need accurate smtp logs

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i've got a client who wants to be able to check on the status of sent email.
he needs a report stating whether or not the email address was valid, if the
email was rejected, if it bounced back, etc. i can process the smtp logs for
some of this info, but some of the info is inaccurate. for instance, i tried
sending an email to a bad address within our domain and then checked the
logs, which read like everything was accepted fine.  this made no sense
until i recalled that the server is set up to forward any unknown emails to
a default recipient..

what about bounced email? it's the remote smtp server's job to notify the
originator of the bounce, isn't it? as such, does it notify the originating
smtp server or the "from" address of the bouce? does it even have to notify
anybody of the bounce?

this is an IIS6 smtp server and i've tried playing with different log
formats to try to get accurate info, but nothing seems to work.

anybody got a good recommendation?


Re: need accurate smtp logs

Dica wrote:

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There is simply no way you can know this. Once the mail has left your
server and been accepted by their server, your mail server can't log
anything more, can it?

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The remote server can reject the mail mid-transaction, in which case it's
your mail server's job to notify the sender.

Or the remote server can accept the mail and then later decide it doesn't
want the mail, in which case it would have to send the bounce message.

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It should check the message's Errors-To RFC822 header if present and send
the bounce there (most don't though). In the absence of such a header it
should send the bounce to the envelope From address, which is not the same
as the From RFC822 header.

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It doesn't *have* to, but it's customary.

Toby A Inkster BSc (Hons) ARCS
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