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Thread: Zimbra for Personal Use?

  1. #1
    neptune is offline New Member
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    Question Zimbra for Personal Use?

    Hello everyone,

    Wow. Who needs Microsoft Exchange - Zimbra is unbelievable! I just stumbled across Zimbra a few weeks back, and never really knew (or acknowledged) that something like this existed and was also open source. Really nice job guys, I'm loving this thing already (and I haven't even got it working yet!)

    So yes, I'd love to use Zimbra for all my emailing needs (on a personal level). Mainly, I want to use Zimbra to synchronize email, contacts, tasks, calendar, etc. between my laptop and two desktops (one at home and one at work), as well as my Blackberry. For now, I'd like to stick with MS Outlook and Zimbra's web interface though. I think Zimbra is capable of doing all that plus more, which is awesome.

    But...

    I'm in the process of setting this up on a residential Verizon FiOS line. I have a dynamic IP, but have converted an old domain which I don't use for much over to be updated dynamically. Supposedly, port 25 is NOT blocked by FiOS, and I believe I can confirm that is true because I can telnet on port 25 to my server from outside my network and connect to it.

    My server runs Ubuntu Server 7.04, fresh install - only Zimbra is installed at this time. The server is in a DMZ from my router, which also seems to be working well. But I guess I'm confused as to what I need to do to get this up and running. I'm proficient (certainly no expert) with Linux (mostly Debian-based experience) but I'm starting to wonder if I'm waisting my time by trying to get this working here.

    I've done some research and have discovered most ISPs only allow you to send mail from their own SMTP servers. That's fine - no problem there really, but what are the exact settings Zimbra needs to get this working? I'd think it would need some sort of username and password from me, that tells Verizon's mail servers that I am a customer and should be allowed. I don't see a field for either of these though, simply a checkbox that says "Use authentication" or something similar.

    At the moment, I cannot send nor receive email to my Zimbra account. I can, as I mentioned, connect to the mail server via telnet on port 25. When I send mail to me@mail.domain.com from my primary Verizon account, I get a return message stating "Illegal host/domain name found", but when I send it to me@domain.com I get nothing back. Just seems to get lost in cyberspace.

    I believe my MX records are correct, but I'm not completely sure. This domain is registered through Namecheap, if that matters/helps. I'm new to email servers - very little experience with them.

    Anyone care to shed some light on this for me? Is it possible? Is what I'm doing at least kind of making sense to the experts here? What do I need to do to get this running?

    I know, a lot of questions, but I'd really appreciate some guidance!


    Thanks in advance.


    ~Neptune
    Last edited by neptune; 07-28-2007 at 08:22 PM. Reason: Typo

  2. #2
    randall is offline Advanced Member
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    I think what you want to happen is very possible.

    I have a dynamic IP, but have converted an old domain which I don't use for much over to be updated dynamically. Supposedly, port 25 is NOT blocked by FiOS, and I believe I can confirm that is true because I can telnet on port 25 to my server from outside my network and connect to it.
    I assume it would be better to have a static IP for your purpose.

    My server runs Ubuntu Server 7.04, fresh install - only Zimbra is installed at this time. The server is in a DMZ from my router, which also seems to be working well. But I guess I'm confused as to what I need to do to get this up and running. I'm proficient (certainly no expert) with Linux (mostly Debian-based experience) but I'm starting to wonder if I'm waisting my time by trying to get this working here.
    UFP-Server instllation should be basic. Did you try installing the DNS-PHP-MySQL Modules? If you did, i believe you need to disable those.

    I've done some research and have discovered most ISPs only allow you to send mail from their own SMTP servers. That's fine - no problem there really, but what are the exact settings Zimbra needs to get this working? I'd think it would need some sort of username and password from me, that tells Verizon's mail servers that I am a customer and should be allowed. I don't see a field for either of these though, simply a checkbox that says "Use authentication" or something similar.
    You can do this in the Admin WebUI. In the server section->MTA and use Relay MTA for external delivery.

    Also, you have not mentioned if you were able to install Zimbra in your UFP without any errors and i you can already login into your admin account via WebUI.

    Maybe you can give us further information as to what is the content of your hosts, resolv.conf and your zone config.

    Hope this helps.

  3. #3
    neptune is offline New Member
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    Thanks for the reply randall, very helpful indeed.

    I have installed Zimbra completely and without any errors. I can login to the administration panel as well as my email accounts at this time without any glitches. As for my Ubuntu installation, I did not install a LAMP server, so there was literally nothing installed before Zimbra.

    It would absolutely be better to have a static IP for this no doubt, but that will double my internet costs per month and I'd like to avoid that if at all possible. For the money I'd spend on that, I might as well rent a dedicated server somewhere (which I might do in the future if Zimbra will handle everything I want to do).

    For my relay MTA, I currently have it set to use 'outgoing.verizon.net' - as that is Verizon's SMTP server. Again, one of my theories as to why this might not be working is because using that server requires a username and password, and Zimbra does not provide me with a field to enter those in.

