Intermittent Forwarding to ATT.NET acct

Discussion in 'Help Desk' started by bob2, Aug 17, 2014.

  1. bob2

    bob2 New Email

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    I teach part-time at Tulane and automatically forward email to my main account, an old ATT.NET account that Yahoo manages. Although most of my Tulane mail gets through fine, intermittently, I get a Postmaster notification:
    554 REPLY: 554_5.7.9_Message_not_accepted_for_policy_reasons.

    School starts in two weeks and my students depend on me getting their email reliably so I want to help you identify the root cause of this so it can be fixed. I can send you two recent messages with headers – one made it and the other didn’t.
     


  2. popowich

    popowich EQ Forum Admin Staff Member

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    Hello,

    There are a few spam prevention mechanisms, most likely SPF, that are probably causing the problem here. Many domains list what mail servers and networks are allowed to send email From: their domain names. Forwarding email causes the email to pass through your University servers and appear to Yahoo that the email is coming from the University instead of the original senders servers. The best way around this problem is to have Yahoo download the email from your University account using pop3 (if possible) instead of forwarding the email from there to Yahoo.

    It may end up being easier on you to have a mail program on your computer(s) and mobile devices that connects to both mail systems using IMAP instead of trying to combine the accounts into a single account.

    :welcome: to Email Questions!
     

  3. bob2

    bob2 New Email

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    Hello Popowich,
    Thank you for responding to my message. I have a few more questions.

    Nslookup (set type=txt) shows that tulane.edu has SPF TXT RRs that look correct. For the most recently-blocked message, I received an error message that says:


    However, I just manually forwarded this same message to my ATT.NET account and it was successfully delivered. The header says:


    Given that the manually-forwarded message successfully passed the SPF mechanisms, do you still believe that my intermittent problem is an SPF issue?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 1, 2015
  4. popowich

    popowich EQ Forum Admin Staff Member

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    The message manually forwarded by you is From: you

    The message passing through an automatic forward is From: the original sender not From: you

    That's the difference and why you see the problem only sometimes with the automatically forwarded email.

    It can fail for this reason if it's both both automatically forwarded and the original senders domains has an SPF record that doesn't include your university email servers.
     
  5. bob2

    bob2 New Email

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    Got it. That makes sense. Thanks for the explanation.

    Earlier, you suggested that I “have Yahoo download the email from your University account using pop3”. I set up the additional account on Yahoo, turned off forwarding from my school account, then sent a test message to that account. I received it on my Outlook client so this is working fine now. Hopefully, this will turn out to be reliable over the long run.

    Is there any effective difference between having Yahoo download email from Tulane vs having my email client poll both accounts?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 1, 2015
  6. popowich

    popowich EQ Forum Admin Staff Member

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    If you have a mail program on your computer poll both accounts, instead of Yahoo downloading the email into a combined account, a Yahoo service outage or something else such as your Yahoo account getting hacked won't impact your ability to get at your university emails.

    Most likely your University has better email support than a free Yahoo account.

    If something happens to your Yahoo account the emails in that account could be lost forever.

    If there is any sensitive or personal information in those emails it could be used against you or the students.

    If you are downloading all email to your computer I recommend setting up an online backup service to protect the emails (and your other files too) in case something happens to your computer.
     
  7. bob2

    bob2 New Email

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    > Most likely your University has better email support than a free Yahoo account.

    I'm actually quite surprised and pleased by the level of support I've received through this forum. Thank you for addressing all my issues. I appreciate your help!

    > If there is any sensitive or personal information in those emails it could be used against you or the students.

    This is a persuasive point. I will set up my Outlook clients to do the polling. And since I use several devices, it may be good to switch to IMAP even though I've never worked with this protocol before. I like to retain all non-deleted and non-junk messages in the pst so I'll need to figure out how to archive them before they scroll off the server.

    How long does Yahoo retain messages for?
     

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