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I am trying to use monit, and set up email server using gmail. The configuration file is like this:

set mailserver port 587
username "" password "password"
using tlsv1
with timeout 30 seconds

And I set an alert to test:

check file alerttest with path /.nonexistent
alert with reminder on 500 cycles

But when I use monit validate, the error message I got is this:

Sendmail: error receiving data from the mailserver '' -- Resource temporarily unavailable
Alert handler failed, retry scheduled for next cycle
'alerttest' file doesn't exist
Sendmail: error receiving data from the mailserver '' -- Resource temporarily unavailable
'alerttest' trying to restart

Anyone has any ideas? Thanks a lot

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You can not configure some other company's email server to hand off emails unless you have an actual account there. Even if you do have an account monit isn't the best program to deal with submitting email. What I would suggest is to just install a local MTA to listen on and then configure monit like this:

set mailserver

In that case monit will hand off the email delivery to an actual MTA who can then take care of sending it out, the MTA is perfectly capable of dealing with the remote server being unavailable, unlike monit (since it's not made for that).

How you set up and configure the MTA is out of the scope of this question, however if you want it to send mail directly it would be best to have a static IP, rDNS and mx records. Or you can use a remote smarthost/gateway.

Edit: brief explanation how to install postfix

  • run:

    apt-get install postfix

  • choose:

    internet site

  • system mail name:

    whatever hostname your system has

You will now have configured postfix to send and receive email to and from the internet. Now when you configure monit as described above you will be able to send out email.

Important, in order to improve deliverability you want to make sure that your IP address has a reverse DNS record that resolves back to your domain.

For example, if your domain is and your server is then it should resolve something like this:

host has address

host domain name pointer

Although it could resolve to a different hostname, just as long as the domain is the same. This is because many email servers will check whether you have a valid rDNS. You can request your ISP (amazon in this case) to change the rDNS for you.

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I used gmail, that should work according to… – Jiechao Li May 11 '13 at 0:35
The remote server responds with "Resource temporarily unavailable". Since monit is not an MTA it doesn't deal well with temporary or permanent smtp failures. Hence my suggestion to use your own MTA. By the way ISPs do not block outgoing port 25 so your MTA should have no problem submitting email to a remote MTA. – aseq May 11 '13 at 1:45
So can I use postfix to do this? I don't know how to set this up, could you guide me to a tutorial? Thanks – Jiechao Li May 11 '13 at 3:07
Sure but I need to know which linux distro you use, if you have a static IP, and/or if you know a gateway to hand off email and whatever else may be helpful. – aseq May 12 '13 at 7:52
I am using Ubuntu 12.04, it's on my Amazon aws. I have a static IP, but I don't know any gateway or so. Thanks – Jiechao Li May 12 '13 at 16:55

You can use a remote mail server. Here are my sample configs which worked. It sends alerts to my gmail through a remote smtp server. I think you still use Gmail as an smtp relay as well.

configure remote smtp server in monitrc


set mailserver port 587
username "" password "mypassword"
using tlsv1
with timeout 30 seconds

set the from email which should be same as the one above

set mail-format { from: }

// /etc/monit/conf.d/

monitor apache2

check process apache with pidfile /var/run/apache2/ alert only on { timeout,nonexist,resource,pid,connection } start program = "/etc/init.d/apache2 start" with timeout 60 seconds stop program = "/etc/init.d/apache2 stop"

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