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boblowski

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About 2 years ago we switched to KMS for all our mail needs. We're still quite happy with our choice. Kerio has proven itself to be a very stable and user friendly mail system.

Yet there are some features that are sorely missing from Kerio, which are now slowly driving us away:

(1) Full text search. This is something users just expect to be able to do. How much I personally disagree with them, many users don't care for folder structures -- they just dump everything together and use the search function to retrieve what they need. Apart from that, the lack of full text search severely limits Kerio's usability for mail archiving.

(2) Server based rules/filters. Not just for incoming, but specially for outgoing mail. We've actually installed hMailServer on the same machine to handle the necessary filtering/copying/moving/handling of incoming and outgoing mail for the domain handled by Kerio. This is of course somewhat silly and adds extra overhead.

(3) More powerful footers. Including HTML footers, and rules and exceptions for adding footers. This is a demand of our management, and Kerio forces us to resort to a third party solution, which again adds extra overhead.

Again, I love KMS and would hate to move our mail to another mail system. Is there any information on those three missing features I can use to convince my colleagues to stay with Kerio?

Thanks
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hbianchi

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I want to add:

- the possibility to search for a word or contact recursively in folders and subfolders in just one step.

- to review the mail store structure improving performance.
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hbianchi

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Onother desired features:

- to permit or deny on a user by user basis to relay all its mail to an external mailbox automatically.

- to have the ability to have multiple and / or complex conditions to issue antispam rules.
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boblowski

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Quote:
the possibility to search for a word or contact recursively in folders and subfolders in just one step


Hadn't thought of that one yet, but yes indeed. A better search option is really very very welcome.

Regarding the missing server based rules/filters: are there other people here using a second mail server in addition to Kerio to handle the actual sending and receiving?

One of the options we're looking into, is using Kerio purely as a web based mail client (think Roundcube, Squirrelmail) and move the actual handling to another server. Perhaps someone here has experience with such a setup?

Thanks again
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mixmax

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I'm surprised no one mentioned the lack of support for Domain Keys and DKIM!

I've been looking into replacing our email infrastructure (all open source based) with something that provides better access to functionality for the end users. Plus, it's really hard to find a solution that provides a solid webmail client--we're currently using SOGo (Scalable OpenGroupware) but the web client just isn't that great. So I've been examining the Kerio Connect beta.

First thing I noticed was that DKIM support is missing from Kerio. And that's a huge minus in my books. So we're already looking at leaving our existing Exim-based MTA in place and then configuring Kerio to relay all outbound email through the legacy server.

I also agree that better signature support is REQUIRED. On the one hand, mangling outbound emails at the server to insert a signature is a bad idea (since it means you can't use digital signatures which must originate at the client, and because I believe certain countries forbid modification of email) there is a growing trend by corporate lawyers (like ours) to force people to append a legal notice. Unfortunately, we can't count on our employees to update their signature formatting when asked never mind hoping that they'll update a legal notice when asked. So that's why we need better server-side signature support.

The other thing I'd like to see is better support for Thunderbird. I, for one, can't stand Apple's obsession with maintaining separate Mail, Calendar, Address Book applications when EVERYONE else integrate all 3. That's one reason we use Thunderbird. Unfortunately, Kerio doesn't support Address Book syncing for Thunderbird and it doesn't seem like it's even on their radar.

I also agree with better support for archives. That is one of the features I really want to deploy here. But if archives can only be searched by subject line...I'm not sure that that's very useful.

Now here's the weird thing. On the Beta page they seem to ask for feedback, yet when you send feedback you get a snarky response back from a developer asking why you are sending a feedback to the bugs address (which is the address they supply for submitting feedback). Maybe they're not interested in what users want?
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boblowski

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mixmax wrote on Sun, 03 January 2010 02:16
I'm surprised no one mentioned the lack of support for Domain Keys and DKIM!

Lack of DKIM is for our organization at the moment not relevant, but I can see how this for bigger organizations might be an issue. From what I understand DKIM is relatively easy to implement from a software viewpoint, so I take it Kerio has other reasons not to add this functionality to KMS.

Quote:
Plus, it's really hard to find a solution that provides a solid webmail client ... So I've been examining the Kerio Connect beta.

Exactly the reason why we'd hate to move away from KMS. The webmail client strikes a very nice balance between ease of use and functionality. Even our most computer illiterate users (and we seem to have quite a number of those Smile ) feel at ease using the webmail interface.

Quote:
First thing I noticed was that DKIM support is missing from Kerio. And that's a huge minus in my books. So we're already looking at leaving our existing Exim-based MTA in place and then configuring Kerio to relay all outbound email through the legacy server.

If you take this route, I'd be very interested to read here more about it. Do you use an external mail archive? How do you plan to integrate the archiving in such a setup?

Quote:
Unfortunately, we can't count on our employees to update their signature formatting when asked never mind hoping that they'll update a legal notice when asked.

I know from my own experience that even if you instruct users personally, it's just not in their 'system' to think about such things.

Quote:
But if archives can only be searched by subject line...I'm not sure that that's very useful.

