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Linux / MacOS

Before proceeding with the installation of Stalwart Mail Server, you need to make sure to have a valid TLS certificate for your server. If you do not have one, you can obtain a free TLS certificate from Let's Encrypt. Once you have obtained your certificate, execute the following command in your terminal:

$ curl --proto '=https' --tlsv1.2 -sSf | sudo sh

Please note that root access is required to perform the installation, if you don't feel comfortable running the install script as root you may also download the stalwart-install binary and perform a manual installation.

Choose a package

Once you run the install script, you will be asked to select which package to install:

Welcome to the Stalwart Mail Server installer

? Which components would you like to install? ›
❯ All-in-one mail server (JMAP + IMAP + SMTP)
JMAP server
IMAP server
SMTP server

Use the arrow keys to select the package you want to install and press Enter to continue.

Enter the installation directory

You will then be asked to enter the installation directory. Press Enter to use the default directory (e.g. /opt/stalwart-mail for the all-in-one package) or enter a custom directory:

? Installation directory (/opt/stalwart-mail) › 

Choose where to store your data

Next, unless you are installing only the SMTP server, you will be asked to select a database backend as well as a blob store:

? Which database engine would you like to use? ›
❯ SQLite (single node, replicated with Litestream)
FoundationDB (distributed and fault-tolerant)

? Where would you like to store e-mails and blobs? ›
❯ Local disk using Maildir
MinIO (or any S3-compatible object storage)
Amazon S3
Google Cloud Storage
Azure Blob Storage

Use the arrow keys to select the option you want to use and press Enter to continue.

Choose an authentication backend

Next, you will be asked to select an authentication backend:

? Do you already have a directory or database containing your accounts? ›
Yes, it's an SQL database
Yes, it's an LDAP directory
❯ No, create a new directory for me
  • If you select the option to create a new directory, the installation program will create an SQLite database under <INSTALL_DIR>/data/accounts.sqlite3 using the sample directory schema. You will need SQLite to manage your accounts, you can install it by running sudo apt install sqlite3.
  • If you are installing the SMTP only package, you will be able to select remote LMTP or IMAP server as the authentication backend as well.

Enter your domain and server hostname

Next, you will be asked to enter your domain name and server hostname:

? What is your main domain name? (you can add others later) ( ›
? What is your server hostname? ·

You will be able to add other domains later on from the configuration file.

Configure your TLS certificate

Finally, you will be asked to enter the path to your TLS certificate and private key:

? Where is the TLS certificate for '' located? (/etc/letsencrypt/live/ ›
? Where is the TLS private key for '' located? (/etc/letsencrypt/live/ ›

Enable DKIM, SPF and DMARC

DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM) is a method of email authentication that allows a receiving email server to verify that an email message was actually sent by the owner of the domain from which it appears to have been sent. It is highly recommended that you enable DKIM (as well as SPF and DMARC) for your domain. The installation script will automatically generate a 2048 bits RSA certificate for your domain and print out the instructions to enable DKIM, SPF and DMARC in your DNS server:

✅ Add the following DNS records to your domain in order to enable DKIM, SPF and DMARC: IN TXT "v=DKIM1; k=rsa; p=MIIBIjANBgkqhkiG9w0BAQEFAAOCAQ8AMIIBCgKCAQEA0esfx6olNOH0d+AO8lcOST2H/sbJ04OCDOAq0oFmGXISj8HB8DUWzqUIIfWV7GzXZq/y/4dQHcxRXN3lNGSCSG8r7H+S57nqFEjvpFeGhYdqFaXXuD6StUgHgR/Oh1P6nO4NmCvO2jgQaRvZALw7PTkf4X9wnLR+Q9I1L8fu5BuclpuoE8cBJzT+oWwvHWDbIBn4DRVNCi1sa1YWhevKgw6OCsmGIUDbAKApX4fA3O80WjF0jF0CpijAI6jibmO5Ajs6zJDlzaumnprfyz4XHIqVTBL3P2z5xA7skQjK1L8vB2ZGYWrXHiwpR5ZQ5nM8AWM5lyp2zwVxhpxFRokxkQIDAQAB" IN TXT "v=spf1 mx -all ra=postmaster" IN TXT "v=spf1 a -all ra=postmaster" IN TXT "v=DMARC1; p=none; rua=mailto:postm[email protected]; ruf=mailto:[email protected]"

If you already have a DKIM certificate simply ignore these instructions and refer to the DKIM section for instructions on how to add a new DKIM signature

Take note of the administrator credentials

If you have chosen to create an authentication database, the installation script will print out the credentials for the administrator account that has been created for you:

🔑 The administrator account is 'admin' with password 'DbCyfJtQ9b4j'.

If you have chosen to use an existing LDAP directory or SQL database for authentication, refer to the administrators section for instructions on how to designate an account as administrator.

Review the configuration file

The installation script will create the configuration file under <INSTALL_DIR>/etc/config.toml. You may want to review the configuration file and make any changes before starting the server.

In particular, you will need to:
  • If you have selected to use an external directory or database as authentication backend, add to the configuration file the connection details for your LDAP directory or SQL database. For detailed instructions on how to configure your directory, refer to the LDAP directory or SQL database sections.
  • If you have selected to use an S3-compatible blob store, add to the configuration file the connection details for your blob store. For instructions on how to configure an S3-compatible store, refer to the Blob store section.
  • If you are installing the SMTP only package, add to the configuration file the LMTP server details where messages for local accounts will be delivered to. For more details refer to the Routing configuration section.

Restart service

Once you have completed the setup instructions, restart the Stalwart Mail server:

$ sudo systemctl restart stalwart-mail

Or, if you are using MacOS:

$ sudo launchctl kickstart -k stalwart.mail

Note: If you have installed any of the standalone packages, the name of the service will be stalwart-<package> instead of stalwart-mail. For example, the service name for SMTP only package will be stalwart-smtp.

Next steps

If everything went well, your users should now be able to connect to the server and send and receive emails. If you are unable to connect to the server, check the log files under <INSTALL_DIR>/logs for any errors.

Now that you have Stalwart Mail Server up and running, you may want to configure the Directory, JMAP, IMAP or SMTP components.

If you have questions please check the FAQ section or start a discussion in the community forum.