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This page was last updated: 10/3/2012 3:23:35 PM

I've been receiving "Delivery is delayed" messages from the CWSL Email Gateway after sending a message. Why? Is there a problem?
Q9:  I've been receiving "Delivery is delayed" messages from the CWSL Email Gateway after sending a message. Why?  Is there a problem with our email system?


A: These notifications are generally caused by problems with the recipient's email system, not our email system. These notifications are essentially our email system's way of telling you "hey, I tried delivering your message to the recipient's email server, but their server didn't accept the message. I'll try again later."


After sending an email message to a particular email address, you may get an immediate "bounce back" message similar to the following:

Delivery Delayed Notification

Why you are receiving these messages:

Our outbound email delivery server is now configured to provide feedback to the sender (you) when there exists a message delivery problem.  Prior to enabling these notification settings, if you sent a message and our email server was unable to immediately deliver the message to the recipient's server, you would not receive feedback that the message delivery was delayed or failed.  Our server would retry sending the message on scheduled intervals, but you would not be aware of this delay (or delivery failure). Now, if there is a delay in sending a message to an external Internet email address, you will receive a notification from our email server similar to the one above. We felt it is important to see these delivery notifications so that you are aware of delays or failures in the delivery of the email that you send.

Important note: this setting change in no way altered how the email gateway sends messages, it only changed the level of feedback it provides to you, the sender.


What causes these messages?

There are a number of conditions that could cause this message, all of which are the result of issues on the recipient's server. This message could be caused by an extremely busy recipient email system (for example, the Yahoo mail system seems to generate these messages frequently). This message can also be caused by a recipient inbox that is over quota, or has some other condition that causes the recipient's email server to not take delivery of the message. 


What can you do if you receive this message?

First, there is no need to forward this to message to HelpDesk as there is typically nothing we can do about this. It is a problem with a remote email system that we have no control over. Our email gateway is able to connect to the remote email server, but that system is not accepting delivery of the message. Our system will attempt delivery 4 more times over the next 16 hours. If it is unable to deliver the message after the 5th and final attempt, you will receive a final "delivery failure" notification.

If you continue to receive these messages when sending to a particular email address, you can contact the recipient directly (via phone, etc.), and let them know that their email system is not accepting messages. Their email account may be over-quota, or there may be some other issue with their email system.

If you receive a large number of these notifications for many different email addresses, please contact HelpDesk as there could be some other problem.

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