From the KnowledgeBase

Accounts: How can I get a personalized Princeton email address (aka alias address)?
Email alias addresses: Answers to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Please read the following questions and answers for details about email alias addresses.

What is the difference between a netID-based email address and an email alias address?

When a new account is created for a member of the University community a netID-based email address is automatically assigned when the account is created. For example: Ann Expert was assigned a netID of expert and her netID-based email address is Once the account has been created the user may wish to set up a more friendly or readable email address. We refer to that address as an alias as it is adding an additional name to the account rather than changing the email account address. For example if the name is available Ann Expert would be able to have the email alias Mail sent to either or will be delivered to Ann Expert’s email box.

Will my old netID-based email address still work?

After establishing an email alias address, you will still be able to receive email that is sent to your netID-based email address. However, when you send an email message, your new email alias address will appear in the “from” information. You will no longer be able to send from your old netID-based email. If you configure your mail application to use your netID-based email address, the mail system will automatically convert that address to your new email alias address before attempting to deliver the message.

What if my netID-based email address is subscribed to a mailing list?

You should unsubscribe from any mailing lists prior to establishing an email alias address and then re-subscribe to those mailing lists after you have established your email alias address. Failure to do so may limit or remove your ability to send email to those mailing lists. Note that once you have set an email alias address it may be extremely difficult to unsubscribe from a mailing list as you will not be able to send an UNSUBSCRIBE command from your old netID-based email address as required by many mailing list servers.

What if I set an email alias address and want to change it?

We only allow changes to email alias address names due to a name change caused by marriage, divorce, or other legal name changes. You should be absolutely certain that you wish to establish an email alias address before submitting your request.

Does setting an email alias address change my netID?

An email alias address only changes your email address. Your netID stays the same. Thus, if Ann Expert married John Novice, she could then change her email alias address to However, her netID of expert would not change.

Can I pick any name I want for my email alias address?

Your email alias address must be based on your name. The alias must be available (not used by anyone else).

I have an email alias address -- do I still need to know my netID?

Your email address, whether it is an alias or netID based, is separate from but related to your netID. Your netID along with your secure password are how you identify yourself to various University systems. Your email address is your identity to others. For example Ann Expert will use her netID “expert” to log into her email application, however when she sends email it is sent from And email sent to will be delivered into her account, which she logs into using her netID “expert."

What if I used my Princeton University netID email address to sign up to Facebook or Amazon or in the Cloud?

What really happened is the account you created on Facebook or Amazon used your netID email address as their account ID. This is convenient for them because they can then send email to you because they have your address. It’s also convenient for you because you likely won’t forget your Amazon account ID because it is your email address. However if you create an alias for your University email account it won’t have any effect on any external systems where you have used your Princeton University email address as your account ID. So if Ann Expert created a Facebook account with the ID and now has an alias email account her account ID on external systems will remain and mail sent from that external system will continue to be delivered to Ann’s emailbox, which now has 2 labels and

What if I have a Princeton University Gmail account?

  • Log in with your netID, not your email alias...

Your Princeton University Gmail account will receive email sent to your email alias address and your netID email address, but you must to continue to log into Gmail using your Princeton University netID email address. For example, if 'Ann Expert' had a Gmail account that has the alias she will need to log in to Gmail using

  • Then... send mail with your email alias as the return address
By default, when sending messages through Princeton Gmail, your will be used as the 'reply to' address. You can change this by adding your Princeton email alias as a verified sender in your Princeton Gmail settings.
  1. Click the gear in the top right gear
  2. Select Settings
  3. Select the Accounts tab, if you're using Google Apps
  4. Under Send mail as >> select Add another email address
  5. In the 'Email address' field, enter your name and alternate email address.
  6. Click Next Step >> and then click Send Verification. Gmail will send a verification message to your Princeton Gmail account.
  7. Go to your Inbox and click the link in the message Gmail sent, or enter the confirmation code in the Accounts section of your Gmail settings.
  8. To have your email alias as the default sender when composing new messages, return to your Princeton Gmail settings by clicking the gear icon.
  9. Select Accounts and click on “make default” next to your email alias.
  10. Note that when composing a new message, you can change your “from” address by clicking on the dropdown icon in the “From” field.

How can you find someone's email address, whether netID or alias?

You can find the email addresses of Princeton University faculty, staff, students and some affiliates by accessing either the Search option on the Princeton University home page, the Advanced People Search or the Address Book within your email client. Note that students have the right to request, via the Office of the Registrar, that their address information be confidential. Those students selecting this option will not appear in the University Directory.

How can I get an email alias address?

  • Prior to submitting a request for an alias you should make sure that it is available by using the Email Alias Address Availability tool (University log in required). Remember that you may only have one alias and further changes will only be considered based on a legal name change. 

  • Request an email alias now

Related Links:

Last Updated:
January 25, 2016

Solution ID: