Initial Setup Questions

Discussion in 'Noob Central' started by delti90, Oct 24, 2012.

  1. delti90

    delti90 New Member

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    Hey There,

    I'm new to this forum and trying to get into Mailing. I'm working with one of my friends on doing this, the plan is for me to manage the servers. I have lots of experience configuring and managing exchange servers, and a bit of experience with IIS based web servers, so I'm not extremely noobish to mailservers. But I would still like a bit of guidance. I already have an account with a reputable marketing company and a good source for emails, so I'm pretty much looking at the hardware aspect of things now.

    I've been lurking this forum for the past two weeks, as well as some other forums trying to get a good idea on how to start. It seems like Interspire is the way to go when you're just starting to mail. I imagine starting up I'll be sending a few thousand a day until my IP's get warmed up. Does that seem accurate?

    The environment I'm thinking of setting up is going to be a VPS running CentOS and either Cpanel or PLESK (possibly Zpanel) as the management tool. Separately I would be running the mailserver on a weaker VPS with a separate IP. I don't have a lot of experience setting up Linux servers, and the test VMs I've set up so far have had some strange PHP problems I can't figure out. So any guidance on getting an initial test server up would be fantastic.

    Looking at the self-test I have most of my bases covered:

    Is my data scrubbed with a professional, reputable third party? (not facebook you fools)

    --My data is coming prescrubbed from a reputable source.

    Is my data littered with dead accounts, hard bounces, etc?

    --This remains to be seen, will update once I actually start mailing.

    Do I know where my data comes from? (demographics)

    --Yes, data includes demographics.

    Does my data include recipient opt in information (opt in timedate stamp and IP) to provide in case of complaints?

    --Yes, I plan to include this.


    IPs:
    Are my IPs clean from the start? (did you check a blacklist site to confirm?)

    --Will update once I start getting servers/ips.

    Are feedback loops set up on my IPs/domains wherever possible?

    --No, not yet at least. Is this important?

    Is RDNS properly submitted to IP Provider?

    --Not yet.

    Is your IP provider mail friendly and are they aware of your intended use? Do you have a dialog with them or do you act shady and covert?

    --My intended provider is mail friendly. I will update once I begin purchasing IPs.

    Does a single DNS zone file link all your IPs?

    --I'm unsure as to whether or not I should be linking them. If one goes down as spam, won't that mean the others will be marked as spam? I could use some clarification on this.

    Is your Credit Card on file with the IP provider? If so, for your protection, cancel the card immediately and offer payment via paypal, especially if the IP provider has terms stating they charge for complaints.

    --Nope.

    Did you ask for a /27 or more to start? Don't ask for 60 IPs to start, no matter how bulletproof your justification..

    --Nope. Don't intend to.

    Mail Server:
    Does my mail system clean my list by removing hard bounces, removal requests, feedback loops, etc automatically.

    --Yes

    Is my mail servers main IP part of the same network as my mailing IPs? (If your ISP shuts off your IPs due to complaints, down goes your mailserver too, say bye bye to your cleaned data)

    --No

    Can I extract clickers and openers from my mail system? (If you don't know why, quit now..)

    --Yes

    Can I use DKIM SPF and other methods to legitimize, justify the authenticy of my mail? Is this automated or do I have to set up DNS myself.

    --I believe I should be able to use SPF rand DKIM records to help legitimize, and set it up manually. But I could use some clarification on this point.

    Can I control HOW SLOW I can send? Warming up IPs in the beginning is key.

    --Yes, this is one of the most important parts to me.


    Will I have to generate thousands and thousands of dollars a month just to pay for the resources to keep this mailing mechanism online and how does this factor into my warm up process?

    --It does not look like I'll need to be generating thousands a month to keep it running. But the plan is to generate money!


    Any help is greatly appreciated. I'm mostly concerned with getting my initial test VM up so I can get an idea of the host environment. So if anyone with CentOS experience can lay in some insight I would be very grateful!
     
