multiple mail servers for one domain

William Attwood wattwood at
Thu May 14 15:33:09 MDT 2009

There is a priority in DNS for each MX record.
MX 10
MX 20
MX 30
MX 40

What will happen is the lower the number, the higher the priority; if mail.
isn't responding, it will try mail2, if that doesn't respond, it'll try
mail3 - if in the end none respond, it will wait a certain amount of time
and try again; eventually, if none work, it will bounce it back to you

To get around the possibility of random e-mail delivery, I actually went
this route:

This is from my bind zone file:

Than I have google setup to forward all unknown accounts to - which delivers cronjob e-mails so I didn't have to pay
for those.

If you don't want to send all unknowns from google to your 2nd mail server,
you can setup a Group and have it send to name at

Does that make sense?

On Thu, May 14, 2009 at 3:25 PM, Daniel C. <dcrookston at> wrote:

> On Thu, May 14, 2009 at 2:01 PM, William Atteood <wattwood at>
> wrote:
> > Yes.  Setup a second mx say
> Won't this result in randomly getting emails for
> accounts that should go to  It's my understanding
> that, while mail is *supposed* to be delivered to the MX records in
> order, it doesn't always happen that way, and that it's acceptable to
> deliver mail to any MX record for the domain.
> Practical upshot being, is it possible to make a non-MX DNS record and
> tell gmail to forward them to it?  If it is, this would prevent other
> mail systems from accidentally sending mail to the secondary server on
> accident.  But Gmail may only be happy with forwarding mail to MX
> records.
> -Dan
> /*
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Warm regards,
William Attwood
Idea Extraordinaire
wattwood at
Vince Lombardi<>
- "We didn't lose the game; we just ran out of time."

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