Mail-In-A-Box How To On YouTube

Hi All,
Not sure if this is the correct category to post this on. If not, moderator please move it to the correct category.

I created a how to install Mail-In-A-Box tutorial on SkillShare and now have posted it on YouTube for all to watch without a SkillShare membership. It covers how to install Mail-In-A-Box on Amazon AWS Lightsail and how to register a domain using Amazon AWS Route53. The tutorial coveres setting up and syncing your email, calendar (NextCloud), contacts (NextCloud), and even your tasks (Nextcloud), with Mozilla Thunderbird/Outlook/Apple Mail/etc., Android phone/tablet, iOS iPhone/iPad.

Blog post & Video Link:

Hope this helps!

David Swanson

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Cool! Thanks for sharing.


Welcome :slight_smile:

Thanks for posting this.

I currently use a $5 Linode VPS. 25 gig SSD, 1 gig ram, 1TB transfer.

The Amazon Lightsail at $5 has 40 gig SSD, 1 gig ram, 2TB transfer.

Looks like this might be an even better deal.

Thanks for posting the detailed video.


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Linode has a backup functionality available for $2/mo.
Automatically manages four backups. 1 daily, 1 weekly, 1 biweekly, and 1 manually initiated.

Does Amazon Lightsail have something similar?



Hi Dennis,

First, Mail-In-A-Box already had a back-up feature that’s free. And…:slight_smile: the backup feature works with Amazon S3.

This is what I do. It’s a little overkill. But…my entire business runs on Mail-In-A-Box and I want to limit downtime as much as possible. With Amazon AWS Lightsail you are only charged with the server is on.
I create a new Mail-In-A-Box instance whenever an update comes out. No configuration nothing. Then I shut it off. I’m not being charged while the server is off.

If a disaster strike; I don’t have to take the time to spin up a new instance. I just click start. Run the restore feature and boom. Less than ten-minute downtime.

You can also create a snapshot of your Lightsail server at any time too.

Now…all that said. Don’t think I’m trying to sell you on Amazon AWS. I have another business on DigitalOcean. I’ve spoken to CEO Ben Uretsky of Digital Ocean a couple of times. Awesome company.

Amazon AWS does have one feature that I really like is that now with Route 53 you can register your own domain name and the pricing is almost at cost. I love being able to control my domain names and servers all in one spot. And the pricing is affordable. I have a reseller account with Enom on their second tier. And the pricing is almost the same.

Hope that helps! Good luck :slightly_smiling_face:

David Swanson
2 Pups N’ Cat

My main interest in the backup is not so much the email data as the whole system configuration.

For instance, I have two VPS right now on Linode. One is stock MiaB and the other is with @jrsupplee MiaB with quota, which works very well, by the way.

I want to install John’s quota version over the stock. I am afraid of fat fingering something, losing the server and having to start all over. Hence the desire for a snapshot. All else fails, roll back to what was running.

Have you looked at Wasabi for storage? S3 protocol at a much lower price. I am using it for backup with a program called arqbackup. Only difference should be the url used to reference the backup.

I do like the concept of having all the pieces in the same place. Route53’s DNS handling is interesting.

Thank you for the detailed, step by step, video on how to use MiaB in an Amazon environment. I know it took a long time to produce and edit. Well done.


If you take a snapshot in Lightsail, where does it store it? S3?

I have used VMware a lot. Snapshots are the greatest thing since sliced bread. Grin.

I do love a good snapshot. I’ve been using Mail-In-A-Box now for almost seven years now. Only had one disaster. Not Mail-In-A-Box at all. My own stupidity by choosing a horrible host. I was trying to be cheap and I was taught a very good lesson.

I did look at Wasabi. Also, DigitalOcean now has Spaces at a great price. They even have an awesome plugin for WordPress that works as a CDN. Which I have used and love.

But…when it comes down to it. It makes it so nice to have everyone in one place. I’m not having to switch between companies. If and when something goes down I’m not having to find out what company is at fault and what is happening.

Amazon AWS is definitely not the cheapest. That said, everything is in one place, great service, great around the world server centers, good and fast support. And again, might not be the cheapest but they’re well within my budget range for the service and ease of use. With a small business, time is my biggest concern. When I can save time that equals out to the little more I pay.

Again, please don’t think I’m trying to sell Amazon AWS. As I said, I use DigitalOcean too. I’m just saying what works for me and why I decided on AmazonAWS.

