I did a five-minute skim of the checkin but hope to look a bit more tomorrow. Hopefully Marius, Benji, Albertas, or someone else who has actually done work on this package will take a look and chime in.

I did have one somewhat trivial thought. I generally prefer durations and intervals expressed as datetime.timedeltas myself, because they convey their meaning without having to look it up docs (is that number value a number of seconds? milliseconds? minutes?). There might even be a zcml built in for schema field for that; I believe I remember that there is in ZConfig.

Also, some variety of doctest would be nice. Even when a package is not using doctests, I add new tests as doctest unless there's a really good reason not to.

In this case, it looks like you've made the code significantly more robust, which has added some probably necessary complexity. The code looks readable, but I recommend a maintainer-oriented overview/ introduction as a doctest, at the least. For instance, perhaps you could think about documentation about the rationale for the approach and about the dance that this code participates in (with the lock files and all the possible SMTP error conditions and the code's responses). Of course, even more friendly docs than that would be nice, but I'm only asking for what I myself tend to give, unfortunately.

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