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Setting up for DirectAdmin

Instructions for updating the Exim configuration to use MailChannels as a relay host are provided in this article. Authentication with MailChannels is required and is relatively simple to setup. With DirectAdmin, the exim configurations are stored in the /etc/exim.conf file on your server and the following changes should be added/modified in the /etc/exim.conf file.

Setting Up Authentication

  • Add the following entries under the "begin authenticators" section.

begin authenticators
driver = plaintext
public_name = LOGIN
hide client_send = : smtpusername : smtppassword

smtpusername : smtppassword should be replaced with the SMTP Username/Password you created when signing up with MailChannels.


  • Add the following Send via MailChannels route to the top of the "begin routers" section.

    begin routers
    driver = manualroute
    domains = ! +local_domains
    senders = !* : !*
    ignore_target_hosts =
    condition = "${perl{check_limits}}"
    transport = auth_relay
    route_list = *

    In the example above, if you do not wish to exclude a domain or sender from the MailChannels relay, leave the senders = line blank. If you do wish to exclude senders or domains here, replace the bracketed sample text with the actual sender address or domain name.


    Note: Do not remove or comment-out the lookuphost: router in the begin routers section, this lookuphost route config will route excluded domain from MailChannels and relay via the DirectAdmin server itself.
    Example of default lookuphost: router section:

    driver = dnslookup
    domains = ! +local_domains
    ignore_target_hosts =
    condition = "${perl{check_limits}}"
    transport = remote_smtp


  • Add the following transport to the "begin transports" section.

begin transports
port = 25
driver = smtp
hosts_require_auth = $host_address
hosts_require_tls = $host_address


Add Authentication Header

  An authenticated sender header is required to track sender reputation within the MailChannels system. This section provides instructions for adding the authenticated sender header to the outgoing emails.
  The authenticated sender header can be added by editing /etc/exim.conf

  • Add the complete "headers_add" line to the file just below “driver = smtp” line as shown:

driver = smtp

headers_add = X-AuthUser: $authenticated_id 

Warning: Versions of Exim prior to the current major release are considered obsolete. If you are using Exim 3.x or earlier it is suggested by the Exim development team that you upgrade to the current release.

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