[sclug] Mail Daemons

Bob Franklin r.c.franklin at reading.ac.uk
Mon Sep 11 20:30:56 UTC 2006

On Mon, 11 Sep 2006, Darren Davison wrote:

> I don't host externally, but I do run my own mail server.  I've found 
> postfix to be an extremely capable SMTP server and one that can be 
> configured without losing sanity. ...

Without starting an MTA war here, we use Exim at the University (as do 
many UK universities, since it was written at the University of Cambridge) 
and it is an extremely powerful and flexible MTA.

For simple configurations Postfix and Exim are probably equally good. 
Exim really wins if you're doing anything remotely complex because its 
debugging and testing functions will allow you to see easily what happens 
to a message all through its handling in the MTA; Postfix consists of a 
series of daemons which hand the message off to one another, so it can be 
difficult to debug like this.

Since our Exim configuration at the University consists of all sorts of 
message redirections, legacy handling, rewriting, passing to Exchange, 
checking LDAP queries, SMTP callout, being able to do this in one command 
is a really boon.  [Maybe this is why universities love it, since they 
have all this legacy nonsense.]

As for IMAP and such like, I have no recommendations about this; we use 
Dovecot at the University, but have never been involved in that.  It seems 
to do a good job with large mailboxes and heavy load from bad MUAs (e.g. 
Outlook, Outlook Express, Apple Mail), but I can't imagine this being an 
issue with your server.

   - Bob

  Bob Franklin <r.c.franklin at reading.ac.uk>          +44 (0)118 378 7147
  Systems and Communications, IT Services, The University of Reading, UK

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