Qmail Reject vs Bounces

 
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imknight
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 20, 2005 5:26 pm    Post subject: Qmail Reject vs Bounces Reply with quote
Can i bring everyones attention to the following article in our blog:

http://life.34sp.com/wordpress/?p=27

If anyone has any queries over this please let us know.
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Last edited by imknight on Thu Jan 18, 2007 6:16 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 20, 2005 7:48 pm    Post subject: Re: Qmail Reject vs Bounces Reply with quote
imknight wrote:
Can i bring everyones attention to the following article in our blog:

http://life.34sp.com/wordpress/?p=27

If anyone has any queries over this please let us know.


I'm not sure how exactly my email is setup... will have to check

But, does this mean I will no longer able to send mail to blah@domain.com and download it (despite not having blah setup)?
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 20, 2005 7:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
No, this wont affect that at all.

What you are doing is using a catchall for non existant email addresses, this setting is a replacement for the people who have mail set up to "bounce" mails to non existant mailboxes.

Bounces can lead to the servers becoming blacklisted and in turn cause issues for all users on the server.

I however do strongly discourage you from using the catchall, it is a proven way of picking up excess spam/virus as you will get some people who will just send to random email addresses at a domain and you will therefore get all of them emails.

The far better option is on the mailname that you use simply add all your aliases "sales","info","enquiries","fred" etc - that way all your wanted emails will be collected in the single mailbox and all other emails will be rejected.
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 20, 2005 8:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
<spooky trivia>
Only on this day, did I set up some new mail boxes and set the "Reject" option !
</spooky trivia>
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 20, 2005 8:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
Cheers Ian.

imknight wrote:
The far better option is on the mailname that you use simply add all your aliases "sales","info","enquiries","fred" etc - that way all your wanted emails will be collected in the single mailbox and all other emails will be rejected.


I've already got various aliases set up.

sales and info obviously get deleted ;-)
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2006 5:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
If you do want to control spam, I recommend not using the standard names like info, webmaster, admin, sales. These are so common spammers will send to them knowing they will reach the target more often than miss, so instead try using inventive or unusual names, and preferably scripted contact forms.
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 18, 2007 6:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
Please note that we will be once again going through the servers in the near future to analyze the usage of bounces and external catchall addresses. Both of these are key factors in getting our servers blacklisted with various companies.

In the future the whole section may disappear as it has been deemed by many people that the use of catchalls/bounce messages is to be highly discouraged to aid in cutting down spam across the internet.

Anyone using either of these systems should alter them accordingly. If you wish to have a single mailname to collect all your mail - then this is what mail aliases are for, a single mailname can have a numerous amount of aliases, enabling you to get all the email you want on one email address, without the need of collecting email for xyxycx@ sdfdf@ your domain.
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manuel
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 09, 2007 9:39 am    Post subject: Re: Qmail Reject vs Bounces Reply with quote
imknight wrote:
Can i bring everyones attention to the following article in our blog:

http://life.34sp.com/wordpress/?p=27

If anyone has any queries over this please let us know.
The article does not explain what a "reject" is. I get the impression that "reject" simply deletes the mail without any warning either to the sender or to the owner of the receiving domain. If, so, the word "reject" is a misrepresentation and should be replaced by "delete".

So please, what exactly does "reject" do?
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 09, 2007 11:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
The server temporarily 'rejects' the email - sending a 'temporarily unavailble' code to the sending server, all properly configured mailservers will know that this means to try again in a few minutes.

This temporarily failure system is in use anyway at all times, as it can be that the server is at the maximum connections etc etc, so this is nothing that should cause any issues to any proper mail server sending email into the server.

We dont 'delete' anything, as we dont actually receive anything until the server resends.
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 09, 2007 12:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
imknight wrote:
We dont 'delete' anything, as we dont actually receive anything until the server resends.
It still doesn't answer my central query:
Do I as owner of the recipient domain receive any indication as to the specific mail being "rejected"? Does the sender of the email receive any specific indication that the mail has been "rejected"? If there is any such indication to either of these parties what form does it take?
If there is no explicit indication to either party, what happens to the email - is it simply lost, deleted, delivered to a black hole or what? Does the 'temporaily unavalable' dialogue go on for ever? If this is the case then we're in a similar situation of Greylisting where it's possible that legitimate email simply disappears off the face of the earth.
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 09, 2007 12:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
This is a natural process that takes place across the internet on a daily basis.

Even without grey listing - 'temporary failures' take place all the time on the internet.

So no you as the recipient would not get anything from it.
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manuel
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 09, 2007 12:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
imknight wrote:
This is a natural process that takes place across the internet on a daily basis.

Even without grey listing - 'temporary failures' take place all the time on the internet.

So no you as the recipient would not get anything from it.
So the bottom line is that when an email is rejected no one who needs to know is given any information that the mail has failed? I can't accept this as any legitimate sender who sends me email and makes say a spelling mistake is left completely in the dark as to delivery failure (as am I). So as with greylisting it's quite posiible for legitimate mail to be wiped off the face of the earth and neither I, nor the sender will know anything about it.
In understand that with geylisting there is an opt-out possible. It might not matter for reject but for the fact that 34sp is now telling me that I will be forced to go down this route, like it or not.
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 09, 2007 12:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
I think here you are confusing 'greylisting' and 'reject'

Greylisting tests the validy of the mail server.

Reject tests that the emailbox exists on the server.

In the case of the latter a simple 'undeliverable' is sent back to the user telling them that no mailbox of that name exists.
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manuel
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 09, 2007 6:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
imknight wrote:
I think here you are confusing 'greylisting' and 'reject'

Greylisting tests the validy of the mail server.

