How to use Postfix as Relay for Mailgun

Mailgun is a popular SMTP Relay/API service, one of my favorite. For transactional emails I have favored Mandrill before they declared to shutdown and later on merged with Mailchimp. Mandrill has cleaner network than any other services for transactional emails till this date. But what if, you need a smtp relay along with transactional emails? Mandrill fails there, as they can’t be entirely used as a SMTP relay. For those cases, I prefer Mailgun over Sendgrid, one of the main reason is, Sendgrid has poor network quality over Mailgun.

If you try to configure Sendgrid with Postfix, you will see, it will work without smtp_sasl_auth_enable set to true/yes. But this won’t be the case with Mailgun. To use Mailgun as smtp relay, you need to set the following in your main.cf file:

# set the relayhost to use 587 port of mailgun:
relayhost = [smtp.mailgun.org]:587

# set the authentication using static method:
smtp_sasl_password_maps = static:postmaster@yourdomain.com:password
# you can get the smtp authentication from Sending >> Domain Settings >> Select Domain >> SMTP Credentials

# set sasl authentication on
smtp_sasl_auth_enable = yes

# set sasl security options to no anonymous:
smtp_sasl_security_options = noanonymous

Once these are done, you can save the file and restart postfix to start relaying with Mailgun. In cases, if you see the following error:

SASL authentication failed; cannot authenticate to server smtp.mailgun.org[34.224.137.116]: no mechanism available

Along with the following:

warning: SASL authentication failure: No worthy mechs found

This means, you are lacking the SASL authentication library for postfix or libsasl2 is not enough to cover the dependencies. To resolve this, you can install the cyrus-sasl libraries. You may do that using the following:

yum install cyrus-sasl cyrus-sasl-lib cyrus-sasl-plain

This should be it, your SMTP should now send mails using Mailgun as the relay.

How To Send Email From an IP without Authentication – Cpanel/WHM

Since antirelayed is removed by the cpanel team from the latest cpanel, the situation might arise to some people, at least to me. I had a server sending mails without authentication, a trusted IP. Now, how to do this with the latest Cpanel/WHM?

Well, Cpanel still keeps the facility called ‘alwaysrelay’. This one was there when antirelayed was there. Antirelayed used to allow relay for an IP without authentication for a specific period of time, while ‘alwaysrelay’ will allow relaying all the time.

All you need to do, is to add the IP in the following file in a new line:

/etc/alwaysrelay

and restart the Exim:

service exim restart

That should be it. Remember, you might encounter the exim report cpaneleximscanner found your email to be spam. In such cases, go to WHM >> Service Configuration >> Exim Configuration Manager >> Set the following option to ‘Off’ : Scan outgoing messages for spam and reject based on the Apache SpamAssassin™ internal spam_score setting

and Save. Now you may check, it should work.

How To: Restore Zimbra Quarantined Email by Clam AKA Heuristics.Encrypted.PDF Release Point

Zimbra Mail Server automatically quarantines emails that get hit by the Antivirus scan using Clam when the mail is received. While putting the email on the recipient inbox, what it does, instead of giving the original email with the attachment, it sends a virus detected email with the following kind of error message:

Virus (Heuristics.Encrypted.PDF) in mail to YOU

Virus Alert
Our content checker found
virus: Heuristics.Encrypted.PDF

by Zimbra

It actually means, the original mail is now quarantined. Zimbra maintains a virus quarantine email account that is not normally available in the ‘Manage Account’ list of Zimbra Admin panel. You can find it if you search with ‘virus’ in the ‘Search’ box of the admin panel. What zimbra does in quarantine situation, is that, it pushes the mail to the quarantine email instead of original recipient.

Now, to get back the mail delivered to the original recipient, we need to first get the quarantine email account, get the message id, and then we need to inject the mail into the LMTP pipe that bypasses any scanning. Here are the steps on how to do this:

# First get to the zimbra user
$ su - zimbra

# Get the email account that is used to store virus detected mails
$ zmprov gcf zimbraAmavisQuarantineAccount
zimbraAmavisQuarantineAccount: virus-quarantine.mrhmcbg4kz@yourhostname.com

# virus-quarantine.mrhmcbg4kz@yourhostname.com this should be our quarantine email account, now we need to get the quarantine account's mailbox id
$ zmprov gmi virus-quarantine.mrhmcbg4kz@yourhostname.com
mailboxId: 73
quotaUsed: 644183

# Mailbox id here for the quarantine account is 73. Now go to the message storage of this id using the following command: cd /opt/zimbra/store/0/<mailboxId>/msg/0
$ cd /opt/zimbra/store/0/73/msg/0

# list the messages
$ ls *

These are your quarantined emails. Now for example the complainer is ‘sam@yourhostname.com’. To search for the emails designated for this email account, you may use the following:

$ grep -l sam@yourhostname.com *
281-1216.msg
300-1400.msg
301-1476.msg

This should return you all the emails that got quarantined for the above user.

