FAQ

Installing

1. There is no setup.exe; how do I install the software?
After downloading the .zip or .rar compressed file, extract sendblaster.msi, which is in Windows Installer format, and double-click it to start the setup process.
     
2. I double-clicked on sendblaster.msi but nothing happens
You may need to install or update Windows Installer from Microsoft's website.
     
3. The license key I received doesn't work; OK button remains gray
Every license key is bound to a unique e-mail address; make sure you enter the correct e-mail address (the same one you used when buying) along with the license key - and of course double check you haven't misspelled any of the two. Please also make sure you enter the correct license (Pro instead of Free).
     
4. Installation fails and displays 1304 Error or other errors
The error you encountered comes from Microsoft Windows Installer and usually means that you haven't sufficient permission to change system files.
Please log in Windows with administrator privileges and re-run setup.


Sending


1. I can't send; SendBlaster does not connect or returns an error (incorrect ip, service not available or similar messages)
99% of the times this is caused by your firewall preventing SendBlaster from accessing the Internet. Temporarily disable your firewall on your local PC or network gateway before sending. Some antivirus programs can also cause this problem; we suggest that you temporarily disable your antivirus too. A detailed tutorial on troubleshooting is available here.
     
2. Can I use Direct Send with AOL?
AOL blocks connections on port 25 (see AOL faq), therefore if you are connecting to the Internet using AOL you cannot use Direct Send mode.
     
3. When I launch a mailing, some of the messages or addresses don’t get sent and return an error.
When sending to lots of addresses it is normal that not all of the messages go through: some of the addresses could have become inactive or be temporarily jammed, e-mail servers could be overloaded, the connection could be momentarily interrupted or slow. If the percentage of sent messages is very low, or even no message is sent, it is necessary to check the Send Settings.
It might be necessary to change the send mode (direct or through SMTP) and, if your SMTP server uses antispam filters, lower the number of connections and raise the pause time between messages. The SMTP server could have restrictions that will prevent you from sending more than a certain number of messages within a specific time span (for instance a given server may not allow sending more than 50 e-mails per hour); in such case, after the first send, the operation will be completed at a later time using the History functions.
If the SMTP server anti-spam restrictions can’t be overridden and sending operations go through only with very slow settings, try using direct send or by using a “more tolerant” SMTP server (on the Internet it is possible to subscribe, even for a low price, to very efficient SMTP services).
If the problem arises while using the direct send mode, it may be necessary to manually specify the IP address of the DNS server.
     
4. My messages are not delivered or are filtered out as spam
Nowadays most mail servers have built-in anti-spam filters; they are quite smart, but sometimes they fail and delete (or mark as spam and redirect to some "spam" folder) perfectly legal messages; this is a common problem with Hotmail and other very popular free mail services. If you feel a lot of your messages are filtered out and not delivered, here are some basic rules to avoid being marked as a spammer by mistake:

1. Always include plain text: "personal" e-mail messages, even if written using HTML format, always include a plain text part. If a plain text part is missing, most antispam filters become suspicious. When you finish composing your message, use SendBlaster's "Text from HTML" button to automatically create a plain text part from HTML.

2. Most of your message must be text; avoid including large images. Once again, antispam filters become suspicious when the image / text ratio is too high.

3. Don't over-attach: attachments should only be used in small, personal lists; if you are publishing a newsletter, upload files on your website and use links instead (your subscribers will be happier too).

4. Avoid those words that are commonly used by spammers and constantly flooding your mailbox.

5. Switch to Smtp: While Direct Send mode is very useful in many situations unfortunately nowadays a lot of mail servers refuse direct delivery in order to prevent spam. It's better to use Smtp when you are mailing to a large number of recipients.
     
5. Which settings should I use for Smtp?
You should use the same settings you use on your personal e-mail client (Outlook Express, Thunderbird, Eudora, etc); your ISP should give you the right settings (simply ask them something like "Can you tell me your Smtp server address and, if I need an account, my username and password?"). Please also remember to disable any antiviruses or firewalls before sending.
     
6. Can I change Smtp port?
Sure; use servername:port format. As an example, if you want to use "smtp.provider.com" on port 579, simply enter smtp.provider.com:579 as your Smtp server address.
If no port is specified, default port (25) is used for Smtp connections.
     
7. When I send a message with embedded images I cannot see the pictures in my e-mail client
When you compose your message in SendBlaster, insert images by using "Image" button instead of using copy/paste; make sure they don't have any "strange" characters in their name or path. Another option is to create the message template as an html page and then import it into SendBlaster.
     
