summary: opinions on web-based email

Lewis Bergman lbergman at
Tue May 27 17:28:51 IST 2003

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On Tuesday 27 May 2003 08:44 am, Raymond Dijkxhoorn wrote:
> Hi!
> > How large is large? Our Prayer setup is handling 12000 users (up to
> > 39000 logins/day and 1.5 million page views) on about half a PC.
> > It has the disadvantage of being relatively new and not having many
> > installations.
> xs4all is also using Squirrel, thats a ISP with around 200.000 customers.
> So indeed, how large is large ?
I was on the development team for SquirrelMail when ss4all went live with
their system. It isn't the same code as you'll download from sourceforge from
the project page. I am not saying that the stock sm code can't handle it,
just that xs4all's code fork isn't a good example as it isn't standard.

Unless the coders have completely rewritten the IMAP code of sm it still uses
non persistent IMAP connections. This is a real problem if you get hundreds
of thousands of hits per day. How xs4all got around that was with hardware if
I remember correctly. They fronted it with a load balancer and stuck three
servers behind that. I think most of the changes they made were security
related having to do with SSL excintricities.

Not that I am unhappy with squirrelmail, I have used it for years. Just that
for really large deployments you might look at one of the webmail projects
that doesn't use IMAP at all or somehow manages to do it on a persistent
basis. Any project that deals directly with mbox or maildirs is going to be
faster than one that uses POP or IMAP as an intermidiary. If, on the
otherhand, you are willing to throw hardware at it just about anything is
likely to respond well.

- --
Lewis Bergman
Texas Communications
4309 Maple St.
Abilene, TX 79602-8044
915-695-6962 ext 115
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