Ubuntu & Postfix

Oscar Veloz oveloz at glasfloss.com
Tue Sep 12 20:38:13 UTC 2006

"So, bottom line, about the e-mail thing: Get yourself VMWare Server or
something like that, set up a local testbed system, play around with it
a little, gain some experience in handling it. You can keep you out of a
lot of annoying situations this way... :)"

The above is funny because it's where I'm doing all of this - in vmware, but how is that relevant to my question I still ask.  You tried to help me, you didn't tell me to give it up since I'm too far behind and you didn't express disdain for me because through ignorance I'm just like all the other ignorant spam relayers.  You lost me though, Kris.  You agree with what? With Mike telling me that I need to know what I'm doing before I put a mail server online?  That's what I'm trying to do, I'm trying to learn postfix better.  What I'm saying is "read the question", that's all.  More specifically, I did not ask "do you think I am smart enough to set up an smtp gateway?, nor did I ask, should I stop what I'm doing because I don't know this?  Those answers would then have been relevant.

Here is the bottom line - someone got annoyed (not insulted) because they assumed I am throwing an insecure mail server out on the net, and I just want to help (not offended by them or you) because I am assuming that Bird and Smith are uptight and should seek enlightment so that when they read a question they either ask for more info if it is of interest or they just go on with more important things in life if they don't get it.  You tried to help because you are helpful, they tried discourage or chastise because they are unhappy maybe, and I am just trying to teach them some life lessons.  In the end, the internet is beautiful, I thank Al Gore for it ever day.   


-----Original Message-----
From: ubuntu-users-bounces at lists.ubuntu.com [mailto:ubuntu-users-bounces at lists.ubuntu.com] On Behalf Of Kristian Rink
Sent: Tuesday, September 12, 2006 2:39 PM
To: Ubuntu user technical support,not for general discussions
Subject: Re: Ubuntu & Postfix

Hash: SHA1


Oscar Veloz schrieb:
> Ok, my network is protected against such as far as I know.  What you're
> saying is that before attempting to set up a production postfix machine,
> that I should be at the point where I don't need to ask questions?  Your
> logic is silly, really.  

Not to be too rude and/or offensive, in a certain way I have to agree
with what Mike wrote, even though maybe it's not what you want to read.
I also replied to your questions earlier, and I think I gave you a few
hints. However, there is one thing I want / have to outline, being
myself an administrator of a bunch of e-mail systems to pass through
several tens of thousands of mails each day: Setting an e-mail relay up
in a right way is a tedious and difficult task (and one which actually
gave me a whole bunch of sleepless nights while learning to do things
right), as there are dozens of ways how to get into trouble, not just
talking about spam and viruses, and not just talking about an MTA like
postfix which is (compared to sendmail or possibly exim) easy to
configure and provides a reasonable amount of security.

The point just is, no matter whether talking about SMTP (which _really_
can be a pain in the a**) or HTTP or FTP or any other service made
publicly available: Before setting up a server which is open to "the
world", you _want_ to be at least halfway comfortable with handling the
server software that implements that very service. It is not just about
spam or viruses. It's not even about security. I remember a situation
earlier in my life when I got caught somewhere in the middle of my first
postfix/amavis/cyrus setup and spent most of a day trying to figure out
why mail is not delivered locally - those situations happening in a
testbed environment are just annoying because they keep one from
proceeding smoothly. Encountering those situations in a "productive
environment" can end up in consequences way more severe - just imagine
customers losing bunches of money because one of the services you
provided is not available just because of a misconfiguration you failed
to track down in an acceptably short time. To do so, however, you need
to have solid _basic_ knowledge about a few things, you should to be
able at least to tell

(a) whether a server is up and running at all,
(b) why a server daemon died in case it is not running,
(c) how to possibly restart a service and see if it actually restarted,
(d) what a few basic error messages mean and how to deal with them.

It's not that you should not ask questions in case you don't know
something - actually, compared to other mailing lists or newsgroups,
this one is pretty helpful and friendly in most situations. But just
imagine a situation in which you won't have time to ask someone on a
mailing list and wait for a reply (which can take hours or days,
depending on your  problem).

So, bottom line, about the e-mail thing: Get yourself VMWare Server or
something like that, set up a local testbed system, play around with it
a little, gain some experience in handling it. You can keep you out of a
lot of annoying situations this way... :)

Cheers & good luck,

- --
Kristian Rink *  http://zimmer428.net * jab: kawazu at jabber.ccc.de
icq: 48874445 *  fon: ++49 176 2447 2771
"Wenn einer allein träumt, ist es nur ein Traum. Wenn viele gemeinsam
träumen, ist das der Anfang einer neuen Wirklichkeit." (Hundertwasser)

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