Silicon Valley - Public Access Link

Using SVPAL's Virtual Mail

The SVPAL virtual mail facility allows an hosted web account holder to control how email is handled for their Internet domain. The virtual mail facility allows you to create virtual mailboxes within your Internet domain. Email sent to each virtual mailbox is automatically forwarded to a real mailbox that you specify. For example, if your Internet domain is, you can use the virtual mail facility to create the virtual mailbox . Then you can specify that email sent to the virtual mailbox is to be forwarded to your SVPAL mailbox .

Virtual mailboxes are created by modifying the file .virtualmail in the home directory of your hosted web account. Using the example just cited, you would add the following line to your .virtualmail file:


The left side of this line specifies the virtual mailbox name . Do not include your domain name () in the virtual mailbox name. The right side of this line specifies a real mailbox () to receive email forwarded from the virtual mailbox . Specify the full mailbox name of the real mailbox including the domain name (). Use spaces or tabs to separate the virtual mailbox name from the real mailbox name.

Important Note: Changes you make to the .virtualmail file do not take effect immediately. The system checks for changes to your .virtualmail every few minutes. Changes to virtualmail should take effect within 10 minutes.

Each virtual mailbox name must be unique. Duplicates entries are ignored. In the following example, the second entry for is ignored by virtualmail. Email sent to is only forwarded to .


However, you may specify multiple virtual mailboxes that forward to the same real mailbox. In the following example email sent to and email sent to would both be forwarded to .


Normally, email sent to a virtual mailbox not defined in your .virtualmail file, is returned to the sender with an error. However, you may change this behavior by specifying a default mailbox. You do this by defining the special virtual mailbox named ''. Email sent to a non-existent virtual mailbox is forwarded to your default mailbox. The following example defines the default mailbox as .


If this is the only entry in your .virtualmail file, then all email sent to any mailbox at is forwarded to . However, you may combine this feature with the specific email forwarding shown previously to produce more useful results. In this next example, the specific forwarding of overrides the default forwarding specified with ''.


In the above example email sent to is forwarded to , while all other email is forwarded to . A specific email address forwarding overrides the default forwarding specified by ''. The order of these lines in the .virtualmail file does not affect this behavior.

You may also include blank lines and comments in the .virtualmail file for documentation and readability. Comment lines must start with the character. The following example shows the use of both comments and blank lines.

# Send info email to


# Everything else goes to


And that's about all there is to it. The easiest way to edit the .virtualmail file, is to use the menu interface. Enter "org" at main menu, then select from the options listed.

You may use FTP to update your .virtualmail file. Just download your .virtualmail file to you computer. Edit it with a plain text editor (e.g. Notepad for MS Windows). Then upload the file back to your SVPAL account.


[SVPAL Home] [Subscriber]

Contact Silicon Valley Public Access Link
Last Updated: Friday January 18, 2019