Trouble emailing accounts

Since the beginning of April, anybody I’ve emailed at Yahoo says they haven’t gotten any email from me, or they don’t reply (when they normally would). The exception seems to be my web host’s Yahoo email address. Yes, it’s odd, isn’t it?

My email is being blocked by Yahoo! Mail. What can I do?

Talking with my host and looking at the mail server logs, they’re delivered successfully. Some of them will say “421 Message from ( temporarily deferred.” A few seconds later [in the mail server log], it’ll say “250 ok dirdel” which means it’s all good.

I’ve been bugging my host about this, but if I don’t have to, I need a reason to believe everything is okay except for these few people who don’t check their Bulk Mail folder. (That would be another issue.)

Any ideas? If you want to help me test, email me with your Yahoo address and I promise to email you back. The more the better. Thanks!

Update 4:20pm 4/29/07 – Thanks to Connie’s help, at least I can verify that my emails are going directly into the Bulk Mail folder. What now?

Update 8:25pm 4/29/07 – My last email to Connie went directly into her Yahoo inbox — but she added me to her address book beforehand. Is there anything I can do?

Update 10:16am 4/30/07 – Carlo (who emailed me from emailed me through a co-worker that saw this blog post. Carlo, if you’re reading this, I emailed you back at 9:30am and haven’t heard back.

Update 10:43am 4/30/07 – From Carlo: “I’ve updated our database to reflect the correct category for your sending IP; the changes should take full effect in a few hours. If you continue to receive reports of your emails going missing or into your recipients’ Bulk folder thereafter, just let me know.”

Lastly, refer to Why am I getting “451 Message temporarily deferred” or “421 Message from x.x.x.x temporarily deferred” errors when sending mail to Yahoo!? and fill out the form if you’re having the same problems.

Blogging is cool, especially if important people actually read it. All should be back to normal soon enough — whatever that means! Special thanks to Carlo and your co-worker informant!

Published by

Bryan Villarin

Bryan works at Automattic. He's also a cat whisperer. Sometimes…a photographer, and card magician.

10 thoughts on “Trouble emailing accounts”

  1. The samething is happening, but only if I redirect my office email to the yahoo account. I redirect to any other email account it works. I redirect my account so I can receive the emails on Treo. I am currently waiting on Yahoo to email me back after calling their Customer Service was a joke.


  2. I understand from Carlo’s post that Yahoo can and does place the sending IP in a kind of a whitelisting ensuring the arrival to the inbox and not Bulk.
    What is the procedure to getting into this list as I am having the same problem (421 and Bulk)?



  3. Bryan,

    I saw you posts and updates. The thing is that to my understanding and I think i saw it on the Yahoo Help, they claim not to hold a white list but to exmine each mail by mail.
    From the posts above i got the oposite impression.

    Whats / who’s right?


  4. @Naor: I guess it looks like they favor a whitelist more than the content of email.

    I don’t know what’s the truth. I just documented what happened. It stinks, but I’m just glad that someone fixed it for me.

    You need to take it up with Yahoo. I probably should’ve complained amidst the dilema, but I just didn’t have the time to at the moment.


  5. For the last couple of weeks I have been getting the same error message when trying to send mail to my sister-in-law who I have been sending mail to for years. I think it is highly unlikely that she has blocked my mail, so what is happening? I read your other comments and I am somewhat internet illiterate, so what can/should I do to fix this? Thanks for any help you can give me.


  6. There “is” another way to fix this. If you notify Yahoo and they don’t bother to fix it move your account to You are free to forward the “fix” to Yahoo too if you would like. Sometimes large companies don’t seem to respond until it affects their bottom line. Go figure.


  7. I know for a fact that part of the email problems with Yahoo and others is that in April they started considering any messages from an email server that doesn’t have a valid rDNS/PTR record as spam. I have a T1 line that I run a small ISP from. I thought everything was cool…I had PTR records in my DNS server, so the world should be spinning in the correct direction. I thought wrong. The provider of my T1 actually still owns the block of addresses. They were intercepting the rDNS lookup path and returning ‘Host not defined’. I had to get them to delegate the rDNS for my IP block to my DNS servers. This allowed the world to see my rDNS/PTR entries. I still get the stupid deferred message, but does get through does go into peoples inbox.


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