BlogPrefect.com switched from the mail systems provided by BlueHost to redirecting the MX records to FastMail. This was done primarily for visibility and consolidation purposes. I shall be taking you through a How To on redirecting your MX records to point to FastMail from BlueHost. This guide also includes the step to include the DKIM signing key.
FastMail MX Record Setup BlueHost
This guide provides some assistance on setting up your MX record on BlueHost server end so that you can use FastMail to manage your email. The steps are fairly straightforward, you just have to wait some time when the MX records are updated.
- Estimated time to change the code: 10 minutes.
- Ease of coding: Easy to Moderate.
- Time for the record changes to cascade through: Upto 24 hours.
Before getting started:
- Make sure you have your domain username and password to hand.
- Make sure you have your FastMail username and password to hand.
Notes and Disclaimer
Note 1: This change is considered “highly visible”. The exact words that FastMail uses. This means that you should schedule making this change when there is less activity. A good time is at night when you are receiving less email.
Note 2: The Subdomain I have that rests underneath BlogPrefect.com doesn’t have a subdomain MX Record setting like the one displayed in FastMail with the form of maindomain.subdomain.com. It appears as its own DNS record in the DNS zone editor on BlueHost, therefore it is considered its own domain for the purposes of email. This means you have to setup a new domain on FastMail.com and edit the MX records on the host.
Note 3: If you are hosted elsewhere (not BlueHost) these instructions can still work but please note that some of the settings such as “Host Record” may use a different character than @.
Note 4: For my own privacy and security I have redacted my host details and the DKIM signing key in the images displayed.
Disclaimer: I do not assume responsibility for any changes you make to your DNS record. If you are unsure of how to proceed I recommend you consult with a professional before continuing.
Disclaimer: FastMail is a paid email service and after a trial period will cost a fee.
Stage 1: FastMail Setup (The Easy Part)
1. Access “Settings” from the top left drop down.
2. Select “Domains” on the left hand side menu.
3. Click the “Add Domain” button.
4. Add your domain, e.g. example.com, you don’t need the www.
5. Press “Save” when complete.
Stage 1 Complete.
Stage 2: Make a Note of the FastMail DNS Required Settings
1. Press Edit on the Domain
Note: you won’t get a unique DKIM signing key if you don’t save the Domain first. This is an auto generated alphanumeric long chain code that is hard to break.
2. Press “Show DNS settings”
3. Make a note of these settings, leave the window open so that you can copy and paste them later.
Stage 2 Complete.
Stage 3: Edit/Add the DNS entries to the MX record in BlueHost
Note: You can do these out of order if you wish as long as you have amended 1 MX and 1 TXT entry and added 1 MX and 1 TXT entry.
1. Login to BlueHost
2. Go to Domains > Zone Editor
3. Select your domain from the drop down (if you have more than one). The page will expand to show you the DNS records.
4. Scroll down to MX (Mail Exchanger)
5. Edit the first record by clicking edit. The default is set to Priority 0. You will be changing the priority to 10 and changing the points to field to FastMail’s SMTP mail engine.
6. Enter the following, then press save.
7. Scroll up to “Add DNS Record” and enter the following, then press add record. This will add the priority 20 element of the SMTP mail engine for FastMail.
8. Edit this TXT entry for SPF by scrolling down to TXT. SPF helps prevent spam.
9. Paste in the “txt value” and press save. You will cut and paste this info from FastMail.
10. For DKIM Scroll up to “Add DNS Record” and enter the following, then press “add record”. DKIM is another spam protection feature.
Note: The Host Record is mesmtp._domainkey, The txt value is the really long chain of alphanumeric code that begins “v=DKIM1; k=RSA; p=“
11. When complete you should see the following:
Stage 3 Complete.
Stage 4: Await Confirmation
Await your Confirmation, you will see when you go into Settings>Domains in FastMail that it has been approved. If you’ve made a hash of things you’ll have to check what you entered at BlueHost’s end.
You should receive this email from FastMail:-
If you did make a major mistake or in future want to leave FastMail, you can return the records back to the BlueHost default by pressing this button:
The default will direct all mail back to its original destination.
Stage 5: Setting Up Aliases
You will need to set up your aliases in order to send and receive as different personas of your domain. E.g. firstname.lastname@example.org
I will show you how to setup 1 alias, then you just need to rinse and repeat.
1. Go to FastMail Settings > Aliases and Press “New Alias”.
2. Enter your new alias in the Email Box. Select the drop down to the right after the ‘@’ sign to select the correct domain if you have more than one. Press “Save” when you are done.
3. The information will take 15 minutes to update so be patient. This 15 minutes will apply to each Alias.
4. FastMail recommends that you add Abuse and Postmaster as two default aliases. This is so that spam issues can be mitigated. Other good suggestions include your First Name, Sales, Support and Info.
5. Test your new email addresses by sending from another account. Make sure you can send and receive without errors.
Stage 5 Complete.
I hope you found this guide useful. There is nowhere specifically written to take you through this process so I hope this has provided a sufficient short cut. If there are any refinements you think are needed or you hit a log-jam with your setup, let me know.
Sharing is Caring
Please share this with the world, not only to help your fellow man and woman but also because I asked nicely. You can use the sharing links to the left from SumoMe.
If you’d like to get in contact with me regarding this guide, you can leave a comment below, you can DM me on Twitter by following this link, or you can send an email to headboy [at] blogprefect.com.
Happy Emailing 🙂