Amazon Web Services: WorkMail — Create Email Addresses for Your Domain on AWS

Joe Alongi
4 min readMar 18

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One of the first questions when purchasing a domain, is often, how do I create my own email? For personal use, for business use, for public accessibility and beyond, you can get started using your domain for email right away with WorkMail.

Using your domain for email can help create a public facing set of emails for providing your users, customers, and individuals looking to get in touch for business reasons.

If you have already purchased or transferred your domain to Amazon Web Services (AWS), then you can begin these steps now. If you have a different domain registrar you will need to bring your domain over to AWS.

Amazon Web Services (AWS) has a guide for this process, which I will illuminate to provide further explanation of downstream choices.

Create a WorkMail organization

Organizations are categories for AWS to assign users, emails, and DNS records to a specific domain. Creating an organization allows you to group users, their emails, and their services to a domain.

You can start by accessing the AWS WorkMail page, to read through and understand the services provided, once you are ready, click “Create Organization”.

In the AWS console, select the type of domain you will be using for creating your email accounts, if you already have a Route 53 domain, you should choose “Existing Route 53 domain” for “Email domain”.

The “Route 53 hosted zone” should be the hosted zone that was created for your domain, the Domain Name System (DNS), allocated to your domain. If your purchased your domain through AWS this should already exist, and if you transferred the domain, you should have also implemented this within that process.

Choose an alias for the “Alias” field that will act as a subdomain for accessing the AWS WorkMail webmail, your alias will be appended to the beginning of the url so that your users can access their mail via, [alias].awsapps.com/mail.

In the advanced settings you can select the “User Directory” for storing the users, which allows you to use an existing directory or a new directory.

The “Encryption” method can be important if you have security practices particular to key management. You can choose to use the AWS WorkMail key or select to use an existing Customer Managed Key (CMK) from within your AWS Key Management Service (AWS KMS).

Benefits to utilizing AWS KMS include secure key management, key lifecycles, and key usage logging that can enable a more secure environment for your email service.

Once you have filled in the required fields in the AWS console, click “Create organization”.

Create a WorkMail user

Your users, accounts, employees, or departments are the subjects of the prefix that will be created in this step.

You can decide what the naming conventions will be, whether it is contact@ or welcome@, if proper names are shortened like aws@ or amazon@, and what types of email accounts your domain requires, outside of AWS.

In the “User name” field, enter the account name that will be used to login to the WorkMail webmail, this can be the same as the email prefix, but can be different as well.

For the name fields, “First name” & “Last name”, you can decide, optionally if these should be included.

Choose a “Display name” for the user that will be entered into the WorkMail system and aligned with the User Name, First Name, and Last Name.

In the “Email setup” section, you can now choose the email prefix, which will be the name before the @ mark, of the domain.

The User Name, Display Name, and Email can be aligned in a naming convention to create a reoccurring identifier and 1:1 relationship between the user and their account.

For the email address domain, you can either choose to use your existing alias created for WorkMail, or the domain that you chose when you created the organization. If you intend to use the domain, make sure that you change that dropdown to your domain.

You can create your users’ password by filling in the “Password” field and confirming that password by filling in the “Repeat password” field.

Once you have filled in the required fields in the AWS console, click “Create user”. Your organization and user should now be created and accessible through the WorkMail webmail address at the alias you chose [alias].awsapps.com/mail.

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Joe Alongi

Advisory Application Developer @IBM — JavaScript, Java, Kubernetes, and Cloud Native. (These Views Are My Own) collectedview.io