Tag: dns DNS problems

Hurricane Electric had a significant outage of their authoritative DNS servers this morning, causing them to return valid responses with no results for all(?) queries. This will have caused delivery problems for any mail going to domains using DNS – which will include some of their colocation customers, as well as users of their […]

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The Internet is hard.

There are so many things that need to happen to make the Internet work. DNS entries need to be right. MXs need to be set up. Web servers need to be configured. And, let’s be honest, anyone who has ever run their own services on the Internet has flubbed a configuration. We don’t think about […]

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SPF: The rule of ten

Some mechanisms and modifiers (collectively, “terms”) cause DNS queries at the time of evaluation, and some do not. The following terms cause DNS queries: the “include”, “a”, “mx”, “ptr”, and “exists” mechanisms, and the “redirect” modifier. SPF implementations MUST limit the total number of those terms to 10 during SPF evaluation, to avoid unreasonable load […]

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On Friday I talked a bit about the history behind TXT records, their uses and abuses. But what’s in a TXT record? How is it used? When and where should you use them? Here’s what you get if you query for the TXT records for from a unix or OS X command line with dig […]


A brief history of TXT Records

When the Domain Name System was designed thirty years ago the concept behind it was pretty simple. It’s mostly just a distributed database that lets you map hostname / query-type pairs to values. If you want to know the IP address of, you look up {, A} and get back a couple of IP addresses. […]

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PTR Records

PTR records are easy to over look and they have a significant impact on your ability to deliver mail without them.  Some ISP and mailbox providers will reject mail from IP addresses that do not have a PTR record created. PTR records are a type of DNS record that resolves an IP address to a […]

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4 things spammers do legitimate marketers don’t

I’ve never met a spammer that claims to be a spammer. Most that I’ve met claim to be legitimate marketers (or high volume email deployers). But there are things spammers do that I never expect to see a legitimate marketer doing. I’ve written about these things throughout the blog (tag: TWSD), but it’s probably time […]


Four things to check before your next mailing

Like many bits of technology, email is often set-and-forget. Everything is checked and rechecked during setup, and then no one goes back and looks at it again. But mail programs are not static, and people make changes. These changes don’t really break things, but over time they can create their own set of problems. Setting […]

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I can’t click through if you don’t exist

Recipients can’t click through if you don’t exist A tale of misconfigured DNS wrecking someone’s campaign. I got mail this morning from A Large Computer Supplier, asking me to fill in a survey about them. I had some feedback for them, mostly along the lines of “It’s been two decades since I bought anything other […]


Flush your DNS cache (again)

This time it appears that DNS for major websites, including the NY Times, has been compromised. Attackers put in DNS entries that redirected visitors to a malware site. The compromise has been fixed and the fake DNS entries corrected. However, people may still have the old data in their DNS caches and security experts are […]

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  • Vague reports of Yahoo problems

    A number of people, on different forums, have been asking if anyone is seeing a higher bounce rate than usual with Yahoo. Not sure exactly what's going on here. As I understand it, folks are talking with Yahoo about it. If I hear anything more, I'll share. For now, though, if you're seeing a small increase in Yahoo bounces (or other weirdnesses) others are seeing something odd, too.No Comments

  • Responsive design just got easier at Gmail

    Today Gmail announced they are supporting media queries in Gmail and Google Inbox. This should simplify the creation of emails for multiple platforms. The full list of supported rules can be found on the Google Developer Site.No Comments

  • Brief blogging break

    Sorry about the unexpected hiatus. I picked up a cold that really made me feel fuzzy and writing was an exercise in futility. I'll be back Monday. Meanwhile, Oracle bought another ESP (Bronto) when they bought NetSuite.  No Comments