Level 1: Cadet

Accessing old BigPond email

I have been a BigPond customer since 2000, yes I know I’m a glutton for punishment.  Back then it was a dial-up account and we had the 3 bigpond email addresses permitted under the subscription.  The primary and 2 additional addresses.  Over the years we moved to BigPond cable and acquired another primary email address which was primarily so the Surfboard modem could log in and this became our primary account for Telstra’s My Account service.  Their choice not mine.

All these accounts were hosted on the BigPond SMTP enabled email server, then in 2016 Telstra launched Telstra Mail.  This was the next generation of must have service, it now offered IMAP access and a whole lot of new features.  First the cable modem’s account was invited to migrate, followed instructions and it all worked.  Then came the invite for the original primary account and one of the secondary accounts, again follow instructions and it all worked.  Then finally several months later the remaining secondary account was invited to switch to the new Telstra Mail server, follow instructions and it failed.  so for the next 3 - 4 months into 2017 I worked with the Telstra techs and eventually they gave up on the problem and couldn’t move the account so it was left on the old BigPond SMTP server.

Roll forward to early 2019 in false hope I tried to access the account via IMAP and still no dice, I could only access it through SMTP so fair assumption it was still on the old BigPond infrastructure, the iPad that I was setting up could even still access emails from 2006 after downloading all mail.


Move forward to yesterday and I was troubleshooting a problem with internet access.  I removed the email settings for the account from my iPad and tried to set them up again.  I was presented with the option of using SMTP or IMAP (?).  So naturally I selected IMAP and it worked.  This is the account that was stuck in the last decade just on 18 months ago.  Happy days, Telstra had fixed the problem although they had neglected to tell me, then not.


I logged on to the account via Telstra Mail webmail only to find all my email prior to August 2016 was gone. Now I may not need most, if any, of the email from back then or anything before hand but because the migration failed on every attempt since 2016 I hadn’t gone through all the stored mail to decide what I needed and what I didn’t.

so is there any way of getting back to my email from the period 2000 to 2016? 

I asking the community because I am done with Telstra this week.  Long story short, you don’t appreciate how bad their customer service is until you need it.


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