New domain - mail host not active

Greetings -

I setup my new Dreamhost account after coming from a certain parentally named named hosting provider, and overall, I’m thrilled … its like a breath of fresh air, and what I dreamed hosting should be like.

My account has been up for a few days now, and I have updated the name server entries over at that other place to Dreamhost. The DNS change has had several days to propagate through the net, and I am able to access at dreamhost just fine.

Last night, I began the process of setting up an email account for this domain (though I had an email address set up at the previous host, I never really used it for anything, so getting that migrated quickly wasn’t that important). Last night I created the email address, and the clock dissappeared on the manage email addresses screen within a few minutes of creating the account.

However - it appears that does not exist. My mail reader can’t find it, and I can’t ping it. I can visit, but when I try to login, I get:

Error connecting to IMAP server:
2 : No such file or directory

Which I’m assuming is related to the apparent lack of existance of

In the “noneditable dns” records, mail is listed with a ip address with an A record, as well as two MX entries.

From my home computer, if I do “nslookup”, I get the correct ip address.

However, if I use “host” it states “host not found: 3(NXDOMAIN)”

Is there some other step I need to do to make the host name active? Or do I just need to wait a bit more (it has now been 12 hours since I activated the first email address for the account, if that is in any way a trigger for creating the host alias).

Or, is this not really the problem and I’m missing something completely obvious that is documented elsewhere in the wiki?

many thanks for any advice you can offer,

ps: as used by others on the forum, if it is not clear is not my real domain …


First, Welcome! In my experience the creation of the “mail.mydomain.tld” subdomain is triggered by the establishing of the email address, and I have had it take anywhere from minutes to 36 hours for that domain to be available via DNS.

Another piece of anecdotal information you might find useful as you get set up is that the single most unpredictable “wait” time I’ve experienced over the years at Dreamhost is the availability of email accounts after I have set them up. Sometimes they take less than an hour, but often they will take as much as 24 hours or longer.

Other’s posts in this forum indicate my experience with this is typical. At this point, since the “clock” icon is gone from the Control Panel screen, I suggest you wait a bit longer before becoming concerned or submitting a support ticket; you may well have mail.yourdomain.tld available within the day.


Okay - as I said, I haven’t used email on this domain for much yet, so a delay isn’t a problem. I’m happy to sit tight for another day or so to see if will appear. I was just looking for a sanity check to see if I was missing something obvious.

Thanks for the quick response … I’ll check back in later on with the status …


It took 5 days for my mom’s ISP to find my new mail host’s IP address.


Okay - as of this afternoon (about 20 hours) after creating the first email account) - and the host alias appears to be working just fine. I was out running errands during the day, so I don’t know exactly when it became active, but sometime between 12 and 20 hours.

I am able to send and receive email from gmail - I haven’t exhaustively tested other domains, but presumably if they don’t work now, they’ll work in a day or two (or 5 )