On Sat, Dec 20, 2003 at 03:29:23PM +0800, Zhang Weiwu wrote:
> Hello. Just to confirm: if I use dial-up connection on my laptop and use 
> the ISP's smtp server to send emails, I don't really need sendmail's most 
> functions, so it is safe to set 'sendmail="NO"' in rc.conf without loosing 
> local emails like "weekly run output", is it?

If you're using something like Netscape or Evolution for your e-mail
needs, then yes, you don't need an MTA on your local machine to do
that.  However, automatic e-mails from your system -- usually from the
periodic(8) scripts -- do require sendmail(8) or equivalent.

Note that you don't need to have sendmail listening on port 25 for
incoming e-mail, but you do need sendmail to run occasionally to
process outgoing messages in the mail queue.  You can achieve that by:


Now, the sendmail MSP (Mail Submission Process) needs to hand-off the
e-mail to a MTA (Mail Transport Agent) -- you can either run an MTA
process locally, or you can configure the MSP to deliver straight to
your provider's smarthost.

For the first, just add:


which will start up a sendmail process that listens on the loopback
address only.

For the second, you should create a slightly customized sendmail
configuration, as follows:

    # cd /etc/mail
    # cp freebsd.submit.mc submit.mc
    # vi submit.mc

(or whatever your favourite editor is) and change the last line from:

    FEATURE(`msp', `[]')dnl


    FEATURE(`msp', `smtp.yourprovider.net')dnl

where smtp.yourprovider.net is the mail smarthost provided by your ISP.


    # make
    # make install
    # make restart

Note that these configurations will cause your system to dial-up every
time you send an e-mail.  If that's not acceptable to you, then you
can generate a configuration that just queues up the mail and only
attempts to deliver the next time that your link comes up.  But that's
a topic for another e-mail.
> I was told nowadays many spam filters only accept smtp server's email when 
> the smtp server is in the same domain as the sender's email address. So it 
> seems I better not use the sendmail on my laptop to send emails in case 
> they are filtered. Should I? Thank you.

That's not the case, and a server set up in that way would be breaking
the SMTP standards.  It's perfectly permissible to run e-mail for
several different domains from the same server.

What you do need to ensure is that your system and your e-mail address
are appropriately registered in the DNS.  Generally if you use the
SMTP service from your provider, then this will not be a problem.



Dr Matthew J Seaman MA, D.Phil.                       26 The Paddocks
                                                      Savill Way
PGP: http://www.infracaninophile.co.uk/pgpkey         Marlow
Tel: +44 1628 476614                                  Bucks., SL7 1TH UK

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