MX records are a type of DNS record that are used to specify the mail server responsible for accepting email messages on behalf of a domain name. MX records are essential for delivering email via the Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP). In this article, we will explain what DNS MX records are, how they work, and how to configure and use them.
The “MX” in the MX record stands for “Mail Exchange”, which is used to specify the mail server that handles email for a particular domain name. For example, if you pull the DNS records of example.com, the MX record currently returns a value of: 10 mail.example.com. This means that the mail server for example.com is mail.example.com, and it has a priority of 10.
MX records are used by SMTP servers to route email messages to the correct mail server. When an email message is sent to a particular domain name, the sender’s SMTP server will look up the MX records for that domain name to determine which mail server to send the message to. The sender’s SMTP server will then connect to the mail server and deliver the message.
You can also add multiple MX records for the same domain name, which can provide redundancy and fallbacks in case one of the mail servers fails. This is also known as round robin load balancing, which can distribute email traffic to one of several mail servers. Each mail server will have a priority, and the sender’s SMTP server will attempt to connect to the mail server with the highest priority first. If that mail server is unavailable, it will try the next mail server with the next highest priority, and so on.
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