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Old 07-19-2017, 08:18 PM   #1
fredsea
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Question setting up a mail server in Debian 8


I have an old clunky and noisy machine running Debian 8.3, doing a nice job as mail server. It came with Exim, inetd running, and (I assume) the latter launching ipop3d and imapd from the UW-mail suite out of the box. So, I collect mail from a few providers via fetchmail, the mail gets placed in /var/mail/$username and picked up by my work computers via POP or IMAP.

I am trying to set up a new, cool and silent, server, and it came running Debian pre-installed (now updated to 8.8), but none of the above works or is available. I thought that Exim4 (it is running out of the box, with the same arguments as in my previous server) would act as an agent to place the fetchmailed messages in /var/mail, but fetchmail logs that there is no SMTP service available. imapd and ipop3d are not available in /usr/sbin (they are, out of the box, in my old server's directory), and I don't see any way to get them from anywhere (inetd is also running out of the box with the same argument, -i, as in my old server). I guess I should install something like, say, dovecot, but, even so, I can't figure out how to have something doing the required SMTP work. I know I am terribly in the dark of how mail services work, but I am having trouble finding a good explanation, and, in any case, I would be happy to have the system just work.

Any help will be very gratefully appreciated. Thanks!
 
Old 07-19-2017, 09:34 PM   #2
frankbell
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This article in the Debian wiki might be a good starting point.

According to this, exim is configured out of the box only for emails within the system, not for emails to and from external systems.


Quote:
As mentioned earlier, the installed Debian system is only set up to handle e-mail local to the system, not for sending mail to others nor for receiving mail from others.
 
Old 07-21-2017, 01:39 AM   #3
AwesomeMachine
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Exim4 is pretty much disabled by default. Localhost delivery only.
 
Old 07-21-2017, 05:34 PM   #4
fredsea
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Thanks, and thanks to Awesome Machine for the info.

Looking at related posts/answers, I read a suggestion to check what, if anything is listening to port 25, and the result was

tcp 0 0 127.0.0.1:25 0.0.0.0:* LISTEN 2662/exim4
tcp6 0 0 ::1:25 :::* LISTEN 2662/exim4

OK, that seems to be the problem: my localhost is 127.0.1.1, not 127.0.0.1. I corrected that in Exim4.config and it worked! Now on to have POP3 and IMAP work.

Thanks again!

Last edited by fredsea; 07-21-2017 at 06:28 PM.
 
Old 07-21-2017, 06:37 PM   #5
mark_alfred
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This is kinda old, but perhaps something from it or from the Debian wiki could be of use.

https://wiki.debian.org/DebianEdu/Ho...rver%28SMTP%29
 
Old 07-22-2017, 06:09 PM   #6
fredsea
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What happened to the UW ipop3d and imapd daemons?

The way POP and IMAP were working on my old server was through imapd and ipop3d, installed by default, from, I take, the uw-mailutils package. It looks like uw-mailutils does not include them any more, and I can't find any other way to get hold of them (links on the uw-imap page and mirrors are broken). I could go brute force, copy them over from my old server, and edit inetd.conf and /etc/servers to include pop and imap services (right now, they have no mention of them), but I wonder if that would work or even mess things up. Or, I suppose, I could install dovecot. Any comment or suggestion will be gratefully accepted.
 
Old 07-30-2017, 02:00 AM   #7
fredsea
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Issue solved, if anybody is curious

So, finally, I managed to get Exim and dovecot working, using SSL/TSL. It was not completely smooth, as the dovecot wikis (accessed from Debian) list file positions different from what they are in Debian 8.8, but with some help from the find tool, things worked. Thanks for all the suggestions.
 
  


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