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Allow custom rejection messages for RBLs that do not return a TXT record

mtindor shared this idea 8 years ago
Open Discussion

The following thread describes the problem:

Basically, when a message is rejected because it is found in an RBL, cPanel relies upon the resultant TXT record information to fully populate the reason for the rejection.

As an example, if an IP address is on the RBL, both an A-record (one or more) will be returned and a TXT record will be populated, and it is that TXT record that is used to fully complete the text in the rejection notice.

Example 1 (Spamhaus -- provides both one or more A-record as well as a TXT record)

dig 235 IN A 235 IN A 235 IN A

dig TXT 900 IN TXT ""

Example 2 (BRBL - only provides A-records on a match)

dig 746 IN A

dig TXT


;note that no TXT record is provided

The text in the TXT record is then used to populate the rejection message:

[]:2078 is in an RBL, see

However, for some custom RBLs (such as, only A-records are available on a positive match. There is no resulting TXT provided by, and as such the rejection message text ends up looking like this:

[]:2078 is in an RBL, see

cPanel needs to add a way for admins to add a custom rejection message that, if present, will override anything found in a TXT record when querying that particular RBL.

Not only must we be able to grep our logs and easily find "" (or whatever custom RBL you are using), but the sender who is being rejected deserves to have a meaningful response sent back to them during SMTP rejection. As it stands right now, you can't grep your exim logs to see what hits occurred for an RBL that doesn't provide TXT record, and any sender rejected by that RBL is not provided with a meaningful rejection message.

Replies (5)


mtindor, thank you VERY much for researching this problem and finding the cause. This problem has been bothering me for at least a year. We are also using the Barracuda RBL and when we reject a message based on an IP in this RBL, the end user gets no good indication of the reason, due to the problem you have documented.

Hope this request gets more support.

- Scott


IMO, this is less of a Feature and more of a Bug. Regardless, the whole custom RBL configuration has come a long way, but needs some more finesse.


We just recently noticed the message was missing since it did work in the past. We agree there should be an appropriate reject message in the bounce how ever it is implemented.


We agree that providing a good reason for rejection is mandatory for our mail servers.


Very well put mtindor!

I've been using Barracuda's excellent BRBL for a few years.

To be honest, I don't remember it ever worked properly though.

Yes, you can manually edit exim.conf, but cPanel is forever undoing your edit!

Very frustrating and time consuming (but I think worthwhile, as it's a good RBL!)

I hope this feature request gets lots more votes.

Thanks for taking the time to submit the request.

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