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Old 25 Feb 2024, 03:23 AM   #1
camner
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Alias addresses vs "other" address at my domain

Reading this post recently let me to ask a question that has been puzzling me.

On the "My email addresses" screen in Settings, in the Type column some addresses have the word "Alias," but others do not. ALL the addresses are of the form <xxx@mydomain.com>, where mydomain.com has its nameservers pointed to FM.

What are these "other" addresses, and how in the world did I set them up?

What are the functional differences between "Alias" addresses and these "other" addresses?
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Old 25 Feb 2024, 06:01 AM   #2
n5bb
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See: Fastmail help: My email addresses > Type


I believe there is a bug in this Fastmail settings page with the display. Every address on that page which has a dot (period or full-stop) character displays nothing in the Type column. That includes wildcard subdomains such as *@sub.fastmail.com or aliases such as user.alias@fastmail.com. When I have time I will report this to Fastmail staff.


Bill
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Old 25 Feb 2024, 06:11 AM   #3
hadaso
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I have a long list of "My email addresses".
They have six different types:
  • Alias
  • Shared alias
  • Catch-all alias
  • Shared catch-all alias
  • Send via Fastmail
  • none (that is: nothing in the "type" column)
What I see is that "shared" means that there is more than one target (the received email is routed to more than one location). It says "Messages sent to this address will go to you and other members of your team." but this is not true: they are routed to my account in Fastmail and a copy is sent to an external account as a backup.
"Catch-all" mean it is ca catch-all alias' of course (all addresses under a domain).
"Send via Fastmail" is the email address from the organization that employs me, that I set as an identity many years ago. I have all email sent to that address forwarded to my Fastmail account where I handle it. Usually I reply from a different address in my own domain.
The addresses that have no type designation are in subdomains of either my own domain or a Fastmail domain (when another alias allows me to receive mail at that subdomain). I also have one email address without a designated type that is a catch-all address at an external domain that cannot be used for sending anymore because I cannot verify that address.
So at least from my addresses it seems that those with the various "alias" types are ones that have a target (and that were setup as aliases years ago) and those without a type or with type "Send via Fastmail" are identities I have set up in the past.
So my guess is that the addresses you have of "alias" type are aliases you setup in the past in your own domain (or domains) and the ones with no type must have been setup as identities and there has to be a catch-all alias in the same domain so that email to these addresses are received.
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Old 25 Feb 2024, 12:25 PM   #4
camner
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Thanks to all for your responses. But color me still confused.

In my list of addresses, I have the following:
  • My main Fastmail address <username@fastmail.com>, the one I created when I first signed up for FM years ago. This address has the word "Alias" in the Type column. This doesn't make a lot of sense to me. If there is any email address that shouldn't be thought of as an alias, it would be the main address, no?
  • Two other addresses that were set up long ago, using one of the available domains for such things (e.g., mm.st). These addresses also have the word Alias" in the Type column.
  • A catch-all address <*@mydomain.com>, which, understandably, has in the Type column "Shared catch-all alias".
  • A bunch of addresses of the form <something@mydomain.com> that I set up anywhere from many years ago to perhaps about 2 years ago. These have nothing in the "Type" column.
  • An address I set up a few days ago of the form <something@mydomaincom> that looks and feels just like the ones in the previous item, but this one has "Alias" in the Type column
  • An address I set up a few weeks ago of the form <something@fastmail.com> that has "Alias" in the Type column

I can't make sense of this.
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Old 25 Feb 2024, 01:55 PM   #5
n5bb
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To the right of the Type column is a funnel tool which can change the sort criteria. Be sure this is set to “All” or you won’t see all types.
Quote:
Originally Posted by camner View Post
… My main Fastmail address <username@fastmail.com>, the one I created when I first signed up for FM years ago. This address has the word "Alias" in the Type column. This doesn't make a lot of sense to me. If there is any email address that shouldn't be thought of as an alias, it would be the main address, no?
You can change your login user email address at Settings > Users & Settings > User Management (tab) > Edit > Username > Rename. So you probably changed your username at some point. The username shown at the location I just described is your login username, and it will be shown in the “My email addresses” list as “Username”.
Quote:
Originally Posted by camner View Post
… A bunch of addresses of the form <something@mydomain.com> that I set up anywhere from many years ago to perhaps about 2 years ago. These have nothing in the "Type" column.
See my first post in this thread. Do these addresses have a dot (full-stop or period character) in them such as I described in that post? Also be sure to read the Fastmail help section I listed.

