How to set up an SMTP server on Ubuntu

Email servers are a must for small, medium and large businesses today. They enable simple and efficient traffic control. Also, your email servers ensure that you can independently define or set your rules to achieve your goals. These advantages ensure that you manage your servers more efficiently and cleanly.

SMTP is your ideal protocol for managing email servers. Commonly known as the Simple Mail Transfer Protocol, SMTP is distinguished as the standard Internet communications protocol developed and used for the transmission of electronic mail.

It relays emails using third party to send emails through servers. This protocol comes in handy for businesses or businesses with large volumes of email. Notably, SMTP has no downtime, sends emails to your inbox and not your spam folder, and has an analytics section on the dashboard. Thus, you don’t need much time and resources to manage your email servers.

This article shows how to set up an STMP server on Ubuntu 22.04. The same steps apply if your computer is running on Ubuntu 20.04.

Step 1: Update your server

The first step is to login to your server and update it. You can login with SSH and make sure your server is running on the latest Ubuntu packages. You can also use instead of SSH CTRL+ALT+T to access your server. You can then run the following command:

Step 2: Install Postfix

Once your server is up to date, install Postfix with the following command to install the email utilities:

A Postfix configuration window will appear during the installation. The window is shown below:

The configuration comes with Internet site as the default email configuration type. This is the recommended type of configuration for this specific purpose. So you should press TABchoose OKand then press ENTER.

Step 3: Configure Postfix

Now configure Postfix so that it can send and receive emails from the running server. In this case the running server is the localhost. You can accomplish this configuration process by setting Postfix to listen exclusively on the loopback interface. This interface is a virtual network used by servers for internal communication.

Make the relevant changes by editing the primary Postfix configuration file ( located in etc/postfix. However, back up the file before making any changes. You may need the original version.

You can then access the file with the following commands:

Locate the following lines from the file:

Focus on inet_interfaces and set its value to loopback-only as below.

Step 4: Apply changes and start Postfix server

Be sure to save the file after making the required changes in the Postfix configuration file. You can then enable Postfix and launch it with the following utilities:

Step 5: Configure Firewall

The firewall can restrict Postfix. You can allow all Postfix functionality in the firewall with the following commands:

Step 6: Test the SMTP server

Use telnet to confirm if the server is working properly. The following command should help:

A perfectly working postfix should produce the following results:

Proceed to install the Postfix mail delivery packages. This is possible with the following command:

Run the following command once the installation is complete. The utility should help complete the setup process.

If necessary, enter your actual email address when testing.


The tutorial provided a step-by-step guide to setting up an SMTP server using Postfix. As you probably know, a Postfix server allows the implementation of the SMTP protocol to manage the sending of emails. It’s fast, easy to configure, and incredibly secure, making it popular with companies that handle bulk email.

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