Ubuntu On My Freebsd Server

If you feel the need to put ubuntu on your FreeBSD server, here is a guide.

It's really simple, the first step is to take ubuntu

take ubuntu

Step two put it on your server (for example my FreeBSD server)

ubuntu on FreeBSD server

Works also on Apple hardware

ubuntu on mac

Mail Part 4 Wrap Up

The simplest way to check if everything work as expected, is to configure one of your new mail accounts in your mail client and send a mail to the test service of http://www.mail-tester.com/. If something not working there is a good chance that you find a hint in your mail log which you find there -> /var/log/mail.

I used also http://mxtoolbox.com/ which has a few nice tools to check your DNS setup and SMTP.

Many useful things are stolen and copied from these articles:

Special Thanks to

This is not a part of the three part series:

Mail Part 3 Setup Imap Dovecot

A mail server where your mail program can't receive your mails is a bit lame. So this last post describes how you can setup a dovecot to serve your mails over imap.

The fist step as usual is to install it.

pkg install dovecot2
echo 'dovecot_enable="YES"' >> /etc/rc.conf

I personally use a really simple IMAP configuration if you need more, lets say something like pop3 support, you should definitely check out the dovecot documentation because dovecot can almost everything.

But for a simple IMAP server it's just these few lines in your config (/usr/local/etc/dovecot/dovecot.conf).

protocols = imap
ssl = required
ssl_key = </usr/local/openssl/private/mail.domain.tdl.key
ssl_cert = </usr/local/openssl/certs/mail.domain.tdl.crt
mail_location = maildir:~/mbox
listen = *

userdb {
  driver = passwd
  args = blocking=no

passdb {
  driver = pam
  args = 

Hint: I use here the same ssl certificat and key as for the OpenSMTPD config.

With the configuration file in place we can start (service dovecot start) and test the service. For testing I used openssl, like this:

openssl s_client -connect mail.domain.tdl:993

It should print a lot of informations about your certificate and you should be able to login with:

a1 LOGIN yourunixusername yourunixpasswordincleartext

Which should return something like this:


This is the last part of a three part series:

Mail Part 2 Dkim

DKIM is a technology to validate and protect you against spoofing of your emails. This is achieved by putting a public key in the DNS records an sign all outgoing mails with with the private key. So everyone can validate if you authorised to send these mails.

To use this with OpenSMTPD we use dkimproxy which we need to install first.

pkg install dkimproxy
echo 'dkimproxy_out_enable="YES"' >> /etc/rc.conf

And of course we need to configure it:

$ cat /usr/local/etc/dkimproxy_out.conf
# specify what address/port DKIMproxy should listen on

# specify what address/port DKIMproxy forwards mail to

# specify what domains DKIMproxy can sign for (comma-separated, no spaces)
domain    domain.tdl

# specify what signatures to add
signature dkim(c=relaxed)
signature domainkeys(c=nofws)

# specify location of the private key
keyfile   /usr/local/openssl/private/dkim.key

# specify the selector (i.e. the name of the key record put in DNS)
selector  dkimselector

The important bits here are the listen and relay ip:port combination. For the most setups you can use since the DKIM proxy needs only be accessible on the for your OpenSMTPD server. Of course you need to replace domain.tdl with your domain but the rest you can more or less just copy.

As you can see there is a key file which we now need to create. And the public key part of this key goes in our DNS.

openssl genrsa -out /usr/local/openssl/private/dkim.key 1024
openssl rsa -in /usr/local/openssl/private/dkim.key -pubout -out dkim_public.key

And this public key we can now put in our DNS, this should look something like this:

dkimselector._domainkey IN TXT "k=rsa; t=s; p=MIGfMA0GCSqGS...CMaVI02QIDAQAB"

dns settings for DKIM

Here is MIGfMA0GCSqGS...CMaVI02QIDAQAB your public key with out the -----BEGIN PUBLIC KEY----- and -----END PUBLIC KEY----- in one line. An easy way to print your public key without new lines is this: cat dkim_public.key | tr -d '\n'.

That's everything we need to configure on the DKIMproxy site. We can start the service with service dkimproxy_out start.

Update OpenSMTPD configuration

We have a running DKIM proxy but it's useless if we don't route our mails through it. To achieve this we update our smtpd config (/usr/local/etc/mail/smtpd.conf).