8. When I send I sometimes receive a "Socket operation on a non-socket" error
The "Socket operation on a non-socket" error means that, for some reason, the Windows TCP-IP stack has been overloaded, and the socket channel (which is used for communicating with the Internet) has been shut down abruptly.
This error may have a lot of causes, which usually require a good network analysis and networking skills in order to be tracked down. But most of the times this is just a temporary error which will be solved simply restarting Windows.
If the error repeats, here are some hints:
- Before launching a mailing close all other programs and processes, especially those who need internet access
- Temporarily disable your firewall, antivirus and other Internet security programs
- As a test, in order to track down timing problems on the network, configure SendBlaster's "Send" settings to use just 1 connection and set a pause of 5 seconds between messages (if it works, you can gradually increase the speed later)
- Perform a system scan and make sure that no spyware, trojans or other malware are running (they may be silently having Internet access)
- Update drivers for all network gear (modems, routers, USB dongles, etc)
- If you are on a wireless connection, make sure the connection is good and stable
- Apply Windows updates if any are available
- If you are using an Smtp server, check that it is working (you may have to ask your ISP)
- As a last resort, install SendBlaster on another PC connected to the same local network (this way you will be able to check whether the issue is coming from your PC or from the network)
As this is a network-related problem, you may find additional information performing a search on a search engine with "socket operation on a non-socket" keywords.


Downloading subscriptions


1. I have not quite understood how this feature works
A practical example may help: See our detailed tutorial
     
 2. Can I change Pop3 port?
Sure; use servername:port format. As an example, if you want to use "pop3.provider.com" on port 1000, simply enter pop3.provider.com:1000 as your Smtp server address.
If no port is specified, default port (110) is used for Pop3 connections.
     
3. When downloading subscriptions, SendBlaster says there are new messages but does not recognize them as subscriptions (addresses are not added to the list)
If apparently valid subscriptions are not processed there may be different reasons:

1) The e-mail address they are sent to is not the address used for managing the list
2) The originating address is already present in the list
3) The wrong list was selected (please remember that each list has a different account)
4) The subscribe message has a wrong format
5) The message was already processed before
6) The new messages are not subscriptions, but "normal" messages on that mailbox (they could even be spam)

To test that everything is ok, you should create a blank "test" list, configure a fresh e-mail address for managing subscriptions (please note that each list may have a different account), send a subscribe message to that address, and then download subscriptions for "test" list.
     
4. Error "(30005) failed to open message" or error 91.369 when downloading subscriptions
If you are experiencing one of these errors you are likely to be using a pre-1.3.9 release; please upgrade to the latest release.

Downloading bounces


1. I have not quite understood how this feature works
A practical example may help: See our detailed tutorial
     
2. Can I change Pop3 port?
Sure; use servername:port format. As an example, if you want to use "pop3.provider.com" on port 1000, simply enter pop3.provider.com:1000 as your Smtp server address.
If no port is specified, default port (110) is used for Pop3 connections.
     
3. Error "(10054) Connection reset by peer" or "(10053) Software caused connection abort" when downloading bounced mails
If you are experiencing one of these errors you are likely to be using a pre-1.3.9 release; please upgrade to the latest release.

Importing


1. How can I import addresses from Outlook / Excel?
SendBlaster can directly import addresses from Outlook Express; you can import data from other programs (including Outlook, Excel, etc.) after having exported them to .csv/.txt format (one record on each row, fields separated by comma, semicolon or tab) or using specific plug-ins.
     
2. How can I import data from an existing MySql / SQL Server online database?
Simply create a script in any server-side language (Asp, PHP, etc) which will show all your database records in "csv" format (one record on each line, fields separated by comma or semicolon); then, when importing, tell SendBlaster the url of this page. This also applies to any online database, such as postgres, SQL server, etc.
     
3. When importing a .csv / .txt file I get an error
The file probably contains non-ANSI characters: if an "end-of-file" character is encountered, which should not be present in an ANSI file, this error could occur. Please make sure your csv file contains ANSI characters only. If you want to convert it and / or correct it, here is what you can do:

1) Create a new .txt file with Notepad (it is very important that the file is created from scratch)

2) Open the old file with Notepad and copy all the text

3) Paste the text in the newly created file

4) Import the newly created file

This should correct any ANSI problems in most situations. Obviously this is an emergency trick only: configure the program you are exporting from so that it creates ANSI-compliant files.
 

4. The program crashes or shuts down when importing an HTML page or file.
This is due to a bug in a Microsoft dll used by SendBlaster, which has not been corrected by Microsoft yet. It is caused by the <!DOCTYPE...> tag in the opening part of the page, just before the <html> tag.

In order to avoid the error, before importing the page open it with any text editor (Windows Notepad is ok) and remove the <!DOCTYPE...> declaration (even better, remove anything before the opening <html> tag).

Licensing and upgrading


1. I am using Free Edition; if I upgrade to Pro Edition will my data and settings be preserved?

Yes, all data and settings will be preserved.
     
2. How do I upgrade to the latest release?

Both Free and Pro users can upgrade to the latest release simply downloading the full setup and installing it over the "old" release: all data and settings will be preserved.
However, for safety reasons, we strongly suggest doing a full backup of SendBlaster data folder before updating.
     
