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How do you do....it? Thread, How do you send mail to large quanities of people via your OWN SMTP server? in Technical; Alright everyone. This is more directed to the admins of edugeek since they run forums and I'm pretty sure at ...
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    link470's Avatar
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    How do you send mail to large quanities of people via your OWN SMTP server?

    Alright everyone. This is more directed to the admins of edugeek since they run forums and I'm pretty sure at one time they were phpbb, but here it is for anyone who can help. Below is a copy/paste from phpbb's support forums. They couldn't help me. I'm basically trying to run an SMTP server from inside my house where I have 7 servers and growing. My current setup is that my ISP has port 25 open ONLY if using their business internet, and even then, you can only send off to a max of 5000 recipients a day. If you're on a normal high speed connection or my ISP's upgraded high speed connection [about 3MB's a second down] which is what I have, you get 1000 emails a day as you'll read below, and that's ONLY if you're using the ISP's SMTP. I'm looking for SOMETHING unrestricted because I'm running my OWN mail server, not somebody elses. If anyone feels they can help I'd really appreciate it. I have all the hardware working, I can receive emails to the mail server perfectly from any address. But sending is the issue. Thanks for reading!

    ---------------------------------------------------------

    Hello,

    I run a website that uses PHPBB. I host it on my own servers and have MX records in DNS pointing to my home servers as well where I have a mail server running. That mail server receives mail fine, and the PHPBB forums authenticate with it perfectly and the mail gets added to the queue. However, there comes a time when that email actually has to be sent away from the mail server and to the actual recipient [duh].

    Most ISP's these days block port 25 for obvious security reasons such as SMTP Relay's being open and allowing spam through. However I am NOT a spammer. I'm trying to use my own SMTP server, and since port 25 is blocked on my current internet connection, my perfectly good mail server with absolutely no restrictions on how many recipients there are can't send mail. Unless I can find a relay somewhere, but most relays are pretty limiting to say, 100 recipients a day. My ISP allows for 1000 relays a day, however that's only if you're using an ISP email account. I'm not. I'm using PHPBB and a custom mail server that ties in with my DNS Domain Name.

    My question I'm posing to all of you who run very successful PHPBB forums, is how...how do you possibly send mail to so many people? Whether it's people who have subscribed to a forum topic, new members wanting authorization, or mass emailing every member of your board, how do you do it?

    Thanks!

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    m25man's Avatar
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    I would have thought that sending isn't the problem your more likely to run into other issues like running out of upload bandwidth, reverse lookup checks, RBL'S and old IP block lists used by twitchy mail admins.

    Unless you have a public IP address of your very own this can be a problem.
    Even the ones that some of the ISP's allocate to clients seem to be drawn from old Dial-Up pool's that they have been holding onto for years!

    These are still listed on many RBL databases as dial-up IP's and the result is blocking or blacklisting. If I choose to do a reverse lookup on your incoming connection am I going to get smtp.yourdomain.com or dialup72.36.54.86-virginmedia.net

    Have you tried DynDNS: DNS Hosting, Email Delivery and Other Services Apart from the obvious Dynamic IP services they have a really good range of DNS services, Mailhop/Webhop static and custom services that might suit your needs.

    That way you can have your primary MX pointer with them and have it redirected (even to a different port) on your system.
    EG. someone@yourdomain.com MX points to Dyndns Mailhop service on port 25 this is redirected to your dynamic IP on port 24, 25, 587, 2525, 10025, 52525 and get your NAT router to remap one of these to 25 on your internal mail server!
    Easy!

    DynDNS EMail Services -- MailHop Forward

    At the end of the day if you are only paying £10 a year for domain hosting and associated services then you are going to have problems and I have more than my fair share of those!

    On the other hand I have one client paying close to 60k pa for leased line and IP services and for some reason we don't have any problems with that one!

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    link470 (27th April 2008)

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    Hmm, so let me see if I understand. If someone else for example sends an email, it goes to the mail queue just fine. That's on port 25. Now, my mail server, if I have the SMTP service set to another SMTP port, is the mail going to get to its correct destination? Like hotmail, google, etc.? I'm using Kerio MailServer 6. I seem to remember changing it to a different port and it didn't make a difference. Mail couldn't be sent. However the MY mail server receives mail to be sent perfectly and our guys with with those email accounts on my domain can receive mail perfectly from anybody. Just sending out of the server seems to be the problem. I get error 4.1.1 host could not be contacted because of course 25 is blocked by ISP. With all these forwarding services though they seem to charge by the amount of mail sent, per recipient, but I just need that port OPEN, my mail server does all the sending, it's sending itself, I have my own SMTP server, if I'm thinking right I shouldn't need to forward to anybody else to send my mail because my server can do it itself. My IP address doesn't change. It's dynamic yes, but it hasn't changed in a year and a half. I'm very happy with it. Also, I can purchase a static IP if I need it for $15 a month which isn't a problem, but since mine hasn't changed I haven't gone that way. My DNS is hosted at GoDaddy and I have all my MX and SPF security records to point to my IP here at home. Again, if I'm somewhere else and I telnet to my server on port 25, I get a valid response that SMTP is ready, so I can go IN 25, so my clients at other places can send mail TO the main mail server from their mail client program from anywhere and it gets to my mail server to be sent to its destination, BUT, my mail server can't send out. That's the only issue.

    So again, Kerio has settings for which port each service uses. Would I need to change SMTP to a nonstandard port, and have each of my clients set THEIR smtp settings to a non standard port so the mail server receives the request on that port, AND sends on that port and isn't blocked out the ISP and to it's destination? Or would I need to find a way to have Kerio receive on port 25 so clients could keep their same port 25 settings for sending mail, and the mail server just SENDS on a different port [which I cant find the option for because it appears theres just one option, "smtp = [port number]" under services, and the only other option for specifically sending mail on a different port is using a SMTP relay and it asks for that relay's mail server address, which of course then gets to me paying money per email relayed and I don't want to deal with that].
    Last edited by link470; 27th April 2008 at 10:38 PM.

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    Your scenario sounds pretty similar to many.

    You have all of your inbound working as it should be and you are happy with it.

    But your outbound SMTP is not working out, is this correct so far?

    You said your domain is with GoDaddy, so why should your ISP honour your mail? A common misunderstanding.

    The IP address you are using belongs to your ISP not you or GoDaddy, therefore if an abuse situation arises the ISP has no control. Hence many will not allow relaying for foreign domains.

    So you try to send the mail from your own server using the ISP's IP address assigned to you router using a Domain Name that is not really bound to it!

    This is where the reverse lookups will catch you out.
    Your server will send it's mail from yourdomain.com IP xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx (the IP however resolves back to a dynamic-host-client.yourisp.com) the recipients email servers may detect this and depending on how strict they are bounce the mail.

    Most send mail applications will either send using DNS(FQDN) or route all mail via a specific relay.

    If you create DNS A records on GoDaddy's control panels pointing to IP addresses that are controlled or managed by another TLD (your ISP) you will end up with conflicting DNS reords.
    Therefore the correct proceedure would be to create C-Name records for your domain that are aliases for the isp FQDN for your broadband node!

    Are you following?

    If I were to ping yourmx.yourdomain.com my query will go to godaddy and be pointed to your external IP and if permitted I will get a response.

    If I were to ping your external IP -A what will I get? your ISP Node name of course.

    So back to my previous post, you need to choose a service that will resolve the specific smtp issue you are having and I think from your description an authenticated outbound relay maybe all you need.

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    link470 (28th April 2008)

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    Thank you very much for your reply.

    It all makes perfect sense. I actually called my ISP a few weeks ago and asked them how I could do this. They said no matter what plan I got from them, their mail servers still restricted recipients/relays/messages to 5000 a day. Where as popular forums will send out MUCH more than that a day.

    This was their reply to when I asked them about all this below. Pay close attention to the end, is this what you were describing? It's not a c-name record, but it may help because it's reverse. Yet, still only 5000 emails. Grrr. Who knows maybe it's enough but I just can't see my mail servers growing for batch emails like newsletters and people subscribing to forums etc., that mail server would be firing off a new email on each reply to a subscribed forum, and who knows how many people are subscribed.

    Before anyone says it, yes I know there's hosting packages out there that do stuff like have a prebuilt phpbb server etc. but hey, lol, I want to learn and do this myself! I'm close!

    Quote Originally Posted by ISP Support
    Even though you are running your own mail server you would still have to adhere to our SMTP server rules which are:

    Maximum Number of Recipients per E-mail: 400
    Maximum Number of Messages that can be sent per day: 5000

    We would also recommend that if you are going to be running your own mail server that you also have a PTR record to avoid getting blacklisted. This is something that we can create for you once you have your mail configuration in place.
    Last edited by link470; 28th April 2008 at 03:26 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by link470 View Post
    We would also recommend that if you are going to be running your own mail server that you also have a PTR record to avoid getting blacklisted. This is something that we can create for you once you have your mail configuration in place.
    The PTR record is your reverse entry. This will prevent your mailserver from being incorrectly detected as a bogus reverse lookup.

    If you can operate within the ISP's guidelines this will be enough. If you need higher SMTP traffic then an authenticated relay service is about all you can do an pay the going rate.

  9. Thanks to m25man from:

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