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Old 02-05-2008, 06:12 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Big Problems With BIS - Unreliability with receiving messages

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Hi All,

I wonder if some of the knowledgeable folk on this forum might be able to help me out. We have about 20 Blackberries (8700s) on BIS (Vodafone UK) connecting through to a mail server via IMAP.

The reliability of these devices is, for some reason, really terrible. Every week, one of more of these devices starts experiencing one of the following problems with receiving messages:

o Incoming e-mail messages stop being received on the Blackberry altogether

o Duplicate incoming messages start being delivered non-stop (hundreds or even thousands of messages). Essentially dumping the whole contents of the users mailbox to the Blackberry, over and over again until the device stops receiving messages.

To fix the problems, we: delete the service books, take the battery out, re-send service books and re-set up the mail accounts. This always fixes the problem temporarily, but the problem can reappear after a few weeks.

My question for the folks here is: are Blackberries running BIS often this unreliable? That is, is it common to need to delete and re-send service books, hard reboot etc to fix this kind of problem? Or, do you think this problem could be somehow being caused by the IMAP mail server?

I should say that we *never* have problems with IMAP clients running on PCs. So, I'm at a loss to know why the BIS should be so problematic for us...

For information, our e-mail host is Fastmail.

Thanks very much in advance for any info/advice,

Simon
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Old 02-05-2008, 06:14 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I have been using BIS on ATT and Verizon for several years and have experienced nothing like you have described.

I wonder if it might be an issue with the email host? That woudl be the next place that I would check.
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Old 02-05-2008, 06:32 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SimonBrocklehurst View Post
o Duplicate incoming messages start being delivered non-stop (hundreds or even thousands of messages). Essentially dumping the whole contents of the users mailbox to the Blackberry, over and over again until the device stops receiving messages.
Simon, yes I have had that happen in some form. Never thousands but a few hundred, at one time. In my case it was old mail from six months back. This was not via an imap server, however.
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Old 02-05-2008, 08:15 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JSanders View Post
Simon, yes I have had that happen in some form. Never thousands but a few hundred, at one time. In my case it was old mail from six months back. This was not via an imap server, however.
Yes - in some cases with the "hundreds or thousands" messages problem with us, it's old messages from months ago that are delivered to the Blackberry.
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Old 02-05-2008, 08:34 AM   #5 (permalink)
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That has not happened to me on AT&T. It did a couple times last summer/fall on TMobile. It's been mentioned around here a few times and literally only a handful of users here mentioned it had happened to them, so it is not very widespread.

And there is apparently no fix or way to keep it from happening.
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Old 02-05-2008, 09:30 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Thanks for the information. It's much appreciated.

Simon
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Old 02-05-2008, 09:38 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SimonBrocklehurst View Post
o Incoming e-mail messages stop being received on the Blackberry altogether
Simon, for this ^^ on BIS, look here... this FAQ could be your best friend.

My Email Stopped Arriving - BlackBerryFAQ.com

Good luck, ask back if you need direction.
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Old 02-05-2008, 10:02 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks for the pointer to the FAQ. This approach does work - I've used it quite a few times!
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Old 02-05-2008, 10:15 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Sounds like something on the IMAP server end. Maybe check with Fastmail and see what their syncing options/defaults are if any.
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Old 02-05-2008, 10:21 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I have AOL mail and AT&T. About a month ago my BB received several hundred emails 6-8 months old that I had already previously received. I deleted them--- a few hours later I received a different batch of several hundred old emails. This happened 5 or 6 different times that day. I called AT&T who had me delete and re-establish the email account, delete service books, all the same stuff. RIM had me do the same. None of it worked. One guy from RIM suggested that I delete as many old emails from my AOL account (on the computer) as possible. I did, and since then, the problem has not re-occurred.
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Old 02-05-2008, 11:03 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daver42 View Post
Sounds like something on the IMAP server end. Maybe check with Fastmail and see what their syncing options/defaults are if any.
I will be checking with Fastmail to see if there's anything that might be causing it. However, this problem affects other e-mail providers too; and it's worth noting that we have zero problems with other IMAP clients such as Outlook or Thunderbird. Whatever the BIS is doing appears to be unique to the BIS...
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Old 02-06-2008, 07:58 AM   #12 (permalink)
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what mail server are you running? Is this in-house or hosted?

I just ask as with 20 users I'd drop BIS like a stone and move to a BES based solution, as there's stacks of reasons: -

For the end-user
xxx8226; BES enabled full wireless synchronisation of emails, calendar, tasks etc to / from your email server and your handheld xxx8211; if youxxx8217;re out of the office and update your calendar, then your office colleagues can see your changes immediately.

xxx8226; BES ensures that sent emails are sent via your mail server xxx8211; currently if you use BIS then any sent emails are only stored on the handheld, which makes it difficult to read emails sent from the device. With BES the Blackberry device is effectively a remote control for your mailbox and any items sent from it will be sent out via your regular email account, and the sent item can be seen via your desktop client xxx8211; imagine that you had confirmed a price to the customer via your Blackberry, and then 3 days later you need to confirm that price xxx8211; with BES you can simply look it up on your regular desktop.

xxx8226; Reliable, Speedy Email Delivery xxx8211; with BES youxxx8217;ll get an email as soon as itxxx8217;s sent, often arriving on the device before it arrives on your desktop. BIS only checks for email from 3rd party accounts every 20 minutes, so youxxx8217;ll be waiting for that urgent email

xxx8226; No Spam - Existing email server anti-spam technologies can be used with BES xxx8211; therefore your handheld will not fill up with spam as this is controlled as the email server level. We have had several complaints of BIS customers suffering from spam

xxx8226; Address Lookup xxx8211; any contacts be they internal or external that are listed on the global address list can quickly be looked up from the device and called, texted or emailed directly as required, so there is no need to transfer the xxx8216;company directoryxxx8217; to contacts on your Blackberry.