Now the question is, how can we get these emails delivered to the designated user bypassing the antivirus/antispam tools. To do this, you need to inject the mail into LMTP pipe. You may do this using ‘zmlmtpinject’ command as following:

$ zmlmtpinject -r sam@yourhostname.com -s admin@yourhostname.com 281-1216.msg

Remember, to change same@yourhostname.com to the original recipient. admin@yourhostname.com would be the newly rewritten sender for this mail delivery and ‘281-1216.msg’ is the file name of the original email that you found out from the grep command. You can do lmtp injections for one email mail with each command. So, you would require to do this for each emails.

How To Renew & Deploy Let’s Encrypt SSL on Zimbra Server – 2020

Ok, there is a reason to put 2020 on the title. Because the process has changed since past. At this moment, I manage a Zimbra server with multiple domains in it, which won’t deploy the ‘other’ domains if not specified. The process is fairly simple, but I am keeping this as a documentation purpose, so that I don’t miss next time.

To renew the certificate for attached domains using certbot is fairly simple, just do:

# certbot renew

Once done, you you want to use the pre-hook and deploy-hook to do the patching and deploying as following using certbot_zimbra.sh

# certbot_zimbra.sh -p
# certbot_zimbra.sh -r -d 'your_domain'

Updated, certbot_zimbra doesn’t take this. ‘-n’ used to be taken as new and ‘-r’ for replacing, now, ‘-r’ is removed. Instead you can use ‘-e’ to specify new domains. So the command for replacement and deployment would be fairly simple as following:

# certbot_zimbra.sh -p
# certbot_zimbra.sh -d -e 'mail.yourdomain.com'
# certbot_zimbra.sh -d -e 'mailapp.yourdomain.com'


… and so on. At this moment, I couldn’t find a way to advise zimbra certbot to follow a list of domains instead of one. But this is probably possible by cracking the certbot.

How to setup Postfix relay with authentication in CentOS 7

To configure postfix to relay mail using another MTA, you may do the following steps:

postconf -e 'relayhost = smtp.to.relay.com'
postconf -e 'smtp_sasl_auth_enable = yes'
postconf -e 'smtp_sasl_password_maps = hash:/etc/postfix/sasl_passwd'
postconf -e 'smtp_sasl_security_options='

Replace smtp.to.relay.com with the original MTA hostname that you going to use for relaying. Now, create the sasl_passwd file in /etc/postfix with the following inside:

smtp.to.relay.com smtp_username:smtp_password

Now, use postmap to generate postfix hash db:

postmap /etc/postfix/sasl_passwd

You can verify if it’s working with the following:

postmap -q smtp.to.relay.com /etc/postfix/sasl_passwd

This will return the username and password for your smtp relay host.

Now all you need to do is to restart the postfix

service postfix restart

Quick Tip: How to Check Total Number of Mails in Postfix Queue

Exim provides a quick way to check the total number of mails in the queue. This is done using the exim -bpc Although, this is not the same for postfix. Postfix doesn’t come with an easy way to do that.

How to Check Total Number of Mails in Postfix Queue

A quick tip on what I use to check the postfix queue number is the following command:

# mailq | tail -n 1
-- 6899 Kbytes in 1518 Requests.

Basically, postfix returns the queue statistics at the end of the queue listing command. We are simply tailing that to find the number.

 

How To: Clear Postfix and Exim Queue

How to clear postfix queue

Postfix queue can be cleared using the postsuper command. The syntax is as following:

# postsuper -d ALL

It will clear all the postfix queue. You can specifically clear the deferred emails for example from the postfix queue as following:

# postsuper -d ALL deferred

If you have a large quantity in postfix queue, there is actually a quicker and easier way to do that. You can simply remove all the folders under /var/spool/postfix and it will clear the queue.

# rm -Rf /var/spool/postfix/*
# mailq | tail -n 1
Mail queue is empty

Note: The folders inside postfix would get created automatically once the queue starts filling up, nothing to worry about.

How to clear Exim Queue

Exim queue can be checked using the following:

# exim -bp

To check the number of mails in queue, you can use:

# exim -bpc

To remove a message from exim queue, you need to use the following:

# exim -Mrm {message-id}

There is no build in command to clear all the mails from exim queue. You can use a pipe command to clear the exim queue as following:

# exim -bp | exiqgrep -i | xargs exim -Mrm

Although, there are even quicker and easier way to clear the exim queue, specially if you have a lot of emails in queue and the server is pretty loaded.

# rm -Rf /var/spool/exim/input

Removing the input directory should clear the exim queue. Note: The directory would automatically create once the exim starts it’s queue again, no need to worry.