  2. PushSend

    PushSend VIP

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    fanFUCKINGtastic 1st post! I was watchin' you too. I think you'll fit in nicely around here!

    +rep
     
  3. delti90

    delti90 New Member

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    haha, thanks, I appreciate it. I just wanted to make sure I had a decent understanding of mailing before made my first post and make it clear that I understand this isn't something I can just jump into.
     
  4. nickphx

    nickphx VIP

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    What 'strange php errors' are you experiencing? I've never managed or even dealt with exchange.. But if you have the patience to maintain any microsoft product, you should be able to figure out how to send a decent amount of email with relative ease.
     
  5. delti90

    delti90 New Member

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    I have a friend who is currently mailing and lent me one of his Interspire licenses. I set it up successfully on shared hosting. So decided to tackle it on an actual linux environment. I configured PHP, mysql, apache, and installed Plesk to manage it. After setting up the database and installing Interspire I can't get past the login screen.

    I come to the login screen, type my credentials and hit "login" and it just reloads the login.

    I found these two KB's on interspires site:

    Link1

    Link2

    While the second one is for Windows servers, it's the same error and it leads me to believe it's a PHP error. Though all of my permissions seem to be set correctly
     
  6. nickphx

    nickphx VIP

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    Probably a permissions error with where php is storing your sessions... upload a script called test.php , in there put:

    phpinfo();

    stupid forum strips out the php opening tags even when i wrap it with the phpbb code tags.. oh well.

    go to that.. search for session , make sure that path is writeable by the user running the webserver.
    good luck with interspire.. unless they've completely changed their database structure and overall mailing logic, it won't work out for data over like 100k records.
     
  7. delti90

    delti90 New Member

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    Thanks. I'll give it a shot and let you know if it works out. As for Interspire, most of the stuff I have read seems to recommend it to noobs, like myself. Is there something else you'd recommend over Interspire, or something to move onto afterwards? I've also heard a lot of good things about VoloMP.
     
  8. nickphx

    nickphx VIP

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    volomp doesn't leave much room for improvement. it's closed source and written mostly in c. it also has a pretty expensive lease. if you're any good with php you could get oempro and extend it's functionality. i remember it was decent and some people actually use it for volume over a few million records.
     
  9. delti90

    delti90 New Member

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    You were right! I had previously tried setting permissions through ftp and through Plesk. This time I did chmod straight through SSH and that did it.
     
  10. delti90

    delti90 New Member

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    Thanks for the advice. My initial plan was to at least get it set up through a panel. I feel like the more ways I set it up, the better I'll understand the environment since I'm moving from years of experience in IIS and Exchange environments. My next step is going to be setting up a VM without a panel. Hopefully tomorrow sometime.
     
  11. nickphx

    nickphx VIP

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    virtual machines are the way to go.. i wouldn't bother with the open source free stuff though. i've setup xen , kvm and vmware esx 4 and esxi5. I ended up sticking with esxi5. Now I run about 150 vms across 30 servers, most running tunnels or MTA stuff.
     
  12. delti90

    delti90 New Member

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    That was something I was curious about. I host all of my windows servers using esxi 4 so I figured it would be the way to go for this as well. I've never really looked into it, but I'm sure it's possible to map different ips to each guest os if I buy a server with oodles of ips.

    Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Tapatalk 2
     
  13. delti90

    delti90 New Member

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    I currently have my Client and Mailservers ready to go, and am building a campaign. I'm looking into SpamAssissin, but I'm still not sure how I should go about setting it up, I've found a few websites that will check your spam assassin score based off of headers, I doubt that's the best way to do it, but is it sufficient for now?
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2012
  14. delti90

    delti90 New Member

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    Currently working up on warming up. I'm sending out 160emails an hour. Ten per ip over 24 hours. Then tomorrow i'll do the same. Next day bump it up a bit. Right now I'm working on gmail, tomorrow i'll send gmail again, and work on setting up feedback loops for AOL and Yahoo. So far I've learned a lot more in the short time I've actually been mailing.
     

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