[Techtalk] spf and mail

Kathryn Hogg kjh at flyballdogs.com
Fri Mar 16 22:40:10 UTC 2007

Maria McKinley wrote:
> Sounds like you followed it pretty well to me! Thanks! I think this is
> exactly my problem. The offender is the University of Washington, and
> they have already told me that they have no intention of publishing an
> SPF record, and I expect they won't be any more enthusiastic about
> re-writing the sender address. So, is there a way to figure out what
> mail has been forwarded and exclude it from SPF testing? The email link
> of Stuart Gathman's opinion seemed to imply this was possible, but
> didn't explain how. Any ideas?

I don't think the problem is whether or not the U of Washington is
publishing an SPF record or not.  The problem is that if they do very
simple mail forwarding, it looks like mail sent from your server is being
delivered by a machine on their network.  In other words, the mail is from
your domain but it fails an SPF check because the IP address it is coming
from is not listed in your SPF record.

As the page Mary pointed you to, they need to remail the message not just
forward it.  If they remail the message it will be from the U of
Washington and will be allowed to be delivered because they don't publish
an spf record.

If its just one or two servers that cause this problem, you can add their
MX servers to your SPF list but that means anything sent from them can
pretend to be you and still be SPF compliant.


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