Sendmail Configuration
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Thread: Sendmail Configuration

  1. #1
    Senior Member
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    Sendmail Configuration

    Hi everyone,

    I am trying to setup and configure a RH9 Server using Sendmail, and I am 1) running into trouble trying to get it properly configured, and 2) I want to be sure I don't create an open relay.

    Can anyone point me to a good resource for editing the sendmail.mc file? I have read the docs that came with RH (awful!), and been to most of the sites I found on Google, yet I can't figure out how to properly edit the MC file.

    Yes I am headed down to Border's to get a Book on Sendmail, but in the mean time, and suggestions/help is appricated!

    Thanks!
    MrCoffee

    PS: Sorry I am use to Exchange which is VERY straight forward compared to sendmail... at least of an old geezer like me!
    ~ I'm NOT insane! I've just been in a bad mood for the last 30 years! ~ Somepeople are like Slinky's: Not good for anything, but the thought of pushing them down the stairs brings a smile to your face!

  2. #2
    PHP/PostgreSQL guy
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    To be honest, sendmail is very tricky and only those who've worked on it for years can truly understand the mc and cf files... The ongoing joke is that if you can read a sendmail.cf file and understand all the stuff, then you've done it too long! It's not a very easy MTA and I recommend using NetQMail, which has the patches and installation for a much easier program.

    It can be found here and the latest release of that is 1.05.

    Hope this helps!
    We the willing, led by the unknowing, have been doing the impossible for the ungrateful. We have done so much with so little for so long that we are now qualified to do just about anything with almost nothing.

  3. #3
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    At its most basic,
    Relay configuration with Sendmail is done via the access and access.db file.
    You edit /etc/mail/access and you run makemap against the access.db file using the access
    file for input.

    Not the easiest MTA to dork with.

    More complicated tweeks require .mc file edits but not for simple relay configuration.


    Might be easier to tell us what you want to do and we can show you that in particular.


    Sendmail is just too big for a quick howto..

  4. #4
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    Too complex?

    Ok, simply put I want to set up a small email server for a new domain.

    Backup a few steps: Yesterday I built and configured a Win2k Box and put Exchange on it to use as our email/web/ftp server for a new company. After I went home, one of the other people in the group thought he'd be helpful and plugged it into our IAD/Router, (he thought it was the firewall) and run windows updates. Of course an unprotected Win2k box was infected within 2 hours and I came in this morning and all hell had broken loose. I yanked the box off the network, undid and removed the cabling bypassing the firewall and went about rebuilding the machine. And called our ISP and got our Data feed back on. (Yeah they turned our IAD off completely).

    But then the other people in the group dicided many RH9 would be a better choice for a new domain. I didnt have an issue with that, having setup RH before for web and Ftp. I rebuilt the box, and then I got to sendmail. Okkkkkkkkkkk.... this is ummm interesting. I guess I expected something a bit more straight forward and simple. RH use to have a good configuration tool, or so I have read, but it isn't available under RH9 (?).

    End result: I have a nice RH system, doing the web and FTP servering very well, and all attempts to configure Sendmail have failed completely. I am only servering a total of 4 users at the moment.

    Someone suggested Qmail, which I am about to check out.

    The issue isnt that I couldnt figure this out, but more like how much time is it worth? I have another pair of networks I support, a full domain, and over 100 users to terrorize ummm help. While I am use to Exchange and Win2k for email.... I and totally conffused and the proper information to put into the sendmail.mc before running the m4. Sigh.

    So basically that is what I want to do. Even if I use Qmail now... at some point I am going to want to know about Sendamil and if demand requires it, move over to it.

    Thanks!
    MrCoffee
    ~ I'm NOT insane! I've just been in a bad mood for the last 30 years! ~ Somepeople are like Slinky's: Not good for anything, but the thought of pushing them down the stairs brings a smile to your face!

  5. #5
    PHP/PostgreSQL guy
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    Qmail is a lot easier to use and upon looking for documentation, I found this link for you to use. I plan on using qmail extensively in replacement to sendmail because of ease of use and better security techniques (IMHO).

    QMail installation, step by step

    The only difference between qmail and netqmail is that qmail requires a few packages that netqmail already includes in the gz file.
    We the willing, led by the unknowing, have been doing the impossible for the ungrateful. We have done so much with so little for so long that we are now qualified to do just about anything with almost nothing.

  6. #6
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    Thank you all for your help and input on this. I am going to set up Qmail for now. I went to the local Borders and picked up a couple of books on Sendmail and one on Qmail. I figured it can't hurt to learn something new.

    Thanks again!
    MrCoffee
    ~ I'm NOT insane! I've just been in a bad mood for the last 30 years! ~ Somepeople are like Slinky's: Not good for anything, but the thought of pushing them down the stairs brings a smile to your face!

  7. #7
    AO Antique pwaring's Avatar
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    I'm fairly sure that, after a certain version in the 8.x branch, sendmail comes with open relaying disabled by default. Unless you turn it on deliberately, you should be safe from that security problem at least.

    Sendmail isn't as difficult to configure as people make out, especially if you're only doing minor stuff. Obviously if you want to host dozens of virtual hosts and have some complex forwarding/mail delivery set up then it might get more complicated, but the computer society at my university manages to use it without problems to handle mail for hundreds of users and dozens of virtual hosts.
    Paul Waring - Web site design and development.

  8. #8
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    Originally posted here by pwaring
    I'm fairly sure that, after a certain version in the 8.x branch, sendmail comes with open relaying disabled by default. Unless you turn it on deliberately, you should be safe from that security problem at least.

    Sendmail isn't as difficult to configure as people make out, especially if you're only doing minor stuff. Obviously if you want to host dozens of virtual hosts and have some complex forwarding/mail delivery set up then it might get more complicated, but the computer society at my university manages to use it without problems to handle mail for hundreds of users and dozens of virtual hosts.
    Good points.
    Sendmail is just different in that after editing the config files, you run them against M4 macro software which tends to confuse people.

    I have a sendmail install that processes around 44,000 messages per hour with great uptime numbers. It can work very well. I don't think Qmail or Postfix or Exim are any easier to manage. It can often simply depend on which you learned 1st.

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