I'm embarassed that I just might be missing something super silly easy, but after trying everything that I know how to do (which isn't much when it comes to Linux), I am coming here for help. My situation is as follows:
I purchased a Raq4R and following the instructions posted on this site and one other Raq site I managed to successfully upgrade to the Raq550 OS. I have installed all the patches that I could do through the BlueLinQ site (which left four Kernel upgrades that I didn't do following instructions from this site). I have not yet looked to find a suitable kernel upgrade, but that's next.
The purpose of this Raq is simply to host my personal domains which are pretty much to show off pictures of my children, link to my work site and so-on. I'd also like to have email for each of those dozen domains. Traffic should be nearly non-existent, except for once or twice a month when I post new pictures and get four visitors in one day.
My network is pretty up to date, with all Cisco switching, and from the location that I am running I have a T1 line and 100MB network throughout. My registrar, Dotster, is currently doing my DNS for $10/year/domain, which I might ultimately switch to the Raq, but that's not the issue. Email is currently hosted on Exchange on my network.
At this time, I have successfully switched one domain's DNS pointers for A and MX to my Raq server, to allow me to test functionality. I have created that virtual site on my Raq and added a single user with all the defaults set as they were and without changing anything weird. I did not enter any information in the optional Email Server Alias, although I do have the MX record pointing to mail.domainname.com.
The good news is that the web site loads perfectly, as I would expect, and I can resolve without a problem. However, email does not seem to be working. I cannot send from that user's account (I don't get an error I just never receive the email) and I cannot receive/check email for that account. I assume that I am missing something simple, but it does not seem very clear in the instructions, so I thought that I would start here while I continue troubleshooting this problem. Has anyone encountered a problem like this? Are there any suggestions?
Thanks for the response - right now I believe that I am having a problem both incoming and outgoing, and I'm not sure that I really understand from the few options that are there, how it could be done wrong. From everything I've read and from what I am seeing in the interface, it appears that it's just plop and go.
To answer your specific questions:
1. Unfortunately, without some guidelines I'm not sure that I know how to install OpenWebMail. I did find the OpenWebMail.org web site and will be reviewing the information that I find there to see if I can wing it.
2. Typing mail from the shell prompt, for the user that I have been testing, tells me that I have no mail, which seems very odd. Of course, what I am seeing is that I can neither send or receive email, and I am not given any errors. The mail just goes into la la land.
Additional things that I've tried:
1. Deleting virtual site and starting over.
2. Deleting users and starting over.
3. Simplifying things to the absolute least common denominator.
All without success. I'm not sure why it's not just grabbing the mail, and unfortunately, like I explained, I don't know enough about Linux to dig into it below the surface.
Are there reputable people that do consulting on Raq servers where I could just have them log in and go to work to get this fixed? I've searched on the web and it appears that there are a lot of them, but it seems weird to just hand over the keys to the kingdom without talking to someone and most of them just want you to send an email with all your info so that they can get it done.
Once you are done, there will be a location created automatically for you at http://yoursite.com/webmail and you can login with any of your created users.
Try sending an email from there and see if it does through. ( send to an external account. Yahoo or Gmail maybe... )
If it does get through then maybe your server's Mail functions were not configured properly or the MX is faulty or may even be because you forgot to set it to relay from that site.
Second, from the CommandLine :
Type in the following
It will prompt for a subject. Enter anything and press enter followed by the body of the email, enter what you want here.
After your are done press the period and enter.
( period is a . )
it will ask for a CC: press enter
Now wait for the email.
if nothing goes through, check the log files again at /var/log and view the "message" file by either downloading it or issuing a "vi" or "pico" command to get the text editor
See what it tells you there.
if everything goes through and works... then it could be a config error on the GUI interface or an MX setup error....
Can I just hire you to fix this? Basically everything that could go wrong is.
1. Because it send faster I went to the shell and tried to send the message following your instructions. I never received the message at my yahoo.com, gmail, or personal email accounts.
2. When I went to pico the messages file I received an error, while logged in as Admin, which read "Read Permission Denied: /var/log/messages". Haven't googled that yet.
3. Installing perl worked very well and seems to have went smoothly.
4. When I installed the other file that you put out there for me (thank you VERY much), I get an error that reads: " There was a problem with the package file. The post-install script failed." I'm not sure where I jumped off the platform on this one.
So... back to the drawing board.
I guess what I'm wondering is, to start with, since I have done all the other upgrades, should I start by upgrading the kernel so that it is at least somewhat current for the 550? (Remember, I am running a Raq 4 with the 550 OS). I think I found a patch somewhere on the internet, and perhaps that will be a start?
Additionally, since I am not using this in a production environment, and there is absolutely no data, users or account information on this machine, should I just reinstall from scratch?
