When an email address such as:


receives an email and I have SSH root access to example.com how can I download all the emails received through the example.com webserver, specifically all the emails received by myemail@example.com?

Also, assume mail.example.com is hosted on a completely different server and uses Outlook Web for authentication to the email address (email & password). Is it still possible to retrieve those emails? If so, how?


A machine that you can ssh into with the name example.com doesn't necessarily receive the emails for that domain, that is dependent on the MX records for that domain.

If that machine receives the emails (via SMTP), there is no guarantee that there is some web backend that allows you to read those emails. Much more normal is an IMAP(S) or POP(s) server.

If you can ssh into the machine you can look at /var/spool/mail to see if the mail for the user can be found there. If so that is normally a file that you can just copy over (scp) and read locally. If not, depending on the setup, you might find things under ~/Maildir but that is guess work, unless you can see how the MTA is set up on that system.

  • The MX records using mxtoolbox.com/SuperTool.aspx return: mail.example.com and exchange.example.com, both of which have different IPs to example.com. Is it still possible to retrieve emails by solely having root access to www.example.com or is this an impossible task? – bob tommy Mar 11 '15 at 17:11

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