Bill
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Old 25 Feb 2024, 06:19 PM   #6
hadaso
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Quote:
Originally Posted by camner View Post
  • A catch-all address <*@mydomain.com>, which, understandably, has in the Type column "Shared catch-all alias".
  • A bunch of addresses of the form <something@mydomain.com> that I set up anywhere from many years ago to perhaps about 2 years ago. These have nothing in the "Type" column.
My hunch is that these addresses at <something@mydomain> were set up as identities, when then the catch-all alias for the domain was already defined. So they don't have a target of their own but received email to these addresses is delivered using the catch-all alias targets (it is "shared" so it must have more than one target).
The new way of doing things is that when you define a new address like <something@mydomain> it is set up as an alias (with a corresponding sending identity), with target(s) of its own, that override delivery settings of the corresponding catch-all alias (if there is one). If you choose to set up the same address as "an address you already have" then an alias is not created, and either Fastmail determines that it is already handling the email for the address (there is a catch-all alias that includes it, or it is a subdomain address that comes with an existing alias), or else the address has to be "verified" to become address (an email is sent to the address with a link or code, to ensure the user can receive email at the address).
Perhaps the "dot in address" bug is related to detection of the address being a subdomain address at an existing alias (that is the entire address is searched for a dot instead of just the domain part).
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Old 26 Feb 2024, 08:36 AM   #7
camner
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n5bb View Post
To the right of the Type column is a funnel tool which can change the sort criteria. Be sure this is set to “All” or you won’t see all types.
It has been set to "All"

Quote:
You can change your login user email address at Settings > Users & Settings > User Management (tab) > Edit > Username > Rename. So you probably changed your username at some point. The username shown at the location I just described is your login username, and it will be shown in the “My email addresses” list as “Username”.
Looking where you had indicated, I see that the "this is you" address is xxx@fastmail.fm, which explains why the address xxx@fastmail.com is listed as an alias. Thanks!

Quote:
See my first post in this thread. Do these addresses have a dot (full-stop or period character) in them such as I described in that post? Also be sure to read the Fastmail help section I listed.
None of my addresses have a dot character in them (other than as the separator between the domain name and extension, of course).
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Old 26 Feb 2024, 08:38 AM   #8
camner
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hadaso View Post
My hunch is that these addresses at <something@mydomain> were set up as identities, when then the catch-all alias for the domain was already defined. So they don't have a target of their own but received email to these addresses is delivered using the catch-all alias targets (it is "shared" so it must have more than one target).
The new way of doing things is that when you define a new address like <something@mydomain> it is set up as an alias (with a corresponding sending identity), with target(s) of its own, that override delivery settings of the corresponding catch-all alias (if there is one). If you choose to set up the same address as "an address you already have" then an alias is not created, and either Fastmail determines that it is already handling the email for the address (there is a catch-all alias that includes it, or it is a subdomain address that comes with an existing alias), or else the address has to be "verified" to become address (an email is sent to the address with a link or code, to ensure the user can receive email at the address).
Perhaps the "dot in address" bug is related to detection of the address being a subdomain address at an existing alias (that is the entire address is searched for a dot instead of just the domain part).
I suspect you have hit the nail on the head! Do I infer correctly from your comments that at present, it is no longer possible to set up an address as an "Identity"?
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Old 26 Feb 2024, 05:37 PM   #9
hadaso
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Quote:
Originally Posted by camner View Post
I suspect you have hit the nail on the head! Do I infer correctly from your comments that at present, it is no longer possible to set up an address as an "Identity"?
If I understand the current situation correctly, now if you create an entry for an email address in the "My email addresses" page, then if you choose "an email address I already own" then what you create is actually a sending identity, and if you choose "alias" then you create a new alias + a corresponding identity in one step. There is also an interface for creating an alias without a corresponding identity: in the "Users & Sharing" page there is an "aliases" tab, and clicking "New alias" there enters a form to create just an alias, without a corresponding identity.
Most of my aliases are there, and not in the "My email address" page. I don't know why some are here and some are there. My guess is that when the new scheme replaced the old one aliases with corresponding sending identities were "merged" with the sending identities and put in the "My email addresses" page, and aliases without corresponding sending identities were considered as forwarding to "other members of my team" and put in the aliases tab in the "Users & Sharing" page.
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Old 28 Feb 2024, 11:07 AM   #10
Terry
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Quote:
Originally Posted by camner View Post
I suspect you have hit the nail on the head! Do I infer correctly from your comments that at present, it is no longer possible to set up an address as an "Identity"?
It stupid how its now set up you need a degree in computing to work it out, but it is there.
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