    My hosts file looks like this:
    127.0.0.1 localhost.localdomain localhost
    192.168.1.3 mail.*domain*.com mail

    Resolve.cong file looks like this:
    nameserver 192.168.1.1

    Also, in my Zimbra admin settings under the MTA tab, I have the following settings:
    Enable authentication: *checked*
    TLS authentication only: *checked*
    Web mail MTA Hostname: mail.*domain*.com
    Web mail MTA Hostname: outgoing.verizon.net
    MTA trusted networks: *none*

    Hope that provides everyone with some helpful information.
    Last edited by neptune; 07-29-2007 at 10:03 PM. Reason: Tagging error

  4. #4
    phoenix is offline Zimbra Consultant & Moderator
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    Normally your ISP would accept mail from their own IP blocks without authentication. Do you have to enter a password for a mail client to use their mail server? Anyway, the details you need are in the wiki.
    Last edited by phoenix; 07-30-2007 at 10:51 AM.
    Regards


    Bill


    Acompli: A new adventure for Co-Founder KevinH.

  5. #5
    dwmtractor's Avatar
    dwmtractor is offline Moderator
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    Default ISPs usually require POP-before-SMTP

    Quote Originally Posted by phoenix View Post
    Normall your ISP would accept mail from their own IP blocks without authentication. Do you have to enter a password for a mail client to use their mail server? Anyway, the details you need are in the wiki.
    Actually this is no longer true, although it was at one time. Most ISPs now require POP authentication before they'll relay SMTP. You may notice with a conventional POP client that the system will refuse to send mail until you've checked your mail first--this is evidence of the "POP-before-SMTP" setup which is now almost universal.

    Bottom line is this creates a real problem for hosting your own SMTP server, and I'm sorry to say I don't know a way around it. Checking your POP mail with a different client in order to wake up your relay is not a particularly attractive option. . .

    If you DO come up with a way to do this I'd be curious to hear what it is. . .

    Dan

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    phoenix is offline Zimbra Consultant & Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by dwmtractor View Post
    Actually this is no longer true, although it was at one time. Most ISPs now require POP authentication before they'll relay SMTP. You may notice with a conventional POP client that the system will refuse to send mail until you've checked your mail first--this is evidence of the "POP-before-SMTP" setup which is now almost universal.

    Bottom line is this creates a real problem for hosting your own SMTP server, and I'm sorry to say I don't know a way around it. Checking your POP mail with a different client in order to wake up your relay is not a particularly attractive option. . .

    If you DO come up with a way to do this I'd be curious to hear what it is. . .

    Dan
    We're not talking about a pop connection, it's a relay via SMTP. If you read the link I posted you'll find out how to do that.
    Regards


    Bill


    Acompli: A new adventure for Co-Founder KevinH.

  7. #7
    dwmtractor's Avatar
    dwmtractor is offline Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by phoenix View Post
    We're not talking about a pop connection, it's a relay via SMTP. If you read the link I posted you'll find out how to do that.
    I understand, Bill. The problem is that some ISPs who provide dynamic IP accounts (such as the user who started this thread) build their accounts around the assumption (however incorrect) that all their users are POP users (because, after all, they sold them POP accounts). Since they also want to prevent these users from using their mail accounts as spambots, they frequently block access to port 25 (the SMTP server simply rejects the connection) from the IP of the sending machine until a POP connection has been established first. This then unlocks SMTP for a period of time--usually 10-15 minutes--after which their SMTP server will deny relaying again until another POP request has been made.

    Most of these ISPs also flat-out block port 25 to any servers except their own, also to prevent the use of these connections as spambots.

    I have had at least three different ISPs who have set up their accounts this way. I've watched SMTP requests from my own little SMTP server (this was a pre-Zimbra installation) fail repeatedly until I did a POP check and then they zinged right thru. In at least one case (with AT&T, no less) I specifically asked their tech support if they had an alternate option for just SMTP authentication and they told me they did not, and did not intend to allow it.

    Dan
    Last edited by dwmtractor; 07-30-2007 at 10:31 AM. Reason: clarify SMTP auth vs. pop-before-smtp

  8. #8
    dijichi2 is offline OpenSource Builder & Moderator
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    We're not talking about a pop connection, it's a relay via SMTP. If you read the link I posted you'll find out how to do that.
    you're not listening/understanding what he's trying to say.

    neptune, have you tried without using your ISP as a relay? If they're not blocking/proxying inbound 25 then probably/possibly they're not doing the same outbound either.

  9. #9
    neptune is offline New Member
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    I have yet to review that Wiki article you posted Bill, but I certainly will when I get home tonight.

    My ISP does not block port 25, inbound or outbound. However, since I'm completely new to mail servers, I have been doing a fair amount of Googling and have read about some steps people have taken to get Exchange working on connections similar to mine. I figure Exchange is similar to Zimbra in the way it sends mail, that is universal correct? People have been saying that they need to relay, which is what I've been trying. I have not tried it without those relay options.

    I'll read over that Wiki article and try completely disabling any SMTP relaying and post back later tonight with what I find.

    Thanks again all!

  10. #10
    phoenix is offline Zimbra Consultant & Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by neptune View Post
    I have not tried it without those relay options.
    I was assuming you were having problems sending the mail normall, hence the relay request.

    If you don't have port 25 blocked then you don't need to relay and Zimbra will deliver the mail normally by doing a DNS lookup. The only problem you may encounter is caused by the fact you're on a dynamic (domestic service?) IP, some mail servers will reject mail from such accounts. I'd try it without the relay first and see how you get on.
    Regards


    Bill


    Acompli: A new adventure for Co-Founder KevinH.

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