Exactly my point Smile
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GlennK

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Here are some of mine.

1. First I will agree that server based rules are definitely needed. This would include the ability to reroute or block by email address or IP, send automated responses, etc.

2. Control over what the user is allowed to administer in the user/domain admin web interface. Specifically an option to disallow the change of mail storage quota. The quota thing has kept me from allowing user admin.

3. Ability to disable/enable services on an account basis

I agree the web mail interface is very nice! This is one of the (many) reasons we like Kerio so much.

I am happy to hear Kerio is moving to web based admin. This makes it much easier to admin our clients that have Kerio with a differing server version.


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mixmax

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GlennK wrote on Wed, 06 January 2010 13:44

I am happy to hear Kerio is moving to web based admin. This makes it much easier to admin our clients that have Kerio with a differing server version.



Absolutely. I didn't even know that Mailserver had to be managed through a client app until I started looking at the Kerio Connect Beta. I wouldn't even consider Kerio 6.x because of the lack of a web interface...

@boblowski: Setting up a relay server for all in/out mail is a pretty standard setup. You just need to setup Kerio to relay all outbound mail through that server, which would also have the highest MX record(s) in DNS for whatever domains it hosts mail service for. It is up to the relay server config to then forward mail to the correct place (that should be easy enough to do with Exim). I'm also thinking about setting up mailarchiva for archiving, which again would all be handled at the Exim relay (that is, mail would be forwarded to the archiver by Exim *after* spam filtering takes place; and all outbound mail from Kerio would get relayed through Exim so that also makes it easy to send outbound mail to the archiver).

But I've got to say one thing: this is an awful lot of stuff to throw at one problem (Kerio + Exim + Mailarchiva) when all of it could be handled by Kerio if only it was more adept (or capable) at handling these things, the fact that they are only NOW migrating to a web-based admin panel is a bit concerning IMHO. Then again, I'm not aware of any single solution that does all of this (AFAIK, even Zimbra doesn't support DKIM).
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Pavel Dobry (Kerio)

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mixmax wrote on Wed, 06 January 2010 19:42

Absolutely. I didn't even know that Mailserver had to be managed through a client app until I started looking at the Kerio Connect Beta. I wouldn't even consider Kerio 6.x because of the lack of a web interface...


Actually, you have no idea how many customers prefer standalone administration console Smile . But I agree, the trend is clear.
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boblowski

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mixmax wrote on Wed, 06 January 2010 19:42
Setting up a relay server for all in/out mail is a pretty standard setup. You just need to setup Kerio to relay all outbound mail through that server, which would also have the highest MX record(s) in DNS for whatever domains it hosts mail service for. It is up to the relay server config to then forward mail to the correct place (that should be easy enough to do with Exim). I'm also thinking about setting up mailarchiva for archiving, which again would all be handled at the Exim relay (that is, mail would be forwarded to the archiver by Exim *after* spam filtering takes place; and all outbound mail from Kerio would get relayed through Exim so that also makes it easy to send outbound mail to the archiver).

Thanks, this is very useful, we seem to look for a similar solution. Yesterday I build a small setup, but with hMailServer as relay server (simply because I'm familiar with it, but it's actually a quite capable mail server) and MailArchiva for archiving as well. I take it you simply copy every incoming and outgoing message to an IMAP journal mailbox on the relay and then let MailArchiva download and archive those mails?

And how do you plan to handle false positives at Exim's spam check? If I understand correctly, user won't have direct access to the relay to check the filtered messages.

Quote:
But I've got to say one thing: this is an awful lot of stuff to throw at one problem (Kerio + Exim + Mailarchiva) when all of it could be handled by Kerio if only it was more adept (or capable) at handling these things

Exactly our problem. I'm not looking forward to keeping two additional systems up-to-date and in good working order. And that's why I'm slightly annoyed that something as simple as a full text search is still not available in KMS. That would at least save us the external archiving part for the moment.

Quote:
Then again, I'm not aware of any single solution that does all of this (AFAIK, even Zimbra doesn't support DKIM).

Take a look at IceWarp. It does everything and a lot more, though we moved away from it a few years ago due to stability and integration problems, and an inferior (at least compared to KMS) webmail interface. They recently released a new version, so things might be better now.

Thanks again for your reply
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mixmax

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boblowski wrote on Wed, 06 January 2010 23:40

I take it you simply copy every incoming and outgoing message to an IMAP journal mailbox on the relay and then let MailArchiva download and archive those mails?


Wow that's fancy! Very Happy Please note that I have not actually built this system yet, I'm still in the research phase. But Exim is highly capable of doing quite a bit of custom stuff thanks to its text-based config file and gobs of functionality. In the proposed setup I would simply add additional Transport and Router configs to Exim, which would simply send a copy (via SMTP) to Mailarchiva, which just acts as another MTA. No IMAP involved.

Quote:

And how do you plan to handle false positives at Exim's spam check? If I understand correctly, user won't have direct access to the relay to check the filtered messages.


