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July 2007 Archives

July 7, 2007

Book Reviews

I’ve been stumbling across a few reviews of my book! Here they are:

Free Software Magazine

I liked many parts of the book: firstly, the diagrams dividing down the underlying responsibilities in a crisp no nonsense approach as exampled by the queuing diagram on page 39. Secondly, the book is not verbose and does what it has to do with no extra embellishments. For a busy system administrator the book is thus more viable than a 500-page manual. Thirdly, I enjoyed the discussion of the Sender Policy Framework (SPF) and also DomainKeys contained within the pages 93-97. Finally, the mentioning of Silly Qmail Syndrome (page 132) and a patch solution should for some of you short cut a degree of pain and potential embarrassment.


qmail is a great email system. It’s been around forever — the latest stable version is almost 10 years old. I considered The qmail Handbook to be the only quality book on qmail available. However, it’s now going to have to share the spotlight with the release of Qmail Quickstarter.

As mentioned before, the latest qmail release is almost 10 years old. A lot has happened with email administration since then — for instance with security and filtering. Not only has the qmail community adapted to these changes, but they’re also all covered in Qmail Quickstarter. This book also does a great job at describing the unique architecture to qmail. qmail takes the age-old Unix approach of using small programs to do one thing well. Each of the pieces that make up qmail are explained and illustrated here.

Though I haven’t used qmail in years, I’m glad to see that it hasn’t fallen behind in the world of email servers. On the contrary, it’s alive and well and this book does a great job showing that off. I give it a 10/10.

There are others… one was submitted to slashdot but appears to have been rejected (I may post it in its entirety later; the author sent me a copy).

July 10, 2007

Another Review!

I just got a link to another review of my book! This time, by a fellow named James Craig Burley, who also frequents the qmail mailing list. Here’s his intro and conclusion:

Email servers, also called Mail Transfer Agents (MTAs), today do much of the heavy lifting required to transport email from sender to recipient, ideally without the sender or recipient being particularly aware of them. They store (queue) incoming email, then forward it to user’s mailboxes, sometimes via other email servers, while often trying to avoid accepting or sending out spam or viruses. They also allow users to read email waiting for them in their mailboxes. qmail is a popular email server for Unix-based systems; “Qmail Quickstarter: Install, Set Up, and Run your own Email Server” introduces the reader to qmail as an email-delivery architecture that provides the building blocks for an email server.

“Qmail Quickstarter” is a good book for anyone wanting to come up to speed on qmail, whether as their email server of choice or as a means to better choose among the many email servers available. I give this book a 7 out of 10.

About July 2007

This page contains all entries posted to Kyle in July 2007. They are listed from oldest to newest.

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