MTA advice ??

George Davidovich freebsd at
Sun Aug 24 22:02:19 UTC 2008

On Sun, Aug 24, 2008 at 02:06:25PM -0400, pete wrote:
> I have a hosted domain that recently changed their mail filtering. I
> am not happy with the new setup and am considering setting up my own.
> Looking for tips on setting up something on my freeBSD 6.1 box.
> My ISP is cablevision IO. Not sure what they allow, ie: whether I can
> have my hosted domain set to use my cable IP as a MTA, or if I have to
> do some kind of end run around cablevision to get a MTA set up
> locally.

Here are the pre-requisites:

	- You must have a solid understanding of SMTP, DNS, etc.
	- You must have one or more fixed IP addresses.
	- Your ISP must be willing and agree to delegate your IP
	  address(es) to you or to whomever is going to handle the DNS
	  for your domain.  A call to your ISP's DNS provisioning
	  department may typically be all that's required.
	- DNS must be set up correctly.
	- Your email server must be set up correctly.
	- Your own network must be secured. 
	- Your DNS and email servers must be available 24-7/365.

If all the above can't be met, you have no business sending or receiving
email.  If you want to try and PASS GO and collect the $200 by skipping
one or more of the pre-requisites (common enough, it seems), prepare
yourself for some heartache, and be aware that you're likely to cause or
participate in grief for others.

Put simply, email is one of the more complex and challenging things you
can do.  If you don't have the knowledge or technical expertise, but
feel confident you can master the fundamentals and progress from there,
be prepared to spend the next month or two or three slogging through
reading RFCs to do so.  If you do, know that your work has just begun,
and the hard part is just around the corner. ;-)

> Also looking for advice on which software would serve me bet in this
> instance.

I'd suggest setting up an internal test network and deciding for
yourself.  For example, setting up a number of FreeBSD jails, each with
its own running installation of sendmail, postfix, qmail, etc. would be
a good approach, and may more useful than relying on the opinions or
recommendations of others. 


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