Gmail has just started preventing Discourse from logging in to check for reply-by email notices

FYI, I’ve set up two new Discourse instances over the past 2 weeks. With the first, last week, reply-by-email was working just fine. I just tried to set it up on the second.

It seems that Gmail, in the past day, has just started to recognize Discourse as an “unknown device” and prevent it from polling pop3 for replies. It retroactively affected the Gmail address I was using for the first site that I set up last week that was working just fine.

Anybody else seeing this? It just started for me…


This might be of interest:


Thank you. That must be a new default? Anyhow, the layout of the security page has changed from that article. It now looks like this:

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Yes, we really need a better recommendation for a less fragile pop3 service, gmail has been very patchy, it always had issues that it sometimes blocked.

For all our customers @mpalmer will be working on automatically setting up a preconfigured pop3 server, so this hassle is gone and incoming email is way faster.

9 Likes has been great for me.

$10 a year for a rock-solid host. I don’t remember having an issue in the last 5 years I’ve used them. I have two discourse sending & receiving on them, no issue.

This is my referral link for them but of course, I wouldn’t recommend them if I wasn’t happy user.


The rest of my discourse use POP & SMTP from the docker host itself, with the docker IP subnet whilte-listed.

I have tested zoho, it seems ok (and free)

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Yea also testing that now, although I have years of positive experience with Google Apps so I am loath to migrate existing companies away from it.

There’s also less popular alternatives like with decent imap services (even encrypted)

For future self-hosters, the current best practice is to not use POP3. Instead, Discourse runs an SMTP server itself that receives your messages and POSTs it into Discourse without any polling at all.

I use it with namecheap email by forwarding from a mailbox on the top-level domain ( to the forum subdomain (

For CDCK-hosted instances, they’re doing the same thing under the hood.

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There are lots of installs using pop3 collection from gmail, it still makes a lot of sense to do and is very much supported. The guide you linked only supports a single mail domain and endpoint(+API key), the minute you move beyond that you enter the hurt that is multiple public IPs and whatnot.

Google didn’t block POP3, they just forced customers to acknowledge that it was less secure.