As we all know, most Microsoft Windows native email server software such as Microsoft's Exchange or IPswitch's Imail costs a lot to deploy and maintain. hMailServer on the other hand is a full-featured (which handles IMAP, SMTP, and POP3 email protocols), free email server. Version 4.4 is licensed under the GPL while version 5 and higher is closed source, but basically is still FREE. hMailServer is actively developed by Martin Knafve and currently has a very active user-base community.
hMailserver can be deployed and used for a small scale email system to a high capacity, enterprise wide email server solution. Out of the box, hMailServer uses Microsoft's SQL lite for it's database backend for small to medium sized systems while fully compatible with industrial quality databases such as MySQL and PostgreSQL. This document will briefly discuss and introduce what the requirements are and what software you need to be able to utilize hMailServer as your email server software for your Widows-based Virtual Private Server (VPS).
- Database: If you are planning to use MySQL or PostgreSQL as your database backend, you will need to have a running system before you can install hMailServer itself. Please refer to the following links:
- hMailServer -- http://www.hmailserver.com/
In some instances wherein you will need to have a web based email client frontend, Squirrelmail is known and documented to be quite friendly and compatible with hMailServer. In fact, it's the most widely used web based interface for hMailServer. You will need to install the following if you wish to have a Squirrelmail frontend.
- Web Server: You will need to install a web server that can run well with PHP since Squirrelmail is PHP based. Two widely used web servers for this purpose are as follows:
- Perl: You will need Perl to run PHP as cgi for Lighttpd as well as for running the user friendly Squirrelmail configuration program. There are several Windows based Perl implementations but the following are the famous ones:
- SquirrelMail -- http://squirrelmail.org/
NOTE: Some of you might ask, why I chose to do individual/independent installs of the major components when it could have been easier to just install a ready WAMP package such as the "WAMP Server" (http://www.wampserver.com/en/). The reasoning behind this is that most WAMP systems are designed to be deployed as test environments where programmers and developers will have very minimal problems in terms of security and settings. So if you read the disclaimers on each WAMP type systems, you would always discover that the makers actually DO NOT advise that it will be used in production environments due to the relaxed security settings and other such reasons.
by: kai talledo 06/01/2011