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I'd like some help sense checking my website email and DNS set up, as well as troubleshooting one issue I have.

I have a website with a mail server installed for sending order confirmation emails. It sends emails from: sales@example.com

I also have a zoho account set up for: sales@example.com

  • My domain A record is currently pointing to my webserver.
  • My CNAME www is pointing to my webserver.
  • My CNAME mail is also pointing to my web server.
  • I have MX records pointing to zoho mail.
  • I have an SPF record as follows:

    v=spf1 ip4:<<webserver-ip>> include:zoho.com -all
    

When I send emails from the website I would like to also send them to a example.com email address. This is possible and is set to do so, however, the emails never make it through. I assume this is because the webserver sending those emails believes that example.com resides there.

I'd also appreciate any general feedback on any misconfiguration with the above that could be done better.

  • Are you using a webhosting control panel of some kind? eg. cPanel, Plesk, etc.? – MrWhite May 20 '18 at 14:00
  • I believe that your presumption is correct. On many web hosts you can edit the DNS records but, what you should do is contact support at your web host and hope that they are not glorified script kiddies with a real job now, that they actually know what they are doing. – Willtech May 21 '18 at 12:45
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I assume this is because the webserver sending those emails believes that example.com resides there.

That is quite possible. Mailservers will route email internally if it thinks the mail is handled locally and the email will never leave the local server. If the email is being handled externally, then you often need to explicitly state this. For example, if you are using cPanel then under "Email" > "Email Routing" you should explicitly select "Remote Mail Exchanger":

Select Remote Mail Exchanger in cPanel

Everything else looks OK, except for:

My CNAME mail is also pointing to my web server.

This is incorrect. The mail subdomain is often used to configure email clients, to point to the incoming/outgoing mail server. Your mail server is now Zoho, not your web server. I expect you'll probably just ignore this and use the relevant Zoho server names directly (eg. imap.zoho.eu etc.).

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