[SOLVED] K9 mail stopped working with Google incoming pop server

Hi all,
Hav’been at this for the best part of the frigging day and maybe some of you have an explanation:
I have used K9 configured for several accounts, 2 of them pop gmail com incoming mail server accounts, for the best part of 8 months. Then 2 days ago the K9 (my version is 6.400 on Android 8.1) just quit retrieving gmail messages… I reissued new app-passwords from the google web pages for each account to no avail, then tried oAuth 2.0 for 2-step authorization “for sports”. It did not work either.

I use:

  • POP3 protocol for the pop gmail com, security SSL/TLS on port 995 for the incoming server.
  • security STARTTLS on port 587 for outgoing smtp gmail com server
    The error message I get when checking the incoming server’s config is simply: “Unable to open connection to POP server”.
    The outgoing server settings as mentioned earlier produce no error. They check.

Any idea, suggestion or nudge anyone ? Is this me losing neuronal connections or is it Google going voodoo on me … ?

Step by step Google is enforcing secure login. As you may have read in the email Google has sent to all POP users, starting 15 December 2022, you need to enable POP access in the settings additionally to setting up an app password.

Have you enabled POP access in your Google settings?

This might be the opportunity you’ve been waiting for to switch to IMAP… :wink:

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You are referring to the “Forward, POP & IMAP” tab on the gmail account settings web page.

Yes, I have enabled POP Download for all messages and disabled the IMAP protocol for other apps or devices pointing to the same gmail account. Both settings are on the same already referenced page.

I must have done that 22 times today. I also noticed that every time I save the settings, Google throws me back to my inbox page. When I go back to the settings and tab for POP/IMAP, I see that the previous setting actually does stick. A green colored notification says “Status: POP is activated.”

Some other thing I noticed is that K-9 does not offer the possibility of using OAuth 2.0 secure authorization for the incoming server communication protocol; the choices are “Simple password”, “Encrypted password”, and “Client certificate”. This departs from Google’s favored protocol: OAuth 2.0. Is this a deliberate choice on K-9 dev’s part ?
I know that Google is by far not the only email service provider on the planet, but it’s certainly one of the most popular… Any thought ?

So it turns out that Gmail allows App-passwords ONLY when 2-step OAuth 2.0 authorization is turned on for that Gmail account.

So the fact that the OAuth 2.0 option does not appear in the choices available for authorization protocols in K-9 for a Gmail account becomes inconsequential as soon as you have OAuth 2.0 set up in Gmail.
In that case just to generate an App-passwords for K-9 Email and use it in K-9 for the given account both when setting up the incoming POP3 email server and the SMTP outgoing one.