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IBM ISeries EMail Question

We currently have our IBM ISeries configured to send email thru our on premises Exchange 2013 server. The internal IP of the Exchange Server is and I have a corresponding Host Table Entry on the ISeries pointing to that ( On the Exchange Server I have also setup a FrontEnd Receive Connector with the scope set to the internal IP of the ISeries ( Everything works well and has for years.
However, we will be moving from hosting our Exchange on premises to using Rackspace's hosted Exchange and I was unsure how to route the email from the ISeries to Rackspace?
1 Solution
Jian An LimSolutions ArchitectCommented:
you need to check with rackspace if you are allow to setup receive connector.
If not, then you will need to keep your exchange server? or other mail relay server to fulfil this requirement.
ctsuhakoAuthor Commented:
So far, Rackspace has talked about setting up an spf record. I don't know if this equates to a Receive Connector.
Jian An LimSolutions ArchitectCommented:
let's change another way of answer the question.

When IBM ISeries EMail send email out,
what is the from and to address?

if the from address is from internal, and to address is external, then you will need a connector (if rackspace can provide) or alternative solution.
if the from address is anyone, and to address is internal, then you don't need a connector.

this is the same to migrate to Office 365, you will need to keep an on-premises Exchange server to keep this flowing. As a result, I will recommend you consider migrate to office 365 (better pricing, and you get your a hybrid exchange exchange licence for free!)
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The Rackspace comment about an SPF record might be that they are suggesting that the IBM sends out email directly (or via a local smarthost) rather than via Rackspace.

To send via Rackspace, Rackspace would need to create a suitable receive connector.

As Jian An Lim has said, Office 365 also allows one to setup custom receive connectors.

Even if you have a receive connector on Rackspace or on O365, unless the IBM mail server has the capability of STARTTLS it might be advisable to have a local smarthost that has STARTTLS to cover the mailflow to Rackspace/O365.
Gary PattersonVP Technology / Senior Consultant Commented:
This expert suggested creating a Gigs project.
This is a question for Rackspace support.  Tell them that you have a system in-house that needs to relay mail via SMTP off of your hosted Exchange server, and ask them if it is possible to configure that on their service.

I suspect the answer is probably "no".  I looked at RackSpace support site, and didn't see any relevant articles.  Still worth a call.

That leaves you with a couple of primary alternatives.

1) If your IBM i is behind a firewall with a static public IP address, you can configure your IBM i to directly send email to internet hosts.  (Dynamic public IP will just cause you problems - if you have a dynamic IP, use a mail relay service).  In order to do this, you will need to have your ISP configure rDNS, and whoever manages your DNS will also have to configure SPF.

2) Sign up with another mail relay service - your ISP may offer one, or you can use a relay service like MailGun: https://www.mailgun.com/sending-email - again, you'll probably need to configure your DNS for SPF to work with the relay service, but I'm sure the relay service will provide you with specific instructions during their setup process.
Gary PattersonVP Technology / Senior Consultant Commented:
Just to be clear, to use a third-party relay service, or for your local IBM i to directly initiate email for your domain without going through your new Hosted Exchange, you will NOT update your DNS MX records - you just want these additional mail servers to send email on your domain's behalf, not receive email.  

The trick to getting that to work reliably is to set up rDNS and SPF properly so that mail recipients can verify that the sender (IBM i or relay service) is authorized to send on your domain's behalf.  

Also a good idea to make sure that the FROM address that you use for outbound emails is a valid mail address on your MX mail servers (hosted Exchange in this case).

Here is a tool that I use to verify setup:

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