HEC Montréal: Deployment of a Large-Scale Mail Installation

Forced to upgrade by a flood of junk mail, this university went to a heavy-duty system based on Linux. And, they made it a seamless transition without disturbing users' existing mail configurations.


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Honestly way to complicated of a fix

Used Servers's picture

I would just move Google apps and let them take care of the mail. It will be a lot cheaper and more advanced instead of running squirrel mail.

Shortcomings in the setup

Rahul Amaram's picture

This is a really interesting infrastructure. But I see a few shortcomings in it. Feel free to comment on them.

1. Round-robin DNS is being used for load-balancing of webmail servers. If one of the servers goes down, connections to it will still be made and will result in failure for the end-user. A better way for load-balancing webmail HTTP connections is to probably use some HTTP proxy.

2. There is no load-balancing of IMAP servers. This might pose a limitation if the size of the university and the IMAP usage increases considerably.

3. Single point of failure of the storage device which is already mentioned in the article.

4. I am not sure if split brain condition (http://linux-ha.org/wiki/Split_Brain) is handled for LDAP & IMAP servers. If not, this may lead to data corruption and inconsistencies.


Sun Java Enterprise Mail Serv

Anonymous's picture

Sun Java Enterprise Mail Server runs pretty well on RedHat9. It would be much easier to migrite to Sun Mail Server ver 6.

Easy != better

Anonymous's picture

But it would result in a very inferior email infrastructure. There is also the fact that it would be a lot more expensive, far less customizable, far less maintenable, unsafe (you don't know what is inside), and you would have to pay the Sun maintenance fees.

You better target Microsoft Exchange users on your next propaganda run for Sun. Nobody that knows what he is doing would drop a Cyrus IMAPd + OpenLDAP setup for a Sun Mail Server setup on technical merits.