Thoughts on Barracudas?

Dhawal Doshy dhawal at
Mon Aug 21 14:30:20 IST 2006

Julian Field wrote:
> What is your opinion on the Barracuda appliance?
> How easy is it to use?
> Does it actually work?
> Can it survive the loads they say it can?
> And, of course, how does it compare with MailScanner?
> Please be open and honest, and as impartial as you can.
> All of your thoughts are most welcome.

We managed to convince a customer (5K+ users) to use MS (though it was 
and always is mostly a commercial game). Spam is an evolving thing and 
MS is doing well enough. The MTA+SA part on which MS really depends for 
spam rejection/detection is the weak link (though a properly configured 
MTA+SA works better than a barracuda).

Where barracuda and other commercial products have an advantage is the 
fact that they use "your appliance" for distributed checksumming 
(something like razor/dcc) thus giving them better spam detection, maybe 
they also use "your appliance" as a spamtrap. Add automated updates (at 
both engine + rules level) and a pretty GUI for finishing touches.. The 
appliance from the folks at FSL is way better compared to a barracuda.

IMHO, MS + MailWatch does it quite well. Maybe (just maybe) you would 
want to consider URIBL support in MS (for non-SA users) OR a MS-Milter 
OR something on these lines.

Finally, check barracuda's security track record if you really want to 
convince someone away from them..

- dhawal

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