[sclug] Domains, email web hosting

Roland Turner SCLUG raz.fpyht.bet.hx at raz.cx
Wed Apr 6 12:27:42 UTC 2005

Patrick Kirk wrote:

> Actually this Yahoo service looks good for ?22.  Just a shame its not
> http://smallbusiness.yahoo.com/email/custom_mailbox.php
> Anyone got any idea how to migrate the existing Inbox and Sent mails to
>  a web interface?

That part of the problem I do not know how to solve, but take care with (/
stay away from) Yahoo's small business service. Note that, in addition to
anything else, you _CANNOT_ (with one special exception) share the same
second-level domain name between Yahoo SB mail and anything else.


- The service requires you to delegate to yahoo's own DNS servers the
domain that appears in inbound email addresses. So, if you're wanting
yahoo SB mail to receive and present emails for joe at mydomain.com, then the
provisioning process will pause at a not-yet-live state (no inbound emails
being accepted) until it detects that you've redelegated mydomain.com the
Yahoo SB mail DNS servers, which in turn generate the dynamic records
required for the service to operate. (N.B. this is not "add an MX record
to your zone file which directs incoming email to Yahoo's servers", this
is "grant control of the entire domain to Yahoo's SB mail service").

- The Yahoo SB mail DNS service is not the same as Yahoo domains; in
particular you cannot add your own A or CNAME records to point to your
web/ftp/whatever servers.

- You can nominate a single webserver which they'll allow to be reached as
www.mydomain.com; I don't recall whether it was through an A record, a
CNAME record, an HTTP redirect or even an HTTP proxy.

- Their recommended approach was to register two seperate domains for your
email and web activities. This makes some sense if you are a webmail
provider (yahoo.com addresses are available to the masses, yahoo-inc.com
addresses are only available to Yahoo staff), but is a little inane for
the rest of us.

This is a little outside scope for the original poster's question, and
it's even conceivable that Yahoo has fixed this particular problem. My
intent is simply to warn that, while Yahoo's small business offering looks
neat, it has some nasty catches and, frankly, I'd be astonished to learn
that similar mistakes had not been made elsewhere in the design of the

- Raz

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