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I am trying to setup an email server on my home server. It is running Debian Etch with Exim4 and Dovecot. I "think" that the configuration is done properly, but ...
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  1. #1
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    Need help trouble shooting email server setup


    I am trying to setup an email server on my home server. It is running Debian Etch with Exim4 and Dovecot.

    I "think" that the configuration is done properly, but I can't seem to get any mail. I think the issue might be with my domain and the MX records, but I am not sure. I don't see any errors in my log files so at this point I don't even think the mail is getting to my machine.

    Here is the error I get from the bounced message:
    This message was created automatically by mail delivery software.

    A message that you sent could not be delivered to one or more of its
    recipients. This is a permanent error. The following address(es) failed:

    eric@bonneycpa.com
    SMTP error from remote mail server after RCPT TO:<eric@bonneycpa.com>:
    host smtp.where.secureserver.net [xxx.xxx.xx.xxx]:
    553 sorry, relaying denied from your location [xxx.xxx.xx.xxx] (#5.7.1)
    My domain is with Godaddy and here are some relevant items from my records there:

    1. MX Records:
    @ smtp.secureserver.net
    www. bonneycpa.com which points to myipaddress to my router (this is a static ip)

    2. A Host Record is @ and again points to my ip address of my router.

    3. I have various CNames such as mail, pop, smtp all of which point to "name".secureserver.net name being mail, pop, smtp etc.

    My web traffic is going to the server just fine. I can ssh into my server using bonneycpa.com just fine. As I indicated, I think the first issue I am having is that the mail is not evening getting to my box. Does anyone have any suggestions?

    Thanks,
    -Eric

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    I just did a reverse dns lookup on my ip address and this is what I got:

    74.218.151.122 resolves to
    "rrcs-74-218-151-122.central.biz.rr.com"
    Top Level Domain: "rr.com"
    Could this have anything to do with my issues of having mail delivered to my box?

    -Eric

  3. #3
    Linux Engineer jledhead's Avatar
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    that depends on who you are sending the mail to. some isp's and mail server are a little stricter on what mail they will take. I found a good test mail server is aol.com. they give informative and helpful bounce messages. a reverse dns that points back to a dynamic ip will have trouble with certain mail providers because they require valid reverse address'. and valid reverse address usually aren't dynamic, those are usually spammers.

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    Sending seems to be working just fine. I sent out a test message from my home email server and the email got to me just fine. Now I haven't attempted this on a lot of different domains as of yet since it is just getting setup.

    The issue is receiving emails. I tried to reply to the email that I received from this account and the email was immediately bounced back to me.

    With my current MX records I am getting the following error:

    This message was created automatically by mail delivery software.

    A message that you sent could not be delivered to one or more of its
    recipients. This is a permanent error. The following address(es) failed:

    eric@bonneycpa.com
    The mail server could not deliver mail to eric@bonneycpa.com. The account or domain may not exist, they may be blacklisted, or missing the proper dns entries.
    So it appears that the configuration on my end is setup correctly, at least for sending. I would have thought the sending part would have been the issue, not receiving.

    Anyone have any other suggestions? I really think this is a Godaddy issue and I must have something configured incorrectly with my domain.

    -Eric

  6. #5
    Linux Engineer jledhead's Avatar
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    74.218.151.122 isn't accepting connections (at least not to the outside world). if I telnet to that ip on port 25 it doesn't respond.

    your mx record is setup for the domain and lookups should work for anyone.

    is your router opening and forwarding incoming port 25 to your mail server?

    for testing, if you could connect from the outside and test with telnet
    #telnet yourip 25

    no response could mean anything. if the port is open to your mail server its time to run tcpdump on your mail server to see if its getting there
    #tcpdump port 25

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    Quote Originally Posted by jledhead View Post
    74.218.151.122 isn't accepting connections (at least not to the outside world). if I telnet to that ip on port 25 it doesn't respond.

    your mx record is setup for the domain and lookups should work for anyone.

    is your router opening and forwarding incoming port 25 to your mail server?

    for testing, if you could connect from the outside and test with telnet
    #telnet yourip 25

    no response could mean anything. if the port is open to your mail server its time to run tcpdump on your mail server to see if its getting there
    #tcpdump port 25
    Thanks for the help and I feel stupid. I can't fix the router right now as I am not at home, but I know for sure that port 25 is not open at all. I only had opened the port for IMAP as that was what I was intending to use. So I still need to open up port 25 (standard pop correct?) for the email to be delivered to the server?

    I'll give it a go once I get home and see what happens, unless one of my kids gets home soon and can fix it for me.

    -Eric

  8. #7
    Linux Engineer jledhead's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EABonney View Post
    So I still need to open up port 25 (standard pop correct?) for the email to be delivered to the server?

    -Eric
    standard smtp

    yes, other servers will try and connect to your server using smtp port 25, so it needs to be open.

    hopefully that fixes it. after you turn it on, I would check your logs fairly frequently since this is new to you. you don't want to be consiered an open relay so make sure you check the logs and that you aren't an open relay.
    use something like this Check an Open Relay

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    Quote Originally Posted by jledhead View Post
    I would check your logs fairly frequently since this is new to you. you don't want to be consiered an open relay so make sure you check the logs and that you aren't an open relay.
    use something like this Check an Open Relay
    Thanks a lot for the help. I do remember reading something about Open Relay while I was initially setting up Exim4 and Dovecot and I know that in one of the configuration files I turned off the ability to relay mail. I think it was in Exim but not sure.

    I'll be checking the logs frequently early on anyways just because I want to make sure everything is running the way it should and I am not missing anything.

    -Eric

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    Ok so I forwarded the smtp port to my internal ip for the mail server and I am still not getting email that I am sending to my email address. I can see in the log files that emails are being rejected that don't match any or my current accounts so I know that exim4 is actually listening and doing its job.

    This really does make me believe even more now that my issue lies with GoDaddy. I just can't figure out how to properly fill out the MX record to get this right. Repeated ticket submissions to GoDaddy have gone unanswered at this point.

    -Eric

  11. #10
    Linux Engineer jledhead's Avatar
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    I can telnet to your server now and just sent a test from you to you

    if you are seeing mail hit your server and exim is rejecting it, then the problem lies on your server and godaddy has done its job of providing the mx record.

    paste some of the reject lines from your log files

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