Sending email via an ISP account

Posted on 1998-06-11
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2010-04-20
Hello! I'm a Linux newbie and I'd really appreciate some help with my email problem.

***The problem***:
I can't send email via my ISP.

***What I'm using***
The Slackware 3.4 distribution, kernel 2.0.30, is installed on my personal Linux box.
I'm running BSD sendmail 8.8.7.
I'm successfully using fetchmail 4.4.7 to retrieve and read mail from my account with my ISP using POP and a simple .fetchmailrc file in my home directory:

poll mailserver.my.isp.com
protocol POP3
username <my_username_at_my_ISP>
password <my_password_at_my_ISP>
is <usename_on_my_machine>

This works great for receiving mail.

***What's happening***
When I run the outgoing mail queue to send mail via SMTP through my ISP, I get error messages saying that my machine has an unresolvable host name.

PLease help...

Question by:periclis
  • 2
  • 2

Author Comment

ID: 1637305
Edited text of question

Accepted Solution

richrussell earned 400 total points
ID: 1637306
Check your /etc/hosts and /etc/sendmail.cf files to see that your host name is in there in the right places. Have a look at the man page for sendmail, it's quite useful. Also have a good read through of the howto files.

I got there in the end, so I just run 'ppp-on' then sendmail gets my mail and sends any outgoing.

Have a word with your ISP, they may be able to point you in the right direction. It's worth while getting a good linux book as this is dealt with in quite a few of tem.

Expert Comment

ID: 1637307
Hello, you need to modify your sendmail.cf for working in a LAN.
Some variables :
my.domain : your local domain
smtp.my.isp.domain : the SMTP server of your ISP
my.isp.domain : the domain of your ISP

edit a new .mc (ex foo.mc)and type (dnl is commetary):
-------cut --------------------
dnl Check the location of cf.m4
dnl The fiels FROM that the ISP gave you
dnl You will create a .db after ...
FEATURE(genericstable,``hash -N /etc/revaliases'')dnl
dnl you will probably change this ...
dnl If you use Procmail
dnl location of procmail : /usr/bin/procmail
dnl by default /usr/local/bin
dnl Comment out one of these 2 FEATUREs above
dnl depends of your case ...
----- cut here ------
You "masquerade" your local domain by a real domain.
You can add the cost ... means that every messages is queued until a PPP connection is made (the command is sendmail -q)
Add in the mc file :

1. Generate the sendmail.cw (save your old /etc/sendmail.cw) with:
$ m4 foo.cw > /etc/sendmail.cw
2. Put in the /etc/hosts the IP address of smtp.my.ISP.domain
XXX.XXX.XXX.XXX smtp.my.IPS.domain smtp
3. Put this line in the /etc/revaliases :
my.domain: real-adresse@my.ISP.domain
4. regenarate the base aliases
sendmail -bi -oA/etc/revaliases
5. kill sendmail
kill `head -1 /var/run/sendmail.pid`
6. restart sendmail with :
/usr/sbin/sendmail -bd -os
(you can modify the rc script to start sendmail with these options)
. OK !
Every message is kept in /var/spool/mqueue and once logged on the Internet type:
/usr/sbin/sendmail -q (to empty the queue)
You can add this line in the ip-up script

Hope this helps


Author Comment

ID: 1637308
Thank you very much for the detailed response!
However, there's still a **small problem**:

I can't send mail to myself, or to other users with accounts on the same ISP, no matter whether I use as address




I can receive email from users with accounts on the same ISP.

These messages are queued normally when I'm not logegd in to my ISP, but when I log in to my ISP and try to run the queue they bounce with "this address had permanent fatal errors: user unknown".

Messages to recipients on remote addresses are not bouncing, but i don't know yet whether they're getting through.


Expert Comment

ID: 1637309
Have a look on the /var/log/maillog to see what happens (the format of addresses)
Try to log on your linux box with the same account than your ISP gave to you (bloody english on monday morning ;-)).
Or mail me directly (vikie@iname.com)

Featured Post

Free Tool: Path Explorer

An intuitive utility to help find the CSS path to UI elements on a webpage. These paths are used frequently in a variety of front-end development and QA automation tasks.

One of a set of tools we're offering as a way of saying thank you for being a part of the community.

Question has a verified solution.

Are you are experiencing a similar issue? Get a personalized answer when you ask a related question.

Have a better answer? Share it in a comment.

Join & Write a Comment

Google Drive is extremely cheap offsite storage, and it's even possible to get extra storage for free for two years.  You can use the free account 15GB, and if you have an Android device..when you install Google Drive for the first time it will give…
I have written articles previously comparing SARDU and YUMI.  I also included a couple of lines about Easy2boot (easy2boot.com).  I have now been using, and enjoying easy2boot as my sole multiboot utility for some years and realize that it deserves …
Learn how to get help with Linux/Unix bash shell commands. Use help to read help documents for built in bash shell commands.: Use man to interface with the online reference manuals for shell commands.: Use man to search man pages for unknown command…
Learn how to navigate the file tree with the shell. Use pwd to print the current working directory: Use ls to list a directory's contents: Use cd to change to a new directory: Use wildcards instead of typing out long directory names: Use ../ to move…
Suggested Courses

619 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question