In a first step we add a new listen directive. The port here 10028 should match the one you configured for the relay in the dkimproxy configuration.

listen on lo1 port 10028 tag DKIM_OUT

And we need to replace

accept from local for any relay


accept tagged DKIM_OUT for any relay
accept from local for any relay via "smtp://"

After a OpenSMTPD restart (service smtpd restart) it should tag all mails with a valid DKIM signature.

This is the second part of a three part series:

Mail Part 1 Setup Smtp Opensmtpd

This is mostly my personal mail server documentation a bit polished in three blog posts.

DNS setup

Set a MX record to a subdomain like mail.domain.tdl and then the mail.domain.tdl points to your IP. Don't forget to increase the TTL of this records if everything works. Why? I set my TTL to 259200 sec, which are 3 days

Make sure your reverse DNS match the hostname of your mail server!

And you should probably set the Sender Policy Framework

doamin.tdl.                 IN   TXT    "v=spf1 mx mx:domain.tdl -all"

Create users

Now we need a user, replace $USERNAME with the account name. If your email address should be hi@domain.tdl your account name is hi.

pw user add $USERNAME -m -s /sbin/nologin -c "mail user ($USERNAME)" # create user account
passwd $USERNAME                                                     # change password

mkdir /home/$USERNAME/mbox                                           # create mail directory
chown -R $USERNAME:$USERNAME /home/$USERNAME/mbox                    # own the directory to the right user

If you need to create a few accounts maybe use this script, where you can just run this script with the user name as parameter.

Install OpenSMTPD

Before we can install OpenSMTPD we need to stop and remove sendmail. So first we stop it with:

service sendmail stop

Then we can edit /etc/rc.conf and add these lines, to make sure sendmail is not started automaticly after a reboot.


Now we can install OpenSMTPD which is really really easy, it's just:

pkg install opensmtpd

and add to /etc/rc.conf


and your done. Well almost we need to create the SSL certificates and configure the OpenSMTPD.

Create your SSL certs

As the first step we symlink the certificate root to the global certificate root location. If it's not alreay done.

ln -s /usr/local/etc/ssl/cert.pem /etc/ssl/cert.pem

At this point we can create our certificates.

openssl genrsa -out /usr/local/openssl/private/mail.domain.tdl.key 4096
openssl req -new -x509 -key /usr/local/openssl/private/mail.domain.tdl.key -out /usr/local/openssl/certs/mail.domain.tdl.crt -days 1440

Country Name (2 letter code) [AU]: NL
State or Province Name (full name) [Some-State]:Amsterdam         
Locality Name (eg, city) []:Amsterdam
Organization Name (eg, company) [Internet Widgits Pty Ltd]:l33tsource Ltd
Organizational Unit Name (eg, section) []:
Common Name (e.g. server FQDN or YOUR name) []:mail.domain.tdl
Email Address []:admin@domain.tdl

By default these key and certificate should only be accessible to the root user. So we fix that with chmod.

chmod 500 /usr/local/openssl/private/mail.domain.tdl.key
chmod 500 /usr/local/openssl/certs/mail.domain.tdl.crt

OpenSMTPD configuration

With the SSL certificate in place we can edit the smtpd config (/usr/local/etc/mail/smtpd.conf).

pki mail.domain.tdl key "/usr/local/openssl/private/mail.domain.tdl.key"
pki mail.domain.tdl certificate "/usr/local/openssl/certs/mail.domain.tdl.crt"

listen on lo1 port 25 hostname mail.domain.tdl tls pki mail.domain.tdl
listen on lo1 port 587 hostname mail.domain.tdl tls-require pki mail.domain.tdl auth mask-source

table aliases file:/etc/mail/aliases

accept from any for domain "domain.tdl" alias <aliases> deliver to maildir "~/mbox"
accept from local for any relay

This is it. Really simple and short. What this does is listen on port 25 and 587 on the lo1 interface (this should obviously match your interface) and accept encrypted connections. The key and certificate location are configured with the pki keyword. And the messages are delivered to the home directory of the user in a folder called mbox.

Now we can start the smtpd service and test it with telnet.

telnet servername 25
    EHLO mail.domain.tdl 
    MAIL FROM:<FROM@domain.tdl> 
    RCPT TO:<TO@domain.tdl> 
    Subject: Testmessage 
    (blank line) 
    This is a test.
    (blank line) 

If it's says something like 250 2.0.0: 5x549x2a Message accepted for delivery, congratulation your SMTP works.

This is the first part of a three part series: