Configuring E-mail services

Applies to the following products: 
Questionmark Perception
Applies to the following Perception versions: 
Perception 5.2
Perception 5.1

Perception can be configured to send emails to participants at the end of assessments, or with Email Broadcast. This can be achieved by setting up an SMTP (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol) service running on the application server or by connecting to an appropriate email server in the Server Settings. If you intend to run your own SMTP service you should make sure you have installed the SMTP service. For further information, please refer to:

For information about how to use a separate email service, please refer to:

If you intend to use the SMTP service to send out emails from the application server follow the instructions below for your particular operating system once the SMTP service has been installed.

In Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2003, Windows and Windows XP, SMTP is provided by IIS (Internet Information Services) by default. The SMTP service doesn't have to be supplied by Microsoft, however.

The default Perception settings assume the SMTP server is available on the following address and port.

IP address: 127.0.0.1

Port: 25

For details about how to configure your server to use SMTP, please refer to the following sections:

Configuring your IIS SMTP server in Windows XP and Windows Server 2003

If you are using the SMTP server available in IIS, you should make the changes described in this section on the server where you have installed Perception Server. If you are not using IIS as your SMTP server, you will need to refer to the documentation for your SMTP server for instructions.

To configure your IIS SMTP server:

    1. Open IIS

To open IIS, click Start, click Control Panel, and then double-click Administrative Tools. Click Internet Information Services (IIS) Manager

    1. Open the Default SMTP Virtual Server Properties dialog

To do so:

      1. Expand the machinename (local computer) folder in the left-hand pane (where machinename is the name of your application server)
      2. Right-click Default SMTP Virtual Server and select Properties

If you cannot see the Default SMTP Virtual Server folder, then you do not have SMTP installed. This is included as part of the Email Services Windows component, and you will need to install this before you can use the IIS SMTP server.

    1. Open the Access tab and click Authentication...
    2. Ensure that the Anonymous access box is ticked and click OK. This ensures that Perception can connect to the SMTP server without having to log in
    3. Click Connection...

Ensure that Only the list below is selected and that the list includes the IP address 127.0.0.1. This ensures that only Perception Server can relay mail through the application server.

To add 127.0.0.1 to the list if it not already there, click Add... and enter the IP address. Ensure that Single computer is selected and click OK.

Click OK to return to the Default SMTP Virtual Server Properties dialog.

    1. Click Relay...

Ensure that All except the list below is selected and that the list is empty. This specifies that all domains are authorized to use the SMTP server.

If more security is required (such as with public SMTP servers), the option Only the list below should be selected, and a list of specific domains should be added, namely those domains specified in the From: email address in the Email Broadcast. For example, if you specify myname@xyzcompany.com in theFrom: email address, you should ensure that xyzcompany.com is added to the list.

Click OK to return to the Default SMTP Virtual Server Properties dialog.

    1. Open the Messages tab

Ensure that the following boxes are not ticked:

  • Limit message size to (KB)
  • Limit session size to (KB)
  • Limit number of messages per connection to

You can restrict the above settings by ticking the relevant box but only if you are sure that doing so will not interfere with emails sent by Email Broadcast.

Click OK

    1. Open the General tab

Ensure that the IP address selected is set to (All Unassigned), and that the Enable logging box is ticked.

You can click Properties to confirm the location of the log files.

    1. Click Advanced...

Ensure that the (All Unassigned) IP address is configured to use TCP port 25. If it is not, select the IP address and click Edit. Enter 25 into the TCP port box and click OK.

Click OK to return to the Default SMTP Virtual Server Properties dialog.

    1. Open the Delivery tab and click Advanced... The Advanced Delivery dialog is displayed

Enter the fully-qualified domain name of your application server. This is the machine name plus full domain name.

If your company has a specific mail server, enter the IP Address of your company's mail server in the Smart host box. If your company does not have a specific mail server, leave it empty.

  1. Click OK to return to the Delivery tab
  2. Click OK to confirm any changes

Configuring your IIS SMTP server in Windows Server 2008

If you are using the SMTP server available in IIS, you should make the changes described in this section on the server where you have installed Perception Server. If you are not using IIS as your SMTP server, you will need to refer to the documentation for your SMTP server for instructions. If you intend to install the SMTP server in Windows Server 2008 the following components will also be added by default.

