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Secondary MX Server

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by DgrMouse, Jul 24, 2009.

  1. DgrMouse

    DgrMouse Registered

    Jul 24, 2009
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    Is it possible to use cPanel DNS only as a secondary mx server for my clients? we are currently running cPanel and DNS only in tandem, and if the cpanel server ever fails, we need something to continue to collect the email.

    If this is not possible, dos anyone know a way to do this? Unfortunately I am not fully literate with linux, so any walkthough would be advantageous.

    thanks in advance,

  2. david510

    david510 Well-Known Member

    Aug 22, 2004
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    You will not be able to produce a complete failover of service one one server to other. You can configure a remote DNS server using the dns clustering feature of cpanel. Ie you can run different nameservers on different servers.
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  3. Spiral

    Spiral BANNED

    Jun 24, 2005
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    You completely lose me be because you are talking apples and oranges between different services that have no bearing to one another.

    However, I think you are asking if your server went down, could mail still be directed elsewhere to another server. If so, the answer is YES in that you could setup a secondary mail server record in your DNS zones at a much lower priority for mail to be directed only if the primary mail server cannot be reached then mail would be re-routed to the secondary server.

    Now this is only effective as long as DNS remains functional or the cached zones remain in effects (up to first 48 hours following your server going down). To have complete failover control, you would probably want to cluster your DNS with another server so that if one server goes completely down, you still have another providing the DNS records for all your zones including the alternate MX records to use during the outage.

    While good to consider such contingencies, it should also be noted that a properly configured server can often run virtually indefinitely without outages and those few times you might have issues where the server might go down should be very brief and anybody sending mail to your server during the time of your server's outage would just be held in the mail queues of the sending servers until your server comes back online and then all the mail would be sent on a delay once your server comes back online so you would not miss any messages irregardless unless your outage was a very, very long time such as more than a week before you would stand to lose any mail! People who don't know how the mail system works might think that they might miss messages because a server is down but this is simply not true. Mail servers hold mail messages in a queue until the mail until a connection can be made to the recipient server and the mail can be sent out. If a connection cannot be made, the mail is held and another attempt is made later. The queue holding times vary but most servers generally configure a week or longer to allow for messages to be delivered so I really would not worry too much about losing mail if your server has an emergency and is down for a few hours.
    #3 Spiral, Jul 24, 2009
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2009

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