To sendmail or to postfix that is the question?

Matthias Andree matthias.andree at
Wed Mar 10 23:42:20 UTC 2010

Am 10.03.2010 17:47, schrieb Steven Hartland:
> Ok so I'm looking to replace our current windows mail
> server using mdaemon with a FreeBSD solution, having
> looked around there seems to be differing opinions
> of which is the best option to go with between sendmail
> and postfix.

The best -- well, you'll know that with hindsight if you've tried both.

> The problem with looking for info on this is that a
> lot of the high listed articles in Google etc are
> from way back when, 2000 - 2007 during which time
> quite a bit can change.
> So what are peoples current day experience with the
> two options?
> A few key question come to mind:-
> 1. Has sendmail's config moved away from the black art
> it once was?
> 2. Is postfix that much easier?
> 3. What would people use for:
> 3.1. POP / IMAP support?
> 3.2. Web Mail?
> 3.2. AV / Spam filtering?

sendmail's configuration was never a black art unless you needed features beyond
what the m4 macro set supported. Instead, it was a matter of reading the README
file and the "op.*" manual, writing/adjusting the .mc files, and grinding the
.mc file through m4 to process it into the .cf files.

Postfix can be easier to configure, and I personally prefer it over sendmail --
and it appears to have had fewer and milder security issues and a more
security-aware design - and it's been faster in my setups.  Still you need to
understand what you're doing, and Postfix has evolved into a feature-rich MTA,
so you don't get to know it in an hour of reading.

I've deployed a few postfix + Dovecot + amavisd-new setups; these systems don't
need webmail. I used to use sqwebmail on a few sites.

Matthias Andree

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