[K12OSN] WBEL Mail Server

Ben Nickell twinprism at athena.physics.isu.edu
Wed May 5 16:37:23 UTC 2004

Comments inline..

Jim Kronebusch wrote:

>I am going to attempt to build a mail server from WBEL.  The
>requirements are to be able to host multiple domains, have webmail (I
>prefer OpenWebmail), have anti-spam (I prefer SpamAssassin), have
>anti-virus (It looks like ClamAV is most common), and a mailing list

I have just built 3 servers on WBEL with Postfix, amavisd-new, 
SpamAssassin, Squirrelmail, and ClamAV,  and MailMan.  
Installing/tweaking is not simple, but it works extremely well and is 
very powerful and configurable.   Installing amavis and its dependencies 
can be daunting, but dag wieers has good repositories that made it 
easier.   I usually don't like mixing repositories, but in this case it 
is easier for me, as long as I document really well what I got from 
where, and I wrote some scripts to alert me if there are updates to 
packages from dag's repositories and install them manually.   I use apt 
for dag, and yum for k12ltsp on these boxes. I ran into a couple of 
conflicts installing packages, such as the perl-perl-ldap rpm from 
k12ltsp conflicted with a similar package from dag, but nothing I 
couldn't manage.   Not having done it before, and with mediocre skills 
it took me about 8 hours to set up the first one,  the second was up and 
running in <2 hours, with some added tweaks.


> Webmin had a quick
>fix to have Procmail and SpamAssassin talk but I don't know how to have
>Sendmail deliver to Procmail.  Then do I need to configure Amavis or
>something to tie in ClamAV?  
Here is a link to a webmin module for setting up amavisd-new, I haven't 
used it, but have been meaning to try it.  I prefer editing config 
files, as I feel I get a better picture of the whole process, but I'm 
all for making my job easier. 

>Les recommended using Sendmail and MimeDefang, what does MimeDefang do
>(Antivirus or Spam)?  
Others have talked about MimeDefang, and I've never used it.   I've used 
Mailscanner with sendmail, and amavisd-new with postfix.  I have been 
leaning towards postfix because it is supports the features I need out 
of the box and RH/WBEL, it integrates a little better with amavisd-new 
(the developer uses postfix) and it's easier for me to tweak and 
understand than sendmail. I have been using sendmail for 6+ years, but 
already like postfix better after 6 months with it.  They both work 
well, use whatever you are most familiar with.

>For now I really liked the ease of SME server but the canned package has
>me worried for future expansion or modifications, I think WBEL would
>offer more flexability (Such as using OpenWebmail instead of Horde).
>Any comments?
WBEL won't match the ease of SME, but you can have a very flexible setup 
that is still maintainable.  Squirrelmail is really easy to get 
running.  Haven't used the others because Squirrelmail (over https) 
meets my needs.

>I have looked all over and can't really find a good "how to" on a full
>featured email server.
I can't help much here..  I put mine together from bits and pieces from 
here and there.  I did keep notes, but they are very disorganized and I 
won't have time for a couple of weeks to make them coherent to anyone 
but myself.
This links might be a good place to start if you want to know more.

Check out the howtos under documentation.  The readme files are very 
good too.
A quick first time setup is in this one, 
several of the others are more advanced and more comprehensive.

I can't say the whole process has been easy, but it has been fun, I keep 
going back and adding more 'features' to my setup.

Hope this is of interest to someone,
Ben Nickell
Idaho State University Physics Dept. 
Pocatello Community Charter School

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