Knowledgebase
Introduction to Script Mail (with Questions and Answers)
Posted by Paul Woodland on 04 August 2012 04:24 PM

Script Mail is the method via which all email needs to be sent from websites on our servers. The old method of sending via "localhost" will be withdrawn from the UK servers in January 2013. It has been introduced in order to protect our services from abuse, and as a result ensure the reliable delivery of email sent from websites hosted with us. As hackers and spammers use more and more sophisticated means to compromise flaws in website's code, it becomes more and more common for innocent websites to be used to send spam. It is always best to secure websites to prevent this, but Script Mail provides a level of protection against websites sending spam in the event that their owners fail to properly secure their sites. Because of this, it helps prevent our IPs from being blacklisted (which can cause emails you send to be blocked or to be sent to junk mail folders). Script Mail works by requiring that a website identifies itself before it is allowed to send email through our servers, so that we always know which website has sent any particular email, and can limit the amount sent per website.

How do I enable and use Script Mail?
To enable script mail, login to the control panel and click on the "Domains" icon and then the domain in question. You will find an icon called "Script Mail" near the bottom of the page. The first time that you visit, you will see that the website is not currently enabled for sending emails and so your username and password will not be displayed. To enable it, you need to select a limit on the number of emails that can be sent from the website per hour. For security, the lowest suitable limit should be selected. The limits are described on the page so that you can make an informed decision. If a high limit is selected, a justification will need to be given. This is to ensure that only websites that need a high limit select one, or the protection against abuse is reduced. Once you have selected a limit, click the "Save" button.

You will now see two options, the second of which is to allow any "from" address to send emails through your site. This again removes a level of proection against abuse, so is not the recommended option, but is there for websites that need to send emails that appear to be from many different addresses. The first option is the recommended one, and it will ask you to specify (one per line) a list of addresses that you want to allow sending from.

You will then be asked to agree to the terms and that you are responsible for all emails sent through our servers using your details. For this reason it is important to keep your details safe and secure, and to keep your website up to date and secure so that it can not be used to abuse our services. To indicate your agreement, carefully read each clause and tick the box by the side to indicate agreement. You will need to enter your name at the bottom and depending on the limit selected, may need to enter a jusitifcation. Once you press save, you will be sent back to the main page, which will now show your server address, username and password, which you can can enter into your code to send emails.

If you believe at any time that the details may have been compromised and could be used by spammers, please immediatley request a new password be issued. This can be done using the link on the Script Mail page in Helm. Also on this page, you can view statistics on how many emails have gone through our servers from your website for each sending address. You can also add new addresses that are allowed to send email.

Sending an email
Once you have enabled script mail and obtained your authentication details, you can then send emails from your scripts. We have provided example code for ASP, ASP.Net & PHP. Please see the link below to find these articles:
https://support.liquidsix.com/index.php?/Knowledgebase/List/Index/16/script-mail

Q & A

Why are a username and password now needed?
A authentication system was added in October 2012 to help prevent abuse of our SMTP server. This results in more reliable email delivery for all customers, by reducing the risk of blacklisting. It does mean that some changes to existing websites may be required, in order to start authenticating so that we can identify the sender responsible for each email.

I wish to send a large newsletter, how does this affect me?
Our service is not designed for sending bulk mailings, it is designed for web hosting. There are many companies who offer dedicated services for sending newsletters on your behalf. This is the recommended option. If you do wish to send a legitimate newsletter through script mail, it will need to be sent at a rate that does not hit the hourly limit.

I need a higher limit than is available?
For more information: https://support.liquidsix.com/index.php?/Knowledgebase/Article/View/96/16/i-need-a-higher-hourly-limit-for-sending-emails-than-is-available

What about the PHP mail() function?
The PHP developers took the decision not to implement SMTP Authentication, meaning that the mail() function is unable to send email from our servers. It is also responsible for probably 90% of all incidents of spamming, so it's inability to function will help keep our services secure. You can still send email via PHP, using any mailer class that supports SMTP authentication. We provide an example here:
https://support.liquidsix.com/index.php?/Knowledgebase/Article/View/91/16/sending-e-mail-using-php

Can I use this service to send email from anywhere other than my website hosted with LiquidSix?
No, this service can only be used to send email from a website hosted with us, and not with one hosted elsewhere, or from your PC etc. If you are sending email from your PC, you need to use our mail email server. 

I have another question
As always, please contact support and we will be happy to assist with your query. 

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