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Email on Windows 98, 2022


retrotrash69
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Hello! I am a new user, forgive my posting without introduction.

I came upon this site while searching for answers to Windows 98 related questions.

You see I am planning to eventually quit using all or most post 2000 technology, and just use technology from 90s and earlier. I know it sounds insane, I have my reasons and they are irrelevant for the purpose of this post. I am aware that I will never get a full modern web experience on such machines, but I am fine with this as I will not be using the internet as often, and have no need for things like social media. I have been running experiments and have successfully accomplished most things which I use the internet for already, with the exception of email. I have Outlook 98, as well as seamonkey. They seem to give me errors and fail to connect no matter which email settings I use (I have protonmail and gmail). I am worried that I may still need some sort of email support.

I found a thread on this forum related to this, but it is almost 10 years old and only has a few posts, I would rather not bump it. My issue might just be something as simple as me screwing up the settings. I would appreciate any advice. If anyone here still uses 98 as a "Daily Driver" computer, please give me any tips as to what you use for email, if any!

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You could try POP Peeper (the free version) but I'm not sure if it works on a vanilla 98/SE or it needes KernelEx. I did use it a few years ago on my 98SE machine but it did have KernelEx installed as well as other system library updates. Also used it until a week or two ago in Linux Mint under Wine 5.14 (later Wine versions have a problem with displaying HTML messages).

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There is an old version of npop:

https://www.nakka.com/soft/npop/index_eng.html

in the "UK version":

https://npopuk.org.uk/2.11/index.htm

that runs on plain Win98:

https://npopuk.org.uk/2.11/downloads.htm

npop is  an e-mail tool that is stripped down to "just what is needed".

No idea if it works with gmail or protonmail, though.

jaclaz

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Without KernelEx:

Outlook Express (6sp1 here) still works with Windows 9x SSL Protocol WinSSLWrap!

https://msfn.org/board/topic/174247-windows-9x-ssl-protocol-winsslwrap-117-rev-08/     It should also work with other eMail programs.

Thunderbird 2.0.0.24 (Seamonkey 1.1.19) ? - currently no longer used

DreamMail 4.6.8.2 ? - no longer in use

With KernelEx:

Thunderbird 3.1.20 ? / 9.0.1 ? / 10.0.12 ? - currently not testet -  RT's "Network Security Services" updates should work for TB 9.0.1 (Seamonkey 2.6.1) and 10.0.12, too. http://o.rthost.win/gpc/files1.rt/Firefox10-new-nss.7z

Pegasus Mail ? - currently not tested http://kernelex.sourceforge.net/wiki/Pegasus_Mail

+ core updates

Thunderbird 52.9.1 https://msfn.org/board/topic/181424-firefox-24-52-for-me-and-98/    note the intructions - the account wizard doesn't work yet

 

Edited by schwups
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Thanks everyone for your replies. I have tried most of your suggestions and so far have partial success with RetroZilla only (which funnily enough is already my main browser), I'll get into that later. But first I will recount my experience with the others just for sake of possible interest.

Pop Peeper requires KernelEx, while I do have KernelEx I don't think its working right, most XP applications give me missing dll errors, including that one.

NPop failed, it gives an error and crashes, all information was correctly entered...

Pegasus Mail is the first I tried before joining here, it appears they have made sure to nuke the win 98 compatible version off the web, and it appears the newest one requires windows xp or 7 (forgot which)

I am excited however that I did manage to connect to gmail using Retrozilla's email client, however when I try to send, it goes into a loop of asking me to type my password.. I click ok and the same box just pops up again and again, and the email is not sent. I tried sending a message from another computer to the email address that is setup on RetroZilla, and even though it appears to have connected, it still seems not to work, no new messages are downloaded. All of this applies to both POP and IMAP

Can anyone help trouble shoot this?

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Did you try latest Retrozilla version. I think thats it: http://o.rthost.win/gpc/files1.rt/rzbrowser-tls12-20200127.7z

http://o.rthost.win/gpc/files1.rt/retrozilla-suite-tls12-20200131.7z

I tested RZ and I was able to receive and send. I have set for smtp and pop TLS, TLS 1.2 is supported, too, POP > no secure authentication and smtp > use Name and Password.

