The Domino® mail server and mail routing

To process incoming and outgoing mail, IBM® Domino® mail servers run a variety of server tasks and maintain a number of special databases. Some components are required for all Domino® messaging systems; others are needed to support specific configurations only.

The following table lists some of the required and optional components Domino® uses to route mail.

Table 1. Server Task Names and Descriptions
Task name Description
Router task Monitors the database for new messages. Responsible for transferring messages to other servers and delivering messages to local mail files. Can transfer mail using Notes® remote procedure calls (NRPC) as well as SMTP. Converts message format between Notes® rich text and MIME as needed. Maintains a routing table comprised of information derived from the Domino® Directory and NOTES.INI file.
SMTP task (Optional) Enables the SMTP listener, which lets the server receive messages sent over SMTP routing.
Server task Listens for incoming messages sent by clients and servers over Notes® routing and for IBM® Notes® client requests.
IMAP task (Optional) Enables IMAP clients to access messages in user mail databases on the Domino® server.
Converter (Optional) Enables mail files for IMAP access.
Message Tracking Collector (MT Collector) (Optional) Maintains the mtstore.nsf database used to perform message tracking.
POP3 task (Optional) Enables POP3 clients to access messages in user mail databases on the Domino® server.
HTTP task (Optional) Allows the server to host Web applications. Needed to provide Web clients and IBM® iNotes® users with access to their mail databases on the Domino® server.
DOLS (Optional) Provides iNotes® users with offline access to their mail databases

The following table lists important Notes® databases (.nsf) and templates (.ntf).

Table 2. Databases and database templates names and descriptions
Databases (applications) and templates Description
mail8.ntf Template for Web mail.
doladmin.ntf Contains Security Policy documents and user profile documents for DOLS and iNotes® applications. The database doladmin.nsf is automatically created at startup.
Mail Tracking database (mtstore.nsf) Repository for summary information about mail flowing through a server. Created and written to by the MTC add-in task after you enable message tracking. The Mail Tracking database is read by the message tracking tool.
Mail Journaling database (journal.nsf) (Optional) Stores copies of messages that pass through the Router Mailbox. A Mail journaling database is automatically created at startup after you enable journaling.
Mail file databases (username.nsf) End-user mailbox for receiving and sending electronic mail. Every user who accesses mail on a Domino® server has a mail file.
Domino® Directory (names.nsf) Repository for documents that mail clients and the Router use to determine where and how to send messages. Server document, Configuration Settings, Person documents - security/message format, Domain, Connection, Internet Site documents.
Mail Router Mailbox ( Special Notes® database that acts as a temporary repository for all messages in transit to and from mail clients, applications, other servers. Created automatically at startup. The server creates the number of databases specified on the Configuration Settings document.