I don't have a solution I'm afraid, but you're not alone. I have exactly the same issue on my IMac and Macbook Pro. All other non BTinternet email accounts work fine through Mac Mail but the BTinternet account constantly asks for the password to no avail. Even deleting and adding the account doesn't help. As an aside, I downloaded Sparrow to see if I could use that as an email client, but the same problem happened there too. Would be grateful if anyone has any information on this issue. All was well until about three weeks ago.
I have had this issue for several weeks also. I found that if I deleted the account within Mac mail I could set up the account again automatically and it would work, but later in the day kept demanding the password and the account had to be deleted. I also found that the account had to be deleted and resetup each morning.
Btinternet mail works perfectly on my Ipad using IOS5.
I have talked to BT who basically say they have no settings for IMAP mail.
I went to the Apple Store where a genius said all the mail settings were wrong and changed them - it worked for the rest of that day. Unfortuneately I had no record of the settings and couldn't get it back!
I think his settings used a Yahoo IMAP server as opposed to a bt server name.
Maybe Mountain Lion will solve it because it is closer to IOS5 - I don't think Apple care enough about Lion to fix such bugs.
This is also driving me nuts. I took my macbook to a genius last week (2 hour round trip), he changed all the settings and everything worked fine for a day! Now back to asking me for my password all the time and even though I enter it I still can't downlaod my email. Grrrrrr. The stupd thing is that my iphone and ipad aren't affected? Wish I understood why but I don't.
I really don't want to change my BTinternet email address as I've had it for 13 years but I'm losing all patience now.
Interesting. I'm having the same problem, except I'm with Virgin! I'm also having the additional problem that emails sent from one account are being replied to another account... Virgin are denying it's anything to do with them, and keep insisting it's an Apple problem. However, this only started with me when virgin switched their email servers over to Google Mail.
Is BT with Google Mail too? If so, we might have found the common problem...
I have had three sessions on line with BT Yahoo trying to sort out thi problem. We have a PC, MacBook Pro, i-Phone and i-Pad each using btinternet e-mail. The mobile devices work fine but both the PC and MacBook have recently been asking for a password to get mail which is then rejected. Web mail at BTYahoo works fine and always accepts the same password that is rejected on the PC and MacBook.
I telephoned their help line and allowed Yahoo to get onto my PC remotely. They went about deleting and then reinserting all my settings without making any actual changes. At the end of this everything worked fine for a few hours on all devices but then it was back to the password problem on the PC and MacBook.
On the second occasion the person at Yahoo suggested that it was the fault of my PC as everythoing was fine their end and in the settings. I said that I did not believe this because the same problem existed on my Mac but was corrected at the same time during the session when they controlled my PC. (I was never able to get the BT software to download to allow a session on the MacBook). How could making changes to setting on my PC make the Mac start working? It could only be reinserting my details at the Yahoo end that made the difference to both systems, it seemed to me.
On my third session with the kind, quiet talking, patient people in Delhi, they did the same process to get everything to work but when I got the 'you have an old PC line again' I said that I was not at all happy with this answer and was put onto the next level up of assistance. I was then told that Yahoo had improved the security of their servers to stop more than one device accessing e-mail from Yahoo at any one time. He said that the main issue was that my smart phone (and wife's i-pad) needed to be turned off when I turned on either Outlook or Mac Mail so that only one device would be accessing Yahoo at a line. He said that if a second device tried to access my e-mail account it would be blocked out for 12 hours!
Naturally I said that this was a daft situation but he said that the new security arrangements were for my benefit and it was a great technical solution to stop other people getting into my e-mail. I disagreed with him in less calm terms and so he said that he would get an even more senior Yahoo person to call me back and discuss this.Two days later, I am still waiting for that call.
In the meantime I have tried leaving all other e-mail connections turned off overnight and then trying the MacBook but still got the 'enter password' message. I find that if I go to Yahoo and log out and then back into Yahoo, I can get rid of the password message on the MacBook and get mail but it is tedious going though this every time.
Conclusion: it is a BT Yahoo problem of their own making and very annoying. Solution: who knows?
At last I have a solution following several online sessions with Yahoo help desk operators and phone calls from one of their Supervisors.
Summary of the problem: Yahoo, which is used by btinternet or BT Mail say that they have recently introduced changes to their system to no longer allow two devices to log onto and collect mail at the same time from their server. They say that this is to improve e-mail security and is for our benefit.
