Mailing List Message #11903
From: NetHead <>
Subject: RE: Mail error & its interpretation
Date: Thu, 10 Oct 2002 16:42:51 -0500
To: SIMS List <>
X-Mailer: Claris Emailer 2.0v3, January 22, 1998
Bet you all thought you'd heard the last of this! Not so. I'll try to
bring everyone up to speed.

As you may or may not recall, we are unable to send mail to
"". That domain is managed by Legend, whose mail
exchanger is ""; whatever the problem is, any mail
addressed to the domain "" suffers the same fate as
"". Basically, SIMS makes a valiant attempt to deliver
the mail and gives up, finally returning a message that the "connection
is broken".

We have made numerous attempts to connect to via telnet
etc. My isp says that Legend must be blocking us. Legend says that my isp
must not be connecting properly. I even received this message:

----- Begin Quote -----
From: "Steve Wilson" <>
To: "Thomas Mangin" <>
Cc: "Darren Spink" <>
Sent: Thursday, October 10, 2002 8:24 AM
Subject: Re: Undeliverable mail: E-mail status

> This bounce was not generated by our mail server, looking at the headers
> it's from a machine on an internal network ( to a machine
> which thinks it's called     running (Stalker SMTP Server
> 1.8b9d14), this machine seems to then be tring to relay through a machine
> it's not allowed to, I still stand by my original reply that it's a
> with the mail server "" which I guess is configured to
> through their old ISP, as even if they were connected through someone else
> we'll deliver mail for
> I did however find one problem ...
> $ telnet 25
> Trying
> Connected to
> Escape character is '^]'.
> 220 ESMTP Postfix (Release-20010228) (Linux-Mandrake)
> helo
> 250
> mail from: <>
> 250 Ok
> rcpt to: <>
> 554 <>: Recipient address rejected: Relay access denied
> quit
> 221 Bye
> Connection closed by foreign host.
> It seems their mail server is using the A record for and
> to send the mail to that not the MX ... Thus confirming a badly configured
> mail server at And a mail server running on www which
> shouldn't be.
> I'll sort the mailserver on www out so that it's not there.

> Steve.

----- End Quote -----

The "bounce" referred to is a red-herring. I attempted to send mail via a
different mail exchanger. I got a messages that indicated something was
wrong at the Legend end:

----- Begin 2nd Quote -----
Failed to deliver your message to
SMTP: Address rejected by host
Host '' says:
554 <>: Recipient address rejected: Relay access denied

Reporting-MTA: dns;

Final-Recipient: rfc822;
Action: failed
Status: 5.0.0

----- End 2nd Quote -----

Now I read that to say that rejected the message and would
not relay it. But as you can see above, "Steve" categorically denies that
their servers had anything to do with it. His "guess" that it is our mail
server is also incorrect. My SIMS server is configured for direct
connection... it does not connect to any other server for relay purposes
(at least not now... see DNS info below).

I included "Steve's" notes about the telnet session and the www mail for
your consideration. If any of you see anything there that may be a clue
to the problem let me know.

Now, the last time I brought up this topic, Dan Brotsky delivered a
LENGTHY analysis of my configuration, particularly as it relates to DNS
issues. Dan has been gracious and kind to spend a lot of his time
educating me about DNS and helping me fix my DNS records locally.

In the course of this, we found a few interesting things.

First, SIMS setup wants you to fill in a field called, "Main Domain
Name". Imagine my confusion that this should NOT be ""!
According to Dan (and born out now by my experience", this should be
"". A simple router entry " =" tells SIMS what to do with the traffic it
receives from my gateway router that is addressed to "".
Now, I suppose I could leave SIMS thinking it is "", but
based on my configuration, it seems unwise to do so. Dan may want to
chime in here and clarify this.

Second, it turns out that because my isp hosts "web-based" mail as part
of their web-hosting package, they have a "lock" on
"", "", "", &
"". Isn't that special?

No biggie, except, that my DNS records have always said that those
hostnames were the same as "". This MAY have
been the source of some relay issues and perhaps some confusion as
machines tried to send mail to both my server & my isp's server. So, I'm
cleaning all of that out of my DNS records and changing all my mail
clients to look for "" for both SMTP & POP

I've already fixed one client this way and attempted to send mail to
"", but it is no-go, still. I have given up. Mainly
because we have decided to move our subsidiary's email accounts onto OUR
server. So, they will simply connect to our server and all the mail will
be accepted. I just have to make their ip's valid clients...

So, thus ends the saga. I still don't know why we can't exchange mail
with but soon, we won't have to.

Thanks again to everyone who helped.


|     Doug Starkey                             |
|     Network Administrator                    |
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