 

KernelEx: It doesn't mean that you can run every XP program on ME/98. I never had tested Pop Peeper.

9x SSL Protocol WinSSLWrap should work with old 9x compatible eMail programs. It supports the necessary protocols, but of course the eMail program and WinSSLWrap need the appropriate matching settings. Services Configuration: POP or IMAP and, SMTP.

e.g.: POP3 {SSL} Protocol: Enabled, SSL Tunnel, localhost, Listen Port 110 (then also Port 110 in the eMail program),  Remote Host (pop.gmail.com) and Port see Help of your provider, use SSL for remote checked

SMTP {SSL} Protocol: Enabled, SSL Tunnel, localhost, Listen Port 25 (then also Port 25 in the eMail program),  Remote Host (smtp.gmail.com) and Port see Help of your provider, use SSL for remote checked

eMail prog setting:

1.png.2511642252164fc733b364495ae1e6d5.png

PegasusMail - Yes, I see they removed older versions. https://www.afterdawn.com/software/network/email/pegasus.cfm/v4_51

The old versions are available on archive.org.

https://web.archive.org/web/20100404035641/http://www.pmail.com/downloads_s3_t.htm

no files on communityPM:

https://web.archive.org/web/20150428030235/http://community.pmail.com/files/5/default.aspx

Edited by schwups
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some web email clients should work well with retrozilla, especially one's which don't require JavaScript such as the bassic html view of gmail. The case of protonmail is more complicated, don't know if the web client has a version without Javascript. For using protonmail with other email clients you require a special bridge application, it surely don't work with 9x. I think it requires Windows 7 or newer

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Posted (edited)

Yeah I gave up on Proton pretty much, too modern doesn't work with anything older than XP...

Gmail on the web does not display on RetroZilla for me, the login page is probably Javascript or something.. The text box won't show up and therefore won't let me sign in. Would be great if it did work, would save all this trouble....

I downloaded the version of RZ that was linked, it seems to be the exact same (and has all my email settings and bookmarks automatically too), I am thinking maybe I already had that version to begin with. Of course, it still gives me the same problem, appears to connect to the server but I do not receive mail and I cannot send it without it going into a password loop.. This is using gmail settings/address of course.

Is there something I am missing here? something with the settings in either the RZ email client or gmail itself?

 

In terms of Winsslwrap, I don't really understand it or how it works. It seems complicated/over my head, maybe I could understand it if it is explained very simply to me.

 

Edit: I tried the older version of PegasusMail as well, it also does not work.. socket 6 timeout, when trying to send. Not recieving anything either. I'm not sure if it's connecting properly at all..

Edited by retrotrash69
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5 hours ago, retrotrash69 said:

Gmail on the web does not display on RetroZilla for me, the login page is probably Javascript or something.. The text box won't show up and therefore won't let me sign in. Would be great if it did work, would save all this trouble....

AFAIK RZ has no JS updates. You need at least Firefox 27 or 31 or corresponding forks, but that's not for sure (not testet).

GMail POP SMTP IMAP:

https://support.google.com/mail/answer/7104828

https://support.google.com/mail/answer/7126229?hl=en

Edited by schwups
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12 hours ago, retrotrash69 said:

Yeah I gave up on Proton pretty much, too modern doesn't work with anything older than XP...

Gmail on the web does not display on RetroZilla for me, the login page is probably Javascript or something.. The text box won't show up and therefore won't let me sign in. Would be great if it did work, would save all this trouble....

I downloaded the version of RZ that was linked, it seems to be the exact same (and has all my email settings and bookmarks automatically too), I am thinking maybe I already had that version to begin with. Of course, it still gives me the same problem, appears to connect to the server but I do not receive mail and I cannot send it without it going into a password loop.. This is using gmail settings/address of course.

Is there something I am missing here? something with the settings in either the RZ email client or gmail itself?

 

In terms of Winsslwrap, I don't really understand it or how it works. It seems complicated/over my head, maybe I could understand it if it is explained very simply to me.

 

Edit: I tried the older version of PegasusMail as well, it also does not work.. socket 6 timeout, when trying to send. Not recieving anything either. I'm not sure if it's connecting properly at all..

