Project Titanicarus: Part 9 – Building the Email Servers

You've got mail

Email servers.. the bane of every sysadmins existence. The second something goes wrong with an email server, you’re guaranteed to get 100 phone calls and people dropping by your office to say “My emails aren’t working”. This is one part of your hosting infrastructure you want to get right.

I’ve decided to build my infrastructure on Postfix & Dovecot with a MySQL user database. My previous email setup was built using this howto. One of the major issues I ran into was with Courier’s inability to handle large mailboxes so I’ve decided to use a similar setup only with Dovecot in place of Courier and there are a couple of other major differences:

  1. This is going to be a highly distributed configuration (ie multiple servers in multiple datacentres)
  2. This is going to sit behind load balancers (brings interesting spam filtering and security issues)
  3. This is going to use a clustered MySQL backend

So the goal of todays blog post is to deliver:

  • Multi-server & multi-datacentre replicated mail stores
  • Fault tolerance (pull a server out at any time of the day and mail keeps flowing)
  • POP3 & IMAP user access
  • Authenticated SMTP Submission

Continue reading “Project Titanicarus: Part 9 – Building the Email Servers”

Project Titanicarus: How to configure SFTP and FTP with ProFTPD

FTP Server

I personally hate & never use FTP, but some people prefer/need it for their development tools to work. Today we’re going to install ProFTPd on our servers using MySQL based virtual users. The following instructions are adapted from this really good howto, if I’ve missed something you may want to check the original version which I’ve recreated here just in case the other one goes away.
Continue reading “Project Titanicarus: How to configure SFTP and FTP with ProFTPD”

Networking – Simple advice on a scary topic


NetworkingThe one thing that seems to make the hairs on be back of every nerds neck prickle is networking.  I don’t mean the act of making two or more computers talk to each other (cos all healthy nerds love doing that), I mean the act of getting out there and talking to actual human beings in a professional setting.

Networking is an essential tool in any business persons arsenal. If you’re going to be successful at what you love doing, you need to be able to communicate about the passion you have for your product and how it is going to change the lives of the people you’re talking to.  For that communication to be as effective as possible, you need to be able to connect with others effectively, enter networking skills.

Have a read, this stuff isn’t hard, its not always an intuitive process, but it gets easier the more you do it!

Have you tried these tips? Is networking something you find difficult? Let me know your thoughts in the comments section below.


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