3. Are upgrades free?

Minor upgrades (the first number of the new release is the same as the previous one, i.e. 1.2.x -> 1.3.x) are always free.
Major upgrades (i.e. 1.x -> 2.x) may require payment, depending on how long ago you bought the software.
     
4. I bought a single Pro license, can I use it on multiple PCs?
As with any personal productivity tool, if you own a single license you can install and use SendBlaster on a single PC only. If you need multiple licenses please contact our customer service (quantity discounts are available).
     
5. I need to send my mailings from an e-mail address which is different from the one I used for buying / licensing, is that possible?
Sure, you can send your mailings from any address; it doesn't have to match your license key e-mail address. As an example, if you bought SendBlaster using xxx@site.com, you can send mailings from yyy@othersite.org, as well as from any other address.

Other


1. How can I insert in the message body a link to unsubscribe from the mailing list?

SendBlaster can manage its distribution lists by downloading messages from a dedicated e-mail address, different for each list. Therefore, by using tags, it is simple to insert an unsubscribe link into the HTML code :

<a href="mailto:#managingemail#?Subject=Unsubscribe">Unsubscribe</a>

The HTML code must be inserted in the HTML section of the message by clicking on "Show code" button; it can also be inserted as a link using the "Link" button in the message format bar (in which case the text mailto:#managingemail#?Subject=Unsubscribe will need to be inserted in the link window and, once the link is created, the displayed text can be modified to something like “Unsubscribe” or a similar text).
     
2. How do I insert a subscription form in my site?
You'll find detailed script examples on our site; they come in different flavors: PHP, ASP, single opt-in. double opt-in, complete form or e-mail only trasmission, etc.
They are designed so that integrating them in your site is easy: change a couple of settings, adapt graphic layout with any editor (or insert main forms inside existing pages), upload them to your web server, and you're done.
     
3. When I send a message to several recipients, can they all see everyone else’s address?
No, SendBlaster sends each message separately: the recipients’ privacy is preserved. Using SendBlaster to manage multiple sends is therefore useful to prevent accidentally showing other people’s e-mail address, which would be a violation of the privacy rules.
     
4. I’ve lost the password and I can’t access the program anymore. What can I do?
You need to be aware that it won’t be possible to recover lost data. The following procedure will only enable you to regain access to the software.

1. Uninstall the software from the Windows Control Panel.

2. Manually remove the installation folder including all the subfolders; for security reasons, in the event the software gets uninstalled, the database will not be automatically removed (this is why you need to delete it manually).

3. Install the software again.
     
5. Message preview preview does not work
Please make sure that on your system, .eml file extension is associated to an e-mail client capable of opening .eml (mime) files - as Outlook Express or Mozilla Thunderbird.
     
6. How do I backup my data?
SendBlaster 1.x keeps data in two subfolders:

(program folder)\data
(program folder)\history

where (program folder) means the directory where you installed the program. A typical path is:

C:\Program Files\SendBlaster\data
C:\Program Files\SendBlaster\history

Therefore, if you want to backup your data, you simply have to backup these two subfolders.

If you are using Windows Vista and have User Account Control (UAC) on, Vista uses virtualization; files are stored in a different path:

(user's folder)\AppData\Local\VirtualStore\Program Files\SendBlaster\data
(user's folder)\AppData\Local\VirtualStore\Program Files\SendBlaster\history

where (user's folder) means the directory where user data are stored. An example path for user named "John" is:

C:\Users\John\AppData\Local\VirtualStore\Program Files\SendBlaster\data
C:\Users\John\AppData\Local\VirtualStore\Program Files\SendBlaster\history

Therefore, these are the folders you have to backup if you're using Vista and have UAC on. If you turned UAC off, data are stored in the usual (program folder)\data and (program folder)\history folders, as for any previous Windows version.

SendBlaster 2.x stores user's data outside program folder, so you can look for:

C:\Users\User\Documents\SendBlaster2

to find your "data" and "history" subfolders.

 

7. Is SendBlaster compatible with Windows Vista?
SendBlaster has been extensively tested with Windows Vista 32 bit editions. It runs natively in the next generation Windows environment and doesn't need any compatibility hacks or patches. As with other Window versions, it must be installed and run under an Administrator user account.
If you are experiencing any difficulties, here is an article which will let you solve any issues.
     
8. How do I remove e-mail duplicates?
SendBlaster automatically filters out duplicate addresses when sending; there is no need to do it manually. You can have the same e-mail address twice or more in the same list (you may want to have different contact details), but when you launch your mailing only one message is sent to that address.
When importing, you can choose not to import an address if it is already in the list: having duplicates in the lists is up to you, but SendBlaster will never mail more than once the same recipient within the same mailing.
     
9. The program crashed with an error or does not start, what should I do?
First of all check that you have the latest release installed, and that you have administration privileges (= full write permissions) on Windows.
If this doesn't help, please send to us the error report that should have been automatically generated, including a detailed description of what you were doing when the error occurred; then (if you are a Pro Edition user and therefore entitled to receiving technical support) please contact our customer service.

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