Add Dynamic Disclaimer or Signature with Embedded Images in IIS SMTP Service and Exchange 2003 - Tutorial

IIS SMTP Server is a common Windows built-in SMTP service. This tutorial gives you a quick overviews of how to add disclaimer or signature to emails in IIS SMTP Service or Exchange Server 2003 based on customized rules.

Why Email Disclaimer/Signature is Important

In recent years, many regulations about email for commercial communication have come into force in varies countries.

Germany has laws requiring companies to disclose their company name, registration number, place of registration etc. in e-mail signatures. Ireland’s Director of Corporate Enforcement requires all limited companies operating websites to disclose such information in their emails.

The UK’s ECommerce Regulations require this information in all emails from limited companies as well. While criticized by some as overly bureaucratic, these regulations only extend existing laws for (paper) business correspondence to email. Any infringement to these regulations will result in lawsuits.

Even if your country has no similar regulation, it is still worth to append an email disclaimer in every email as in some situations it may protect you from liability in a court of law.

How Disclaimer Plugin Works?

In IIS SMTP Service or Exchange Server 2003, Disclaimer Plugin works as a SMTP event sink, it can append/insert disclaimer or signature to email body based on specific rules.

A disclaimer/signature rule can be set for specified sender, domain, group, recipient or email subject.

How Disclaimer plugin works in IIS SMTP Service

Install Disclaimer Plugin in IIS SMTP Service or Exchange Server 2003

To enable Disclaimer Plugin in IIS SMTP Service or Exchange Server 2003, download EA Disclaimer and S/MIME Installer and install it on your server.

Double click the installer file and the installation will be executed automatically. The installer requires IIS SMTP Service or Exchange Server to be installed. If no IIS SMTP Service or Exchange server detected in your operation system, Setup will be aborted.

After the installation is completed, click “Disclaimer and S/MIME Manager” from “Windows Start menu” -> “All Programs” -> “EA Disclaimer and SMIME for IIS and Exchange Server” to begin the setup.

Disclaimer manager for IIS SMTP Service

Important

After the installation is completed, you must check “IIS Admin” and “Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP)” in Control Panel -> Administrative Tools -> Services, if these services are not running, start them.

Create a Simple Disclaimer/Signature Rule

You can create a test disclaimer/signature rule for a user like this:

  • Click Disclaimer/Signature -> New,
  • Input any description for current rule,
  • Input user email address in Sender Address,
  • Click Edit disclaimer/signature to open disclaimer editor, input some text, click OK,
  • Finally, click Save to save current rule.
Create disclaimer/signature in IIS SMTP Service

After rule is saved, click Test, current rule will be executed with a virtual email message, you can find the result in test dialog box.

If Test all rules is checked, all rules defined on current machine will be executed with a virtual email message.

Test disclaimer/signature in IIS SMTP Service

If test result looks good, you can send a test email from that user, and check if received email body has disclaimer/signature appended.

Sender Address Pattern and Wildcard

A single email address or email address with wildcard (* and ?) can be used in Sender Address. It indicates current rule is only enabled for matched sender address.

Here are some examples:

If Sender address matches the following pattern, add disclaimer/signature
    test@emailarchitect.net

# This rule is enabled for all emails from test@emailarchitect.net
If Sender address matches the following pattern, add disclaimer/signature
    *@emailarchitect.net

# This rule is enabled for all emails from *@emailarchitect.net
If Sender address does not match the following patter, add disclaimer/signature
    test@emailarchitect.net

# This rule is enabled for all emails except test@emailarchitect.net
If Sender address does not match the following pattern, add disclaimer/signature
    *@emailarchitect.net

# This rule is enabled for all emails except *@emailarchitect.net.

Note

With wildcard (* and ?), you can define a rule for all users at domain level. Dynamic disclaimer/signature can be generated for individual users with ADSI variables and domain level rule.

To learn more details, please refer to Use ADSI Variables in Dynamic Email Disclaimer/Signature section.

Sender Group, Recipient and Subject Conditions

Besides sender address pattern, you can set additional conditions for sender group, recipient and email subject.

For example, click Add more conditions and change sender condition like this:

If Sender is in one of group:
    IT
    Sales

That means current rule is just enabled for sender that is in “IT” or “Sales” user group.

Note

In both Recipient Conditions and Subject Conditions, wildcard (* and ?) is supported.

Disclaimer/Signature Editor

Disclaimer/signature editor in IIS SMTP Service

You can use disclaimer/signature editor to change font style, size, color and etc. Moreover, it provides two advanced functions:

Use ADSI Variables in Dynamic Email Disclaimer/Signature

ADSI Variables is used to personalize dynamic disclaimer or signature by utilizing user’s Active Directory objects attribute. To add an attribute, use this syntax: {$adsi:AttributeName}, where “AttributeName” is the attribute you want to include in the disclaimer.

Build Dynamic Signature with Variables

To learn how to use variables, let’s create a rule is like this:

If Sender address matches the following pattern, add disclaimer/signature
    *@emailarchitect.net

The above rule is enabled for all emails from *@emailarchitect.net, then include some ADSI variables in the disclaimer/signature like this:

Disclaimer/signature with ADSI variables in IIS SMTP Service

The following illustrates what email recipient see - all ADSI variables were replaced by the actual value in Active Directory User Attributes.

