Slight email change

I’ve stopped relaying site e-mail via Mandrill—the forum notes you get from the Postasaurus ought now to be delivered directly. This shouldn’t have any real effect on delivery, but actually taking away from Google Apps and making it into a real self-hosted domain, e-mail included, has been a trip.

If you want to see some neat stuff, take a look under the hood at the email headers—we got DKIM! We got SPF! We got a properly configured reverse PTR!

I’m writing up the entire “how to email” journey in a series over at Ars, but I wanted to share here, too. I’ve done everything that I can think of to make sure that’s email behaves responsibly and correct. But just in case, if you suddenly stop receiving forum notifications that you’ve previously enabled, let me know and I’ll try to fix.


Hey Lee, have you ever had trouble with places like Google or Yahoo marking your IP address/range as a spammer and blocking/delaying your mail? My current webhost is a friend of mine, but whoever owned his IP addresses prior to him was apparently a spammer and Google seems to repeatedly mark his account for delayed or blocked delivery because of it. When I saw this post I wondered if you had encountered any issues like this, and if you knew of any way to “clear your name”, as it were, with these places.

I have not—fortunately, my static IP is clear and I aim to keep it that way.

I have heard nearly universal anecdotal evidence that convincing blackhole list providers to un-blackhole your IP address is very, very hard.

From posts on various mailing lists, forums and newsgroups it seems that it does seem that the difficulty varies from relatively easy (RBLs that are professionally run) to near impossible/costs money…

I must admit I’m looking forwards to the writeup - if only because I’ve gone in the other direction. I used to run my own mail servers (with SPF and DKIM) but moved to Google Apps because it could provide me with all of that, and much more, without me having to support it myself.

I had read anecdotal evidence of the same… and then found it not always true. Was pleasantly suprised…

My company hosts a SaaS model application. As part of it, users can send email to other users. We do not receive mail within the application; we send the mail (outbound only) to their own email addresses. The “From” address is their own (usually corporate) email address. That way, if anyone replies, it shows up in their Inbox.
To many email administrators, mail from an external source arriving with an internal address in the “From” field is automatically spam. Valid, except we aren’t… the mail is generated by their users, so if their users want that functionality, we ask their email admins to whitelist our mail IP.

The confusion does cause our mail IP to gather spam scores, though. And there are dozens of RBLs.
We got word of one this past week, reported to us by a user. OK, thanks, we’ll go 'splain who we are/ what we do, and ask to be removed.

When we got there it had already been removed. When we replied back to the user, with a “thanks for telling us, but it’s clear” his reply back to us was that he had requested it be cleared… and it was!