Current news...

Problems with sending mail from Linux and UNIX systems

Following the reconfiguration of the central college SMTP mail servers to respond only to authenticated connections, a number of Linux and UNIX users are reporting that they can receive but not send mail. This is because these users have configured their mail software (for example, Thunderbird, Pine, Mutt, Opera Mail, etc) to use a central college SMTP server for sending outgoing mail and you will need to reconfigure your email client software to make them inter-operate with the college server.

However, all UNIX-type systems generally have their own mail SMTP servers on the local machine and if you are using a Linux or UNIX PC or workstation, a SMTP server will almost certainly be installed on it. These SMTP servers (also known as an MTA, meaning Mail Transport Agent) are known by names such as sendmail, postfix, exim, qmail, etc. and all of them are capable of handing your outgoing mail. In short, you don't need to use an external SMTP mail relay such as the college's to send your email.

If you want to use your own SMTP mail relay, simply configure your email software to use 'localhost' instead of '' (or whatever other SMTP system you are currently using). Your SMTP relay will by default relay mail from your local email software without the need for any fancy authentication settings, etc.

SCAN now running full time for the summer in Huxley 410 and 215

The Maths SCAN is now in continuous operation in Huxley 410 and 215 from Monday, July 2nd, until Monday, October 1st.

Closure of Imperial's Usenet news server

Although not widely advertised to members of the College, the ICT news server was shut down on Friday, June 29th. The reasons for this are not clear but those of you who use Usenet news can use the JANET news server instead and the address of the server is All you need to do is to update your newsreader configuration, replacing with

Andy Thomas

UNIX/Linux support,
Faculty of Natural Sciences

last updated: 2.07.2007