Email problems

We are having trouble e-mailing two domains. All other e-mails seem to be working fine. two types of non delivery messages coming back.
Could not deliver the message in the time limit specified.  Please retry or contact your administrator.
and
There was a SMTP communication problem with the recipient's email server.  Please contact your system administrator.
We have been trying to troubleshoot from both ends. My question is two fold.
First, I attempted to telnet into both mail server and was ok up to the point of Mail From: <email address>.  in both cases the mail servers rejected me. Could that be a security setting on those mail servers, or should that work in most all cases. Does that rejection point to an issue on their side, or can that happen no matter who is attempting to contact the mail server? I have checked all our DNS and MX records setting and they seem to resolve fine. I'm not sure what else to check. Any suggestions would be appreciated.
wlamoreAsked:
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BWaringCommented:
Did you do the telnet from the mail server? If you are getting rejected at the Mail From:, you want to check your mail server IP address to make sure you are not on any blacklist, to start.... there is a free check here: http://dnsstuff.fastnext.com/

Also, check that you have reverse DNS set up for the mail server (same web site), as well as a properly configured SPF record. If you need with that, let us know...
wlamoreAuthor Commented:
I did telnet from the mail server and I have checked and we are not black listed. I have  our ISP doing a double check on our DNS and MX records along with SPF record. All of which I checked myself and found no problems.  I sent out an email to my personal gmail account and checked all the header info and that seemed to be fine.
BWaringCommented:
There is always the possibility that it is a problem on their side... you can do the same DNS checks on the recipients domain, as that sometimes points to issues on their end... try to telnet in from a different IP address... try using a different Mail From: name when you connect.... send an email from your gmail account to those email addresses and see if it goes through from gmail....
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wlamoreAuthor Commented:
I did finally get a RBL - blacklist message from the their servers. I have been removed from all blacklists, but still no luck. Does exchange have a spam filter/check list other that whatever spam protection they are using?
BWaringCommented:
If you were blacklisted, depending on which site you were blacklisted at, it could take longer than a couple of hours to know if it worked... some SPAM filters cache responses, some blacklists use OTHER blacklists themselves, etc...

If you are telnet'ing in, enter a valid Mail From: and it blocks you right there, then you know:

- that device you are connecting, whatever it is, is actively blocking your email address or domain
- if we assume they don't have you manually blacklisted on their side and they have no configuration issues (big assumption), then that device is using some outside information to deny your domain based on domain name alone.

Depends on the version of Exchange, but yes it can have it's own lists both internal and external to check.

Is it possible to work with the recipient and find out what product they use, what outside lists it checks, and if there are any entries in their logs as to why you are being denied?

And I would again, use check to confirm that:

- you are not on any RBLs
- the IP address of you mail server resolves to the actual name that it presents when you connect to it (telnet to your own mail server to check the name)
- your SPF record includes 'mx' (if your outbound mail server is also your inbound mail server) and/or includes 'ip:<IP of mail server>" if it is not

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wlamoreAuthor Commented:
Thanks,
 I'll check all the above again. We have been of the blacklist since early last week. They do use a spam service, and I have contacted them. We come up clean on both the BL services they use.
wlamoreAuthor Commented:
Look like all the bases are covered now. Good to know that all solutions were addressed.
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