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Old 02-20-2007, 04:24 PM   #1
isync
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Question Local IMAP server to manage email, HOW?


Hi there!

New to the forums I'd like to post a request for a step by step how to guide...

I'd like to set up an email server on my local network / home network to manage my mailbox from different machines. Currently I run Mozilla Mail on one machine using the POP3 protocol, so my emails end up downloaded to this one machine and then are unaccessible from all other PCs on the network.

1. I'd like to set up one machine on the LAN to contact my different POP3 mailboxes and download my emails to this one machine. Using IMAP on this local machine, I thought I could read/edit my emails from all PCs on the LAN. Is that a good solution?

2. How would I configure a service on the local machine to do that? Any suggestions for the right IMAP daemon? I am running Ubuntu 6.06.

3. Is it possible to do all that:
3a. First, merge/import all my old downloaded email from the legacy POP3 mailhandling machine into the new IMAP postbox.
3b. Configure the IMAP server to regularly download my email from multiple POP3 postboxes?
3c. Offer an IMAP mailserver on my local LAN.

Any help welcome!
Regards,
isync
 
Old 02-20-2007, 05:12 PM   #2
unSpawn
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Hello and welcome to LQ. Hope you like it here.

1. (..) Using IMAP on this local machine, I thought I could read/edit my emails from all PCs on the LAN. Is that a good solution?
It's stored centrally and accessable from all machines which makes it efficient, yes. Do make regular backups though (as in single point of failure).


2. How would I configure a service on the local machine to do that? Any suggestions for the right IMAP daemon? I am running Ubuntu 6.06.
No idea there. I'm sure there's a package for IMAP. It should run from (X)inetd w/o much configuring.


3. Is it possible to do all that:
3a. First, merge/import all my old downloaded email from the legacy POP3 mailhandling machine into the new IMAP postbox.

IMAP handles "standard" UNIX mailboxes fine. If they are plain text format you have no problem. If you have a complete tree of mailboxes you can copy them over to the server.


3b. Configure the IMAP server to regularly download my email from multiple POP3 postboxes?
Use Fetchmail for that.


3c. Offer an IMAP mailserver on my local LAN.
And if you're running wireless or if you favour less "open" client-server communication anyway you could use IMAPS, the SSL-ized variant. If there's no IMAPS server then there's no problem: just configure Stunnel in front of IMAP.
 
Old 02-20-2007, 05:25 PM   #3
isync
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Thanks unSpawn for these first quick hints!!

Anyway, this question is still open...:

Quote:
2. How would I configure a service on the local machine to do that? Any suggestions for the right IMAP daemon? I am running Ubuntu 6.06.
Anybody volunteering for a quick step by step HOW-TO ??
 
Old 02-20-2007, 08:51 PM   #4
billymayday
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I think you should find out what imap server comes with ubuntu - could be courier-imap, uw-imap, dovecot or something else. From there I'm sure a quick search of google linus will find you plent of step-by step howtos.
 
Old 02-21-2007, 04:34 AM   #5
isync
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Thinking over it again, I am now not so sure if this solution is really a good idea...

1. How will I handle spam? So far mozillas intelligent spam training filter did the most work... Can I install things like SpamAssassin to weed through the mailboxes or will mozilla remotely sort the IMAP postbox?

2. Fetchmail will download my email from multiple accounts, but at what intervals? Will I from now on only be notified about new email in the set update/fetchmail interval? Like every 10 minutes or so?

3. Outgoing mail. Will I send email over my local IMAP server (so that sent mail will be properly stored in the "sent" folder)? Or will I send directly via my 'real outgoing mail server' and mozilla mail will handle the storage of a copy into my IMAP outbox?

I know, going a bit off-topic here to find out about the IMAP send/receive details. Hope you will help anyway...



PS: Just found this related thread: http://www.linuxquestions.org/questi...d.php?t=357865

Last edited by isync; 02-21-2007 at 04:46 AM.
 
Old 02-21-2007, 06:22 AM   #6
unSpawn
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1. How will I handle spam?
Fetchmail -> Procmail + Procmail recipe (Spamassassin, Clamassassin) -> mailbox


2. Fetchmail will download my email from multiple accounts, but at what intervals?
If you look at the docs (yes, that's a hint to RTF(ine)M) you'll see you can run it as daemon in the background with configurable intervals.


3. Outgoing mail. Will I send email over my local IMAP server
IMAP it self is not a Mail Transfer Agent like Sendmail, Postfix etc, etc. Think of IMAP as a simple storage handler: it serves mailbox contents. If you want to filter mail for the LAN from outbound email you'll have to set up an MTA that will deliver locally on the server and relay outbound email to your ISP's MTA (Sendmail -> SMarthost settings).
 
Old 02-21-2007, 09:05 AM   #7
isync
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unSpawn
1. How will I handle spam?
Fetchmail -> Procmail + Procmail recipe (Spamassassin, Clamassassin) -> mailbox
Great. I didn't expect that I could chain these tools in such a manner. (BTW: Although I am a great fan of Mozilla, the spam training filter is not the last word for large amounts of variable spam...)

Quote:
2. Fetchmail will download my email from multiple accounts, but at what intervals?
If you look at the docs (yes, that's a hint to RTF(ine)M) you'll see you can run it as daemon in the background with configurable intervals.
Actually what I expected withougt reading the doc... But your comment proofs that I have to live with an interval using this solution.

Quote:
3. Outgoing mail. Will I send email over my local IMAP server
IMAP it self is not a Mail Transfer Agent like Sendmail, Postfix etc, etc. Think of IMAP as a simple storage handler: it serves mailbox contents. If you want to filter mail for the LAN from outbound email you'll have to set up an MTA that will deliver locally on the server and relay outbound email to your ISP's MTA (Sendmail -> SMarthost settings).
I don't know if you got me right here: I had my Mozilla "Sent mail" folder in mind, the one where all the delivered/sent mails are archived. Now using the above setup, how would it archive my mail if I (a) use a local sendmail which forwards outbound emails, and (b) if I use a non-local smtp mailserver? Does/can Mozilla magically split each outgoing mail (one for archive one for recipient)?
 
Old 02-21-2007, 04:50 PM   #8
isync
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No more hints??
 
Old 02-22-2007, 08:13 AM   #9
ramram29
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Lad, it would take days to write down everything step by step in order to do exactly what you need. Pick up a few good Postfix and IMAP books and don't forget to google for articles.

Try to get as far as you can, then when you get stuck with a problem that takes you, let's say, 4 hours or more to solve, then ask for help on specific questions. Hence, 'how do I install a car engine' versus 'how do I tension and diagnose my engine's timing belt'
 
  


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