Best SMTP Gateway Program and Reporting Tools

Jeffrey Goldberg jeffrey at
Wed Aug 13 01:03:14 UTC 2008

On Aug 12, 2008, at 3:22 PM, Josh Kidd wrote:

> I just wanted to pose this question to the list on people's opinions  
> as
> to what the best SMTP Gateway program (ie. Sendmail, Postfix, etc)  
> [...]

Depending on the nature of the site and needs, my preferences tend to  
run exim, then postfix, then sendmail.  But opinions will vary  
greatly.  Many very smart people for whom I have a great deal of  
respect do not share my particular preferences.

> is and what the best log analysis tool for that SMTP program is.

If I wanted to be a bit unhelpful just to make a point, I would say  
perl (or grep depending on taste).  It depends on needs.

> We are currently using Symantec Mail Security for our  outgoing SMTP
> Gateway but want to employ an open-source solution instead. My problem
> is our main requirement is to have a way to view the logs on a web  
> based
> interface that will allow our system administrators when a customer
> complains they didn't receive an email to be able to go into the logs
> and search by date/time and view the activity for that period to
> determine if the mail went through our system or if it was blocked and
> if so why.

It should be very easy to roll your own.  I know that exim comes with  
a number of GUI useful monitoring tools, but I don't know if this  
functionality is there.  But I do think that several of the tools come  
close.  They aren't web based, but X11 tools.  Also (if your privacy  
policy allows it) there's a configuration setting for logging subjects.

> I've heard of and read about a few different programs like SMA and
> Anteater and pflogstats, but I don't know if these will have the
> functionality I need to allow admins to search logs for a specific
> date/time and/or specific phrase/address on a web based interface.

Maybe someone has already done this, but it really wouldn't be a  
difficult thing to develop your own tool for doing this.


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