CommuniGate Pro: How To

Data Files

This section explains how you should configure your CommuniGate Pro Server if you have some specific needs.


How can I gradually migrate accounts from my old server?

In many cases, especially when you migrate users from an old server, your may want CommuniGate Pro to deliver mail to all accounts created in a certain domain, while mail to all accounts that do not [yet] exist in that CommuniGate Pro domain should be relayed to some other [old] server, without any change in the headers and envelope addresses.

Open the Domain Settings for that domain and set the Mail to Unknown option:

Mail to Unknown Accounts
Here domain.dom is the name of this CommuniGate Pro Domain and otherserver.dom is the DNS name of the other [old] server. If the DNS name for the other server does not exist, you can use the IP address instead:

When the CommuniGate Pro server receives any message directed to aname@domain.dom, and the domain does not have an account/group/forwarder/mailing list with that aname name, the message is Rerouted (the envelope address is changed) to aname%domain.dom@otherserver.dom.smtp. The .smtp suffix tell the SMTP module to accept this address, and cut the domain name part from the envelope address, using that part only as a name of the server to connect to (the SMTP module always cuts the IP-address type domain parts, too). The resulting envelope address (aname%domain.dom) is converted to the standard form (aname@domain.dom) before it is sent to that other server. As a result, the other server receives such a message with the unmodified envelope data and header fields.

As soon the aname account is created in the CommuniGate Pro server domain.dom domain, mail starts to go to that account automatically. You can copy all messages from the aname account on the old server to the aname account on the new server and phase out the aname account on the old server.


SMTP Delivery

How can I relay mail for certain domains?

If you want your Server to act as a back-up mail relay for certain domains, you can enable the Relay to All Hosts We Backup option in the SMTP module settings. But this is not a perfect solution, since anybody with access to any DNS server would be able to use your server for unauthorized relaying.

To safely back-up the domain place the following record into the Router table:

Relay: =

Read the Protection section to learn the meaning of the Relay: prefix (you can omit it, or you may want to use the RelayAll: prefix instead).

If you want to relay mail for the domain, but it should go to via a different server, use the following Router record:

Relay: =

If you want to bypass the MX records and relay all mail to a certain IP address (specified explicitly or using a DNS A-record), then see the Bypassing MX section.

How can I send mail to a remote host bypassing its DNS MX records?

If your server should send mail to a domain target.domain via the relay relay.domain, you can specify the IP address of that relay in the Router:
target.domain = target.domain@[]
You may want to relay mail using DNS A-records instead of explicitly specified IP addresses:
target.domain = target.domain@relay.domain.25.smtp

The SMTP module does not look at the MX records if the port number of a remote host is explicitly specified. By specifying the standard (25) SMTP port number, you tell the SMTP module to look for the relay.domain DNS A-record, and ignore its MX records.

Note: You may want to add a Relay:, NoRelay: or RelayAll: prefix

How can I hold all client mail till their servers send ETRN?

If your client has a symmetric dial-on-demand link (i.e. a link that is brought up by the provider when there is any traffic to the client hosts), that client may want:

To serve such a customer (the mail domain), you should:

How can I forward mail to the other SMTP MTA on the same server?

You may want to have two different SMTP Servers (MTA) running on the same computer, but listening on either different port numbers or on different IP addresses.

To relay mail to the "sibling" server running on the port 26, you can redirect to the domain other-port if you put the following record into your Router table:

other-port =

To relay mail to the "sibling" server running on the port 25, but on a different IP address, you can redirect to the domain other-ip if you put the following record into your Router table:

other-ip =

For example, if all mail to the domain should go to the sibling server running on a diffent port, place the following records into the Router:

other-port =
Relay: =

or simply:

Relay: =

How can my customer servers receive mail if they have dial-up connections?

Small sites may have dial-up connections only and they can be off-line most of the time. To provide better mail delivery to those sites, you should use your CommuniGate Pro server as their back-up mail relay. You should:

How can my customers release mail to all their domains with one ETRN?

Remote servers that use your CommuniGate Pro server as a back-up mail relay can serve multiple domains. Those servers usually send ETRN commands specifying only one domain as the ETRN command parameter.

To let mail to all customer domains being released with one ETRN command, you should enqueue mail sent to the customer "secondary" domains into the customer "main domain" queue.

If the remote server should receive mail for the domain1.dom, domain2.dom, and domain2.dom domains, but it sends ETRN commands only for the domain1.dom domain, use the following Router domain-level records:

domain2.dom = domain2.dom@domain1.dom.smtp
domain3.dom = domain3.dom@domain1.dom.smtp

How can my customer servers receive mail if they have dynamic IP addresses?

If a customer has a mail server and a dial-up connection with a dynamic IP address, the customer server cannot be listed in the DNS, because DNS records link domain names and fixed (static) IP addresses.

To deliver mail to those sites, you should use your CommuniGate Pro server as their mail relay. Depending on the customer server capabilities, your can use either the ATRN or the Unified Domain-Wide Account method.

If the customer server supports the On-Demand Mail Relaying (ATRN) method, you should:

If the customer server supports the Unified Domain-Wide Account method, you should:



How can I store all outgoing mail sent by all my users?

In a corporate environment, it may be necessary to store all outgoing mail into a mailbox in a system administrator or a security officer account.

Note: if your company chooses to copy employee mail, it MUST notify all server users about this policy.

To copy mail sent from certain domains, use a Server-wide Rule:


The account security should already exist in the main domain, and the mailbox outgoing should already exist in that account.

How can I restrict to whom my users can send mail?

