RE: [NTISP] Post.Office Complaints

Info ( (no email) )
Wed, 10 May 2000 10:14:52 -0700

I fought with them for over two years and I finally gave up and went to
Mailsite. I have had "One" call about an EMail hanging and it turned out to
be a 35mb attachment and there client was timing out not the server. I
would recommend Mailsite for any small to medium sized ISP. Especially if
you are using Emerald.

-----Original Message-----
[]On Behalf Of Bob's Lists
Sent: Wednesday, May 10, 2000 6:20 AM
Subject: RE: [NTISP] Post.Office Complaints

Just to add, from 3 years experience of using Post Office...

> - "I'm downloading my mail and the transfer hangs" . Users
> that use Outlook would routinely call about their mail is
> timing out. For some reason, Post.Office doesn't like Outlook
> (and Outlook is one of the most popular e-mail clients).

It's not *only* Outlook, it does this frequently with almost any mail
client. About 2 years ago I went through weeks of talking to
support about this one, without any real success (total lack of interest on
their part).

Clients sometimes have to log in via web-based mail, delete the offending
message (the one that's causing it to hang up) and then download the rest of
the mail into their normal mail client. The problem seems to particularly
affect forwarded messages, for some reason - I had one client whose mailbox
*always* locked in this fashion when he got a forwarded mail from a
particular person, although normal mail from the same person got through.
Very weird.

Another interesting one - if you manually move the message out of the users'
mailbox, then move them back in one at a time and the client hits 'send &
receive' ALL the messages go through - even the one that was causing the
problem. It seems a *very* obscure problem, caused by a particular message
type, AND if there are other messages 'behind' it in the queue.

> - The admin. isn't given an easy way to clean up unread (old) mail.

Amen to that...

> - No true mail relaying (spammer) prevention. If the sending
> domain = one of your own domains then send it. Therefore,

Not quite true, you can block by domain AND/OR IP address - the spammer
would have to spoof one of your IP addresses to be successful.

> - No web interface to check, send, receive, mail.

Also not quite true, but unlike the trend (most other vendors have started
adding web support as 'part of the package' have decided to
make web mail a completely separate package, with a very high (imo) price

> - No body, subject, or sender word blocking. Therefore, if the
> admin. wants to block a particular type of e-mail (based on a
> word in the subject or body) and redirect (or copy) to another
> account, you can't do it with Post.Office.

Tricky one... I like to leave this type of filtering up to the client, EVEN
in unusual circumstances (e.g. the recent "ILOVEYOU" chaos)...

> - There isn't an _easy_ way to setup a form letter to greet
> new customers, or to customize error related letters that

Whoever thought of putting the welcome forms, error message text, etc in the
registry needs to be taken out and shot, is all I can say.

> - No way easy setup a replicating mail server arrangement.

I found a (sort of) workaround for that... I have set up a backup server
using the free 10 user licenced version. My MX20 points there, so if the
main server's down for any reason incoming mail waits on the backup server.
Of course, clients can't access their mail on it but at least it relays the
waiting mail over to the main server very quickly, when the main server
comes back up. say that if you are using two servers, you need
two licenses per number of users on each server. Since the 10 user version
is free, and you're not using it for postboxes - only relay to your main
server - I believe you are not in violation of their licensing agreement.

> - Post.Office doesn't clean up after itself. The admin.
> occasionally has to dig through its directories, and identify
> garbage that it leaves, and clean up after it.

Another Amen... also, since I use Emerald which happily creates accounts but
has no way of deleting them, there are a lot of addresses/mailboxes which
have to be deleted manually. Even a throwaway utility - "which mailboxes
have not been accessed in xx months" would be useful...

> - Slow to get new releases with new features out to market.


> - No pay? No support. If you don't buy a support contract from
> them, you're S.O.L.

Their support e-mail address used to accept mails (even if they went
unanswered or were not answered in the timeframe one would expect with a
support contract). Now, if your mail to support does not contain your
support number, they bounce it. In other words not only do they have one of
the most expensive post offices in existence, if you don't pay on top of
that for support, they don't want to know you.

I've been looking for an alternative to Post Office for some time, for all
the above reasons - the only thing that's putting us off is the difficulty
in migrating to a new package... nightmare...

It would be nice to see some recommendations on the list - with 'real' users
of the other packages chipping in with a message like this one with the good
and bad points of each...

For example, I had one server running NTMail and I hated everything about
it - the admin interface, and the fact that TWICE I had a user with a
corrupt mailbox and it hung the entire service (both SMTP and POP hung on
startup with some obscure error message!). Post.Office, at least, has NEVER
failed on me yet.

I've been surfing through the web site of VOPMail, which looks interesting.
Anyone *really* put this one to the test? How is it?

> I suspect since they have a large customer base, they aren't
> worried about these items (yet)... because, the money is too
> good to worry about it..?

Not sure about that one, but they are (again, IMO) very arrogant when it
comes to complaints such as these.



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