I started today with grand plans of setting up a nice, secure email server complete with spam filtering, virus scanning, and solid validation to keep me off the spammer lists. I researched various sources of information, created a plan and began working toward email nirvana. The whole purpose of this endeavor was to receive a single email, for my SSL certificate renewal, but the grander goal was to become more familiar with the world of email administration. Plus! I could reduce my reliance on Google for one more service.

After many hours of tweaking postfix, dovecot, spamassassin, etc. I ran into an issue that I did not have the patience to resolve. Depending on what I set "mydestination" to in postfix I would receive one of two errors. Either the email would immediately bounce stating there was an error on a local relay because the user was unknown, or the email would bounce more slowly with a relay access denied error. I read through postfix and dovecot docs, multiple web forums, and a linux system administration book. Every variation in settings I tried failed, but the mydestination setting seemed to have the most impact. I came back to the issue late in the day after a couple breaks and still did not make any progress. Then, I decided I could wait on that email server I just wanted to get the SSL certificate renewed.

So, instead of reducing my Google dependence I added a new one by starting up a 30 day free trial of Google for Work. I verified I was the domain owner, created my email account, received the approval email from my SSL provider, and updated my server with the new certificates in under an hour.

Sometimes it's just easier to pay.