Hosted Email

Anyone have a good, reliable yet inexpensive hosted email provider they can suggest? I currently get pretty good email service through my web hosting provider, but I’m up for renewal and they want $120-150/year for Windows hosting and I realized I can do free web hosting on Azure (through MSDN credits), I just can’t get email handled there, so thought I could save some money. Unfortunately it looks like most places want you to pay per user, and charge $5/$10 per user. I’ve got two email boxes (and nearly 200 aliases), and when I add it up that’s not far off what I’m paying for my current web host.

So anyone have a solution they’re happy with?

I use DreamHost for my dominionsqt3 email service that Dominions 4 players here can use for email diplomacy instead of forum PM. It seems stable enough and first year was cheap enough at <$50 or so. Unlimited mailboxes/storage, etc on a shared sdervice, bundled with domain and webhosting. It was one of those sign up specials, so the true cost is somewhere between $6-10/month, but I don’t know for sure until the first year comes to a close and I see how much they sting me! I assume I’ll be able to hunt down a renewal special at the time though, so we will see.

They use a highly customised version of cPanel with little to no API access though, so if you wanted to do some scripting/automation tasks (like mailbox creation/deletion), I’d not recommend it and instead look at others that do offer that access, of which I am led to believe there are several.

I think from memory I found the same thing - dedicated email hosting was expensive, but all the big webhosting players offer email as part of their bundled services at much better rates (well, for sign up anyway). That said, I far from exhaustively searched the interwebs for options.


The best non-google managed email host is Their “Enhanced” account level allows you to use your own domain, gives 15GB of mail storage and 5GB of files, and costs $40 per year per account. This includes up to 500 email aliases.

Their webmail client is really excellent, easily comparable to gmail, and of course is advertisement-free. It does calendaring also and supports CalDAV synchronization. They also support 2-factor authentication. They have a free trial, check it out.

I don’t use it myself as I’m grandfathered-in to Google Apps for Domains, which is completely free. But if I wasn’t, I would.

Edit: Dammit rei.

Depending on what you need, the business versions of Office 365 include hosted email. $60/user/year.

Thanks everyone. I actually discovered I’m eligible for 5 free Office 365 mailboxes, so I’ve been transitioning over to that today. The only downside I’ve found is that the maximum message size (receiving or sending) is limited to either 25 or 35 MB (my old host was 100MB). I did a scan through my Outlook and I’ve only received 4-6 email messages larger than that over the last several years, so should be ok.

As a bonus, I’m finally getting a calendar I can sync between my phone and outlook without the goofy Google Calendar Sync stuff.

Is Fastmail still considered the best option for hosted mail?

It shows my stubbornness but I’ve never used gmail - I’ve always used the email provided by my ISP for my own personal use. But it’s likely I’ll be moving soon and will likely lose my 10+ year old email accounts. But these email accounts are themselves on life support - the tech himself after some conversation admitted that they haven’t changed since 2006, that the ISP itself used gmail, and that recent updates to Apple mail have repeatedly broken sending mail using their accounts and that it was unlikely it would ever be fixed again.

I’ve looked into Zoho mail and Fastmail - Fastmail is by Reddit repute “going to die”. Zoho mail apparently is doing well in India and is 3-5x cheaper per account than Fastmail. But you do end up with a less appealing “zohomail” address.

What i’d like is to have about 10-15 email addresses for personal use. This is apparently? harder to do in gmail?

Fastmail is still considered the best. For privacy, Protonmail. GMX is still around.

What’s your problem with gmail? With a gsuite account you can have a bunch of addresses on your own domain and they do not scan the contents to show ads. You also get unlimited space on google drive. It does cost ten dollars per month though, plus the cost of your domain, $12 or so per year.

I guess I just don’t know how to do it. It isn’t clear how to make multiple addresses (to me anyway, I don’t want just aliases but separate inboxes, though I guess I could just apply a sorting rule), and I’ve never used gsuite. But i’ll look into it now.

I do really want at a minimum 5 different email addresses, and I like them to live as separately as possible.

With a $10/month account on GSuite for Business you get one email account, but it can have up to 30 aliases. You can just setup a catchall address so every email to goes to you, that’s what I do, then I sign up to every site with [email protected].

The only way to be sure you’ll keep an address for life is to run your own domain. Nobody can ever take that away from you. But it’s another $12/year or so for the registration. That said, I wouldn’t be stressed about gmail going away, Google isn’t going to kill one of its premiere services.

And of course if you’re happy with an address you can just use [email protected] aliases and filter/tag/sort off that, which is less slick than what I do but has the advantage of being completely free. Or just make multiple gmail accounts, for that matter.

I use my domain email primarily, but I have 6 Google accounts myself. My domain, a secondary older account, an EDU account to sign-up for educational discounts, and a couple more for various Google Voice phone numbers.

I gave GSuite a spin because of the 14 day trial. I was expecting it to be an upgrade of my existing [email protected] account in which then I could route my emails from my domain. It doesn’t work that way. GSuite creates a completely new Inbox for you and you had to migrate your existing free emails into this Inbox. Which kinda make sense and yet, it’s not what I would welcome.

So, something I have used with hobby projects (with a registered domain) is setting up a free Gmail inbox, then pointing mx records through the registrar to IMprovMX. You can set up multiple addresses and have them forward to the Gmail address, which then you can filter or whatever. All for a cost of zero dollars. (In Gmail you can change the “send as” address, too, so this is pretty indistinguishable from paid email solutions, mostly.)

It’s a pretty good solution if you don’t want to pay monthly for email, and gives you the traditional Gmail interface. What can I say? I’m a cheap bastard.

Yes, I use Google Domains for a bunch of domains I don’t have GSuits on and they let you setup 100 email forwards including a wildcard as part of the service.

I found out that my domains with GoDaddy let me have 100 mails forwarding for free for each domain. That means I can just set up [email protected] to forward to my The nice thing about it is that they have an option to set catch all, meaning if you send [email protected], it will also forward to the designated gmail Inbox - very useful for throwaway accounts which I can create on the fly during a forum registration. And it’s free too!

Oh that’s cool! I didn’t realize GoDaddy did that. I might have to transfer my domain over to them!

Godaddy is evil, so I would suggest using anyone else. I use Google Domains myself, they charge $12/year and as I posted earlier, do offer email forwards.

Cloudflare will actually host your domain at their cost, with zero margins, but they don’t do the email forwards.

Is this $12/year charge on top of the domain fee you have to pay?

GoDaddy is less of the twirling mustache evil of their right wing founder shooting endangered animals nowadays but still not the greatest choice. Namecheap and some other cheaper providers that don’t come to mind now have taken up mindshare. Gandi was one of those but suffered data loss without backups this week where their social media response (including their CEO) was super tone deaf telling customers “you really should have used your own backups”

No, that is the domain registration price.