I just configured a Debian server as follows
apt-get install smartmontools
vi /etc/default/smartmontools - and here uncommented these 2 lines
# uncomment to start smartd on system startup
# uncomment to pass additional options to smartd on startup
Then I edited /etc/smartd.conf and uncommented only this line
DEVICESCAN -S on -o on -a -m firstname.lastname@example.org -s (S/../.././02|L/../../6/03)
I was wondering if this is enough for the system to send me an alert message when something goes wrong and/or if there is a way to simulate a problem and see if smartd sends me warnings by email.