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I have my own domain registered and the MX records targeting my own server. Having setup some smtp software, I have my own mail service.

Since I rather have gmail, I was wondering how I can get the gmail interface/service with my myname@mydomain.com address. I found a page describing to point your MX to gmail, but that was for when you were a Google Apps user. Since I am not a business, I dont have Google Apps.

Is there any other way to get gmail on your personal domain?

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closed as off-topic by Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007, teylyn, gronostaj, soandos, Excellll Jul 8 '13 at 13:23

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  • "Questions about the use of web-based applications are off-topic here, but can be asked on Web Apps Stack Exchange." – teylyn, gronostaj, soandos, Excellll
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I think you need to be a Google Apps user. Up to six months ago, Google offered a free Google Apps account as long as you had less than ten users but that is no longer the case. You can either forward email to a gmail account or use pop3 to get them from your server. –  user2313067 Jun 23 '13 at 12:08
    
I knew about the pop3/forwarding, but was not really a fan of it. It forces me to have my own server up and running in the middle, on which I tend to break things now and then :) –  KingWilliam Jun 23 '13 at 12:09
1  
You can try this workaround to get a single free account; but I don't know if it still works... –  user2313067 Jun 23 '13 at 12:16

1 Answer 1

Given that you can't easily use google apps for free any more, here's the solution I use to get the gmail experience with my own domain(s) and without setting up any intermediate server:

Most domain registrars offer a free email forwarding service as part of the domain registration package. I have used several - currently I use Godaddy. Use that to forward the mail to your gmail account.

Next, set up gmail so that you can send email that appears to come from your domain (Settings --> Accounts --> Send mail as). This must be done after you've set up the forwarding so that you will receive the verification email that gmail sends out. Once you verify, you can also set that to be the default address ("make default") from which you send mail. In addition, you may find it useful to enable "When replying to a message: (*) Reply from the same address the message was sent to"

Refinements:

  • Choose the behavior you want for "Treat as an alias" - click gmail's link to understand what fits your needs. From your question, I think you will want to leave that option checked.
  • to better hide the fact that gmail is involved, you can select "Send through SMTP servers", assuming that either you use your own server, or, as I do, you can use your registrar's SMTP servers (godaddy includes that for free with domain registration - up to a limit). This may not be necessary and there are many advantages to using gmail's servers. I suggest you try that first & if you don't like the behavior, you can always change it later.

    If you are using godaddy, I can share with you the settings for their SMTP servers, which I use. If not, go to your registrar's support pages and get the info for sending with a generic mail client through their SMTP server - that's the info you'll need to supply to gmail, if you decide to go that route.

EDIT 2013-06-26

In reply to OP's comment: Every registrar I've used (a half-dozen over the last 15 years) offers free mail forwarding. Most (not all) offered free SMTP relays. As long as you can get the mail forwarded to your gmail account(s), you can implement the plan described above so that you use gmail, but the email appears to come from your domain. So you can start with that approach and when you need to move registrar's, just set up mail forwarding from them.

However - one serious disadvantage of this approach, that I neglected to mention earlier, is that you are at the mercy of the registrar's policies. For example, godaddy's servers have limits on the size of email sent (5MB, last time I checked) - gmail's limit is much higher. Also, godaddy has its own spam filtering rules, which I don't always "agree" with. Something to check if you want to use my approach.

If you don't mind running your own mail server, you can use that to forward incoming mail to your gmail account (or use gmail's POP pickup feature, if you want to store it on your server) & as your SMTP relay - then you set the policies for both incoming and outgoing mail, while enjoying the gmail web experience. The downside is you have to maintain your own mail server, but it does give you total control.

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Thanks for the reply @yosh m. I am not with godaddy. I am with my own registrar, and dont like depending on them (planning to move away). I do manage my DNS records completely myself though, so I will see whether I can get somewhere with that and come back with an update. –  KingWilliam Jun 24 '13 at 14:10
    
See update to answer. Looking forward to your update. Good luck. –  yosh m Jun 26 '13 at 8:21

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