So this is where I think it is going to get frustrating for you, but I hope that you'll bear with me on this. I have downloaded xShell, which seems to be better than the Windows command line telnet application, but it's not obvious how I would download a file, such as the messages file, so that I can work with it in something like Word to do searches and stuff (obviously, I don't know Grep).
But... I was able to get to the file with the /bin/su - command and can see the REALLY HUGE LOG FILE which isn't so easy to read or understand -- especially when I can't search.
Iím still not clear on how to read the log files, but I have managed to successfully get a message out when I am logged into root. Basically, the problem is that it comes from [email protected] which is the name of the root account, obviously, the name that I assigned to the server, and the domain that I set up for the server. Iím not sure if thatís how it is supposed to appear, but itís mail going out, so Iím thrilled!!
Now, the unfortunate part is that I donít understand why I canít send mail from something like Outlook, or what I might be needing to do to install the mail application that you recommended. My mail needs are very low, so even though Outlook is my preferred method, Iíll take just about anything at this point.
SoÖ I guess the part that Iím concerned about now is which way to go to try and resolve why itís just not working the way that itís supposed to be working? And, of course, what do I need to do to figure out why itís not working from one of my personal domains?
So I've come to the conclusion that this is still a problem with sending and receiving mail from my actual domain user account. Basically what I have now is my test domain, lessontime.com, that is currently available to my RAQ server. By adding lessontime.com to the email server alias list I am now able to successfully connect via Outlook and "test" mail. But, I cannot send from Outlook or receive to that account.
I can't believe it - I think I'm learning something. Mind you that this is with a 13 month old child looking for attention and a three week old baby making for two very tired parents.
I've now logged in with the user that I set up in my test domain and find that when I send mail from that account it is leaving the server and arriving now, but it's still coming from the server name itself and not from the actual domain that I would have hoped for.
The good news is that the DNS records seem to have set in fine. They were completed about two days ago and when I do an NSLookup I see what I would expect. I am not using the Raq for DNS at this point, but rather I am using Dotster, because I still have it setup there for whatever reason. At some point I will move DNS over, but this seemed a better place to start. For this reason, I have turned off DNS on the Raq so that there would not be any conflicts.
I'm having a very difficult time reading the log files that I am finding - it seems that there is a tremendous amount of information logged by default. Can I turn this off somewhere so that I am getting less information and so that I will be more able to review the logs?
Finally, I have upgraded all the Kernel files following the instructions in another thread on this site, and fortunately everything seems to be working well. Unfortunately, that did not solve my email problem.
Something's not working right with your DNS I think. When I try
dig lessontime.com mx
I get a DNS timeout error. I also can't ping or otherwise see www.lessontime.com, lessontime.com, or mail.lessontime.com, so there are definitely other issues that need to be resolved first before debugging your mail issue.
I would leave your DNS configured at Dotster, and not move it to the RaQ itself. You want DNS services to be external to your server, so that if the server goes down, you can at least tweak the DNS records to point someplace else.
Thanks for the information. I actually started moving the DNS yesterday and haven't set it up on the RAQ, but based on your suggestion I might move back to Dotster. My only issue is that it's expensive when I start looking at paying for each domain I end up spending about $200/annually at $10/domain/year for DNS service. Any thoughts on that?
Also, as a new side note, I did finally get an error out on one of the messages saying that it couldn't reach an SMTP service at lessontime.com. Not sure what that means, yet, but I am planning on investigating that next.
Of course, while all of this is happening SBC is knocking on my front door wanting to talk to me about taking down telephone service in the area for a few minutes, which isn't bad enough, but the guy is trying to figure out what the NIU is on the side of my house. He's like, "it has a SBC sticker on it, but I've never seen one..." Ugh. Residential service sucks.
Your registrar should provide DNS services as part of their service package. I have several domains at GoDaddy, and they provide DNS at no extra charge. $10 per year per domain just for DNS sounds very excessive - GoDaddy gives you the domain + DNS + some other stuff for $8.95 per year.
I've been thinking about moving from Dotster to GoDaddy just for that reason. I think it would be a good move for that reason alone, but unfortunately it's a chore and I've been more willing to spend the money than I have been to actually do the work. Maybe I'll get on that soon before I have to renew again.
On a side note, and this is a huge problem for me now, for whatever reason I can no longer access my Raq4 from what I consider the external interface (i.e. www.lessontime.com). The site will allow me to ping the Raq, but it doesn't allow me to open anything on port 80, it doesn't allow me to open the admin section, and I can't login - from the outside world! When I go from inside my network, either to lessontime.com or to the IP address (internal or external) I don't have any problem connecting.
Very frustrating... and I am wondering if I shouldn't just go back to Wintel. Although, I love the interface and functionality of this box if I could get it working. Which begs the question; once the initial functionality is set up and working are these pretty much trouble free?
