What is 250 error code?

The 250 error code refers to a specific error message that can occur in email communications when sending or receiving messages. Specifically, a 250 error indicates an issue with the Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP) conversation between a sending and receiving email server.

What is 250 error code?

How a 250 Error Occurs

When an email message is sent, it passes between multiple SMTP mail servers using a specific series of response codes. Each response code signals either a positive or negative status at each step of the delivery process.

SMTP response codes are three-digit numbers where the first digit defines the broader status category:

  • 1xx – Positive preliminary response
  • 2xx – Positive completion response
  • 3xx – Positive intermediate response
  • 4xx – Temporary negative response
  • 5xx – Permanent negative response

A 250 error code falls under the positive completion responses category. Normally, a 250 code indicates an email action such as a message being sent or recipient information being confirmed.

However, in some cases, a 250 error displays when the receiving server accepts part of an email but then fails to complete the transaction properly. This leaves the sending server hanging and waiting for the next step of communication that never comes.

Main Causes of 250 Errors

There are a few common triggers that can disrupted the SMTP transaction between servers and result in a 250 error:

  • Email server issues – Server hardware problems, software bugs, connectivity issues, or resource constraints on either the sending or receiving server can interrupt the SMTP conversation.
  • Spam filters – Aggressive spam filters may accept an initial part of the email exchange before subsequently blocking the message.
  • Routing problems – Incorrectly configured mail routing settings or DNS issues can interfere with message delivery between stages.
  • Full mailboxes – If the recipient’s email inbox is full, the receiving server may initially accept the message before bouncing it back due to lack of space.

A 250 error essentially means that initial contact between mail servers was successful, but there was a subsequent breakdown in communication before the transaction completed.

How to Fix a 250 Error

There are a few things that email users and administrators can try to troubleshoot a stubborn 250 error:

  • Retry sending – Sometimes transient network or server blips resolve on their own, so retry sending after a short delay.
  • Check for blocking – Log into email accounts on both ends to check for filtering rules or spam blocks that may be interfering.
  • Verify connectivity – Confirm both servers have external internet connectivity and DNS is configured properly.
  • Check mailbox size – If the target inbox is full, the user must delete emails to open space for new messages.
  • Contact tech support – If self-service troubleshooting is ineffective, contact tech support teams for either email service to investigate and fix underlying problems.

Persistent 250 errors typically require intervention from IT staff to pinpoint and correct the technical triggers. Email administrators can dig into mail logs to trace the failed SMTP transaction and identify the root cause.

250 Error Code Examples

250 error messages can vary somewhat depending on the email services and servers involved. Here are some representative 250 error code samples:

Copy code

250 Requested mail action okay, completed: id=00000000

250 2.1.0 Recipient <[email protected]> OK 

250 2.0.0 Ok 0010a4o5df45e7e7

250 Mail transaction failed: http://mailserver/failed.aspx

250 CHUNKING aborted.(anonymous:250 552 5.2.0 DATA END command failed Detail: Transaction failed)

The entrance text “250” signals that the receiving server acknowledged and initially accepted the inbound SMTP connection. The subsequent messages indicate that an issue later emerged that stopped the email transfer such as an aborted chunking stream, failed data end command, or aborted mail transaction.

These examples illustrate how a 250 error reflects a communication breakdown between email servers after an initial successful response. The underlying problem may exist on either the sending or receiving server side, requiring investigation of logs and configurations to pinpoint.

Key Takeaways on 250 Error Codes

  • A 250 error indicates an email delivery issue stemming from an interrupted SMTP transaction between two mail servers
  • Common causes include server resource problems, spam blockers, routing issues or full mailboxes.
  • Fixes involve retrying the send, checking for blocks, verifying connectivity, and ensuring open mailbox space.
  • If the problem persists, server administrators may need to trace logs and troubleshoot misconfigurations disrupting the SMTP handshake.

Understanding the origins and troubleshooting methodology for 250 errors provides a pathway to resolving email delivery interruptions that may otherwise seem mysterious to frustrated users.


In summary, a 250 error code signals an failure during the SMTP communication process between two email servers, leading to interrupted or failed message delivery. It arises from server malfunctions, spam filters, routing problems or inbox space issues during the multi-step SMTP transaction. Users can attempt fixes like retrying sends and checking blocks or filters. But elimination of persistent 250 errors requires investigation and remediation of technical issues by server support teams and administrators. An awareness of the nature and troubleshooting steps for 250 errors enables both individual users and IT staff to get stalled messages back on track.

Frequently Asked Questions about 250 Error Codes

What is a 250 error code in email?

A 250 error code indicates a disruption in the SMTP communication between two mail servers during the process of sending an email message. The receiving server sends an initial positive response but then fails to complete the multi-step transaction.

Why do I keep getting 250 errors?

Persistent 250 errors typically stem from recurrent technical problems impacting the email delivery process, such as:

  • Ongoing server hardware or software failures
  • Misconfigured DNS settings or routing tables
  • Overly restrictive spam filtering rules
  • Inboxes consistently hitting maximum size limits

What does 250 recipient rejected mean?

A “250 recipient rejected” error means the receiving mail server initially accepted the incoming message but then refused or blocked the recipient address after further evaluation. This could occur due to spam filtering or recipient address verification failures.

How do I fix 250 connection timed out error?

A 250 connection timed out error indicates connectivity issues between the sending and receiving servers. Solutions may involve:

  • Retrying the failed email sends
  • Checking DNS settings and network connections
  • Monitoring server resources for hardware or software faults
  • Reviewing email routing configurations between source and destination

Why is my email stuck in 250 smtp transport suspended?

This error indicates the SMTP transaction process was halted in between servers during message transfer. Causes can include server downtime, excess resource load, and email looping due to misconfigured addresses or routing. Fixes require troubleshooting and correction on the server side by administrators.

How long does 250 SMTP error last?

A 250 error is not inherently long-lasting but will persist until underlying technical triggers are resolved. These could include temporary server problems clearing up after a few hours or more complex issues requiring troubleshooting and reconfiguration of settings or infrastructure.

Can I retrieve email returned with 250 error?

With proper logging enabled, server administrators may be able to retrieve the content of an email bounced back after a 250 error from internal mail queue storage if the message data was retained. Otherwise, the sender would need to resend any lost or rejected messages.

What is a 450 email error code?

A 450 error indicates the email server declined to perform the requested action, often due to suspended user accounts that reject incoming messages for policy reasons verses technical failures that trigger 250 errors during transport.

What is a 550 email error?

550 errors denote permanent rejections related to invalid or unavailable recipients verses temporary transport interruptions that lead to 250 errors that may resolve upon troubleshooting and retrial.

What is SMTP error 420?

A 420 SMTP error means the originating email server temporarily failed to connect to the destination server, typically due to connectivity issues or remote server problems resulting in timeouts.

How do I bypass error 250 authentication failed?

250 authentication errors stem from invalid or missing sender credentials when routing mail between servers. Solutions involve double checking configuration of SMTP authentication methods and sender account credentials entered correctly at both the client and server side.

Why am I getting error 550 relay access denied?

550 relay access denied errors indicate the remote receiving server has explicitly blocked or failed to authenticate the sending server’s relay attempt due to restrictive policies around SMTP mail relays often implemented as an email security precaution.

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