For the IT dept: -
xxx8226; Ease of End-User Setup xxx8211; adding a new user is a 2 minute job, set them up on the BES and then get them to input their email address and the password youxxx8217;ve given them into the device, and 15 minutes later theyxxx8217;re up and running

xxx8226; Ease of troubleshooting xxx8211; if email is not being delivered to the users device, then you have all the tools at hand to figure out what is going wrong, without needing to test 3rd party mail accounts.

xxx8226; Email Audit Trail xxx8211; any emails sent, are actually sent via the users mailbox on the mail server, so any audit trails or company disclaimers are automatically applied.

xxx8226; Control over devices - in the event of a users losing a device, it can be de-activate from the BES server immediately, and all data on it wiped out, thus providing peace of mind for the business.


Hope this helps..feel free to post follow-up or PM for more advice on switching from BIS to BES...
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Old 02-06-2008, 08:18 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Its the server in some way. Can you use pop3 or OWA instead of IMAP? IMAP can be problematic. Do you have problems with a message saying that the email account is not validated?

If you get a period of time where they are not arriving, call Voda and ask for Blackberry internet helpdesk. Give them one of the affected PIN's and they can see on the BIS admin site if there has been any errors logged.

The biggest problem is when the account is open on outlook at the same time. Check the local machine has the setting to "leave a copy on the server" otherwise outlook will intercept the message before the BB can.

Could you not have forwarding rules to the BB email address? EG forward everything to [email address] and then set the reply to address to [email address].

That way any polling problems will be bypassed completly, yet the emails sent from the device will appear to have been send from your server.
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Old 02-07-2008, 04:22 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crossbones View Post
Its the server in some way. Can you use pop3 or OWA instead of IMAP? IMAP can be problematic.
The current version of the Vodafone UK BIS admin doesn't seem to let you specify IMAP vs POP or ports to use etc (unless I'm missing something). It seems to insist on auto-configuring everything once you supply the address of the mail server etc. Previous versions of the BIS admin let people specify ports.

Also, I'm not sure about people would find using POP acceptable (similar issues, I suspect, as with your suggested workaround below). Can't use OWA - the mail server isn't an Exchange Server.

Quote:
Originally Posted by crossbones View Post
Do you have problems with a message saying that the email account is not validated?
Well, we've had that only once or twice. However, it doesn't seem to be related to the "delivering hundreds/thousands of messages" problems; or the general problem of messages stopping being deleted all together. Those are apparently caused by some corruption of data in the Service Books on the Blackberry (given that deleting the service books, resetting the device, and re-sending the service books fixes the problems).

Quote:
Originally Posted by crossbones View Post
If you get a period of time where they are not arriving, call Voda and ask for Blackberry internet helpdesk. Give them one of the affected PIN's and they can see on the BIS admin site if there has been any errors logged.
I've done this - there are never any errors logged.

Quote:
Originally Posted by crossbones View Post
The biggest problem is when the account is open on outlook at the same time. Check the local machine has the setting to "leave a copy on the server" otherwise outlook will intercept the message before the BB can.
This isn't a part of the problems we're experiencing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by crossbones View Post
Could you not have forwarding rules to the BB email address? EG forward everything to [email address] and then set the reply to address to [email address].

That way any polling problems will be bypassed completely, yet the emails sent from the device will appear to have been send from your server.
This is a good idea for a workaround. I'll look into that, and see if people are happy to use it. One potential issue with this workaround is that it won't let people delete messages on the server from the Blackberry.

Thank you for your suggestions - it's appreciated.
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Old 02-07-2008, 05:07 AM   #15 (permalink)
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No for some reason on all of the 2.4 versions of BIS you can't specify a port. i can't do it on my Voda or T-mobile accounts. I'm going to find out if there is a way round that though.

Though using pop you can still setup wireless reconcile so the messages will be deleted on both the device and the mailbox. Or i'll rephrase that, it SHOULD be able to lol.

Let me know if you have any luck with the forwarding. or setting the server up as POP!
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Old 02-07-2008, 06:19 AM   #16 (permalink)
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This is another link which can help in lot of BlackBerry general issues.

Handheld Issues - BlackBerry
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Old 02-07-2008, 07:17 AM   #17 (permalink)
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i have my work IMAP email set up and i have never experienced any issues; it could be fastmail - they have different types of accounts right? what do you have?
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Old 02-07-2008, 11:26 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Right, the advice I've been given is the forwarding rule, for your application is probably going to stop the problems your having in the short term, and to get one (maybe 2 ) of the blackberry's and to test setting up pop3 on them, and see if the same problems occur.

To get around the lack of port changability to configure pop is a little complicated and long winded but should work.

Basically, get the account to pop3, then just for while you are configuring the email address on the BIS site, close the IMAP ports and leave pop3 open.

Then hopefully it should scan the ports, find imap closed and pop open and auto select them as pop. Then open the IMAP ports again for the other devices or phones to contact correctly. Assuming it successfully configured properly!

Hope this helps as its the last idea I have!!
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Old 02-10-2008, 07:41 AM   #19 (permalink)
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what you need to do is
)1 re- intigrate all BIS accounts
)2 put your pin and IMEI to zero save that and then readd them
so the device can reregister to the rim relay properly
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Old 02-11-2008, 08:37 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xplosive2006 View Post
what you need to do is
)2 put your pin and IMEI to zero save that and then readd them
so the device can reregister to the rim relay properly
What?

Firstly, you can't do that. Not on 2.4, and in what way will that help them register on the RIM relay that the register now command won't??
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