Amazon SES bounce rules

Hello phplisters,

I have setup phplist on an amazon EC2 server in effort to cut out the expensive email bills. We currently use a paid service and found that phplist has most, if not all the same features we are looking for.

The only problem is when we send a campaign, if there are bounces, it does not come back into the system, and there we have to manually go into the list and remove the bounced emails.

Is there a way to automate this?

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@phplistuser You do not say whether you have configured bounce handling in phplist. You need to do that and in SES enable email feedback forwarding for the verified email address to receive bounces (the phplist $message_envelope setting in config.php)

@danwaterloo Dan, can you confirm this?

Your questions directed me to setup the bounce management rules within both SES and PHPLIST. I have created a dedicated mailbox, which is defined in $message_envelope in config_extended. I created an SNS topic in SES to forward bounces, and complaints to this dedicated mailbox. I have successfully setup crontab to process bounces regularly so this part is automatic. This appears to be functioning as desired.

The issue now, is that I have defined the $bounce_unsubscribe_threshold = 2, and after 4 bounces, the user is still active.

I have setup all of the default rules on phplist “Rules to Copy

I also setup some rules that I know come from SES.

All actions are set to blacklist subscribers.

The interesting fact is there is no data under view bounces per list or view bounces by campaign, says “none found”. But when I click on a particular subscriber, it shows in the bncs count.

However, I was able to manually achieve my blacklist goal, by selecting reconcile subscribers. Then manually processing. Is there a way to automate the reconcile subscribers where the users are automatically blacklisted with more than 2 bounces?

You need to use config.php, not config_extended.php for settings to be actioned. extended is there for reference as it has pretty much every setting you could possibly need, BUT as explained in the file, only config.php is used by phpList

Thank you for the reply Dragonrider. In both config.php and config_extended.php file $bounce_unsubscribe_threshold = 2 with that result. [however, I had not read that config_extended was only samples]

I don’t know whether this is the correct approach. You want Amazon to send the complete bounce to phplist, similar to how an SMTP server would. phplist needs the original email to be included in the bounce so that it can identify the subscriber and the campaign that were sent.

Thank you Duncanc. By removing SNS Topics, and just having the Email Feedback Forwarding within SES, and the appropriate $message_envelope set to the dedicated mailbox, that should be adequate to achieve fully automated bounce processing?

That was the ticket. Turning off SNS topics, and enabling email feedback forwarding, with the $message_envelope in config.php now it’s fully automated. Thanks for the help!

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