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Jun
13
New feature in v6.1 – Store and Forward
Posted by Paul Smith on 13 June 2013 08:28 AM

Background

LAN forwarding has been a feature of VPOP3 for many years.

With LAN Forwarding, VPOP3 will forward messages on to another mail server using SMTP. This has two common uses:

  • for use with another mail server. Some people use VPOP3′s LAN Forwarding with another mail server such as Microsoft Exchange Server. They often do this because VPOP3 has many features which Exchange Server doesn’t have, so VPOP3 can do its work first, then forward messages onto the Exchange Server for final delivery.
  • as a backup mail server. Some people like to have two or more MX servers handling their domain’s email, so they may have VPOP3 acting as a backup mail server, and sending mail onto the main mail server when the main server is available.

Using VPOP3 in either of these situations can improve reliability as mail is still accepted even if the main mail server is down, however, the messages which VPOP3 has queued for forwarding to the main server are not available for viewing, so mail can still not be accessed until the main server is back working.

Store and Forward

In v6.1 we added a new feature to VPOP3 Enterprise called “Store and Forward”. In this case, VPOP3 will both store the mail in a local VPOP3 mailbox, and also forward it to another mail server.

If you use this feature, then users will be able to log into their VPOP3 account to view their mail, just as if this VPOP3 was their normal mail server, but if/when the main mail server comes back online, the mail will be forwarded onto that as with normal LAN forwarding.

However, it’s cleverer than simply copying messages to two places (which could easily be done with older versions of VPOP3):

  • When messages are forwarded onto the main mail server, VPOP3 will automatically delete them from the VPOP3 mailbox, meaning that you don’t end up with infinitely growing mailboxes in VPOP3 if you never have a problem with your main server
  • When messages are deleted from the VPOP3 mailbox, VPOP3 will no longer LAN forward the messages on to the main server. This means that you don’t have to delete unwanted messages twice, once you delete them in VPOP3, that’s it.

Configuring Store and Forward

To configure Store and Forward, you first need to create all your users in your VPOP3 server, by going to the Users page, and pressing New  or  Bulk Add Users to add your users.

Next, edit the user by double-clicking on them, and go to the Advanced tab. You will find two boxes in there called Store and Fwd email target and Store and Fwd target server. In the email target box enter the full email address on the target mail server. In the target server box, enter the address of the target mail server (see notes below).

storeandfwd

Finally, remove any previous LAN Forwarding configuration. The usual places this may be set is in Local Mail -> LAN Forwarding -> Configuration or in the Routing tab of the users’ settings (check for entries beginning with SMTP: in the Assistant or Forwarding settings).

Notes

When entering the Store and Fwd Target Server address:

  • you can enter the server either as a host name, or IP address. If you have a local DNS server, then using the host name can be better, but if you don’t have a local DNS server, using the IP address tends to be more reliable.
  • by default, VPOP3 will connect to the target server on the SMTP port, port 25. If your target server’s SMTP service is running on an alternate port, then append a colon followed by the port number to the server address (eg mail.mycompany.com:587)
  • if VPOP3 will have to authenticate with the target server to send mail to it, then you can add that information to the start of the server address in the form username:password@. So, a full server address may be something like fred:dg442gs@mail.mycompany.com:587
  • VPOP3 will use an unencrypted session or a negotiated TLS (STLS) session to communicate with the target server, it will not use SSL (usually on port 465)

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Jun
10
Pruning old messages automatically
Posted by Paul Smith on 10 June 2013 01:58 PM

In VPOP3 Enterprise 6.2 and later you can tell VPOP3 to automatically delete old messages, based on specified criteria.

You can either do this globally, for all users, or just for specific users.

To edit the global criteria (rules), go to Settings -> Database -> Message Store, and look at the Global Prune Rules section. To edit the criteria for a specific user, edit the user, and go to the Prune Rules tab.

Both types of rules are configured similarly, so we will just describe the user rules here

How to add/edit a rule

To add or edit a “prune rule”, press the Add Rule button. This will add a new rule to the table, with a set of default settings. Don’t worry, this rule doesn’t take effect until you press the Submit button.

Now, you can simply alter the settings in the columns in the table, by clicking them. The settings define which messages should be deleted, not what should happen to messages.

Folder

The folder column defines which folder(s) the prune rule applies to. Initially this is set to Inbox, but you can click on the folder name to set it to any folder name you wish. Alternatively, you can set it to * to match all the folders for this user (note that you cannot use wildcards in conjunction with other characters (eg “Inbox/*” will not work as you expect).

Age

The age column defines how old messages are before they will be deleted. This is set in days, and is based from when VPOP3 first saw the message. It is not based on when the message was written or sent. If the Age is set to 365, then VPOP3 will automatically delete any messages which were received by VPOP3 over 365 days ago.

Size

The size column defines how big messages should be before they are deleted. This can be useful to only delete big messages, or to delete big messages sooner than smaller messages. The default is for no minimum size (all sized messages), but you can set it by clicking in that column.

Read

The read column indicates whether this rule will apply to read messages, unread messages or either. This could be useful if you only want to delete messages that have been marked as read.

Flagged

The flagged column indicates whether this rule will apply to flagged (starred) messages, unflagged messages, or either. This could be useful if you want users to be able to ‘star’ important messages so they don’t get deleted automatically.

Deleted

If the deleted column is checked, then VPOP3 will only apply this rule to messages which have the IMAP4 ‘Deleted’ flag set. If this column is not checked, then the rule will apply to all messages. This can be useful if your users do not purge (or ‘expunge’) folders regularly

Spam

If the spam column is checked, then VPOP3 will apply this rule to messages marked as spam by VPOP3. This can be useful if you are not using the VPOP3 quarantine facility, but are, instead, having VPOP3 deliver the messages to the user, and are using VPOP3 Message Rules or email client rules to put spam messages into an IMAP4 folder.

 

Notes:

  • the ‘age’ setting applies to when the message was received by VPOP3, not when any other flags on the message were set. So, if you have the rule set to delete read messages over 365 days old, and you have an unread message which is older than that, it will stay there, but as soon as you mark the message as read, it could be deleted immediately.
  • the prune process takes place periodically in the background, depending on the number of messages needing pruning. If VPOP3 checks for messages to prune and doesn’t find any, then it can wait quite a while before checking again, but if it finds that lots of messages need pruning, it will check more frequently. There is no way to tell when messages will be deleted automatically.
  • Messages that have been pruned can still be recovered using the VPOP3 Recycle Bin feature until they expire from there.

 


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