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A Sneak Preview of NetWin's SurgeMail - page 3

Exit Dmail, Enter SurgeMail

  • May 6, 2002
  • By Dee-Ann LeBlanc

Installing the SurgeMail 1.0 mail server is a pretty straightforward operation. You download the trial or purchased version of the software, unpackage it, change to the mtemp directory, and then (for the Linux version, of course) type ./install.sh as root. This action puts the software into place for you.

That's it!

SurgeMail 1.0 comes with a web-based configuration tool. It's already installed and enabled, though depending on your Linux distribution and setup you might have to do something fancy in order to open up the port for access. Once SurgeMail 1.0 is installed, you open a web browser and type http://localhost:7025. The opening SurgeMail 1.0 configuration page is shown in Figure 1.

I start my explorations here by clicking Global to set up the global mail server behavior. This action brings me to the screen shown in Figure 2, where I get a definite feeling that there's an emphasis on security when I find that the first settings available involve who to allow and require SSL encryption from. As I look through I find that I can set rules about who can change various user settings (the Full Name, forwarding, that kind of thing), which is handy.

Right up front I find the relaying rules as well. I can allow relaying to and from particular places by utilizing a combination of IP, domain, and header information. I can also set up some default global rules for mail always being redirected for certain domains. When I look at the spam section, I can tell SurgeMail 1.0 which blackhole services I want to utilize, and override information if you want to let someone who's being blocked through (though that does defeat the purpose of properly done blackholing).

I also find by digging around that there's mailing list functionality, the ability to shut down and start the mail server, the chance to enter your registration key, an authentication module selector, and the setup section for fetching additional mail from another POP server. The navigation menus could do with a little more clarity, such as separating the overall nav buttons from the internal ones and making sure you have access to all of the internal buttons in each internal screen.

Now I click the Domain button to check out the domain-specific section (Figure 3). I can click on the Domains button to move from one domain to another, alter settings for the selected domain independent of the others, and send out a Bulletin to all of my users (but it's only stored once, isn't that handy?)

Clicking the Status button shows an unimpressive list of status information (Figure 4), but that's not SurgeMail's fault, the server isn't in use! There's quite a bit of data available here regarding mail volume, memory usage, and more. Clicking Log (Figure 5) lets me view or search through the contents of one of the logfiles, and clicking Users (Figure 6) lets me select a domain, and then either search for a user account or create a new one. A nice feature here is the easy access to setting a user's quota information.

This is another one of those web interfaces where you just keep digging around and finding more and more to play with. Fortunately there's online documentation as well to help you find out where you need to go.


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