FASmail - FAQ

General Inquiries | Modifying Account Options | Storage, Quotas and Enforcement | Service Requests | Setup and Configuration | Usage Inquiries | Technical Inquiries | Troubleshooting | Support

General Inquiries

FASmail is an enterprise email service for staff, faculty and student employees of the University of British Columbia. The FASmail service furthers the academic mission of the University by providing timely and immediate communications access to the University, other institutions, organizations and individuals.

Features of the service include:

  • 8GB mailbox and calendar.
  • Safe and secure mail storage using the UBC Storage Grid.
  • Free/Busy Look-ups for booking meetings, rooms and equipment.
  • Email addresses and calendars of all departmental contacts using the service in one address book.
  • Ability to schedule meetings and accept meeting requests.
  • Options to delegate mailbox and calendar access to different users.
  • Virus protection and spam prevention using Sophos PureMessage.
  • The Outlook Web App provides an Outlook-like experience using a wide variety of web browsers.
  • Support for hosting departmental email domains.
  • Blackberry integration (BES): available as a paid option

FASmail is accessible via the Outlook Web App, and through any standards-based desktop email application that supports the following protocols: Outlook Anywhere, Exchange Web Services, Secure POP, Secure IMAP, Secure SMTP, MAPI and ActiveSync.

FASmail is currently only available to student employees unless a department wishes to fund the account. Students should instead use the Student and Alumni email service.

Modifying your Account Options

FASmail uses CWL for authentication. To change your password, please visit the myAccount page.

Currently, this information is automatically generated from Workday. The first and last name can be changed to a preferred name. If you would like to alter your first or last name, please contact your local departmental UBC Directory Administrator. The preferred display name in FASmail can only be set in the UBC Directory. Your Directory Administrator will need your CWL ID.

If a departmental UBC Directory Administrator updates your record with a preferred name, it can take up to 24 hours for the name to change in FASmail.

This is not possible because the display name will be populated into the Global Address List in FASmail, and we are aiming to maintain a consistent standard for all users. Display Names are shown as "Lastname, Firstname" so that they are easily searchable in the Global Address List. Much like a phone book, it's typically easier to search by lastname, firstname than firstname lastname.

If you use POP or IMAP instead of Outlook Anywhere, Exchange Web Services or ActiveSync with the FASmail service, then you can customize the Email Name field.

For security and privacy reasons, email forwarding from the UBC Faculty & Staff Email (FASmail) service to private email accounts, such as Gmail or Hotmail accounts, is prohibited. However, forwarding FASmail accounts to email accounts at other public sector institutions is acceptable under limited circumstances. Before you proceed with setting up email forwarding, please review the Privacy Fact Sheet from the Office of the University Counsel on the Privacy of Email Systems, in particular paragraphs 18 to 21 ("Can I Auto-Forward my UBC Email Account to a Non-UBC Account?"). If you still wish to set up email forwarding, please refer to this usage guide

Storage, Quotas and Enforcement

Yes, the total size of a message including content and attachments cannot exceed 50 MB.

Please note that email clients must encode email messages meaning that the size of an attachment in an email message is generally 30-40% larger than the original size of the file. If the message is too large, there will be issues with sending the message.

The cost for additional storage can be found in the General Information section.

Yes, there is a sending limit in effect for FASmail user mailboxes (eg. firstname.lastname@ubc.ca) to prevent compromised accounts from being used to distribute large volumes of spam and phishing emails. More detail can be found on the UBC Cybersecurity website.

By default, everyone has a 8GB mailbox quota. When this 8GB quota is reached, the department can determine whether or not they wish to increase quota. If a quota increase is approved by the department, the request will then be forwarded to UBC IT for approval. When a user exceeds quota, they will still be able to receive email but won't be able to send. You will receive a warning message as you approach your mailbox quota.

Transitory Records - 90 Day Retention Policy

A data retention schedule provides guidance on how long records must be kept and ensures records are not indefinitely stored if they are no longer needed. FASmail has a 90 day data retention schedule in place for default transitory folders in compliance with the published UBC Records Management schedule found here:


Email messages found in the following folders are considered by UBC to be transitory records and there is a policy in place to remove them after 90 days:

  • Deleted Items
  • Junk E-mail
  • RSS Feeds
  • Conversation History

Make sure to regularly review folders that are impacted by the 90-day schedule and back-up any messages that are meant for long-term storage.

Note: This affects all staff, faculty and student employees at both UBC Vancouver and UBC Okanagan campuses who use FASmail. This does not affect users of the UBC Student Email Service.

Inactive mailboxes

Mailboxes belonging to individuals whose access has been revoked for more than one year will have their mailbox and contents deleted as per the UBC Records Management schedule found here:



Backups of mailboxes are taken nightly and retained according to the following schedule:

  1. Daily backups for 28 days
  2. Monthly backups for one year

Note: Mailboxes are not to be used for storage of university records. External systems should be the primary storage repository for university records requiring retention in accordance with the lengths of time prescribed in the applicable Records Schedule issued by the University Archives under UBC's Records management Policy.

Each mailbox can have up to 10 devices registered at a time. To remove old devices please follow these steps:

  1. Log into mail.ubc.ca
  2. Click on Options > See All Options...
  3. Click on Phones > Cell Phones
  4. Select the device you wish to remove and click on the X to delete. 

