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Customer Story

MailChannels resolves ‘blocklist nightmare’ for Practical Host

With Practical Host CEO, Rami El-Zein
In Business Since
1000s +
Corporate Customers
Using MailChannels Since


Practical Host provides cloud-based email, web, database, and application hosting services for businesses in the Middle East, Africa, and Arabian Gulf regions. Clients are mainly small- to medium-sized companies that want to outsource their email systems.


Business email hosting is a competitive business. To stand out from its competitors, Practical Host guarantees 100 percent network uptime and “ironclad support” – but only for customers on its cloud server infrastructure.

“A few years ago we moved most of our business to a new cloud infrastructure because we’d lost trust in Plesk, the provider we’d been using for almost 15 years,” says Rami El-Zein, who is CEO of Practical Host. “Even Plesk 12, with its email rate-limiting, failed miserably to prevent blocklisting.”

Practical Host did, however, retain a single Plesk server for about 300 small hosting accounts. This server got blocklisted weekly, which was costing the company up to 20 hours of technician time per month.

“The server was under-populated with light-use clients, but it was a nightmare because these 300 accounts were pulling us down with high support costs and low revenue,” says El-Zein. “Blocklisting cannot be resolved instantly – it can take days to un-list the IP and find the cause before a new issue pops up.”

“When a blocklist occurs, it rains support tickets and phone calls. But since we installed MailChannels, support tickets for undelivered mail has dropped to zero.”

The MailChannels Effect

A Simple Solution to IP Blocklisting

Practical Host’s management team combed the internet for a solution to its blocklisting nightmare and found MailChannels, which offers a more permanent solution: MailChannels Outbound Filtering, a hosted email relay service with powerful blocklist avoidance features. It is designed to eliminate IP blocklisting problems related to compromised end-user accounts and spam.

El-Zein says Practical Host followed the straightforward instructions for MailChannels SMTP Relay and had the solution installed within an hour.

“When a blocklist occurs, it rains support tickets and phone calls. But since we installed MailChannels, support tickets for undelivered mail has dropped to zero,” he says.

What’s more, support staff time that used to be spent searching for the source of a compromise and cleaning up the mess has been totally eliminated.

Adds El-Zein, “all Plesk users should know about MailChannels – it’s the best $50 per month we’ve ever spent.”

Trust Brings a New Revenue Stream

Practical Host now has a trustworthy Plesk server, thanks to the elimination of its blocklisting problem with MailChannels Outbound Filtering

“A month into using MailChannels we’ve had absolutely no blocklisting, which has raised our trust to start offering low-cost plans on the Plesk platform,” El- Zein says. “I expect to add a Plesk server every 90 days now that we can guarantee the service.”

The service-level agreement that Practical Host offers on its cloud-based plans will soon be offered on low-cost Plesk plans, thanks to MailChannels delivering security peace of mind.


Practical Host


Dubai, United Arab Emirates


Web hosting, website building, domain name management