Yes, once the RaQ is set up, you won't need to do much to keep it going. The usual -- apply security patches, look through the logs, etc. But Active Monitor will alert you to service problems, high CPU/RAM usage, disk quota problems, etc. I have client RaQs with uptime of a year or more that just keep going and going...
Re moving to GoDaddy - I've helped others do the same thing. You can contact me off-forum if you're interested in some assistance if you've got some $$ to spend and don't want to deal with the details... GoDaddy also gives you a free 1-year extension on each domain you transfer as well.
Re your RaQ/UI access problems - Are you behind a firewall or on a home ISP connection? Many ISPs block port 80 access inbound to their IPs to prevent you from running a server. If your RaQ is in a data center or on a "public" IP that's ok to run stuff on, then there may be a configuration issue.
Your DNS issue could be causing access problems as well, since internally Apache rewrites the domain name you enter. If the RaQ can't resolve the domain properly, it can't answer the request. Can you access the UI at all by using the IP address that is assigned to the RaQ?? i.e., http://a.b.c.d/ ??
Thanks for the response. Glad to hear that once this is up and going it's not going to be as much of a problem. I'd hate to think that I am going to spend this much time every month trying to keep the darn thing running. I know if this was a Wintel box I would be up and running and back to work, so that's a good thing, but this looks so cool on the rack and seem like it could potentially be a windfall for some of the other work that I do. Anyway...
Moving to GoDaddy isn't anything more than I'm lazy, so I guess I'll have to suck it up and get it done. It just takes time, as you know, and while I'd love to hire it out the better side of me says that doesn't make sense just because I'm lazy. Actually, with two kids (13 months and one month), it's more about finding the time lately.
The connection that I am using for this is on a public IP address, which I am alowed to run on my existing ISP. Matter of fact, I am running sites on my other IP addresses without a hitch, so I know that's not a problem. Oddly enough, I can't even telnet into it, either, which seems to be a bigger issue from the outside, but could have something to do with DNS, although I don't know why.
I can access the Raq from the inside of my network going to the otuside address without a problem, with any service, but for whatever reason from the outside world to my box I get zip. Very unusual, IMO, but I've not gotten too far in testing it. Just seems like a weird fluke, which brings me to another question: short of reinstalling the original software, is there a way to reset the box to the initial OS walkthrough so that I can see what I may have setup incorrectly?
I hear you about finding time... I have twins (7.5 years old now) and my wife and I home-school them, so time management can definitely be an issue!
There is not a way to go through the setup wizard again, once the server is set up. The idea is that you shouldn't need to, as you can directly access all the settings that the wizard provides via the different areas of the control panel. Naturally, if you can't get to the UI, that's not going to help you much either way, even if you could restart the wizard.
The fact that you can reach the RaQ from your own machine, but not from anywhere else, seems to indicate some sort of firewall or other traffic limiting service, either on the RaQ itself, or at your ISP/colo.
Is the RaQ local to you, or is it someplace else (colo cage, etc)? If it's local to you, that might explain why you can see it when nobody else can. If it's physically separate from your local network, and you can still see it but nobody else can, that's got to be some sort of a VPN/etc tunnel, or else a crazy firewall rule that allows you and nobody else.
Twins?!? Oy vey! I'm not jealous of you. My wife is a part time teacher, and won't be going back to teaching for some time, and I work from home, so we've been managing pretty well. Of course, that's not saying much, because for all I know it's not well and we're just surviving.
One of the issues that I have now, and the reason that I started thinking about starting over, is because I have a weird problem showing   after the host name, which seems weird. I'm not sure what I remember what it was before, but it's definitely weird.
As for my configuration, I currently have two interfaces on the back of my RAQ component, and they're set up now so that one is on the internal network and one is on the external network, which is how I assumed that it should be. Perhaps that is where I am missing things? Should they both be on the external interface? For the time being I am not running the box around a firewall, because I didn't want the added layer until I got it working.
To answer the other, everything is local to me, but my network is pretty sound and has never given me any problems. How should this thing be set up?
On the RaQ, typically only one of the interfaces is used. On the Qube product, it was designed to act as a gateway, so it used the 2 interfaces like you're using them (one public, one private). Occasionally, I've seen people use both interfaces, but it's not as common as running everything through one interface.
I would use only the primary interface and give that an IP on the public network. Make sure the public IP address is what's configured for all your virtual sites as well.
I'm sure that I won't be the first to say this, but everyone on this board has been tremendously helpful, and I am EXTREMELY appreciative for all the support that I have been given. It's amazing - thank you all.
Now, you've been helping an idiot, because I think that I've finally determined what the problem was. Thanks, Bruce, for the advice about the interfaces, because basically the end result is that making that change helped me discern the OTHER problem, which was directly related to the default gateway (which isn't really optional now is it). I had entered my internal network default gateway, which allowed me to get there without a problem, but when anyone from the outside world tried to connect they would simply never get a response (duh.)
