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Support Information

I provide support via email (only) on a best-effort basis.

If you think that there is a configuration problem or operational issue with one of the servers, need help updating your DNS information, or have other technical questions related to the service, please send an email to "support".

If your problem is urgent, please use the "trouble" email address.  Examples of urgent problems include:

  • None of the servers assigned to you are available
  • The servers are refusing ("bouncing") email addressed to your domain
  • Email accepted by the servers isn't being delivered to your server, and you have good reason to believe the problem is on my end.

Known Issues and Planned Outages

April 26, 2010 -- MX host name changes
The server previously hosting will be removed from service on Wednesday, April 28th, and that hostname will temporarily point to another server. However, to assist in rebalancing MX traffic two new MX server hostnames have been created, and the existing MX hostnames (mx[1-4] will be removed effective May 31st, 2010.

An email was sent today to all active customers informing them of this change. The new MX hostnames were included in that email. If you are an active customer and did not receive this email, please contact support immediately.

July 17, 2009 -- Bounce and Bad User Filtering Implemented
Recent log analysis determined that well over 95% of the traffic through the servers was to non-existent recipients, resulting in a large volume of undeliverable mail.  Until now, the servers were returning standard DSN "bounce" messages for all undeliverable mail.  Unfortunately, this has resulted in numerous complaints of backscatter spam.  The usual approach to preventing backscatter spam is to not accept mail for invalid users in the first place; this clearly does not work for a service like this.

As a result, starting today the servers are recording recipient addresses that are rejected by customer servers with permanent "unknown user" SMTP and DSN codes.  Any recipient address that has been rejected by a customer server ten or more times in the preceding five days is blacklisted.  Blacklisted addresses will be rejected immediately by servers; delivery to customer servers will not be attempted.  Blacklisted addresses will be removed from the list after five days, though additional failures may put the address back on the list after only a few hours.

If you find that a legitimate address within your domain is being rejected by the servers you should report this immediately using the contact information above. Blacklisted recipients are rejected with the following error:

550 5.7.1 <recipient@your.domain>... too many failures for this recipient

In addition, all "bounce" messages related to permanent failures (SMTP 5xx codes) are being aggressively filtered prior to delivery.  After this change, most (99%+) bounce messages are being dropped when an email from a non-customer domain is rejected by a customer SMTP server with a permanent error code.

I resisted making these changes for a long time, as I think DSN errors and bounce messages serve a purpose.  Unfortunately, the few cases where they are useful wind up buried under the flood of bounces for randomly targeted spam.  This brings the behavior in line with current Internet best practice in this area.

Current issues will be listed here once I become aware of them.  Time and date information for planned outages should be considered approximate, and is subject to change.

Self-Help Resources

I've collected some information that may help you resolve email related problems on your own.  This information is provided as-is, and your mileage may vary.  Enjoy!

Adding MX records to your DNS information

If you're not sure what to add to your DNS information you might want to check out the FAQ.  More detailed information on MX records is available at

Test your MX servers

The ZMailer site provides a handy CGI script to verify your MX servers.

Traceroute/Ping your server from the servers

All of the servers have a traceroute/ping CGI script installed.  You can use these to determine if my servers can reach your servers:  mx1 - mx2 - mx3

Copyright © 2002-2010
Scott Logan