Exercises in futility

I'm a bit frustrated since I spent the last 36 hours trying to get a comprehensive email solution set up on my VPS. I learned quite a bit, including more than I ever wanted to know about postfix and mail server configuration.

However, by far, the most important lessons were:

  • Getting a solid email solution set up 'from scratch' is really difficult to do properly.
  • Pre-built email solutions like iRedmail, Zimbra, and Citadel require more resources than my VPS plan provides.

Most enlightening is this beautiful piece of advice given to me by no less than three of my most trusted linux administrator friends:

Setting up email is hard. Use a 3rd party email hosting service - that's what I do.

If you were interested in trying it yourself, my first attempt was setting it up 'from scratch' using this helpful and comprehensive blog post about postfix as a roadmap and it was mostly working by the end of the day yesterday. Unfortunately, despite many positive signs from internal testing I was unable to get secure auth with TLS to function remotely. If I had more time I'd still be fighting with it, but I have other projects to work on.

The next day I cleared the VPS to a base install and tried iRedmail, and shame on me for not checking the system requirements first - my limited VPS playground doesn't have nearly the RAM recommended to run it safely in a production environment.

Running iRedmail on my VPS box would have meant disabling antivirus and antispam measures, which is a security compromise I'm not willing to make.

But hey, there's some good news!

I'll be attending the North American Bitcoin Conference in Miami Beach this month. I will talk more about this in a future post.

Ghost 0.4 is out and I have it running in production currently. I'm a big fan and I think the platform is maturing nicely.