Yes, that would be a problem... In our current setup we mark SPAM with an X-SPAM-header and a score (via Spamassassin) and then deliver those messages into a SPAM folder. Users do have the option to set an auto-trash flag to avoid the SPAM folder and just throw all potential SPAM into the trash instead. In the proposed setup we would just add the X-SPAM-headers and send the mail to Kerio for delivery.

But I've got to tell you that in my experience, our users NEVER check their SPAM folder--we would be up the creek for disk usage if we didn't auto-delete SPAM every 7 days.

We have other anti-spam functionality as well in order to simply reject connections that look bogus in the first place. At the end of the day, in our current setup, our users rarely see any spam in their mailboxes and we rarely see legit messages in the spam folder (those that do appear there are, in my mind, the result of misconfigured servers...).

Quote:

Take a look at IceWarp. It does everything and a lot more, though we moved away from it a few years ago due to stability and integration problems, and an inferior (at least compared to KMS) webmail interface. They recently released a new version, so things might be better now.


Yeah you know I did look at that briefly but was concerned about their licensing costs (one of those cases where every useful feature is an additional license/user). As I read more about Kerio, I'm starting to think that in the longterm, Icewarp's licensing might be more cost effective.

Also, I took a quick look at Icewarp before December (when I think v10 was released) when v9 was out so maybe the new version has better webmail. It's funny, we used to get by on just webmail and later everyone wanted to use clients instead, from an admin viewpoint my preference is just to use a really good webmail interface that's accessible from anywhere with/without the user's personal computer.
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pwhodges

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mixmax wrote on Sun, 03 January 2010 01:16
I'm surprised no one mentioned the lack of support for Domain Keys and DKIM!

First thing I noticed was that DKIM support is missing from Kerio. And that's a huge minus in my books.


I was recently trying to work out why some incoming emails were not getting sorted into their folders according to the rules I have set up, and found that the presence of DKIM broke the incoming sort.

This is actually quite a serious nuisance.

Paul
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mixmax

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Hmm. It's not like DKIM is new. Kerio has had plenty of time to add support and it shouldn't be a big deal considering the platform is mature.
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boblowski

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Thanks again for your reply and sorry for my late answer, the first weeks of a new year always seem to be extra hectic.

mixmax wrote on Thu, 07 January 2010 18:42
In the proposed setup I would simply add additional Transport and Router configs to Exim, which would simply send a copy (via SMTP) to Mailarchiva, which just acts as another MTA. No IMAP involved.

I understand, but I suppose your mail archive is for legal and security reasons located on a separate firewalled subnet. In that case the IMAP solution would prevent an open incoming port from a less trusted subnet. But depending on your mail volume I can see it's not always a practical solution.

Quote:
In the proposed setup we would just add the X-SPAM-headers and send the mail to Kerio for delivery.

But I've got to tell you that in my experience, our users NEVER check their SPAM folder--we would be up the creek for disk usage if we didn't auto-delete SPAM every 7 days.

We have other anti-spam functionality as well in order to simply reject connections that look bogus in the first place. At the end of the day, in our current setup, our users rarely see any spam in their mailboxes and we rarely see legit messages in the spam folder (those that do appear there are, in my mind, the result of misconfigured servers...).

We have the additional problem that we do business with a number of Chinese and Taiwanese companies that actually send out mail like that. I have to take care not to filter out anything that looks like spam, but contains valid content. (And the legal implications of filtering before archiving are still not entirely clear to me either. But that's not a technical problem.)

As a concept we like your setup with an internet facing relay, like in your proposed setup with Exim. I've been reading up on Exim, and it indeed has an impressive feature set. Still I'm not convinced if for us the additional features outweigh the management overhead. But perhaps I shouldn't worry too much about that for now.

I did manage a short test of IceWarp over the weekend. Their web client is better and seems more user friendly now, but IMO it's still no match for KMS's web client. The rest of their feature set runs circles around KMS, I'm afraid...

mixmax wrote on Wed, 13 January 2010 18:44
Hmm. It's not like DKIM is new. Kerio has had plenty of time to add support and it shouldn't be a big deal considering the platform is mature.

That's the part that starts to irk me more and more about Kerio. If anybody from Kerio is reading here: apparently it's a strategic decision to keep Kerio's feature set as compact as possible. That's fine, but please be honest about it. Searching in the forums, even 2-3 years ago there were requests for an improved search option. If you'll never plan to implement it, just say so and we know that if this is important to us, we have to look elsewhere.
Quentinb

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I must also add, Kerio is way cool, but it does lack some features. One that is kiling me at the moment is the lack to whitelist attachments senders. We get a email every day from one of our suppliers, but the attachment name changes (based on the date) but I cannot set a rule to allow this message. Even if I can block all other attachments and allow anything from specified address(es) will already help. You can already filter attachments, so why is it so difficult to allow certain addresses/senders!!

Also, the HTML footer on the server would be really really nice. I have read where Kerio say that becuase of HTML formatting they cannot do the append (somewhere on the forums), but I'm SURE if you tag your (Kerio) HTML with a very specific tag, you would always be able to locate it??

Other than these, two (I recon, easily fixable) issues, I love Kerio.
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