How to disable 554 "bounce" notification in SmarterMail?
Question asked by Eric Bourland - 4/13/2016 at 9:39 AM
Unanswered
SmarterMail 14

Hi friends. A client has asked me to disable 554 bounce notifications in SmarterMail. For example, see the bounce notification below, which SmarterMail sent to my client's colleague, after SmarterMail rejected his message as spam.
 
Is there a way to tell SmarterMail to NOT notify a sender when her or his message is rejected as spam? Thank you as always for your help.

Eric
 
Technical details of permanent failure:
Google tried to deliver your message, but it was rejected by the server for the recipient domain judybyron.com by tarsier.viviotech.net. [162.217.171.90].

The error that the other server returned was:
554 Sending address not accepted due to spam filter

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Joe Wolf Replied
No way to stop or modify any of the SMTP response codes in SmarterMail that I know of.

-Joe
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Eric Bourland Replied
Joe, great to hear from you.

I went into Settings | Security | Antispam | Options tab, and set Content Filter Bouncing to "Disabled". I wonder if that will turn off the SMTP response codes?

I guess I will find out.

Thank you as always for your helpful reply. Hope you are great.

Eric
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Joe Wolf Replied
Well yes, that will stop the 554 messages, but that's going greatly increase server load and the amount of spam you process. Even if you set an action to Delete (which is very unwise from a legal standpoint) you're still going to probably triple the messages you process.

We're very cautious about SMTP Blocking (554)... a message must fail at least two major tests with zero false positives, and we still process about 1000 554's per hour. I have no way to know how many of them would get Greylisted, but if they get past greylisting you have to process the entire message even if you set an action to Delete. So it wouldn't be too hard to DoS your server.

-Joe
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Eric Bourland Replied
Hi, Joe,

hmmm. Well, here is my problem. Two SmarterMail clients report to me that, when some colleagues send messages to them via Google Gmail, the messages get through -- yet, the senders get a 554 "bounce" message from SmarterMail. The clients were upset about this. This behavior began only a couple of days ago. I have changed nothing on the SmarterMail server.

So, my solution is to turn off the 554 bounce messages.

I am not going to set anything to Delete. =) For legal and practical reasons.

So, you are saying that if I disable Content Filter Bouncing, then I will get a lot more spam?

Do you mean that my server will work harder to process incoming spam, or that my server will accept spam that, previously, it would righteously reject?

Thank you again for your help. I really appreciate your time.

Eric
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Joe Wolf Replied
Wrong solution. It's very difficult to get a 554 from a gmail account. You are using some illogical spam filter settings if you're doing that. The current version is filled with errors and terrible practices. You'd be better off using the Wizard.

Yes, your server load will probably triple at least. Once past greylisting you are going to process the entire message even if you have a Delete action set. So all it would take is for me to set up a few gmail accounts and send you a DDoS and I could take your server down in seconds. I assure you Google has more bandwidth than your server can handle. I only use Google as an example... I could use Hushmail or hundreds of others,

Any of those servers will retry and bypass greylisting and then unless you have severe message size limits I crash your server in seconds.

The only way to know how to keep a mail server safe is to stress test it. SmarterMail does not stress test out well at all. The result is a crashed server.

The 554 is the very first and most efficient to protect your server.

You should NEVER EVER delete a message as the System Admin for a paying customer. Every single message must be accounted for. I know the law and if you follow some very popular but terrible advice here you deserve to get sued.

-Joe
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Eric Bourland Replied
Joe, this makes a lot of sense.

Nope, I never delete anything. =)

I set Content Filter Bouncing back to "Require Message Passed SPF".

If I am eliciting 554s from some (not all) Gmail messages, then, I agree, I need to review my spam filter settings, as you suggest.

Have you shared, on this forum, your own spam filter settings in SmarterMail and/or SpamAssassin? Or can you point me to a HOWTO or some documentation that you recommend? Obviously I need to take some immediate steps.

I really appreciate your time and help. This means a lot to me. I hope you are great today.

Eric
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Eric Bourland Replied

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