Around one year ago, I managed to login to gmail (or at least the google account) using Netscape Navigator version 9.0.0.6 (latest) of course with Roytam's patch. Don't remember how I exactly managed to do that, but I just managed to do it once. Maybe there is some trick to login to google account without javascript, but I don't remember. Before loggin, the bassic html view of gmail should work fine.

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Posted (edited)
11 hours ago, schwups said:

AFAIK RZ has no JS updates. You need at least Firefox 27 or 31 or corresponding forks, but that's not for sure (not testet).

GMail POP SMTP IMAP:

https://support.google.com/mail/answer/7104828

https://support.google.com/mail/answer/7126229?hl=en

I have read these before joining and they do not help. It connects to the server but does not receive mail and does not send it.

The version of Firefox I have, does not display almost any webpage at all.  I think it is the last version compatible with 98. Again I am having issues with KernelEx and have not yet gotten any xp-only program to run whatsoever...

Has anyone here ever done this at all in the past 2 years????  I see a lot of people on here who claim to use 98 as a main Os, do you guys not use email at all?
It's crazy how difficult this is considering email has existed far before windows 98... And I used 98 up to 2010 as a daily driver and I was able to send and receive mail on Yahoo (I no longer have Yahoo and cannot sign up for a new one due to requirement of a cell phone, before that is suggested)

For the record on XP email works (including protonmail), but that is too new for my goal which is to stick to pre-21st century. It just seems bizarre that something so simple is now so complicated...

 

Perhaps there is a free email provider that does not require javascript?

Edited by retrotrash69
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18 hours ago, retrotrash69 said:

appears to connect to the server but I do not receive mail and I cannot send it without it going into a password loop.

1 hour ago, retrotrash69 said:

It connects to the server but does not receive mail and does not send it.

I usually had this due to wrong settings. Can you create another basic eMail account, not Gmail, as a kind of cross-check.

1 hour ago, retrotrash69 said:

The version of Firefox I have, does not display almost any webpage at all. 

Yes, I checked this. Firefox 27 renders the login page rather OK and it seems to be functional. It isn't functional on Firefox 9.0.1 (with RT's nss updates).

1 hour ago, retrotrash69 said:

Again I am having issues with KernelEx and have not yet gotten any xp-only program to run whatsoever...

There are only a few things be taken into account during installation.

Paste the unicows.dll version 1.1.3790.0 (download dll-files.com) in your system folder. Don't install an older unicows.dll version! Then install KernelEX 4.5.2 - Reboot.

http://kernelex.sourceforge.net/wiki/Help:Contents

Win ME is my main OS. And I use eMail clients - usually Thunderbird 52 and OutlookExpress 6 - here, but of course nowadays with KernelEx. I don't have an GMail Account since many years.

In my opinion it should be still possible to use an eMail client also without KernelEx today. What are your questions about 9x SSL Protocol WinSSLWrap? At which point you can't get any further?

Edited by schwups
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Posted (edited)

Hello, what email provider would you suggest that does not require phone verification? Which do you use that is compatible with the Win ME clients? These days even going back and trying to create AOL email addresses for instance requires a phone... It's annoyingly difficult to find a provider that does not.

About unicows, I have already installed possibly an old version... What do I do now?

Winsslwrap confused me right at the beginning, when the post mentioned "blackwingcatopenssl files" and "configuring apps to localhost"...

I think it would be easier to understand in the format of a how to for absolute beginners

 

Edit:

Problem solved I suppose? Firefox 10, I was able to login to gmail.

Edited by retrotrash69
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For what it's worth here is my own recent experience with searching for a truly free e-mail provider: link
Do check out the link quoted there to get an idea of what has become of the freedom of communication today.
They do not mention mail.com though. No idea how they go lately, I had my account created a few years ago without the need to provide a phone number. It has been working fine in POP Peeper.

You should really fix your KernelEx installation, it may be required for much more software. I just checked POP Peeper 4.5.3 yesterday in a virtual 98SE setup and it only misses three APIs that should be easily fixed through KernelEx. Also uSP3 might provide additional help, but make sure it's installed before KernelEx.

If it's of any comfort I couldn't wrap (pun intended) my head around WinSSLwrap either, and without false modesty I do consider myself fairly knowledgeable. We may just have a completely different way of understanding things which requires a different approach in explaining certain procedures.

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