An easy way to distribute information about your company to your potential
clientele is to set up an e-mail autoreply, or autoresponder. An e-mail autoreply is an
E-Mail Alias which
executes an autoreply program that automatically replies to any e-mail
sent to it. The e-mail autoreply can be configured to send any message in
the automated reply, such as
a FAQ, marketing plan, or product listing.
To install the e-mail autoreply program, connect to your Virtual Server
via Telnet or SSH
and issue the following command.
% vinstall autoreply
Follow these steps to create an autoreply.
Create an autoreply message called ~/.autoreply (the message
sent back to the customer) in your Virtual Server home directory.
Use an online file editor, like pico, or transfer the file to your
PC in order to add the alias. Be sure to download and upload the ~/.autoreply file in ASCII mode.
Add something like the following to your ~/etc/aliases file
in order to create an autoreply for
info: YOU@YOUR.ISP, "|/usr/bin/autoreply -f info-reply -a info"
Run vnewaliases to update your
When e-mail is received at
info@YOUR-DOMAIN.NAME, an autoreply containing the message
in the ~/.autoreply file will be sent back.
All e-mail sent to
will also be sent to
the mail from the customer would not be sent to
Several configuration options are available.
-m option specifies
a different message file
(for example, "
autoreply -m /etc/mymessage"). Be sure you use the full
path from your Virtual Server home directory.
-f option allows you to change who the autoreply message will
be from (in the example above the "From:" field the customer
gets will read "info-reply@DOMAIN_NAME").
specifies a user that an autoreply can reply for. The user specified should be the same as the
user configured for the autoreply (for example, "
info: ... -a info").
Virtual Subhost Autoreplies
A Virtmaps alias cannot be directed to the autoreply program.
Instead, the autoreply must be created in the ~/etc/aliases file (as above) and the
virtmaps alias directed to the alias in the ~/etc/aliases file. For example:
subhost: firstname.lastname@example.org, "|/usr/bin/autoreply -f info-reply -a WEBMASTER"