SAS Webmail FAQ

Below are a few of the most frequently asked questions about the current version of SAS Webmail.

1. I was writing a long email and when I clicked on "Send Message" (or "Spell Check"), I was taken back to the login screen! What happened?

2. How do I set Webmail to save copies of outgoing messages?

3. How do I attach a file to an outgoing message?

4. Why can't I address a message by using an alias (or nickname) from my address book?

5. Can I add an email address to My Addressbook from a received email?

6. How do I set up one address book entry to send an email to several people at once?

7. How do I include a message's headers when printing it?

8. Sometimes only some of the messages I mark for deletion actually get deleted. What's going on?

9. Webmail won't give me a "compose" window for me to start a new message. What's going on?

10. I've deleted lots of email in an attempt to lower my quota, but my quota doesn't seem to change. Why not?


1. I was writing a long email and when I clicked on "Send Message" (or "Spell Check"), I was taken back to the login screen! What happened?

After 30 minutes without any interaction between your web browser and the server, your Webmail session will expire, or "time out." When this happens (often while composing a lengthy email), the next attempted communication between the browser and the server will fail, and the browser will be directed to the Webmail login page, and the email will be lost.

We have added notifications to warn of Webmail timing out five minutes and one minute before the session expires. Notice that the warning windows are time-stamped so that if you're not present when they appear, you will still be able to deduce at what point the warning popped up. Note that if you have a pop-up blocking program installed, you will not see these warnings (see FAQ number 9, below).

To avoid having your session time out resulting in lost work, we recommend that users employ the same cautious approach as when composing a document in a word processor or graphics program: save your work often! Webmail has a "Save Draft" button at the top of the compose window. Click it and a copy of your email up to that point will be saved (note that a separate instance of the message will be saved each time you click the "Save Draft" button).

If your connection to Webmail should happen to time out, then you can easily reopen the message and continue working on it. Just use the "Open Folder" popup menu to choose the "drafts" folder. If you've saved a draft of a message more than once, click on the most recent version to open it, and then click on the "Resume" link, and the compose window will open and you can continue writing.

Here's how to create your "Drafts" folder if you don't already have one:

While viewing your inbox, click on the "Options" button. On the resulting page, under "Other Options," you'll see a link named, "Message Composition." Click it.

On the next page, look for the popup menu under the label, "Drafts folder:". If "drafts" appears in the menu, select it. If it doesn't appear there, select "Create new drafts folder" and give it a name in the dialog box and press OK. After that, the menu should read, "Create new drafts folder [foldername]" where "foldername" is the name you gave the new folder. Click the "Save Options" button and your folder will be created and selected to retain copies of your outgoing messages.

A note: it's a good idea not to keep too many drafts after you're done composing and have sent the email you saved. After a point, your "drafts" folder may become large enough to create quota problems for your account.

2. How do I set Webmail to save copies of outgoing messages?

If you want to save copies of outgoing messages, you'll first need to let Webmail know where you'd like them to be stored.

While viewing your Inbox, click the "Options" button. Next, click the "Personal Information" link, and then click the "Edit your identities" link. Next, you'll need to select an identity to modify (most users will select, "Default Identity" here, unless you've already changed its name). At the bottom of the "Identities" configuration page, check the box beside "Save sent mail," and select a folder where it should be kept (the "sent-mail" folder is the system default). Choose "sent-mail" if it's available; otherwise choose "Create a new sent mail folder," and name it "sent-mail" (all lower-case). Click the "Change" button, and your settings will be saved. Click the "Cancel" button to leave the Personal Information editing page. Click the "INBOX" button to return to your inbox.

If you don't want to save a copy of a particular email, you may uncheck the setting to save a copy in the Message Composition window before you send the message.

3. How do I attach a file to an outgoing message?

Normally, when you click the "Attach" button at the top of the compose window, you'll be redirected to the bottom of the window, where you may click the "Browse..." button to find your file and attach it.

On some computers, the monitor resolution may be set such that the "Browse..." and "Attach" buttons are not apparent in the Message Composition window. Simply enlarge (or maximize) the window and it should redraw to show the "Browse..." button at the bottom of the window.

4. Why can't I address a message by using an alias (or nickname) from my address book?

The current version of Webmail doesn't support using an alias to represent an email address.

However, you can type part of the person's name in the TO: field and click "Expand Names," and as long as the address is in your "My Addressbook" it will expand it to the full address.

5. Can I add an email address to My Addressbook from a received email?

Yes, simply click the small book icon next to the address and it will be added to your "My Addressbook." A message will appear at the top of the window to let you know it was added.

6. How do I set up one address book entry to send an email to several people at once?

The current version of Webmail doesn't support using a single alias for multiple addresses.

7. How do I include a message's headers when printing it?

Along the top row of links (underneath the row of buttons), you can click on "Message Source" to display a plain-text version of the message with headers, and then send that window to your printer as you would print any other document.

8. Sometimes only some of the messages I mark for deletion actually get deleted. What's going on?

Marked messages are not deleted across multiple pages. That is, for each page on which you wish to delete messages, make sure you click the "Delete" link before moving on to the next page. Note that "Purge deleted" works globally, and will remove all deleted messages regardless of on which page they appear.

9. Webmail won't give me a "compose" window for me to start a new message. What's going on?

Due to the sometimes overwhelming number of pop-up windows that present themselves while browsing the World Wide Web, some users choose to install pop-up blocking software that prevents these windows from spawning. While this can be helpful for stopping unwanted windows, it can also prevent useful windows from being opened--including the "compose" window.

To work around this issue, it's possible to set Webmail to use the existing window for message composition. While viewing your inbox, click on the "Options" icon, and then on "Message Composition." Uncheck the box beside, "Compose messages in a separate window," and click on the "Save Options" button. Click the "INBOX" icon to go back to your mail.

Note that pop-up blocking software will prevent session timeout warnings from appearing (see FAQ number 1, above).

10. I've deleted lots of email in an attempt to lower my quota, but my quota doesn't seem to change. Why not?

Deleting a message in Webmail can be done with one of two models, each of which uses a two-step process:

  • Mark/Purge Model
    1. Mark message for deletion by selecting it and clicking Delete
    2. Remove deleted messages from your account by clicking Purge deleted

  • Trash Model
    1. Move message to the Trash folder by selecting it and clicking Delete
    2. Remove deleted messages from your account by clicking Empty Trash

You can configure which model your account uses in your Webmail preferences, where you can also configure scheduled maintenance actions for the trash model.

 

If you're completing both steps for deleting mail from your account using Webmail, but your quota is still unaffected, you may be over quota and beyond your grace period. Check your quotas using the Account Maintenance website and read the online FAQ pages about quotas.