Anti Spam

Randy Schultz schulra at
Fri Apr 20 17:15:56 UTC 2007

On Fri, 20 Apr 2007, Grant Peel spaketh thusly:

-}Hi all,
-}I am posting this question here because I know there are alot of ISPs using FreeBSD (including me) and am hoping to get feedback, either directly to me or to the list.
-}We are wrestling (as I am sure many are), with spam. Up until now we have been employing Spamassassin locally and using some 3rd party Anti-Spam servervices that are getting less and less reliable as the weeks go by.
-}We are considering two hardware solutions, Easyantispam and Barracuda. Barracuda is very expensive, so the most likely candidate is Easyantispam. Does anyone out there have thought on either or both of these? Usability? Reliability? Total Cost of ownership? Integration issues?

I have no experience with Easyantispam.  At a previous company I implemented a
Barracuda solution, 3 - 600's to be exact, after investigating numerous
(Postini, Brightmail, Ironport just to name 3).  I set them up in
geographically dispersed areas, including different timezones, and had them
clustered to look from the inside as 1 unit.  They took a tremendous beating,
frequently >1.5 million hits/day each.  Note that a "hit" != an email passing
through the box as many of the hits were quickly turned away via RBL's.  I
pounded on a demo model, again a 600, for 7 days, 2 or 3 of which I over-drove
the box(sending it more than it could handle, allowing the extras to build up
on the lab's source systems).  I had nearly every check enabled, including
multiple header and body regex matching, and saw a sustained throughput of
IIRC ~56,000/hr, for an average email size of IIRC 5kB.  In the 3 years that I
was there with the boxen IIRC only 2 had hardware fails, neither of which
impacted us due to the clustering(tho' response times for quarantine access
increased significantly).

I found their tech support to be easy to work with and very professional.  If
the first-level support didn't know the answer they quickly admitted it and
just as quickly called in second-level support.  A few times I actually got to
their third-level support.  ;>  In any case, I never sat on hold more than a
minute or two.  

I like their API.  It was powerful, having the ability to muck with any system
parameter.  I preferred the API when dealing with various setting enmasse.

I did not like their reporting capabilities.  IMHO they had the worst of all
we looked at.  A fair amount of data was available but nearly all of it
required further massaging by us to be useful.

All of these thoughts were circa 2003/2004 so FWIW.

 Randy    (schulra at      765.983.1283         <*>

Rain puts a hole in stone because of its constancy, not its force.
   - H. Joseph Gerber

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