Gyepi Sam
SSH Email Tunnel Part 2

In a previous posting I provide details on how to send emails securely from your laptop or workstation to an SMTP server. This post about how to receive emails securely from your email server.

First, some background. I own domain names where get emails. I have configured DNS to designate an MX host, which is the mail server where my mail is delivered and where I pickup my mail.

The mail server is configured to accept emails for me and emails are flowing into the system. Wonderful! The next step, then, is to read my emails. For this, I have several options:

  1. Read my emails on the server. This is not optimal since I use a laptop and am not always online and sometimes read and respond to email while offline.
  2. Forward my emails through my ISP"e;s servers. This certainly works, but now, my email is flowing through one extra system than it needs to. This also means that if my ISP does not allow me to get mail remotely, have to rig up a solution when I travel.
  3. Leave email on the server and pick it up

Option 3 is really the most flexible and the most work. It requires:

  1. Setup and configure an IMAP server. I used dovecot.
  2. Create a self signed certificate and install it. I do this infrequently enough that I usually forget how, but it comes back rather quickly.
  3. Configure mail server (I use postfix) to deliver mail locally.
  4. Setup email clients (I use fetchmail) to pick up mail over ssl.
  5. Make sure all of this is backed up.