Mail not routing to Mailserver even though MX records poiint there?

Kevin Darcy kcd at
Tue Feb 19 23:49:59 UTC 2002

john wrote:

> Hello,
> I own held, and I've recently setup a mail server at
> home on my Unix server (exim). I've changed the MX record on the my domain
> to point to my server, but no mail is getting through.
> I've tried telnet'ing to port 25 on my ip addr (, but can't
> get throught from the 'outside'. (works from inside!). I know the mail
> server works as I can send mail from it to anywhere, and can send mail to it
> from inside my network no probs.

Well, is the mail server behind a firewall, a filtering router, an Intrusion
Detection device? The only real test of whether a mail server is accessible
from the outside world is to connect to it from the outside world. The other
tests -- outbound, connect from internal -- don't necessarily mean anything.

> When I telnet port 25 to, it comes up with a sendmail banner,
> not exims, so this is obv. still going to UK2's mail serverr . Is this
> 'confusing' my MX record?.. Have I set it up correct.

Why are you telnet'ing to The MX records for
point to (*both* of the MX records point to the same place,
by the way, which is kind of pointless). If you want to test basic network
connectivity to your mail server from the outside, telnet to port 25 on The name "" probably resolves to a webserver
of some sort -- the fact that sendmail happens to be listening on the SMTP port
on that box is probably just a (not so) happy coincidence. Lord only knows
what's happening to the mail you send to that mailserver instance -- ask
whomever runs the "" box.

Nothing here seems to indicate a DNS problem. It looks more like a basic
network connectivity problem.

- Kevin

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