Thank you on your feedback on the video. If I get enough good feedback I’ll make a few more how-to videos like setting up Mail-In-A-Box with WordPress, Mailster Newsletter Plugin for WordPress, implementing Collabora, etc.

Thanks again for your comments puts a smile on my face :slight_smile:

Without researching it I actually am not sure when it’s related to Lightsail. With EC2 it would be S3. I would imagine it would be the same for LightSail but I would have to look that up. Good question.

I know a Lightsail instance can be $5 a month.

With it all in one place, I know pricing follows the pizza principle:

The more you get on it, the more it costs.

Can you give us an idea what the total costs are for a basic MiaB server in Lightsail/Route53/S3/Snapshots?



I don’t think that’s actually possible. Because each business is completely different. Depends on how frequent back-ups are. How many domains you have.

It breaks down to this:
5.00 Lightsail Server (as long as you stick within it’s parameters it’s 5.00)
Route53 is included in Lightsail (make sure you do it in Lightsail) Excludng registering your domain and that depends on the TLD you choose.
S3 comes with a free tier. No way to estimate this. This is dependent on each individual user.
Snapshot again is on an individual base. Depends how often you do snapshots and how often you delete them. I don’t use snapshots for anything.

I have a server for WordPress that does a backup of WP and the database every 4 hours (The only reason I do 4 hours is our website has high traffic. When we started it was once a day) to S3. I have a lifecycle policy in place that deletes the back-up every 7 days. I have a lifecycle policy in place that moves one back-up every week to Glacier for a “just-in-case” scenario. Hidden malware, hacked, etc and have to go back to find where it came from.

MIAB that uses the MAIB backup feature to S3.


Asterisk PBX Server. I use the backup feature that comes with PBX In A Flash with the same scenario as WordPress server

And instance that is just a MySQL server.

I just have instances that have all the server software installed and turned off. If something fails. I just turn the old server off. Turn on the new. Run the restore feature. And I’m back online.

My bill last month was 46.36 however, my WordPress server is 20.00 a month server because we use Matomo for analytics, YOURLS instead of, and our CRM is built into WordPress and needs more power.

For Algo I use the 3.50 server. That’s all that is really needed for Algo.

Sorry I couldn’t be more helpful.

Good luck :slight_smile:

Do I have created an instance in Lightsail and used the console icon to login to it.

Haven’t installed MiaB yet.

I see you have to use sudo, so the question is what’s the name of the user I am logged in as?

I should be able to SSH into it from my Mac like I do with other Linux boxes. Did Lightsail assign me a user name? I may have missed that in your writeup.



If you have AWS CLI tool installed on your computer you can spin one up that way. But, as in the video I just use the GUI to create an instance.

To SSH into your instance the default username is “ubuntu”
ssh -i yourcert ubuntu@ipaddress

I create an ssh cert file for each instance and upload it when I create a new instance. That’s where -i comes into play. Or you can just use the SSH console window for the instance in your browser too if you choose default.

Thanks for the quick reply.

I did

sudo apt-get update

sudo apt-get upgrade

Some packages were held back.

Installing MiaB now.

I have tried to follow your PDF.

I have created and deleted several instances.

The problem I am having is getting my domain name that was bought in Route 53 hooked to the instance. Added static-ip to the instance. Created a DNS zone and tied to static-ip. Added an A record in the zone pointing to my domain name.

How long should it take for the domain to use by MiaB? When installing MiaB I keep getting can’t resolve

I would think once the domain name purchase from the registrar is complete, things in AWS would go quickly.

Not sure what I am doing wrong.


Not to mince terms here but it is important … the A record is pointing to the subdomain, right? box (

Here is the procedure if you are going to use Lightsail DNS record

  1. Purchase a domain in Route 53
  2. Create a DNS record in Lightsail under the MAIN network section.
  3. Change the NameServers in Route 53 to reflect those in Lightsail. (they can be found at the very bottom of the DNS Record in LightSail.
    Wait a few hours to about a day.

Or, if you are going to use Route 53. Which will cost you $0.50 a month where Lightsail gives you three free DNS records a month.

Create an instance in Light Sail
Assign a static IP address
Purchase a Domain in Route 53
Create a DNS zone
Create an A record with subdomain “box” pointed it at the Lightsail instance

Wait for about thirty minutes. Ping the instance to see if it’s connecting :slight_smile:
Hope that helps

Thanks. I was wondering about the difference and you explained it.

Don’t need to pay the extra $0.50. I sound like a tight wad. Grin


I guess there is no point in installing MiaB in the instance until you can ping the domain from another computer, even though you can ping the static-ip.