On 9/5/07, Chad Perrin <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
> On Thu, Sep 06, 2007 at 11:37:11AM +1000, Norberto Meijome wrote:
> > On Wed, 5 Sep 2007 16:52:56 -0400
> > "Bob Johnson" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
> >
> > > In case I haven't made myself clear, I despise Qmail with a passion.
> >
> > I just realised that qmail appears over and over in Linux distros, or at
> least
> > on linux servers i've had to suffer... not sure the relationship there (in
> > design / philosophy...)... and I am really NOT wanting to start a flame
> war.
> > Just a thought that crossed my mind as I was reading this thread.

About five or seven years ago when sendmail was having a lot of
security problems and people were looking for alternatives, qmail was
reasonably well established and was widely recommended. So a lot of
people switched to it (including the place where I now work),
including several Linux distros. We were never very happy with it
here, and I suspect that the reason it has such a following in the
Linux world is either that they have never used an alternative (same
reason Windows has so many fans), or to abandon it and move to
something else would cause a sort of cognitive dissonance that
prevents it from happening.

> I haven't seen enough production FreeBSD systems set up by others to have
> any impressions about whether Linux admins are more likely to use Qmail
> than FreeBSD admins.  I do get the impression, however, that the Linux
> admins who choose Qmail tend to do so for much the same reason that MS
> Windows admins choose Exchange: they think it's easier, that setting it
> up is just a plug-and-play, point-and-click sort of exercise.  The fact
> that it's sending and receiving emails within a couple hours (starting
> from a clean box) seems to be the sum total of their metric for ease of
> setup, and all the hassle and annoyance that follows doesn't even enter
> into it.

For those people I recommend Courier.  It was designed to be a drop-in
replacement for Qmail, but without most of the flaws. The
configuration files, for instance, are mostly the same. The biggest
problem I've had when configuring Courier is that it tends to be
overly determined to enforce RFC compliance and thus will not be
friendly toward a lot of mail from various MS products. Find the
configuration flag that turns off that behavior or users will complain
about the results. The author makes a reasonable case for the default
behavior (to do otherwise forces Courier to be non-compliant itself),
but in the real world you have to be able to accept mail from MS

I have used Courier at my previous job (about 200 users) and at home
and I have no significant complaints. If you just need a basic server
that will handle your personal email without requiring you to learn
what amounts to a new programming language (as with Exim and a few
others), it's a good choice. The full distribution includes a POP/IMAP
server and a webmail system. Just be sure not to skip the README file,
and follow the instructions for testing your installation
step-by-step. I have NOT tried to set up intensive anti-spam measures
on Courier, so I don't know what problems may be in store there, but
I'm sure there is info at http://www.courier-mta.org

I'm not really as evangelistic for Courier as I sound. As long as you
stay away from Qmail you will probably be happy with whatever you use.
I do recommend that you use something that supports Maildir style
mailboxes, though.

- Bob
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