Reject tests that the emailbox exists on the server.

In the case of the latter a simple 'undeliverable' is sent back to the user telling them that no mailbox of that name exists.
Part of the problem if I may say is that 34sp are not explaining reject very well. For example, earlier in the thread you said:
The server temporarily 'rejects' the email - sending a 'temporarily unavailable' code to the sending server, all properly configured mailservers will know that this means to try again in a few minutes.
I don't understand this. Why, if the mailbox doesn't exist does your server need to bother with 'temporarily unavailble' code inviting the sending server to try again? Are you suggesting that a mailbox which doesn't exist now will somehow appear magically in a few minutes time?
I have read the "Help" under Mail preferences in my Control Panel which describes reject as doing this:
"Reject such mail without accepting it and without notifying senders."
That specifically states your server will not notify the sender that their mail is rejected. The only interpretation I have of that statement is that their mail will simply be binned and no one will get a notification. You now seem to be contradicting what "Help" says by saying:
Reject tests that the emailbox exists on the server.

In the case of the latter a simple 'undeliverable' is sent back to the user telling them that no mailbox of that name exists.


Now which of these is correct ,is it:
1 The sender will not be notified of the reject, or
2 a simple 'undeliverable' is sent back to the sender

There is a big difference between them. The first answer is unacceptable to me, but the second may be a compromise, but I would like clarification of exactly what the "sender" receives. Also by "sender" do you mean the From header field, the envelope sender header, the reply-to header, the Errors-To header, the Bounce-To header or what?
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 09, 2007 7:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
I'm sure I'm right in thinking that the sender receives notification that his email was undeliverable (which could be for a variety of reasons).

His SMTP server should try to re-send the message a number of times at intervals until it gives up. The number of times/intervals etc. is down to whoever is administering the server.

I've received many of these notifications over the years and it's perfectly normal.

Try Googling for RFC 3463.
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 09, 2007 8:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
Manuel you are posting on two totally different threads.

Greylisting and reject are not the same thing, they are two totally different things.

Reject does (in the tests i have done today to confirm this) send back a 'undeliverable' email. Statiing quite simply 'mailbox does not exist' (or wording to that effect).

Please feel free to send a email to anything@pristest.34sp.com to see the response that you get back.

Greylisting is what works at MTA level and tests to simply see if the sending server will requeue the email, the best way to read up on this is to read the whitepaper that is linked on our blog post - this gives more information than i would be able to give.

As mentioned in a previous post we did not implement greylisting until such time that we could control it at domain level as we do understand that some people may wish to opt out of this due to the small delay that can be incurred on emails. Most people using it however have noticed great returns and unless you check your email every minute (not advisable for a number of reasons) then the delay generally goes unnoticed after a short while (as your regular emails become part of the system and are not challenged any more)
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 09, 2007 11:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
imknight wrote:
Manuel you are posting on two totally different threads.

Greylisting and reject are not the same thing, they are two totally different things.
I'm aware of that and in this thread I'm only talking about the latter (viz "reject").
Quote:

Reject does (in the tests i have done today to confirm this) send back a 'undeliverable' email. Statiing quite simply 'mailbox does not exist' (or wording to that effect).

Please feel free to send a email to anything@pristest.34sp.com to see the response that you get back.
I have indeed sent a test mail to that email address. The response I got back on the face of it looks no different from a bounce - how does "reject" differ from "bounce"?
As I mentioned earlier, the Control panel "Help" states that "reject" does not give the sender any indication of what's happened. If the response I received from anything@pristest.34sp.com was a "reject" then the "Help" text appears to be wrong. It would also be helpful if you updated blog http://life.34sp.com/wordpress/?p=27 to say how "reject" works from the user perspective.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 8:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
Apologies i seen you mention greylising in your first post on this thread and took the wrong assumption as to which article the link was too.

It differs from a bounce in that it is rejected at the smtp connection, the reply you get back comes from your smtp service - not the mail server of the recipient.

In regards to the control panel - this is a commercial product that we cannot alter items like this on, plesk is a hosting panel that is in worldwide use every day by millions of people.

We are simply taking minor steps on the mailservers to try to assure that your proper mails do get delivered and that you dont loose mail due to someone abusing the way 'bounces' can work.

Any system that in someway sends large batchs of unsolicited email onto the larger companies (aol/ntl/btinternet/yahoo etc) will ultimatly end up getting the server blacklisted and it can take us weeks to get this removed.

Bounce is an option that really isnt acceptable with these items at risk and very few people get legitimate email to mailnames they dont setup - if you are worded about slight spelling mistakes then add similar names as 'aliases' to your mailname - eg sales@ could have sals sale as aliases. Alternativly set the catchall to a temporary mailname on your domain which you can login to on webmail (or similar) and scan through once in a while.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 9:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
imknight wrote:
It differs from a bounce in that it is rejected at the smtp connection, the reply you get back comes from your smtp service - not the mail server of the recipient.

In regards to the control panel - this is a commercial product that we cannot alter items like this on, plesk is a hosting panel that is in worldwide use every day by millions of people.
OK, if that's how reject works then, from the end user's point of view, the end result looks similar to a bounce and I have no problems with it.
It's a pity that I was misinformed by Control Panel "Help" which gives the impression that the mail is simply deleted with no indication to anyone. May I suggest you raise the query with the developers of Control Panel. Meanwhile, can I suggest you update your blog to indicate the correct situation so as to avoid others similarly getting the wrong end of the stick?
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