Replace Disclaimer/signature ADSI variables in IIS SMTP Service

From the above example, you can see one rule can generate dynamic disclaimer/signature for individual user at domain level.

How to Set Active Directory User Attributes

Go to Administrative Tools -> Active Directory Users and Computers -> Users, then select the user account you want to edit, right click -> Properties and edit it. In Exchange 2010 or later version, user can edit his contact information via Exchange Server Web Access -> Options -> Account Information.

Set active directory user's properties in Exchange Server

How to Get Attribute Name

ADSI variable syntax is: {$adsi:AttributeName}. Please note “AttributeName” is not the same as what you see in Active Directory User properties. You need to use “ADSIEdit” tool to find out the real “AttributeName”.

Open “ADSIEdit” by Administrative Tools -> ADSI Edit, then right click -> Connect To and Click OK by default setting, go to CN-Users node, and select one of Exchange User -> right click -> Properties. You will see the real “AttributeName” in the first column of the following dialog:

Use ADSIEdit to query user's attribute name

Common ADSI Variables

In disclaimer editor -> “Insert ADSI variable”, it lists most common active directory user attributes. You can click the attribute name to insert it into editor current position.

AD user common attributes list

Remote ADSI LDAP Options

Disclaimer Plugin queries/replaces variables from current Active Directory by default.

However, if you want to query/replace ADSI variables from a Cross Forest Domain Controller or Remote Machine, you can specify the LDAP server address, user name and password of that server in LDAP options.

Insert Embedded Company Logo/Image in Email Disclaimer/Signature Editor

Although a remote logo/image can be used in disclaimer/signature, by default, the image won’t be displayed due to email client security policy.

To fix it, you can add logo/image by clicking Insert image, those images will be attached as embedded attachment in an email.

Insert embedded image in email disclaimer

Embedded image is always displayed in email client by default.

Image Location and Permission

IIS SMTP Service is running as Local System user, and Exchange Transport Agent is running as Network Service user, so do not put the image file to Desktop or user-dependent folder, Disclaimer Plugin doesn’t have permission to read image files in these locations.

Download Remote Image/Logo as Embedded Attachment

If there are some remote images in disclaimer/signature content, the editor will prompt “Do you want to download remote image as embedded attachment?” after OK is clicked. You can click Yes to download all remote images as embedded attachments.

download remote image/logo as embedded attachments.

Use Disclaimer/Signature Templates

In disclaimer/signature editor, four Signature Layout Templates and one Confidentiality Notice are provided.

You can click Insert content from templates from the toolbar, select a template, edit necessary variables, images, click Insert, template content will be inserted into editor.

Insert disclaimer/signature from disclaimer templates

Note

After template content was inserted, you can still edit font style, size, color and etc.

Insert or Append Disclaimer/Signature intelligently

This is a default option to specify disclaimer/signature position in email body.

It appends disclaimer/signature to the end of email body in new email. On the other hand, it inserts disclaimer/signature before original body content in replied/forwarded email.

Insert disclaimer/signature intelligently

Using this option can place disclaimer/signature at better position in email body.

Multiple Disclaimer Rules

You can define multiple rules for individual user or a group. If If current rule is applied, skip next rule is not checked in Advanced options, all rules will be applied to the matched email based on rule priority.

For example:

# rule 1
If Sender address matches the following pattern, add disclaimer/signature
    *@exch27.server

# add personal signature for users in domain level.

#rule 2
If Sender address matches the following pattern, add disclaimer/signature
    *

# add a global Confidentiality Notice

Then the disclaimer/signature for a domain user is like this:

add multiple disclaimers in Exchange Server and IIS SMTP Service.

Disclaimer Plugin Troubleshooting

If your email does not have disclaimer/signature added after you set correct rule, you should use Log Level to generate debug log like this:

  • Disclaimer and S/MIME Manager -> Journal;
  • Select Full Debug Log and click Change Log Level;
  • Send a test email, debug log file will be available in Installation path\log folder very soon.

Important

Please be reminded to change the log level back to “Only Error Log” after troubleshooting, otherwise, the log file size will be large.

If there are no log files in log folder, you can verify the Disclaimer Plugin installation.

Installation Permission

When you install S/MIME Plugin on IIS SMTP Service or Exchange Server 2003, please make sure you are using “Domain Administrator” to run the installer.

Verify IIS SMTP Service/Exchange 2003 Installation

To verify S/MIME SMTP event sink, you can open DOS prompt, and change directory to EA Disclaimer and S/MIME installation path\installer and input:

cscript smtpregex.vbs /enum
Press enter.

Check if there is EA Smime Sink installed and enabled in output.

IIS SMTP Service Disclaimer and S/MIME SMTP Event Sink

If there is no EA Smime Sink found, you can re-run installer directly (do not uninstall) to fix this issue.

You can also contact support@emailarchitect.net for assistance.

Free Email Support

Not enough? Please contact our technical support team.

Support@EmailArchitect.NET

Remarks

We usually reply emails within 24hours. The reason for getting no response is likely that your SMTP server bounced our reply. In this case, please try to use another email address to contact us. Your Gmail, Hotmail or Office 365 email account is recommended.