Creating this because I cannot find a place to live chat or email with an expert.
The main issue can be categorized as “emails sent to gmail from any of our domain emails bounces back”. But this goes a bit deeper into hosting by centurylink and setting records in DNS.
To start, I am an employee of 3 years. This system was set up long before me and not well managed because it passed from hand to hand, and because it didnt really need any changes. Originally set up through QwestOffice, it is now run through Centurylink, because of a business merger or something.
We have access to the centurylink login for billing, and setting up vanity domain email accounts. There had been no indication of a Cloudflare affiliation until this issue arose.
A couple months ago any email sent from our domain emails to a gmaildotcom email address sterted being bounced back with this: (I have to delete parts to “remove links” in this, I will use “dot” in place of certain dots)
[email protected](mailto: [email protected]) host gmail-smtp-in.l.googledotcom [18.104.22.168] SMTP error from remote mail server after end of data: 550-5.7.26 This message does not have authentication information or fails to 550-5.7.26 pass authentication checks. To best protect our users from spam, the 550-5.7.26 message has been blocked. Please visit 550-5.7.26 https ://support.google.com/mail/answer/81126#authentication for more 550 5.7.26 information. b10-20020a05612202ea00b00344aee57471si419119vko.235 - gsmtp
Upon researching, and contacting both gmail and centurylink support, I find that google had indeed implemented changes recently that would cause this, that we need to have an S P F set up in our domain’s DNS to fix it, that our domain has no S P F record currently registered in the DNS, and that Cloudflare is our DNS provider.
So, trying to contact Cloudflare support, I find that I have to have an account just to talk to anyone. But also, it seems that we have never set up an account with Cloudflare for our domain, (probably because we assumed it was run through centurylink).
I set up an account and told it our domain. it “seems” to recognize that we have it, but it was a little too easy, like anyone could have taken it.
But I have no idea if I am doing this right, If I am actually hooked up to, and controlling, the right domain, if that is the correct SPF entry to add, if there is some changes to the centurylink DNS settings, etc.
I searched the FAQs and various help forum posts, none really address the “do I actually have control of the mresearchdotcom DNS?” and “am I doing the SPF correctly?” questions I have.
I have come pretty far, but at this point I am lost. I just want to live chat with a support agent, but if anyone can give me a better idea of what is going on…