[nos-bbs] RESENDING Re: Sending mail to regular addresses via Winlink

Peter McCorison peter at mccorison.com
Thu Jun 23 19:29:01 EDT 2016

This apparently didn't make it to the list, so resending the message


Gentlemen, perhaps it will clear up some of the FUD in this subject if I 
describe the configuration and goals of the system I'm trying to build.

San Juan County, Washington consists of a number of small, sparsely 
populated islands in the extreme NW corner of Washington State.

Our ACS has been tasked by the local DEM to provide printed 
communications among the most populated islands, and if possible to the 
internet at large in the absence of any infrastructure.

To that end, we have five ham stations located in firehouses and 
Sheriff's offices on the three most populous islands. None of these 
stations have access to the internet. Each station consists of vhf, 220 
and uhf transceivers together with TNCs and other ancillary equipment, 
including hf capability, which is largely useless due to the extremely 
high noise levels in the station locations.

For several years we have been meeting the needs of our sponsor using 
Airmail and local vhf packet. We have only about ten operators 
county-wide who are interested enough, and knowlegable enough to met our 
needs using the Airmail software, which is more complex to use than a 
standard email client. In an effort to recruit more manpower to run 
these stations, I have been working to make it possible to perform the 
needed communication with the operator using only a standard email client.

Micheal has the configuration about right in his conjectured setup: it 
goes Thunderbird -> JNOS smtp server-> one of several reachable rms 
stations -> internet -> winlink. A critical part of this path is that it 
must be able to reach an RMS station which can either send to Winlink 
CMSs or relay messages thru RMS Relay capability. This is the weak link, 
and we are trying to setup master stations on the mainland to take our 
traffic, but with little success so far.

JNOS provides targeted exceptions to the no-relay rule: one or more 
relay source addresses can be configured. We allow smtp relay only from 
the attached Thunderbird client, which is actually in the same physical 

In the absence of internet at any of the stations, we rely on Winlink to 
provide connection to stations other than our local five, which can all 
communicate directly bbs-to-bbs. We use JNOS forwarding to direct 
traffic among the stations and to winlink for forwarding to the larger 

Our new system has not yet been deployed, but in our test stations all 
works correctly with the exception of the circumstance which started 
this thread: email to a standard internet email address via winlink. The 
issues with that function are documented in the first message in this 

  - Peter K2SPR

On 06/22/2016 02:46 PM, Michael Fox - N6MEF wrote:
>> You're assuming JNOS is using internet to get to Winlink.
     ========= snip ===========

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