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DNS, SPF, SenderID - very confused

 9:57 am on Sep 29, 2009 (gmt 0)

Hello everyone.

I'm currently building a website and hosting it on my own virtual private server. The site sends email to its users, and currently all the emails are getting junked when sent to hotmail users. This is totally unacceptable and i need to get it sorted.

I've set up a SPF record for the domain, but theyre still getting junked. What I really need is someone to help me and have a look at the DNS records, SPF record, and the headers sent in the emails to see if there is any reason why hotmail doesnt like it.

Some nice help would be greatly appreciated.


[edited by: encyclo at 1:01 pm (utc) on Sep. 29, 2009]



 1:05 pm on Sep 29, 2009 (gmt 0)

I assume you've read and digested the FAQs on the Windows Live Postmaster website: [postmaster.live.com...]

One issue you don't mention is your server's IP address, have you checked whether it is blacklisted anywhere?


 4:28 pm on Sep 29, 2009 (gmt 0)

Yeah ive checked and its definitely not blacklisted. I have read over the postmaster stuff and even takled to a support guy from MS. As far as I can see, everything is in order, and I'm at the stage now where I really need someone who knows a lot about this stuff to just have a thorough look over everything (I'm a flash developer by profession and dont have a great understanding of DNS and that kinda stuff).



 5:20 pm on Sep 29, 2009 (gmt 0)

What do your PTR records say?

nslookup mail.example.com >
nslookup > mail.example.com

If instead of mail.example.com you see something like cust123.hostingprovider. com you have found one of the possibly many issues...


 8:48 pm on Sep 29, 2009 (gmt 0)

I'm not sure I have any PTR records... This is how my DNS is set up with my domain provider


@ TXT v=spf1 a mx ip4:212.241.xxx.xxx mx:mail.example.com mx:example.com -all

@ A 212.241.xxx.xxx

* A 212.241.xxx.xxx

ftp CNAME www

mail A 212.241.xxx.xxx

webmail A 212.241.xxx.xxx

www A 212.241.xxx.xxx

and my MX records are just

mail.example.com. (priority 10)

Do i need to put another entry in?


[edited by: bill at 1:47 am (utc) on Sep. 30, 2009]
[edit reason] Use example.com and obscure your IP please [/edit]


 9:15 pm on Sep 29, 2009 (gmt 0)

Your upstream provider set up the PTR records, looks fine from here.

When you're saying 'junked' - you mean that the users receive your mail but Hotmail moves it to their junk folder?

In that case I'd take a closer look at your message headers and content to determine what is triggering it.

Adding to encyclo's link above, this may be helpful: [advertising.microsoft.com...]


 9:39 am on Sep 30, 2009 (gmt 0)

Thats right, they recieve the email but its moved to the junk folder. I have read that MS document before and ensured that Ive implemented the parts that I understand, but some of it I dont....


 11:50 am on Sep 30, 2009 (gmt 0)

Something to read which is not really as technical as above answers you can find on clickz com. This monday they published an article about email tracking focusing on delivery. IMHO an interesting read.
There is also a link to a report by pivotal where they interviewed the big ISPs on how they treat email.

Regardless of the above, make sure that your subscribers are going to look into their junk folders when they do not receive the message with in a defined timeframe - and have them put your sending address into their addressbook.


 9:24 pm on Sep 30, 2009 (gmt 0)

thanks onlineleben, thats grat stuff but i'm still having trouble. if anyone would be kind enough to help, below are the email headers as they appear when i send to my test hotmail account. is there anything here that looks wrong?

X-Message-Delivery: Vj0xLjE7dXM9MDtsPTA7YT0wO0Q9MjtTQ0w9NA==

X-Message-Status: n:0

X-SID-PRA: Example <contact@example.com>

X-Message-Info: 6sSXyD95QpXUtn0CnwUUiSMpQZv+/v2SdxO+AChedd9L1y6e8HPg3uGmS5k5

Received: from example.com ([]) by SNT0-MC3-F4.Snt0.hotmail.com with Microsoft SMTPSVC(6.0.3790.3959);

Wed, 30 Sep 2009 14:20:40 -0700

Comment: DomainKeys? See [antispam.yahoo.com...]

DomainKey-Signature: a=rsa-sha1; q=dns; c=nofws;

s=default; d=example.com;

yXqxc7G787T3Bkoivq1JoUESVNEVFehEAQTvhSjRAcExuAZltLEQ75rom4VgN87YanfiqX ;

Received: (qmail 4057 invoked by uid 33); 30 Sep 2009 22:20:39 +0100

To: John Doe <example@hotmail.com>

Subject: spTest PHPMailer Test Subject via mail

Date: Wed, 30 Sep 2009 22:20:39 +0100

From: Example <contact@example.com>

Reply-To: contact@example.com

Message-ID: <74f7c27b3f7237bef729625e33010d46@www.example.com>

X-Priority: 3

X-Mailer: PHPMailer (phpmailer.sourceforge.net) [version 2.0.4]

MIME-Version: 1.0

Content-Type: multipart/alternative;


Return-Path: contact@example.com

X-OriginalArrivalTime: 30 Sep 2009 21:20:40.0225 (UTC) FILETIME=[DC5B1910:01CA4213]

[edited by: encyclo at 3:16 pm (utc) on Oct. 1, 2009]
[edit reason] exemplified [/edit]


 11:15 am on Oct 1, 2009 (gmt 0)

i just sent you a sticky note re whitelisting etc.
Hope this helps as well.

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