In a corporate environment, it may be necessary to let certain groups of users send mail only to other members of that group and to only certain addresses outside that group.

The simplest way to implement restrictions is to orginize these groups of users into CommuniGate Pro domains. If all users in the domain (expect the user boss) are allowed to send mail only to the users in the same domain and to the address, then the following Server-wide Rule should be used:


How can I create an autoresponder that sends files or HTML messages?

You can use Rule "Reply" actions or the simplfied AutoResponser Rule to generate messages in any MIME format. Just start the Reply text with the plus (+) sign and add all necessary MIME headers. Rememeber that the Subject field is not autogenerated in this case and that you have to specify the MIME-Version: header field, too.

You can use the same method to send non-text attachments:

The easiest way to compose such a message is to send the required file to your CommuniGate Pro account using MIME-encoding, and then open the message using the WebUser Interface. After verifying that the message has arrived intact, click the "Message Text" icon in the message header panel. The undecoded text of the message will be displayed in a new browser window. You can copy the encoded message body text and paste it to the Rule text field.



How can I create and use Shared Mailboxes?

A shared mailbox is a mailbox in account X that can be used by a user (account) Y. Shared mailboxes can be used for incoming mail processed by a group of people (sales department, support department, etc.). Shared mailboxes can be used as an extremely fast and effective alternative to mail and distribution lists: the announce mailbox in the marketing account can be used to store all company announcements. If all employees have read access to that mailbox, a single copy of each announcement becomes available to everybody.

To use a Shared Mailbox, two steps must be taken: first, potential users of the shared mailbox should be granted access rights for that mailbox. On the second step the user mailers should be configured to access shared mailbox(es). Since these shared mailboxes belong to a different account, they are called foreign mailboxes.

First, the owner of the shared mailbox should create a regular mailbox within his/her account. It is useful to create a special account public and create shared mailboxes in that account. To grant others access rights to the shared mailbox, the account owner should use either a decent IMAP client that can deal with ACL (Access Control Lists) or the WebUser Interface. The WebUser Interface section describes how you can set the desired Mailbox Access Rights.

If a shared mailbox is created inside the public account, it is useful to grant all Mailbox Access Rights to the real shared mailbox owner, so the owner can perform all operations with that mailbox without logging in as the user public.

To access shared mailboxes, user mailers should be configured to display both the user account's own mailboxes, and the available shared (foreign) mailboxes. The most universal method is to use the account Mailbox Subscription list. This list is a simple set of mailbox names, and both account own mailboxes and foreign mailbox names can be included into that list.

Many IMAP clients can only use the Mailbox Subscription list, but they cannot modify that list, or they do not allow a user to enter a foreign mailbox name into that list. In this case IMAP users should use the WebUser Interface to fill their subscription lists. If a shared mailbox announce has been created in the account marketing, users should put the ~marketing/announce foreign mailbox name into their subscription lists.

The domain administrator can use the Account Template to specify the initial Mailbox Subscription list, so all new accounts automatically get subscriptions to some shared mailboxes.

When shared mailboxes are included into the Account Subscription List, the users should configure their mail clients to display all mailboxes listed in the Subscription List:

Some clients (including Microsoft Outlook and Outlook Express) cannot display foreign mailboxes even if those mailbox names are included into the account subscription list. Users of these mailers can access foreign mailbox via mailbox aliases. They should use the WebUser Interface to specify aliases for foreign mailboxes they want to access. If a shared mailbox announce has been created in the account marketing, users should create the mkt-announce mailbox alias for the ~marketing/announce foreign mailbox. Their IMAP clients will display the mkt-announce name and will provide access to the ~marketing/announce mailbox messages.

The domain administrator can use the Account Template to specify the initial Mailbox Aliases, so all new accounts automatically get a predefined set of mailbox aliases for the specified shared mailboxes.

How can an Administrator clean User Mailboxes?

Sometimes a Server or Domain Administrator should be able to check user mailboxes to clean or file user messages. This can be done without actually logging to the Server under that user name.

The Server Administrator with the All Accounts access right has unlimited access rights to all mailboxes in all accounts on the Server. The Domain Administrator with the CanAccessMailboxes access right has unlimited access rights to all mailboxes in that domain accounts.

Administrators can use any decent IMAP client to access user mailboxes. That client should be able to let users enter the mailbox name directly. To open the INBOX in the username account, administrators should log in under their own names and tell the IMAP client to open the ~username/INBOX mailbox.

The WebUser Interface can be used for the same purpose. Administrators can log in under their own names, open the Subscription page and type the user mailbox name in the Open Mailbox panel.

How can I provide username.domain.dom personal Web Sites?

The standard URL for Personal Web Site of the username@domain.dom account is http://domain.dom/~username.

You may want to provide more "nice-looking" http://username.domain.dom/ URLs for your account Personal Web Sites. This feature is based on the method the CommuniGate Pro server uses to process HTTP requests sent to the WebUser port(s).

For users in a secondary domain domain.dom, add the following records to the Router:

*.domain.dom = *@domain.dom
<LoginPage%*@domain.dom> = *@domain.dom

If the domain.dom is your Main Domain, then add the following records:

*.domain.dom = *@fict
<LoginPage%*@fict> = *

These records route the LoginPage@username.domain.dom addresses to username@domain.dom addresses (or username addresses if domain.dom is the main domain).

Finally, you have to update your DNS server to ensure that all username.domain.dom names point to your server IP address. You may want to use wildcard records (*.domain.dom CNAME domain.dom) if your DNS server supports them.

CommuniGate® Pro Guide. Copyright © 1998-2000, Stalker Software, Inc.