Troubleshoot: fatal: open lock file /var/lib/postfix/master.lock: unable to set exclusive lock

Error Message & Trace details:

One of my customer came with an error saying the postfix in his server isn’t working. The server was running CentOS 7, and the system postfix status was inactive, means not running. Although, the system queue was running I could see. The error that was returning while restarting/checking status was the following:

# service postfix status
Redirecting to /bin/systemctl status postfix.service
● postfix.service - Postfix Mail Transport Agent
Loaded: loaded (/usr/lib/systemd/system/postfix.service; enabled; vendor preset: disabled)
Active: failed (Result: exit-code) since Tue 2018-01-09 04:04:05 UTC; 1s ago
Process: 9201 ExecStart=/usr/sbin/postfix start (code=exited, status=1/FAILURE)
Process: 9197 ExecStartPre=/usr/libexec/postfix/chroot-update (code=exited, status=0/SUCCESS)
Process: 9194 ExecStartPre=/usr/libexec/postfix/aliasesdb (code=exited, status=0/SUCCESS)
Main PID: 1358 (code=killed, signal=TERM)

Jan 09 04:04:03 twin7.hifrank.biz systemd[1]: Starting Postfix Mail Transport Agent...
Jan 09 04:04:03 twin7.hifrank.biz postfix/master[9273]: fatal: open lock file /var/lib/postfix/master.lock: unable to set exclusive lock: Resource tempo...vailable
Jan 09 04:04:04 twin7.hifrank.biz postfix/master[9272]: fatal: daemon initialization failure
Jan 09 04:04:05 twin7.hifrank.biz postfix/postfix-script[9274]: fatal: mail system startup failed
Jan 09 04:04:05 twin7.hifrank.biz systemd[1]: postfix.service: control process exited, code=exited status=1
Jan 09 04:04:05 twin7.hifrank.biz systemd[1]: Failed to start Postfix Mail Transport Agent.
Jan 09 04:04:05 twin7.hifrank.biz systemd[1]: Unit postfix.service entered failed state.
Jan 09 04:04:05 twin7.hifrank.biz systemd[1]: postfix.service failed.

How to fix:

The error to note here is the following:

fatal: open lock file /var/lib/postfix/master.lock

I first killed the smtp and smtpd processes that runs by postfix:

# killall -9 smtp
# killall -9 smtpd

But that didn’t solve the problem. I then used the fuser command to check which process holds the lock file:

# fuser /var/lib/postfix/master.lock
/var/lib/postfix/master.lock: 18698

Then we check the process 18698 and kill the responsible process:

# ps -axwww|grep 18698
9333 pts/0 S+ 0:00 grep --color=auto 18698

18698 ? Ss 4:28 /usr/libexec/postfix/master -w
# killall -9 /usr/libexec/postfix/master
or
# kill -9 18698

Once the process is killed, you can now start the postfix:

# service postfix start
# service postfix status|grep Active
Redirecting to /bin/systemctl status postfix.service
Active: active (running) since Tue 2018-01-09 04:15:50 UTC; 4min 45s ago

SMTP Error: 550 Please turn on SMTP Authentication in your mail client – IP is not permitted to relay through this server without authentication

We had a customer complaining about a commonly seen error of the following type:

550 Please turn on SMTP Authentication in your mail client. mail-pf0-f172.google.com [209.85.192.172]:38632 is not permitted to relay through this server without authentication.

Diagnostic-Code: smtp; 550-Please turn on SMTP Authentication in your mail client. 550-mail-pf0-f172.google.com [209.85.192.172]:38632 is not permitted to relay 550 through this server without authentication.

reason: 550-Please turn on SMTP Authentication in your mail client.
550-mout.kundenserver.de [212.227.17.24]:49392 is not permitted to relay
550 through this server without authentication.

They were all basically the same error. This is a common error and the solution is pretty simple as it looks like. Enabling ‘SMTP Authentication’ on the outlook or the mail client should solve the problem. But interestingly, the client was smart and he wasn’t doing any mistake with ‘SMTP authentication’. The error was actually showing up when someone was trying to send the mail to him (As a receiver SMTP). We then tried digging the error further.

There is something we need to remember. SMTP is not only authenticated using username and password, it also goes through a dns authentication check too. If your dkim/domainkeys/spf/dmarc do not match as the mail server has advised, the mail will get denied with the same type of error (Error code 550). We then realized the customer account was transfered earlier from a different server and the old domainkeys were still there in it’s DNS zone file. As domainkeys are RSA keys generated per server, it is important to regenerate the keys after the server change. Otherwise, the old key check through the DNS can trigger the 550 error from the receiver relay. We had deleted and generated a new domainkeys for the customer and the error went off.