were recently contacted by a customer that he received “dovecot imap-login aborted login” error in his email client.

When we checked, the following entries were missing in the Postifx configuration file /etc/postfix/main.cf.

virtual_mailbox_domains = your.domain.here
virtual_transport = dovecot

 

We added proper entries in this file to fix the problem. In addition to that, we ensure that the entire configuration in the file /etc/postfix/master.cf are correct.

However, always make sure to take a backup of the mail server configuration before making any changes.

[Messed up Mail configuration? One of our Server Admins can help you here.]

Conclusion

In short, “dovecot imap-login aborted login” error can occur due to wrong encryption method used in the email client, wrong username/password, etc. Today, we’ve discussed the top 5 reasons for this error and how our Dedicated Support Engineers fix them.