So... for now, I believe that the Raq(4) 550 is working and I have actually received an email (BONUS!!). I'm learning the hard way, of course, that I can't create things like a user for each domain that has the same username. I know how to get around it, and why you can't makes sense, but it's funny just the same.
I'd like to get some other tools running now, is there an easy to find place on the web that would allow me to know what will work and what won't? For example, I'd like to run OpenWebMail so that I have a web interface to mail, but can't seem to find much information on how to trouble-shoot that... and so on. I guess it's all a welcome to the Raq and figure it out struggle. Fortunately, with tenacity and help from great people like you guys, I'm sure that I will get through it.
Running the newest (and most secure) OpenWebmail requires a newer Perl than what's on the RaQ... and Perl upgrades are a bit of a PITA. If you have your heart set on OWM, I think there are some folks selling a PKG that does all the heavy lifting for you... try the cobalt-users or cobaltfacts mailing list (I'm also on those lists) -- lists.qbalt.com or www.cobaltfacts.com to sign up for either. The list archives for each are searchable at http://marc.theaimsgroup.com/, and are a large trove of useful Cobalt info.
The best thing to do is a little Googling or checking the various list archives, then post here or to one of the lists for some specifics. Everyone on the lists is pretty friendly, but you will get some 'comments' for asking stuff that is obviously Google-able or that can be found in the archives...
When adding users, I generally try to preface the name with a couple of characters from the domain name to make it obvious which is which. Then, as you have realized, you can set up as many aliases as you want for each.
The Cobalts weren't designed to be too customizable; the 550 UI is probably the best one for that (being the newest) though. They were sold as appliances that did a preset list of functions and that was it. It was thought that if you wanted to radically alter the configuration, add stuff, etc., that you were knowledgeable enough to run a generic Linux box.
Now that Sun has EOLd these products, there are fewer and fewer people providing upgrades and addons for them. And for hardware, for sure, you pretty much have to go to Gerald Waugh at http://www.raqware.com/. If you ever need a power supply, etc., he's the man.
Before you do what BruceT suggested, if you have used the 2 PKGs I asked you to download, you already have Perl-5.6.0 but maybe you would like to try again from there the Webmail package to see if it installs this time. ( from what I rememebr these PKGs originated from there )
Anyway as for the domains, I use www.mydomain.com which is at $8.50/yr and providing DNS.
Currently I think they are having a promotion for transferring. $7.50 to transfer over and they will top up with a year of domain hosting as well
Thanks for the heads up. I did remember that I had already installed the Perl software, but didn't think it warranted re-explaining, as long as I knew. I've also tried reinstalling the application that you sent over without success. Same error as before, unable to process scripts.
The good part of that is that I was smart enough to Google it myself and found another copy of the software that you sent over (exactly the same version number and everything; and it happened to be at the Nuonce site.) I downloaded that and it said that it installed successfully, but when I tried to go to lessontime.com/webmail I get a permissions error.
After googling that, I found that there are some things I can do at the root level for permissions, but I stopped to chase just getting things working. It's a never ending battle, but the good news is that I am learning things. Slowly but surely.
I will take a look at mydomain.com tonight as I am trying to figure out who the best registrar will be. All I've learned is that Dotster is expenseive, and while I would like to go to NetSol, they are even more expensive. The funny thing that I learned is that all the registrars use the same customer support. Basically when you call in they answer the phone support and don't have any idea what registrar you are calling from. I talked with someone today for about thirty minutes and basically what I learned is that they're all equally ****ty, some just have better servers. Interestnig to know.
Anyway, more to follow when I am up and running. Thanks again.
Thanks for the feedback on NetSol. Normally, I have avoided them because of the costs and perceived lack of support, but I believe that is getting better. Unfortunately, they're still just priced out of the market. I'm actually leaning towards godaddy.com, because I can do a bulk move without too much trouble. We'll see.
Woo hoo - I am back from vacation and it seems that everything is working flawlessly. All my sites are up and I am even finding that email is working across the board. Of course, that makes the wife very happy, which makes me very happy. Thank you again to everyone for the support. You guys are awesome.
Next steps for me are to tackle web access to email and to install some test applications from my day to day work. I'll let you all know how that goes.
To finalize the off-topic registrar discussion, I went with GoDaddy.com for a variety of reasons - first and foremost was reading random Google reviews. The quality of service, even though I don't like their interface, has been very good. We'll see how I feel in a month. On a side note, when I went to move my domain to GoDaddy.com, Dotster, my original Registrar, offered to lower my domain registration costs to match GoDaddy.com for LIFE. Interesting...
Yeah, it's been a few weeks since I've moved over to GoDaddy.com and while I absolutely hate their interface, I do have to say that the quality of service has been pretty good. Their DNS management is timely and included and they also do everything a registrar is supposed to do.