I know, there are like hundreds of tutorials to install "a mailserver" on Ubuntu 16.04, but I just don't seem to get it working and resetted my server the 4th time now....

What I would like to have is having my webserver, therefore I installed the LAMP-Stack and thats working fine, also used the certbot to get a free LetsEncrypt certificate.

Now next, I want a mailserver, concrete I don't need a graphical gui on my browser, instead it's enough if I can add it on my phone, on outlook, on Mac's Mail program or whatever, so just enter an email-adress, a password and the corresponding imap/smtp server, but I just don't get this working, with no tutorial that I found it seems to work..

I need Postfix and Dovecot for this right? What else do I need? I was once on the point, that I could receive mail if I send it and then receive it with the mail command, but only under the root-user.... I want to have more then 1 adress like info@....., me@....., admin@..., etc...

Can anybody give me a hint or a working tutorial? I'm getting desperate working on this for 6 hours now and have nothing...


You will need some DNS records first if you want your Mail Server be found by the world. DNS MX Record and A Record point to the MTA, it would be nice if you also have PTR Record. You can then add spf and dkim record to upgrade your security level if you want.

Yes, you need postfix and dovecot, postfix is for SMTP; and dovecot is for POP3 and IMAP.

After you install postfix, main.cf is the most important config file.

  1. You need to setup the basic parameters like 'myhostname', 'myorigin', 'mydestination', 'mynetworks', etc.
  2. Then you can setup SASL and TLS for auth.
  3. After that, restrictions can been added, there are restrictions for SMTP connection and restrictions for messages, mailbox...
  4. Those two web site are useful for beginner, https://help.ubuntu.com/lts/serverguide/postfix.html, http://www.postfix.org/BASIC_CONFIGURATION_README.html,

Then we got to dovecot, dovecot's config files are kind of separate in /etc/dovecot/conf.d/. We have

  1. '10-master.conf' for basic configuration like listening interface and ports.
  2. '10-auth.conf' for auth.
  3. '10-ssl.conf' for TLS.
  4. '10-mail.conf', '15-mailboxes.conf' for message and mailbox settings.
  5. You can check https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Dovecot for help.

After all the setup, you can build your own webmail using software like roundcube, sendmail, so you don't need other MUA, you just need browser for access your mail server.

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