Needing to setup an out of office / vacation reply for when you go away but don’t have Outlook?

With the likes of Thunderbird the options are limited when setting up auto responders. This is when we turn to webmail.

Here is a quick guide to setting up auto responders in webmail:


1. Login to Webmail

This is nice and simple if you have your login details (you remembered to keep those safe right?).

Browse to: http://yourdomain/webmail

where yourdomain is your website you are using for emails. So in this case for me it will be (note that I am using https rather than http as I have an SSL certificate)

Enter your login details (username and password)



2. Next choose the default webmail application (if this is your first time logging in otherwise skip to step 3)

These will both do the job it’s only really personal preference as to how you want things displayed. My choices are horde and roundcube but you may have others offered. Select one and click Set as Default if you wish to avoid this selection in the future.

Webmail Application choice screen

For this example I have chosen horde.



3. Open the Autoresponders options page

On the main webmail page navigate to the top right and click the drop down menu where your email address is displayed. Then click Autoresponders.



4. Select Add Autoresponder



5. Setup the Autoresponder

There are a few options here to set:

Character Set – It is highly recommender to leave this as the default utf-8. As this is the dominant set for most users.

Interval – This is how long the auto responder will wait before sending another out of office reply if the sender sends more than one email. I tend to set this to 24hrs.

Email – This is the email address you are setting it up for. In my case

From – This is usually how you want to appear to the sender. I put my name or business e.g. CWebb Designs.

Subject – This is the subject of the email. So if you want the autoresponse to appear as Out of Office Re: (Subject of the original email). I would enter the following into the box Out of Office Re: %subject%

This message contains HTML – If you are adding HTML formating into the email select this.

Body – Here you can put what you want your message to say. I keep mine simple with:

Thank you for getting in contact.

I am out of the office from Start Date to End Date.

I shall do my best to get back to you when I’m back.

Kind Regards,

Chris Webb

Start – You can either set it to start autoresponding Immediately or at a specific time/date.

End – You can set this to either Never end or set a Custom end date. I tend to set it for early on the End Date.

Then click Create/Modify to save your changes.

Here is what my page looked like:



6. Testing

It’s always advised to test the autoresponder. Send a quick test email from another email address to test. If an email comes back it’s worked! Congratulations!! Now go enjoy your holiday you crazy cat!

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