Looking for a VPS to setup as personal mail server

Pretty sure the title says it all. As I have never used VPS before (all the time dedis so far) I have no clue what the requirements would need to be and hopefully this kind community would help me out on that. However, disk space would need to be 10+ gb. Just to add it doesn't need to be nvme.

Comments

  • @Rabbit said:
    Pretty sure the title says it all. As I have never used VPS before (all the time dedis so far) I have no clue what the requirements would need to be and hopefully this kind community would help me out on that. However, disk space would need to be 10+ gb. Just to add it doesn't need to be nvme.

    Well, first and foremost requirement is you being ready to deal with spamlists and IP reputation.

    Sometimes freelancer.

  • As mentioned, do some blackslist monitoring and keep an eye on your IP reputation. If it's just a personal mail server, then as long the range (/24 etc) doesn't end up on a list you should be fine.

    Expect to have to deal with outlook (they seem to need a "new" IP to confirm itself via a process) and a few others but otherwise it's not quite as bad as people say. It's not easy, depends how much work you want to put in. I've ran a personal mail server for years.

    Pick a good provider who doesn't tolerate bad things, as they're less likely to have any ranges get onto blacklists, but also double check they're happy for mail be used on their network. Some prefer to not have it, even if it's personal.

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  • ionswitch_stanionswitch_stan Hosting ProviderOG
    edited February 14

    We offer affordable VPS and allow SMTP from Seattle (not yet automated in Dallas). Feel free to reach out if you have any questions we can help with (customer, or not). Our VPS512 are fairly tiny, but I would be happy to extend our double disk offer, and our VPS1 are affordable.

    Ionswitch.com | High Performance VPS in Seattle and Dallas since 2018

  • @comi and @Mr_Tom Thank you for your kind suggestion and helpful hints.

    @ionswitch_stan I'm a little ashamed I didn't mention it before but I'd rather if the VPS was in the EU. That was my fault.

  • I don't know about their cloud offerings but a lot of my mail servers are on Hetzners network (dedicated /28 though) and no issues.

    Setup proper SPF/DKIM/etc and it'll make the process easier. I've been running a personal mail server in some form or another since about 2005 - it's definitely not a set and forget type thing but it's not a full time job either lol.

  • AnthonySmithAnthonySmith AdministratorHosting Provider
    edited February 14

    https://clients.inceptionhosting.com/cart.php?gid=29

    Might be something of interest there?

    UK (London) DDOS Protected

    Inception Hosting - 256MB OpenVZ VPS back in stock for €8.00 p/year - DEDICATED IP4 + /64 IPv6 https://clients.inceptionhosting.com/cart.php?a=add&pid=177

  • @AnthonySmith The 2.50 a month looks perfect to be honest. You have nothing against email being used? And if I may ask, are any of your IP's blacklisted like mentioned before by some users.

  • As someone who has managed their own stuff on the internet for 20+ years - it isn't worth it. Running a backup MX isn't a bad idea, but trying to keep your IP space clean when Spamhaus and others are happy to throw a complete /24 under the bus.

    My pronouns are asshole/asshole/asshole. I will give you the same courtesy.

  • @WSS said:
    As someone who has managed their own stuff on the internet for 20+ years - it isn't worth it. Running a backup MX isn't a bad idea, but trying to keep your IP space clean when Spamhaus and others are happy to throw a complete /24 under the bus.

    This. Gave up running my own mail servers a few years ago, went to Mxroute, not had any serious problems since. As @Mr_Tom says, running a couple of servers for personal use isn't a full time job, but you do need to put some effort in keeping them patched, checking that they aren't on any blocklists and finding ways of blocking the latest spammer tricks.

  • AnthonySmithAnthonySmith AdministratorHosting Provider
    edited February 15

    @Rabbit said:
    @AnthonySmith The 2.50 a month looks perfect to be honest. You have nothing against email being used? And if I may ask, are any of your IP's blacklisted like mentioned before by some users.

    For a personal mail server I don't mind but bulk mailing is strictly forbidden.