  • IIS 6 Metabase Compatibility
  • IIS 6 Management Console

See the section Windows Server 2008 for details about installing the SMTP service. Once installed complete the following steps to setup SMTP E-mail in Windows Server 2008:

    1. Open Internet Information Services (IIS) 6.0 Manager
    2. Select your computer from the drop-down list
    3. Open the SMTP Virtual Server Properties dialog

To do so:

      1. Expand the machinename (local computer) folder in the left-hand pane (where machinename is the name of your application server)
      2. Right-click SMTP Virtual Server and select Properties

If you cannot see the SMTP Virtual Server folder, then you do not have SMTP installed. This is included as part of the Email Services Windows component, and you will need to install this before you can use the IIS SMTP server.

    1. Open the Access tab and click Authentication...
    2. Ensure that the Anonymous access box is ticked and click OK. This ensures that Perception can connect to the SMTP server without having to log in
    3. Click Connection...

Ensure that Only the list below is selected and that the list includes the IP address 127.0.0.1. This ensures that only Perception Server can relay mail through the application server.

To add 127.0.0.1 to the list if it not already there, click Add... and enter the IP address. Ensure that Single computer is selected and click OK.

Click OK to return to the SMTP Virtual Server Properties dialog.

    1. Click Relay...

Ensure that All except the list below is selected and that the list is empty. This specifies that all domains are authorized to use the SMTP server.

If more security is required (such as with public SMTP servers), the option Only the list below should be selected, and a list of specific domains should be added, namely those domains specified in the From: email address in the Email Broadcast. For example, if you specify myname@xyzcompany.com in theFrom: email address, you should ensure that xyzcompany.com is added to the list.

Click OK to return to the SMTP Virtual Server Properties dialog.

    1. Open the Messages tab

Ensure that the following boxes are not ticked:

  • Limit message size to (KB)
  • Limit session size to (KB)
  • Limit number of messages per connection to

You can restrict the above settings by ticking the relevant box but only if you are sure that doing so will not interfere with emails sent by Email Broadcast.

Click OK

    1. Open the General tab

Ensure that the IP address selected is set to (All Unassigned), and that the Enable logging box is ticked.

You can click Properties to confirm the location of the log files.

    1. Click Advanced...

Ensure that the (All Unassigned) IP address is configured to use TCP port 25. If it is not, select the IP address and click Edit. Enter 25 into the TCP port box and click OK.

Click OK to return to the SMTP Virtual Server Properties dialog.

    1. Open the Delivery tab and click Advanced... The Advanced Delivery dialog is displayed

Enter the fully-qualified domain name of your application server. This is the machine name plus full domain name.

If your company has a specific mail server, enter the IP Address of your company's mail server in the Smart host box. If your company does not have a specific mail server, leave it empty.

Click OK to return to the Delivery tab

  1. Click OK to confirm any changes

Updating the Perception Email settings

Once your SMTP Server is ready you will need to setup Perception with the correct details. To setup Perception to use the Email settings requires some modification of the server settings. The server settings can be modified in Enterprise Manager.

To set the appropriate SMTP settings for Perception following the instructions below:

Navigate to Enterprise Manager and sign in using an administrative user

    1. Click Administration | Server Management | Server settings
    2. Locate the SMTP Settings in the Customer Settings sections
    3. Insert the details of your SMTP server

If you are connecting to an SMTP server that requires authentication insert the Username and a Password that Perception can use to send emails. If you are using the Perception server as the SMTP server as well the user name and password is not required. However, the Default credentials check-box should be enabled

  1. Configure the port and SSL as required and click Save and Exit at the bottom of the page.

It is possible to store two sets of SMTP server details in the settings. The second set of SMTP Settings can be found in the Server Settings section under Server SMTP settings. Fill in the second set of details using a different SMTP server if required. The SMTP server setting can be switched between by un/checking the Use Customer SMTP settings check-box.