Recently, we had an outage due to heat in some of our switch closets. Not only did this generate a lot of alarm traffic for IT Systems…but it also generated a lot of alarm traffic for HVAC and even other systems as well. In the end, we sent out so many automated notifications (emails) to pagers and cell phones that we got rate controlled and then subsequently blacklisted due to the massive volume of emails heading out of our SMTP IP Address. This blacklist meant that email was brought to a screeching halt in the enterprise. I had to have our Network Team fail us over to our secondary SMTP IP Address in order to get mail flowing again. This of course, meant we were no longer using our primary network circuit and there were some DNS hiccups…and really, we didn’t need anything else to make the IT department look bad…DNS was the icing on the cake.
So my question to all the Email Administrators out there is…how do you handle automated notifications in your enterprise? Do you have secondary SMTP servers with different IP Addresses that you use to send out automated notifications? Do you use the same Exchange server but filter traffic using Exchange and virtual SMTP Servers to an external smart host? How do you do it?
I hope someone has some examples for me and I appreciate any help you can give…we’re just venturing into territory I haven’t been in before and it’s always good to get perspective of those who have been there already.