So, if your iPhone or iPad is set to automatically fetch mail and you are also connected to the same mailbox on a Mac or PC, the desktop application will at some stage be locked out by Yahoo and the indication of this is the MacBook or PC asking for your user name and password. When you input the username and password it will be rejected. On the face of it, this is a bit odd and suggests that you have the wrong password or user name or errors in your settings and you probably have these all set correctly.
If you then go to web mail directly at Yahoo.com, then log out of your account and back in again , the process will reset the system allowing you back into your desktop mail system. This solves the problem for a short time until the iPhone or iPad fetches mail again automatically and you will find yourself in a frustrating loop between the desktop mail and web mail. This will be even more maddening if you have more than one mailbox on Mac Mail.
The Solution: Finally, after a week or more back and forth with Yahoo, I was advised to turn off the automatic downloading of e-mail on all my devices and then to fetch mail manually and this seems to work fine. 24hours later I have not had further problems.
On the iPhone and my wife's iPad this means that mail is collected only when we click the mail icon and so there are no longer any audible or visible prompts that new mail has arrived. This is not ideal and does not seem like the progress that Yahoo claim for my e-mail experience but may be better than moving to another provider involving changes of e-mail address.
Its just a pity that Yahoo or BT did not warn us about their new security plans or provide guidance about managing multiple devices going forward. But frankly, I seems likely that the consequences of the changes that they made came as much of a surprise to BT and Yahoo as it did to us.
Thanks for your detailed post, ctarmey. It confirms what I'd suspected.
I only started getting these problems after I bought an iPad. And, by trial and error, discovered that I could receive emails to Mail on my Macbook and iMac for a short period when I logged in and out of BT's webmail, before gettinbg the same problem again when the iPad received emails. I'll turn off the push settings on my iPad.
As you say, it's not ideal. And more than irritating.
BT's Twitter account @BTCare has been useful in the past. I suggest bombarding them with this problem until we get a better solution.
Problem SOLVED - hopefully but not totally satisfactorily !
I am replying to my own preoblem here because a 'nice man' from BT phoned me - from his home he said ( not sure why he told me that but he said he would also respond here when he got back to the office).
He reiterated what Ctarmey and others say above. YAHOO, who control btmail, have 'improved security' on their system. Two of these improvements affect me as a Mac user, with an Ipad and an Ipod :
1. I can only access my bt mail from one device at a time. If any other devices are linked to the server they will be shut off from the server. This arrangement applies even if the other devices are not switched on but are set to receive mail from the server by 'push'.
This could, for example, mean that if I go away for the weekend with my laptop I will not be able to access mail if my Ipad, sitting at home, is silently pushing for mail from the same server ... and a host of other undesirable scenarios.
SOLUTION : All devices which allow 'push' for email sghould be set instead to 'manual',
2. If I sign onto btwebmail I will be automatically signed off and need to sign in again within a couple of hours, even if I have checked the 'please leave me signed on' box. This, I'm told, is progress .....
SOLUTION : live with it .....
Like others here I am tempted, after close to 30 years of having a btemail address, to give up on them - especially as they have just, yet again, postponed laying firre optic supply to this city sentre location. (Virgin claim to have fibre optic capability at this address but on two occasions have sent installers who say it is not possible)
I'm not convinced about the device access thing - my iPhone and iPad often access the same two accounts and always work.
I have this problem but only my iMac - it works fine on my MacBook Pro and my wife's Air, despite those accounts also having iPod/iPhone/iPad's accessing the accounts.
I do use webmail on the one account, which is the one I have the problem with...
I'm simply reporting what the man who phoned from bt told me , namely that:
1. Any devices set to 'push' will be treated by BT Yahoo as being 'connected', even if not switched on and
2. For security reasons the BT Yahoo system will not allow the same user to be accessed from multiple devices at one time ( including devices not in use but set to 'push' new mail)
Like you, I'm experienced enough with BT to doubt anything they say - not because they are lying but simply because one half doesn't tell the other half what they are doing and Yahoo is something else ....
All in all it's simply a huge disappointment that I can't use push on my Mac devices and can't use BT email in a Mac email client ....
At the moment I'm in California on a hotel email system and that adds to the nighmare - requiring proxy server access and so forth.