mail server setup

John G Heim jheim at
Wed Jan 13 09:00:04 EST 2016

I don't think there is a better spam filtering tool than spamassassin. I 
ran the mail server for my department and all by myself, I was able to 
get filtering as efficient as the campus mail server which used a 
commercial product and had a full-time employee tuning it. The secret is 
crowd sourcing. I had it download a new set of rules nightly and 
configured it to use 3 crowd sourced systems, dcc, razor and pyzor. It 
took a while to set all that up but once it was done, all I had to do 
was sit back and let the world tune my spam filter.

Spamassassin is a bigger resource hog than anything else in a mail 
system. I think that is probably true of any spam/virus filter. There is 
just a lot to do.  And really, it's the virus scanning part that is the 
worst. You don't want to skip that. We had about 200 users on a machine 
with 16 cores and 32 Gb of ram. It never had a problem with the load.

On 01/11/2016 01:43 PM, Janina Sajka wrote:
> Hi,
> I've got my crm set up via my personal ~/.procmailrc . It can also be
> setup system wide, however I haven't needed that recently.
> The crm home page does discuss site wide deployment:
> I note one can even use it with Spamassassin. I didn't go that way. I
> dropped Spamassassin because it was spawning far too many processes that
> were absorbing far too much of my available system resources, so that
> other tasks on my server were suffering.
> Am I completely happy with the results? No. I still get too many false
> positives and consequently still need to look at my spam folder from
> time to time. I've white-listed many more email sources than I would
> have expected.
> However, I see no more than a dozen or so emails in my inbox daily, and
> that's a big improvement over what I was getting from Spamassassin.
> hth
> Janina
> covici at writes:
>> How would you use crm114 for spam filtering?  Also, I am unfamiliar with
>> dkim and dmark, -- I do have sendmail -- how would those help?
>> Janina Sajka <janina at> wrote:
>>> Juan Hernandez writes:
>>>> I need webmail, imap, virtual domains, spam/antivirus protection, etc.
>>> Let's take them one at a time ...
>>> webmail
>>> This one is easy. Go with squirrelmail .
>>>   imap
>>>   Another easy one, dovecot .
>>>   virtual domains
>>>   Any mta worth its salt will give you this. It's pretty trivial, e.g. in
>>>   sendmail you simply add domains into a config file, one per line. If
>>>   need be, you can get more elaborate, e.g. direct mail addressed to
>>>   a at b.c. to d at e.f. It's all very doable.
>>>   spam/antivirus protection
>>>   This one is more complicated, and more important. I'm sure you're not
>>>   interested in becoming an open relay for every spammer on the planet?
>>>   So:
>>>   Antivirus -- You probably only care if you have users on Windows.
>>>   clamav is my choice for this, though mine is curently broken--I don't
>>>   have windows clients.
>>>   anti-spam -- much of this depends on a good mta configuration. Today's
>>>   mta's, you'll probably select either sendmail or procmail, set you up
>>>   by default with a pretty good configuration. You'll want to carefully
>>>   read your way through the config file to understand what's going on.
>>>   This is the starting point.
>>>   Next is the process of sorting the mail that arrives into "probably OK"
>>>   and "probably junk" piles. People used to rely on spamassassin for
>>>   that, but I found it far too resource heavy and stopped using it about
>>>   two years ago. I'm now using crm114. And, with Jason White, I'm looking
>>>   at possibly moving to rstampd .
>>>   In any case, you'll want to configure dkim and dmark for your mta.
>>>   These assist the net in assuring you and everyone else that what you
>>>   receive, and what you send is legit.
>>>   Spam is a never ending battle. Expect to need to work on your
>>>   configurations and approaches from time to time as the months and years
>>>   go by.
>>>   If this sounds daunting, that's probably good. It's not a trivial task,
>>>   but it can be fun and certainly can be rewarding. I certainly have no
>>>   interest in giving up my setup for some service somewhere else.
>>>   hth
>>>   Janina
>>> -- 
>>> Janina Sajka,	Phone:	+1.443.300.2200
>>> 			sip:janina at
>>> 		Email:	janina at
>>> Linux Foundation Fellow
>>> Executive Chair, Accessibility Workgroup:
>>> The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI)
>>> Chair, Accessible Platform Architectures
>>> _______________________________________________
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>> -- 
>> Your life is like a penny.  You're going to lose it.  The question is:
>> How do
>> you spend it?
>>           John Covici
>>           covici at
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