    I can make sure you get a clean IP however if it gets blacklisted because of your VPS then I will not swap it, you will need to clean it up yourself.

    As others have said, in 2020 its really not a good idea to run your own mail server, just the amount of spam email bounce backs can blacklist your IP these days due to volume and that can be caused by breathing at the internet the wrong way haha.

    But if it is something you want to try you are welcome.

    If you plan to be able to deliver to hotmail/microsoft free domains then good luck to you and happy weeks worth of reading :)

    Inception Hosting - 256MB OpenVZ VPS back in stock for €8.00 p/year - DEDICATED IP4 + /64 IPv6 https://clients.inceptionhosting.com/cart.php?a=add&pid=177

  • Only bother with running your own if you're going to use an SMTP relay, otherwise, like everybody else said, good luck.

  • So many despairing comments about small, personal MTA deliverability difficulties! I have seen both sides!

    For a year now I have been running a personal MTA. I have sent about 164 emails. From talking with the recipients via side channels, I seem to have 100% inboxing at Gmail, Microsoft, and Verizon.

    However, att.net seems to have a hard block. I am grateful for the hard block, because at least I get to find out what happened, unlike if my messages simply ended up in spam. After weeks, apparently no response seems to have been received from AT&T's postmaster team other than a canned acknowledgement.

    For whatever it's worth, I am sending only plain text, non-html email. SPF, DKIM, and DMARC are set up. I haven't done ARC yet.

    Awhile back I found this Hacker News thread helpful because several comments led me to additional resources:

    https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=21352161

    @Rabbit Good luck with your mail server! I've had a lot of fun with mine!

    Thanked by (3)uptime angstrom mfs

    Old guy! Happy customer of OVH. Tom, not Oles! :-)

  • Better to stick with Mxroute,Zoho & yandex

  • Wow. Thank you everyone for the answers. Seems like in the end it's not a really good idea and I would rather not risk getting one of your IPs blacklisted @AnthonySmith - still, it was meant for personal use but I'd avoid the trouble for both of us.

    I'll better check out mx. As for yandex, yeah no.

  • mfsmfs OG
    edited February 16

    Handling a mail server isn't that impracticable mess some people describe if outbound filtering isn't necessary (i.e. not a relay, no newsletters, no transactional mails)
    Sure, you have to keep an eye on the reputation of your IPv4; and maybe you have to be ready to switch IPv4 in another block as an extreme measure... needless to say you'll have to pick a provider with a good overall reputation. IPv6 grants almost immediately access to GMail/GSuite Inbox. You'll have to subscribe to a couple of whitelists and a couple of monitoring services and you'll have to setup SPF, DKIM, and possibly DMARC.
    Anyway it's fun. Nothing unholy to manage at all, I've done it for at least a decade even if for some stuff I've been lazy enough to rely on third party services.
    You probably won't always hit immediately Outlook's inbox if domain and mail servers are brand new, give it a few weeks at least, then you shouldn't have major issues. No idea of AT&T, since I have 0 recipients on AT&T. Landing in Yahoo! Inbox happens just fine. Same for icloud and domains using GSuite or O365, within a month.
    If you can't trust your senders and high volumes are necessary, then setting up something convenient without resorting to third party services is painful and transfiguring.

    For personal and unimportant stuff it's very convenient. Its IPs are anyway periodically blacklisted by some recipients (no more than a week ago most IPs were seemingly blacklisted by Apple) and there are some occasional service disruptions. Anyway for a grandtotal of 0 ₽/mo. no one can really complain I guess

  • alentoalento OGServices Provider

    Let me just throw out the idea of using Mail-in-a-Box here @Rabbit . It is an all in one solution preconfigured and works ... out of the box. https://mailinabox.email

    I have been using MiaB for over 3 years now and am a major contributor on their support channels. So if you have any questions, please feel free to ask.

    Thanked by (1)mfs

    Recommended providers: BuyVM - MXroute - LunaNode - Forpsi - IntoVPS
    Contact me for all of your Mail-in-a-Box email hosting needs AnyDomain

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