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Email to text message with Exchange 2016

Posted on 2016-09-07
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Last Modified: 2016-09-27
We recently upgraded from Exchange 2010 to Exchange 2016 and everything appeared to have went well, but we seem to have lost one minor function. On our UNIX  host we have a bunch of automated processes and when these processes succeed they send an email to our IT department distribution group, but when they fail they send notification to another IT distribution group which includes our Verizon mobile numbers so we receive notification of failures as a text message to our phone.  This worked just fine using exchange 2010, but since the upgrade to 2016 it no longer works.  

I can send an email directly from my PC's outlook to this group containing our mobile numbers and I receive the text message, it appears to be just when the email is sent from our host to this distribution group via the 2016 exchange server that it doesn't work. The notification still goes to our work email addresses, just not to our phones. I changed my contact in the exchange server from my mobile number to my personal Gmail account thinking it was just a problem with sending the notification to an outside email, but that isn't the case because I received the email to my personal email account.  So it appears to just be a problem when the host is trying to send a notification to @vtext.com.  

Does anyone happen to have any ideas why this function might no longer be working?
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Question by:OCCU
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Expert Comment

by:Adam Brown
ID: 41788733
There are a number of things that could cause this. Determining the exact cause would require some examination and troubleshooting. Specifically, you'll want to examine the message tracking logs in powershell to see what happens to the messages that get sent to those @vtext.com contacts. Run this in powershell:
get-messagetrackinglog -recipient <user@vtext.com>

Open in new window

To get the list of messages sent to a specific contact. That should help you determine what happened to the messages. It's entirely possible that with the change in server, the vtext.com system is flagging the messages as spam and deleting them. If the message tracking logs show that the messages were delivered properly or were rejected, this is the cause. This is most likely to be the cause if you also changed the outgoing mail IP address when you moved to the new server.
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Author Comment

by:OCCU
ID: 41788788
We have done the get-messagetrackinglog and it appears that the message is being sent. We can also see that it is successfully passing through our barracuda filter and being sent to the text email address, but it is never received.  I'm attaching a copy of the message log and the barracuda log that seem to show that the message is being sent...
msglogFL.PNG
baracudamsglog.PNG
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Expert Comment

by:Adam Brown
ID: 41788810
Looks like the barracuda is sending the message to gwsmtp.usa.net. Is your barracuda configured to send via smart host or is it set up to send messages directly? gwsmtp.usa.net is not affiliated with Verizon as far as I know. I would look through the Barracuda configuration to figure out why it's sending messages there. That said, I can also see from the barracuda log that the message is being re-written with a new From: and To: address. This also suggests the barracuda is set to use an intermediary smart-host or relay for sending messages to the Internet.
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Accepted Solution

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OCCU earned 0 total points
ID: 41788871
I have discovered that masking the from address on the UNIX machine to a different address allows the text message to be received. Or, alternatively changing the from address related to the unix host in the /etc/hosts file allows the text message to be received. I'm going to change the from address related to the host inside the /etc/hosts file and hope that it doesn't effect anything else on the host.
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Expert Comment

by:Adam Brown
ID: 41788917
Yeah. If there's a Unix machine in the mix as well you've got a lot to go through when troubleshooting mail failures. I usually recommend no more than 1 additional node in mail flow before getting to Exchange. Makes things much easier. There's rarely (if ever) a requirement for more than that.
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Author Closing Comment

by:OCCU
ID: 41817525
Because I figured out how to solve it on my own by masking the sending email address.
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