View Full Version : Hosting mail on my own server

16th May 2003, 19:58

This is probably a silly question, but I'm fed up with NTL (who host my email at moment) having a large amount of down time.


There was a problem logging onto your mail server. Your Password was rejected. Account: 'pop.ntlworld.com', Server: 'pop.ntlworld.com', Protocol: POP3, Server Response: '-ERR mail storage services unavailable, wait a few minutes and try again.', Port: 110, Secure(SSL): No, Server Error: 0x800CCC90, Error Number: 0x800CCC92

So, what do I need to host email (pop3/smtp mailboxes) on my own Windows 2000/2003 Server?

Any suggestions. Am I tied to using MS Exchange or are their freeware/shareware software packages?

I really want to be able to use either Outlook express or a web browser as the client and be able to access my email from anywhere.

Please don't mention Linux or I will have to kill you >:



16th May 2003, 20:59
Dim, you will need fixed IP for reliability, plus hosting mail server on your box may be considered a hostile act by NTL

btw, i am suprised you using SSL to retrieve your mail -- this is not natural thing for POP3 protocol!

best suggestion is to get cheap hosting with mail facilities -- this can cost like a 5er a month, I am geting my own big fk off dedicated server to solve this and many other problems, I'd give you access but you were not on my side as often as I'd liked ;)

P.S. My box will run Linux 8)

17th May 2003, 08:50
OK, I have my own mail server, fixed IP, permanent connection, and it works well. It also gives me the power to block a fair bit of spam :)

Incoming mails work fine, and show no trace of my ISP being involved, but all my outgoing mails show the gateway of my ISP. That's obvious, because I have defined my mail gateway as the one the ISP offers.

I would prefer to go straight from my system to the outside world, without involving the ISP's mail gateway.

Any hints, pointers or clues welcome.

17th May 2003, 13:31

I already run a webserver on the NTL connection and so far NTL have not complained, even tho technically you are not supposed to run services on the connection.

Also my IP address remains static for months on end, so I'm not worried about that either.

Anyone used/heard of the software below?

ArGoSoft Mail Server Pro
Shareware - 98 NT 2k Me XP
Demo - 98 NT 2k Me XP
Shareware - 98 NT 2k Me XP
DeskNow Mail&Collaboration Server
Freeware - 98 NT 2k Me XP
Demo - 98 NT 2k Me XP
GFI MailEssentials for Exchange/SMTP
Commercial - - - 2k - -
Imail Server
Demo - - NT 2k - XP
Shareware - - NT 2k - XP
Shareware - 98 NT 2k Me XP
Kerio MailServer
Demo - 98 NT 2k Me XP
M3Server Newly Added Demo - - - 2k - XP
Magic Winmail Server
Shareware 95 98 NT 2k Me XP
Mail Direct
Shareware - 98 NT 2k Me XP
MailEnable Standard
Freeware - - NT 2k - XP
Demo - - NT 2k Me XP
Demo - 98 NT 2k Me XP
Merak Mail Server
Shareware - 98 NT 2k Me XP
Mercur Mailserver
Shareware - - NT 2k - XP
Shareware - 98 NT 2k Me XP
Shareware - 98 NT 2k Me XP
PostCast Server
Freeware - 98 NT 2k Me XP
PostMaster Express
Demo - 98 NT 2k Me XP
Shareware - 98 NT 2k Me XP
VisNetic MailServer
Shareware - 98 NT 2k Me XP
Shareware - - NT 2k - XP
WorkgroupMail Mail Server
See Home Page 95 98 NT 2k Me XP



17th May 2003, 14:13
simple thing to do is to change to yahoo or lycos.

17th May 2003, 19:35
if you have fixed IP then just get sendmail or qmail - they should run on windows, i have not tried tho cuz I dont trust windows to be a server :)

17th May 2003, 20:32
atw, i'm not sure this a freeware sendmail program for windows. there's a shareware, but i couldnt get it working.

if you wanted to build one you'd have to plug into all the sockets POP, IMAP, SMTP, l. (HttpMail.) etc. The latter is especially tricky. you would also need to run off specific commands through these sockets.

17th May 2003, 20:36
..and then when he looks up the screen he sees that there is in fact many shareware and some freeware mailers..

17th May 2003, 20:39
Assuming you have a domain name use someone like dnspark to host it for you. They have an automated system so if (and with ntl its a not very likely if) your ip address changes software on your machine can notify them of the change and they'll update their dns records immediately.

18th May 2003, 07:35
"if you have fixed IP then just get sendmail or qmail - they should run on windows, i have not tried tho cuz I dont trust windows to be a server"

Tee hee. I don't run or trust windows either :) . I do have it for support purposes, but that's all, most of the time it's firmly switched off.

But you missed my real question. If I have an MX record which delivers mail to me (which it does), do I really need a mail gateway or can I just send mail "out into the ether"?

18th May 2003, 17:26
there are 2 parts to email:

receiving and sending. The latter can be acheived by using your ISPs mail server, while you can run your own mail server to receive and keep mail. This way you are safe that no one would get into your mail server and spam someone for which you may get yoru connection terminated.

19th May 2003, 10:12
GroupWise (included with the Free version of Novell Small Business Suite 6 - a fully functioning 5 user version for SMEs) is able to send via SMTP and, with the help of the optionally available Pop Forwarding Agent, receive your incoming email from your ISP.

This will enable you to close port 25 (I think that's right - but check) and avoid opening your server up as an SMTP relay.

19th May 2003, 20:05
> This will enable you to close port 25 (I think that's right - but
> check) and avoid opening your server up as an SMTP relay.

Mr Novell Lover strikes again :) you need port 25 to operate SMTP server. You can disable relaying _and_ still run it.

GroupWise is the worst thing ever!

20th May 2003, 00:48
For windows Ftgate I have heard rated, no personal experience.

NTL actually provide a dns name for you in my experience something like [exch][rack]-etc try doing a lookup on your current IP address. That stays current even if the IP address changes - according to the senior NTL engineer I spoke to (I know he was senior he knew what a screwdriver looked like).

As far as open relay its probably best if you limit to only your local subnet addresses and logged in users. You can of course close your send port (25) inbound, outbound will make its own way through the firewall unless you block the port both ways (difficult to do on cheap firewalls).

For Linux the tool of choice is Postfix, many variants all good, some a little more complicated than you probably need. Use webmin to set it up and you don't have to play with config files too much.

If you must use exchange take advantage of the lockdown tool it makes providing a simple level of security fairly easy (OK its not perfect but its better than nothing).

29th May 2003, 21:41
you need port 25 to operate SMTP server. You can disable relaying _and_ still run it.

Yes, of course, but if you don't want a public IP number issued to a server on your LAN, you can use NAT and POP3 your email rather than collect via SMTP. Its just a little added touch. You can still send SMTP, and with the correct hosting service (I use Ghoulnet - but there must be others) you do not have to be limited to a set number of email accounts.

I'd rather have my GroupWise email server up and running 24/7/52 - a system unaffectable by trojan & virus attack, unlike M$s Exchange with it's average 2 weeks/year downtime.

30th May 2003, 19:54
The hard bit with your mail server is NOT to be able to SEND mail - plenty of open relays around (BT springs in mind), but to be able to RECEIVE mail - i dont mean to reading from server using POP3, I mean RECEIVING it from other mail servers, ie you should be able to support SMTP on port 25.