Error: "421 Service Temporarily Unavailable"
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Error: "421 Service Temporarily Unavailable"


Article ID: 169891


Updated On:




When email is sent to a domain protected by Symantec Email, the service responds to the SMTP RCPT TO: command with the error, "421 Service Temporarily Unavailable".

421 Service Temporarily Unavailable


The sending server is hitting the secondary MX preference of the customer, such as

This causes connections to be deferred with this error.


Email should hit the primary MX preference,; legitimate servers should never connect to the backup MX,

Note: We provide 100% redundancy on the primary MX, which has multiple mail servers behind it.

Common causes and solutions

The recipient domain's MX record is misconfigured, with the MX preferences inverted.

See Mail eXchanger (MX) record setup with Email to learn how to set up MX records with the correct preference.

The sending IP address is being throttled by Symantec's traffic shaping service due to a high rate of perceived spam.

Once the administrator of the sending server takes action to prevent spam from being sent through their IP address, Symantec is willing to reset the IP reputation.

See Email sent from a bulk mailer are blocked by Messaging Gateway or Email

The sending mail server is not resolving DNS correctly, and is sending email to the secondary MX record.

To resolve this, flush the server's DNS cache by running the Windows command:

ipconfig /flushdns