Service Requests

All mailbox space increases need to be requested and submitted by the department's FASmail authorized contact within that department.

UBC provides funding for 8GB of storage to all eligible faculty, staff and student employees. Please refer to the General Information section for more information.

Departmental FASmail Authorized Contacts can request these mailboxes by filling out this web form. Please contact your local department IT administrator or FASmail contact for assistance.

Currently, UBC IT handles new account creations at the request of authorized departmental FASmail contacts. Departmental IT Administrators/FASmail authorized contacts can use this web form to request new accounts, distribution lists, generic accounts and resource mailboxes.

There are a number of departments that have integrated with the new Identity and Access Management (IAM) service which automatically creates FASmail mailboxes for active faculty/staff. The IAM team is working with departments to transition to this new method of mailbox and access provisioning.

All non-funded accounts will still need to be granted rights to create FASmail accounts manually through UBC IT.

There is currently no limit to the number of generic accounts (within reason) but we would encourage the removal of these accounts if they are no longer required.

Setup and Configuration

First time users of FASmail should refer to the Setup Docs page for instructions on how to access the service.

Support for mobile devices is currently not available. However, a document on how to set up the iPhone using ActiveSync on FASmail has been provided for reference on the Setup Docs page.

Usage Inquiries

Even though all faculty and staff will now have 8GB mailboxes, we recommend that you continue using auto archive to store old email offline. Additional storage can be purchased for a fee. Pricing can be found in the General Information section.

Although mailbox sizes can be increased from their 8GB default limit, we recommend that you refer to Microsoft's recommended best practices for mailbox size and management: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/905803

Technical Inquiries

The FASmail service uses the UBC Enterprise Active Directory service which is integrated with CWL. Your primary CWL account username and password will be used for authentication.

Yes, but with a condition. UBC custom domains can be hosted on FASmail but please be aware that at this time, we are not providing a forwarding service which means that all users that require a custom domain alias will require a FASmail mailbox. For ineligible users such as students without an active employee number, this will mean that your department will have to fund the FASmail mailbox before they can have an alias. We do not recommend hosting your domain on FASmail if you anticipate that anyone other than FASmail users will require one of these email aliases.

If the MX record for the domain is currently in use, careful planning will be required to facilitate the move of the domain to FASmail. If you are interested in going with this option, please have your departmental IT administrator contact UBC IT and we will work with him/her to get this set up.

Yes, this tool is currently in available to a select group of departmental IT administrators. Please contact UBC IT if this is required.

Yes, as long as the device complies with the supported email protocols (ActiveSync, Secure IMAP, Secure SMTP, etc…), iPhones and Android mobile devices can be connected to FASmail without charge.

Blackberry users can apply for optional BES integration for a one-time fee. Pricing can be found in the General Information section.

To use the complete set of features in OWA, you must use one of the following supported web browsers:

On a computer running Windows XP, Windows 2003, Windows Vista or Windows 7, you can use:

  • Internet Explorer 7 or above
  • Firefox 3.0.1 or above
  • Chrome or above

On a computer running Mac OS X, you can use:

  • Safari 3.1 or above
  • Firefox 3.0.1 or above

On a computer running Linux, you can use:

  • Firefox 3.0.1 or above

Web browsers not listed above will be redirected to a light version of the Outlook Web App. The light version of OWA works with most unsupported web browsers but you will not have access to the full set of features offered by the browsers listed above.

Currently, administration is done by UBC IT but there is an interface that allows departmental IT administrators to do a few administrative functions including managing email aliases, setting mailbox quotas, viewing a list of departmental mailboxes and distribution lists and modifying the preferred name.

Since accounts are tied to CWL, there is no longer a need to manage account information. The UBC IT Service Centre is able to provide support for CWL accounts.


You may have exceeded the daily sending limit in effect on FASmail user mailboxes. Examples of the error messages in Outlook and OWA can be found in the following knowledgebase article KB0018336. More detail on FASmail sending limits can be found on the UBC Cybersecurity website.

The iPhone passcode policy is designed to be in line with Policy 106. This policy refers to the UBC Information Security Standards.

There is now a UBC Information Security Policy in place for mobile devices:

3.7.3 Exception - Mobile devices must be:

  • Protected with a password of at least five characters, unless limited by the device OS
  • Configured to lock the screen automatically, after no more than 30 minutes of inactivity, with password protection
  • Encrypted via device level encryption
  • Configured such that they can be remotely wiped in the event of loss or theft

If you use any email address other than the default [cwl]@mail.ubc.ca address (e.g. firstname.lastname@ubc.ca ), the alternate email address will need to be added to your mailbox. This will grant your account access to send from this alternate email address. To get your alternate email alias added to your account, please contact your local IT administrator or the IT Service Centre. This request may need to be escalated. If you need to send email in the interim, you can try using the Outlook Web App Webmail client.

For any questions about the new email service, please contact your local IT administrator or the UBC IT Service Centre.


Support will be worked out with each individual department. In some cases, end users will be contacting departmental administrators. In other cases, they will be contacting the UBC IT Service Centre.