MailScanner 101, take two.

Kevin Miller Kevin_Miller at CI.JUNEAU.AK.US
Wed Jul 2 23:33:58 IST 2003

A couple months ago, I set up MailScanner and we're currently using it quite
successfully.  In the process however, I did a lot of headscratching and
typically (for me anyway) with new projects I can't see the forest for the
trees when I begin.  Consequently, I don't think I have the critter
installed as optimally as I might.  Since it's in production, I can't really
tinker too much.  But all's not lost.  I grabbed a currently unused Dell
450, and am building a secondary mail server with it.  I've also been
reading the mailing list for the past month and a half or so, which has been
an eye opener!

Last time I had a time constraint to get something up and running.  This
time I can relax, take a deep breath, and go about the process in an orderly
manner.  So, here's the particulars:  I'm running on SuSE 8.0 with sendmail.
The SuSE updates have been applied, but it's basically a vanilla box at the
moment.  I'll be loading the current stable versions of:

MailScanner-mrtg or mailstats (or both)  Probably go to mailstats.

Starting with MailScanner, which is the better way to go, rpm or tar?  I'm
usually a bit leery of rpms on SuSE as they're often written for Redhat, and
do things a bit differently on SuSE (or is it SuSE does things a bit
differently <g>), thus I end up doing a tarball anyway.  But they're great
when they work.  So, how does the rpm pan out on SuSE 8.0/sendmail?

If rpm is the way to go, I presume the perl patches are included (previous
emails to this list indicated that was the case).

Does the rpm load spamassassin as part of it's processing or do I have to
load that after the fact (or before)?

I don't see it referenced in the instructions for either the tarball or the
rpm though I see there's a page about it at  This
references 2.6 - I'll be going with 2.55 and leave the bleeding edge to
others.  Are there any significant differences if I follow those
instructions with the 2.55 version?

If it's not loaded/installed by the MailScanner scripts, should I install it
before or after MailScanner?

The last go-round, I think I did the tarballs, including installing
spamassassin from a tarball.  When I was trying to get Razor2 going, I
downloaded some perl stuff from CPAN which either the spamassassin site or
the Razor site said I needed, which made my system sort of grumpy.  Said
modules weren't installed that were, or version errors or some such.  It's
been several weeks since I've been able to play w/it, so I can't remember
the specifics.  Instead, I just wiped the machine, and reinstalled and
figured it was better to do it right rather than try to fix what I probably
hosed last time.  Thus this tome.

For the antivirus I got a copy of F-Prot, but then they changed the license.
Aargh.  A grand more to do the same thing.  So I'm looking at a different
antivirus solution now, probably RAV.  I don't mind paying for
support/updates and I thought the original $300 F-prot cost was quite
reasonable, but the new scheme isn't exactly competitive.  Does RAV auto
update both the signatures and the program?  I want something I can put in
and ignore until it's time to send 'em another check in a year.  A friend is
using Sophos, and he says he has to put in a new user license quarterly or
some such.  Life's too short for that.  All the docs seem to refer to
installing Sophos as a step however.  Can I presume that I can substitute
whatever flavor of antivirus there and *not* have to install Sophos?

Some of these probably seem like dumb questions to a bunch of you, but
they're not particularly clear to us folks that are a bit newer to the joys
of Linux.  Your patience and indulgence are appreciated.  I'll probably have
more a couple of steps into the process.

TIA.  I don't usually reply to replies for past requests for help, as I
don't want to clutter the list so I'll say in advance that I appreciate the

Kevin Miller                Registered Linux User No: 307357
CBJ MIS Dept.               Network Systems Administrator, Mail
155 South Seward Street     ph: (907) 586-0242
Juneau, Alaska 99801        fax: (907 586-4500

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