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abrichr 14th August 2012 00:04

Helo command rejected: need fully-qualified hostname

This is my first time attempting to configure a mail server. For the purposes of this thread, let my domain name be

I followed the instructions at

Outgoing mail seems to be working; the problem is with incoming mail. The message on the server says:

postfix/smtpd[2642]: NOQUEUE: reject_warning: RCPT from abc: 504 5.5.2 <phil>: Helo command rejected: need fully-qualified hostname; from=<> to=<> proto=SMTP helo=<phil>

In this case, is an existing domain name that does not currently point to this server. I wish to configure this server fully before changing the DNS so as to minimize downtime.

Furthermore, "phil" is the name of the local computer I am using to connect to the mail server. It seems unreasonable to me for the server to expect that every client machine has a fully qualified domain name. Therefore, I suspect that something is wrong with the configuration settings specified in the tutorial I followed.

Any help in this matter would be greatly appreciated.

Version information:


Ubuntu 12.04
Postfix 2.9.3
Dovecot 2.0.19


# The first text sent to a connecting process.
smtpd_banner = $myhostname ESMTP $mail_name
biff = no
# appending .domain is the MUA's job.
append_dot_mydomain = no
readme_directory = no

# SASL parameters
# ---------------------------------

# Use Dovecot to authenticate.
smtpd_sasl_type = dovecot
# Referring to /var/spool/postfix/private/auth
smtpd_sasl_path = private/auth
#smtpd_sasl_path = /var/run/dovecot/auth-client
smtpd_sasl_auth_enable = yes
broken_sasl_auth_clients = yes
smtpd_sasl_security_options = noanonymous
smtpd_sasl_local_domain =
smtpd_sasl_authenticated_header = yes

# TLS parameters
# ---------------------------------

# Replace this with your SSL certificate path if you are using one.
# The snakeoil self-signed certificate has no need for a CA file. But
# if you are using your own SSL certificate, then you probably have
# a CA certificate bundle from your provider. The path to that goes
# here.
smtp_tls_security_level = may
smtpd_tls_security_level = may
#smtpd_tls_auth_only = no
smtp_tls_note_starttls_offer = yes
smtpd_tls_loglevel = 1
smtpd_tls_received_header = yes
smtpd_tls_session_cache_timeout = 3600s
tls_random_source = dev:/dev/urandom
#smtpd_tls_session_cache_database = btree:${data_directory}/smtpd_scache
#smtp_tls_session_cache_database = btree:${data_directory}/smtp_scache

# See /usr/share/doc/postfix/TLS_README.gz in the postfix-doc package for
# information on enabling SSL in the smtp client.

# SMTPD parameters
# ---------------------------------

# Uncomment the next line to generate "delayed mail" warnings
#delay_warning_time = 4h
# will it be a permanent error or temporary
unknown_local_recipient_reject_code = 450
# how long to keep message on queue before return as failed.
# some have 3 days, I have 16 days as I am backup server for some people
# whom go on holiday with their server switched off.
maximal_queue_lifetime = 7d
# max and min time in seconds between retries if connection failed
minimal_backoff_time = 1000s
maximal_backoff_time = 8000s
# how long to wait when servers connect before receiving rest of data
smtp_helo_timeout = 60s
# how many address can be used in one message.
# effective stopper to mass spammers, accidental copy in whole address list
# but may restrict intentional mail shots.
smtpd_recipient_limit = 16
# how many error before back off.
smtpd_soft_error_limit = 3
# how many max errors before blocking it.
smtpd_hard_error_limit = 12

# This next set are important for determining who can send mail and relay mail
# to other servers. It is very important to get this right - accidentally producing
# an open relay that allows unauthenticated sending of mail is a Very Bad Thing.
# You are encouraged to read up on what exactly each of these options accomplish.

# Requirements for the HELO statement
smtpd_helo_restrictions = permit_mynetworks, warn_if_reject reject_non_fqdn_hostname, reject_invalid_hostname, permit
# Requirements for the sender details
smtpd_sender_restrictions = permit_sasl_authenticated, permit_mynetworks, warn_if_reject reject_non_fqdn_sender, reject_unknown_sender_domain, reject_unauth_pipelining, permit
# Requirements for the connecting server
smtpd_client_restrictions = reject_rbl_client, reject_rbl_client, reject_rbl_client
# Requirement for the recipient address. Note that the entry for
# "check_policy_service inet:" enables Postgrey.
smtpd_recipient_restrictions = reject_unauth_pipelining, permit_mynetworks, permit_sasl_authenticated, reject_non_fqdn_recipient, reject_unknown_recipient_domain, reject_unauth_destination, check_policy_service inet:, permit
smtpd_data_restrictions = reject_unauth_pipelining

# require proper helo at connections
smtpd_helo_required = yes
# waste spammers time before rejecting them
smtpd_delay_reject = yes
disable_vrfy_command = yes

# General host and delivery info
# ----------------------------------

myhostname =
myorigin = /etc/hostname
mydestination =, localhost
#relayhost =
# If you have a separate web server that sends outgoing mail through this
# mailserver, you may want to add its IP address to the space-delimited list in
# mynetworks, e.g. as 111.222.333.444/32.
mynetworks = [::ffff:]/104 [::1]/128
mailbox_size_limit = 0
recipient_delimiter = +
inet_interfaces = all
mynetworks_style = host

# This specifies where the virtual mailbox folders will be located.
virtual_mailbox_base = /var/vmail
# This is for the mailbox location for each user. The domainaliases
# map allows us to make use of Postfix Admin's domain alias feature.
virtual_mailbox_maps = mysql:/etc/postfix/, mysql:/etc/postfix/
# and their user id
virtual_uid_maps = static:150
# and group id
virtual_gid_maps = static:8
# This is for aliases. The domainaliases map allows us to make
# use of Postfix Admin's domain alias feature.
virtual_alias_maps = mysql:/etc/postfix/, mysql:/etc/postfix/
# This is for domain lookups.
virtual_mailbox_domains = mysql:/etc/postfix/

# Integration with other packages
# ---------------------------------------

# Tell postfix to hand off mail to the definition for dovecot in
virtual_transport = dovecot
dovecot_destination_recipient_limit = 1

# Use amavis for virus and spam scanning
content_filter = amavis:[]:10024

# Header manipulation
# --------------------------------------

# Getting rid of unwanted headers. See:
header_checks = regexp:/etc/postfix/header_checks
# getting rid of x-original-to
enable_original_recipient = no

falko 14th August 2012 19:24

Do you have a fully-qualified hostname in /etc/hostname, or is it just phil?

abrichr 15th August 2012 00:58

I did have a fully-qualified hostname in /etc/hostname, but I scrapped that installation and went with the one at instead.

It's up and running, but I'm having some performance problems, for which I've started a thread at


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