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What is the Use Merge Fields option?

The Use Merge Fields option allows you to insert fields to customize the e-mail for each recipient when sending a mass e-mail. For example, you can select the FIRSTNAME field to add each recipient's first name to the salutation of the e-mail. For detailed instructions, see Using Merge Fields in E-mails.

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Can you insert images into the body of the e-mails using HTML format?

No. You must send them as attachments. If you would like this option, please enter an enhancement request. For instructions on attaching files to e-mails, see Composing and Sending E-mails.

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Why am I being prompted to enter a password when I try to send e-mails?

The first time you use the e-mail function, you are asked for a password to authenticate your e-mail account. If you are asked for your password after this initial setup, this means another ACS user configured your SMTP settings to require the password before sending e-mails. For more information, see Configuring ACS to Send E-mails.

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Why do I not have the ability to edit my SMTP address?

If you can't edit your SMTP address, your user permissions are set to None for Add/Edit SMTP Settings.

 To change the user permissions
  1. Under Advanced Tools, click the Admin Utilities tab.
  2. In the drop-down list, select Add/Edit Users.
  3. Click Go .
  4. Select the user.
  5. Click Edit.
  6. Click the Security tab.
  7. Expand Utilities.
  8. Click Add/Edit SMTP Settings
  9. To change the permission to All, double-click the word None.
  10. Click Apply.
  11. Click OK.


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To send e-mails, does each user need to have rights to Add/Edit SMTP Settings?

No. It is only necessary that one user, usually the Administrator, have All rights to Add/Edit SMTP Settings. Other users can still send e-mails even if they do not have rights to these settings. Only the Administrator needs rights to edit user names, passwords, etc.

Once e-mail accounts are set up, users can choose which account they want to e-mail from.

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How can I determine my SMTP Address?

You must know your SMTP server address to configure ACS to send e-mails. An SMTP address displays in one of the following formats:

  • As a series of numbers, such as
  • As a descriptive location, such as

 To determine your SMTP address
  1. Open the Run window.
    a.) Windows 7: On your Windows desktop, click the Start button  in the lower-left corner of the screen. The Start menu displays. In the search box, located at the bottom of the Start menu, type run. Click  Run. The Run window displays.
    b.) Windows 8.1 and Windows 10: On the Windows desktop, right-click the Start button  in the lower-left corner of the screen. A Windows context menu displays. Click Run. The Run window displays.
  2. In Command Prompt, type ping
    • If this returns an error, type ping instead.

Your SMTP address is listed directly after the word "Pinging." See an example below. Once you have determined your SMTP address, you can return to configuring ACS to send e-mails. If you have trouble determining your SMTP address, contact your Internet service provider.


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Can I write HTML in e-mails?

No, you cannot write HTML in e-mails sent from ACS.

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Can I link to websites in the body of the e-mail?

With ACS version and higher you can include web links in either the plain text or rich text editors.

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What should I check if e-mails are not being sent?

Check your SMTP settings to make sure the correct Port and SMTP Server address are entered. For detailed instructions, see Configuring ACS to Send E-mails.

If authentication is used on the server, and the user name and password are correct, send one e-mail to someone on the church/site network. If the person on your network does receive the e-mail (unlike your other recipients), a few of the possible problems are:

  • The recipient's SPAM filter is blocking the e-mails.
  • Your mail server is not allowing traffic outside your network.
  • Your Internet Service Provider (ISP) does not allow forwarding of e-mails.

Check with your network technician to verify the settings on your mail server.

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When trying to send e-mails with attachments, neither the e-mail nor the attachment sends.

There are several possible causes for this problem:

  • You are using an Internet Service Provider (ISP) e-mail address, such as AOL® or Yahoo!®, instead of a Simple Mail Transport Protocol (SMTP) e-mail address, such as Gmail™ (Google Mail™). ACS requires an SMTP address for the send e-mail option to work properly. 
  • Your e-mail provider has a limit on the size of the files you can send, and your file is larger than that limit.

Your solution varies depending on what is causing the problem. If you currently use an ISP e-mail address, you can sign up for a free SMTP e-mail address through a variety of services.

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What do the E-Mail Options mean?

Click Options to manage the settings for your e-mail.

  • Send BCC — Select to send the e-mail as a Blind Carbon Copy (BCC). This way, the recipients cannot see the other people to whom the e-mail is sent.
  • Send a Copy to the From Address — Select to send a copy to the e-mail address listed in the From field. This option is useful if you are composing and sending an e-mail for someone else. For example, you send an e-mail reminding choir members of a special practice time and use the choir director's e-mail address in the From field. If you select this option, the choir director also receives a copy of the e-mail reminder.
  • Send a List to the From Address — Select to send a list of the e-mail recipients to the address listed in the From field.
  • Number of Addresses to Include in a Single E-mail — When sending a mass e-mail, this determines the number of recipients of a single e-mail. Some Internet Service Providers (ISPs) limit the number of addresses a single e-mail can be sent to. You can accept the ACS default (50) or enter another number. The maximum is 500. Contact your ISP if you do not know your limit.

    Useful Info

    When sending a personalized e-mail using merge fields, a separate e-mail is sent for each address, regardless of the limit entered.

  • Number of E-mails to Send before Reconnecting — Some ISPs disconnect after sending a pre-determined number of e-mails. To ensure efficiency, enter the e-mail limit set by your ISP. If you don't know your limit, you can accept the ACS default (10), enter another number (500 max.), or contact your ISP.
  • Pause between E-mails — Some ISPs have time delays for sending e-mail, especially if multiple e-mails are being sent. To ensure efficiency, enter the time delay set by your ISP. If you don't know the delay, you can accept the ACS default (2 seconds) enter another number (between 1 – 60 seconds), or contact your ISP.


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What is the difference between Plain Text and Rich Text?

There are differences between Plain Text and Rich Text.

  • Plain Text — With Plain Text, your message is sent in plain, black text with no formatting.
  • Rich Text — With Rich Text, you can underline text, use boldface, change the color or size of the font, and italicize.

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