Opened 10 years ago

Closed 10 years ago

#1505 closed Question/How do I...? (fixed)

Changing over email

Reported by: Owned by:
Priority: High Component: Tech
Keywords: email dns Cc: busman@…
Sensitive: no


Hello, I'm having a bit of trouble setting up email accounts. In going to the member control panel and adding an email account I am not getting our domain in the pull down window. It looks like we have the appropriate entry in our DNS to allow our domain to show up but it is not happening. Please advise. Thanks, John

Change History (12)

comment:1 Changed 10 years ago by

Are you setting up the membership account first, John? Email is actually an alias for the membership account so you'll need one of those for each email you want to set up. Once you set up the membership, that will appear in the drop-down. Is that what you were doing? If so, let us know and we'll work on this further.


comment:2 Changed 10 years ago by

Ah. This is going to be a problem. Our control panel won't let you create an email address on our server unless your dns is configured to deliver email to our server. Since your DNS is configured to deliver email offsite, our control panel is not giving you the option.

So... I just created the domain and configured it to deliver email to our servers here.

Now, you can create email accounts for all of your users with the email addresses (e.g. Be sure to test them (ensure you can download email, access webmail, etc.).

When you are ready to switch your email:

  • change your DNS settings (changing your mx record to point to instead of
  • create new email addresses (that point to the exact same user accounts you already created but use your real email address that will now be available after the DNS change)

comment:3 Changed 10 years ago by

Jamie, I'm a little confused about the last part.

  • create new email addresses (that point to the exact same user accounts you already created but use your real email address that will now be available after the DNS change)

Using your example of joe@, should I create a new email address joe@ Also am I actually creating all new email addresses or simply editing the ones I already created?

Finally our dominant or main domain is We have forwarding for both url and email set up in the domain Will our folks still receive emails sent to either domain when I switch our email?

comment:4 Changed 10 years ago by

  • Keywords email dns added

Good questions - and this is confusing!

Judging from your control panel, it looks like you've perfectly setup all your email accounts with the temporary domain.

Your next steps are:

  • Try to send messages to your temporary email address (
  • Test by checking for the message via webmail (note: your login is your username, not your email address).
  • Teach your co-workers about the location of webmail ( and how to choose the right mail server
  • Configure any desktop email applications, like Thunderbird to use your new settings. Add these settings in addition to your existing settings. Again, the login is your username, not your email address (so it will stay the same).

These steps are all very important to do before switching your DNS settings to be sure that everyone is ready to accept email at the new location. Once you think you are all setup and ready to go, then you'll take the steps to make the move:

  • In the Members Control Panel, go the DNS settings. Change the MX record for both of your domains to:
  • Once you've made that change, go the email addresses section and now you should see both your domains show up in the drop down menu for creating email addresses. Create new records for all of your users with your regular domains. When you are done, each user will have three email addresses pointing to their user account (,,
  • You can then delete the if you want.

I hope this makes a bit more sense - let us know if you have any other questions.

comment:5 Changed 10 years ago by

Things seemed to have gone alright, but one thing I am noticing right now is that when someone from our office sends an email to another person here the email does not go to the server but instead still goes to That will present a bit of a problem and I hope there is a way around it rather than setting up two accounts in each person's email software.

comment:6 Changed 10 years ago by

There seems to be more inconsistencies. I have been able to send emails to everyone using both extensions ( and from my personal aol account and they have been delivered to the server, but people are still getting mail off of the beyond just the emails sent from inhouse. Also when I send an email to someone inhouse using the extension the mail is bounced back to me saying xxxx@ no longer accepts mail.

comment:7 Changed 10 years ago by

What does "people are still getting mail off of the beyond..." mean? Do you mean that's the return address? There is an entry in your dns for and that's totally acceptable and normal. But the return address for your email should be the email from which you're sending the email.

If you mean they are retrieving with that address, that's totally expected. It's not a program or misconfiguration although the better way to set things up is to use the domain itself (e.g. as the server address for both incoming and outgoing. I've a feeling they have that mail thing in their account configuration.

Are I understanding you or can you explain it further for me?


comment:8 Changed 10 years ago by

I have configured our desktop email applications, Eudora in most cases, so that the incoming server is set to and believed any new emails that were sent to say joe@ or joe@ would be retrieved upon checking for emails. Well as of three hours ago I was not able to retrieve all the emails and had to switch the incoming server to in the desktop email application to retrieve the rest of the emails.

I also witnessed this using webmail. If I sent an email from my AOL account to joe@ or joe@ I could check webmail using joe's login and view those emails. But if I sent them from another one of our company's email accounts using Eudora or Outlook they would not show up in the MayFirst webmail.

I would expect that from the time I made the changes in the DNS settings to our two MX records we would have all our emails going to the server and we would be able to view all of them at one webmail location again the albizu server at MayFirst.

comment:9 Changed 10 years ago by

Hi all,

I think I have an idea of what is going on. The problems you've identified are:

  • When you send email from your organization's Outlook or Eudora accounts, they are being delivered to the old mailboxes on the old server.

I believe this is happening because your Outlook and Eudora default outgoing mail settings are still pointing to your old server. In other words, when you send mail, by default, it is being routed to the old mail server. This still works fine if you are sending to other people. Your old server checks the domain, determines that it should not be delivered locally, looks up the proper server address via the DNS records, and forwards the message. However, when you send a message destined for one of your domain names, your old server doesn't bother checking the DNS settings. It simply gets the email, notices that it is supposed to handle mail for your domain, and delivers it locally.

The solution is to change your default outgoing mail server to be albizu or, when you are confident that you are no longer getting mail at the old server, you can remove the old server settings entirely (see below).

  • The old server is still receiving messages, even from people outside the office.

This is most likely happening because of DNS propagation time. DNS records are cached, sometimes for a full day. Therefore, even though you've changed your MX records, some servers on the Internet still have cached the old settings. It might take up to 24 hours for your change to fully propagate.

  • When sending in house to, it bounces.

I think this is related to the first problem - your inhouse computers are not using albizu as the outgoing server, but instead using the old server (and failing). I think this problem will go away when you solve the first problem.

Let us know if this helps and if you have other thoughts, question, or problems!

comment:10 Changed 10 years ago by

I think the DNS propagation time is probably the culprit all around since we are actually using our ISP's server for our outgoing mail server in our desktop email applications and not I will do a little more testing today. It looks like emails are being delivered more as expected.

On maybe a related note, in going into our account at to manage our domain I noticed that it says in order for the forwarding services for the url and email to work properly we must use NS1.NAMERESOLVE.COM,NS2.NAMERESOLVE.COM,NS3.NAMERESOLVE.COM,NS4.NAMESRESOLVE.COM for the name servers. We are currently using A.NS.MAYFIRST.ORG,B.NS.MAYFIRST.ORG. Could this cause any problems?

comment:11 Changed 10 years ago by

No - it sounds like you have the right settings.

The domains are dotster-run domains. If you were letting dotster handle your DNS, then you need it set to them, however, since you are letting May First/People Link handle the domains, you should keep them set to and

Thanks for the report back about the email delivery. If you think you're home free, please close out the ticket by changing it to resolved: fixed (you can always re-open or create a new ticket if you encounter new problems).

comment:12 Changed 10 years ago by

  • Resolution set to fixed
  • Status changed from new to closed

Thanks for your help on this.

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