RE: VopMail or MailSite

Richard Lachance ( (no email) )
Fri, 3 Jul 1998 16:59:40 -0400


> It looks like vopmail has just cloned our successful product, MailSite.
> Imitation is the best form of flattery :-)

Let's give credit where it is due. Both VOPMail and Mailsite have licensed
the same mail application from the University of Edinburgh, hence the
similarities between them. Also under the guise of honesty, the years of
rock solid improvements in Mailsite are by far the product of the
development efforts of the University...

It is also ironic to note that many of the IMAP improvements in your most
recent version of Mailsite were the result of testing and development on
VOPMail. We chose to communicate these bugs and their fix back to the
University and they trickled through into Mailsite.

We started the VOPMail project in February '98 and formed an in-house team
of developers commited to the product. Since then, we have added the
following features (that are not available in Mailsite):

- Full local recipient verification: This simple feature verifies that a
local mailbox exists before accepting an email. By refusing the email
immmediately, the bounce message is generated by the remote SMTP server,
instead of the local one, limiting the performance hit of mail bombing and
incoming spams.

- Spam filter: Any portion of the SMTP transaction and any header in the
email can be used to filter spam. Since the verification is done at
reception, the email is refused immediately and the bounce message must
generated by the remote SMTP server, again reducing the impact of spam.

- Spam filter API: there is room for multiple spam filters active in VOPMail
at the same time. Anti-spam services and other developers can use this API
to extend the spam filtering of VOPMail.

- RADIUS authentication: A RADIUS client was added to VOPMail, able to
interface with any RADIUS server, local or remote, NT or Unix based. All
ISPs can then integrate their dial-up services with their Mail services.

The following features are currently in development for VOPMail and will be
released during July:

- HTML Email interface: Users will be able to read & send emails directly
from within a WWW browser. This feature will be bundled in VOPMail at no
additional charge.

- Automatic expiry: A configurable clean-up system to automatically remove
old mailboxes and messages.

That sums up the improvements we have made and are making in only a few
months of licensing the product. A final point of comparison would be
pricing: VOPMail has a flat price of $750, regardless of the number of

For the sake of comparison and for the readers of this list, how about you
list the features unique to Mailsite that your in-house developers have

> We've been in this business since May 1995 and we shipped
> MailSite version 1.0 way back in 1996. Since then we have invested
> a great deal of time and money on enhancing the product to meet
> the needs of our customers. We have over 400,000 users worldwide.
> We have achieved this success by focusing on delivering a Rock
> Solid product that is backed up by Rock Solid support.

Flashing corporate credentials is not, in my opinion, the best way of
providing a useful comparison between two products, but here goes

Vircom has been in business since January 1994, writing software for the
online industry and focused on ISPs. Our development have touched
technologies such as: a TCP/IP stack, 2 distinct mail servers, a PPP server
for NT, 2 distinct RADIUS servers, a WWW server, an ActiveX telnet client
and a graphical multi-user game, using DirectX on the client side and NT on
the server. We estimate approximately 2,000 ISPs are using, or have used,
our software. Vircom's reputation for technical support has also always
been excellent, as can probably attest our clients that are subscribed to
this list.