My domain registrar is Cloudflare and my site is hosted through A2 Hosting. My problem is that my email worked fine when A2 Hosting was my domain registrar and web host. Now, neither Thunderbird or Outlook can connect to my server.

My current DNS records for email are:

CNAME    mail                  prismapixel.studio    Auto         Proxied
MX       prismapixel.studio    prismapixel.studio    120     0    DNS only

When attempting to set up my email in Thunderbird I get the following message after entering my email and password:

Configuration found for a Microsoft Exchange server

Incoming: IMAP mail.prismapixel.studio SSL
Outgoing: SMTP mail.prismapixel.studio SSL
Username: ****@prismapixel.studio

When I click on Done, it sits there spinning on Checking password... and then says Unable to log in at server. Probably wrong configuration, username or password.

When I check my domain at hardenize.com and click on Mail servers on the left side under Email it shows Test failed under TLS. It also shows that the mail server is operational, STARTTLS is configured as well as DNSSEC. Upon clicking on TLS on the left side it displays this network error for the analysis of the problem:

A network error occurred while we were trying to communicate with a server.
Hostname: dc-2236d9e77805.prismapixel.studio
Error message: java.net.SocketTimeoutException: Read timed out
IP address:

Furthermore, it shows that Email Certificates are not implemented or disabled. I do indeed have a certificate installed and verified through my cPanel.

I tried another tool, checktls.com and the results display the following message for my certificate:

Cert Hostname DOES NOT VERIFY (dc-2236d9e77805.prismapixel.studio != *.supercp.com | DNS:*.supercp.com | DNS:supercp.com)
(see RFC-2818 section 3.1 paragraph 4 for info on wildcard ("*") matching)
So email is encrypted but the host is not verified

I am at a loss and have been trying to fix this for the past 3 days to no avail. Any help would be much appreciated.


I am now receiving and sending mail. I made the following changes to my DNS records:

  1. Removed the CNAME record.
  2. Changed the MX record to:
    MX prismapixel.studio mail.prismapixel.studio 120 0 DNS only
  3. Copied the URL from the PTR record.
  4. Found the IP of the URL.
  5. Created an A record with the IP of that URL:
    A mail Auto DNS only

hardenize.com is still showing a java.net.SocketTimeoutException but I believe that is on their end as checktls.com shows everything as good.

  • 1
    Check this, in particular numbers 4 and 5. It looks like you have an A record pointing to the IP of mail.prismapixel.studio on A2 Hosting, but without a screenshot of your DNS records in CloudFlare, I can't tell about #4, or the spam module in cPanel.
    – dan
    Aug 7, 2020 at 4:08
  • 1
    @dan I didn't even see your comment until after I found a solution. It appears the solution was pretty much exactly what you were thinking. If you'd like to suggest it as an answer I'd be more than happy to award the answer to you. Aug 7, 2020 at 4:33
  • No worries, feel free to add it as an answer yourself and accept it when you can - thanks.
    – dan
    Aug 7, 2020 at 4:35

2 Answers 2


In order for Cloudflare to route mail to the correct location, the MX record should point to the server that manages your mail.

MX    example.com      mail.example.com      Auto      0      DNS only

example.com is where your domain goes while mail.example.com is where the server name required by your mail host goes. Next, if the MX record points to a subdomain of your site, make sure that you have an A record set for that subdomain, mail in this case, pointing to the IP address of the server that handles your mail and that it is not proxied (grey cloud).

A     mail      ##.##.###.##      Auto      DNS only

After that, all mail will be routed correctly.


To route emails to your mail server you need to have two specific DNS records.

  1. An A (IPv4) or AAAA (IPv6) record for your mail subdomain that points to the IP address of your mail server.
Type Name IPv4 address Proxy Status
A mail DNS only
  1. An MX record that points to the A record subdomain you just created.
Type Name Mail Server TTL
MX @ mail.prismapixel.studio DNS only

Cloudflare documentation

  • 1
    Thank you @Angeliss44 . This is a very clear and concise answer to the problem. Sep 26, 2023 at 0:08

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