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Home » Kerio User Forums » Kerio Connect » What is the point in getting Kerio? (If kerio can't do everything that Exchange can do then surely its pointless)

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Right, I have been trying the trial version of Kerio to try and understand the point of using this as an alternative to Exchange, However, after 3 hours of Configuring I find that most of the exchange-type features seen to be limited to the webmail, if you can't use outlook then what's the point.

problems (If there are fixes I will happily try them out and apologise if I'm wrong)

1 - You can't setup multiple SMTP Relay servers, for instance, if I had two domains, and and I wanted domain 1 to send through one relay server and domain2 to send through another...doesn't seam possible (this isn't terribly important, and I don't think exchange does this, but they are more likely to say that clearly in the documentation)

2 - The 'From' email Box doesn't work in outlook 2007, even if I set up aliases for the accounts it doesn't allow you to send through them in outlook, also if you have admin rights to folders you can still only send through your primary account rather than choose the account you want to send mail from, i.e

admin<_at_> has access to:
and kevin<_at_>

but the 'admin' can only send as admin<_at_>, so its a bit worthless having control of those accounts. even if a user wasn't an admin and just wanted to have multiple e-mails in one place and use them in one place without messing around HE CAN'T

3 - The Support documentation is awful, its a mix of half information and junk from what I can see, you can search for Hours just to find the answer to a problem. a specific connector problem with an error code and everything won't even get results with a google search, the point of an error code is so you can identify an error. It took an article from someone equally as annoyed as me to find one of my solutions.

4 - The instructions for Kerio are badly put together, you can follow them to your hearts content but unless you are using windows 98 none of the instructions are up-to-date. Setting up folder permissions for instance had no bearing on 2007, it was in fact totally different. I just had to work it out.

5 - Addresses don't seem to appear in the public address book. thats it really, they don't, I think they are supposed to...but maybe thats only webmail (again).

6 - A Business can't run on webmail alone. everyone in business expects outlook or a software email client. I personally expect there to be some level of group interaction without having to use a webmail client. I may as well just stick with POP3 through outlook rather than go back to webmail.

7 - There are more problems with Kerio than with Exchange, or at least all of the problems I had with Exchange were problems that had a fix or a work around that was easy to use.

So, that was a list of some of the frustrations and as I say I am quite happy to admit I'm wrong if there are fixes or I have incorrect info, but if there are they are hidden behind a terrible website search and a forum that seems not to respond to all of the people asking the same questions as I have been looking for


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While I don't think Kerio say they do Everything that Exchange does, it surely is a cool alternative @ half the price(for the software alone) !!

1: They don't claim then can, and you need an advanced plug-in for Exchange (to my knowledge) to do so there - bad first point!

2: Not aware if this is a limitation of the Kerio Outlook plugin. At least there is no problem doing so in a 'normal' IMAP application, like Mail on OS X.

3-4: Same point, at could be better... and there could be more technical details, but some of those are here:

5: Well, something might be wrong, or you don't wait long enough. It clearly state the GAL is updated periodically...

6: Be our guest - use POP3 and stone yourself back to the middleage.. have a nice trip. And a lot of businesses run on webmail alone.. We don't, but a lot do!

7: Facts? Give me a break.. ohh, you can just choose to run Kerio on non-windows and Get a Life™.. Wink

And since you can run Kerio in minutes compared to having to use hours or days to get Exchange to run great, I really don't think you have argued your points very well yet..


Jakob Peterhänsel
Consultant - Humac A/S

Apple Certified Support Professional (ACSP)
Apple Certified Technical Coordinator (ACTC)
AppleSeed/CQF member since 1998
Kerio Messaging Partner

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I'm wondering if you ever installed the Kerio Outlook Connector? If you did, then what kind of "group interaction" were you missing, compared to Exchange?

I'm not a Kerio expert but I installed, configured and maintains our Kerio mailserver in our 130 people business so I have som knowledge of what works and what doesn't. Regarding 1 and 2 then I haven't tried it, so I can't comment.

3) and 4) I don't agree since I find the documentation quite good but when you have problems then you're correct that it's now always possible to just google an answer. I guess that it's because that there are just gazillions of Exchange servers outhere and not so many Kerio mailservers. Kerio's support is quite good though if you have the time to wait for them to reply, since it can take them a couple of days. Even when calling them they don't always have the resources to help, which isn't good enough. But overall they're quite easy to get in contact with and they will eventually pinpoint the problem.

5) You must have done something wrong... this should just work. Are you talking about addresses for the users created in Kerio mailserver? Have you created local users or imported them from Active Directory? We use AD and that just works... Please check if the option to display the users in the GAL is enabled.

6) Again, if you installed Kerio Outlook Connector, then there can't be much that you're missing. What may puzzle you is that the features are located other places than when Outlook is connected to an Exchange server.

7) You figured this out in 3 hours... both that there are more problems and that the support documentation is bad... My experience was that I had Kerio up and running in 10 minutes and then most things just worked. It's SO easy to configure and the logs are great for troubleshooting, which can't be said for the logs in Exchange 2003 which was were I was coming from.

I hope that others can come up with answers for the rest of your issues and that you eventually will realize that Kerio Connect is quite good. It's not perfect but it's a very good replacement for Exchange in companies where they don't need the bells and whistles that Exchange has, and in companies which don't consist of Windows machines alone (like ours).

Rene Frej Nielsen

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So here is my POV:
1 - I believe this is just minor issue. You can't setup smart host on domain basis, but who REALY needs it in real world? Kerio delivers using MX which is mostly used, and 1 smart host (e.g. ISP's) is IMHO enough fo rest. But if you realy can't use MX delivery and realy need more smarthosts, then you need additional solutions (like standalone email gateway which will be smarthost for kerio and uses different smarthosts for different sender domains)

2 - Actualy, with KOFF (Kerio Outlook Connector with offline support) installed, you can use "From:" field in Outlook 2007 to send email froma ANY address (just type desired address into). Of course, in mail headers will be written "original" user address, but most of email clienst will show "From:" as you typed it (and use it for replies).
Yes, there is no easy "combo box" to select "from" address from all user's addresses defined in Kerio. I have created suggestion of it in Kerio feedback, wher you can support it. http:// -possibility-to-select-from-address-from-list-in-

3 - Online "Manuals" are maintained and alway up-to-date with current version of Kerio. Support infos (knowledge base, faqs etc) could be old, as it is mostly related to specific version.
In any case of problems, you can just contact support (even with trial if you registered it for support). I have also some problems, and everything was solved with support. Only time of their reaction may be slower than I would like.

4 - I don't get this... as in "3", manuals are up-to-date. What folder permissions are you talking about?

5 - In GAL are only users which have checked corresponding option in their details. GAL is synchronized in intervals, I think that it is every 2 hours. I have never had problems with GAL (regardless if users are local or from AD domain). So again, contact support if you have all setup correctly, and GAL not working. And of course, GAL contacts are visible in Outlook too (with KOFF)

6 - As other stated, many Bussiness CAN run on webmail alone, if webmail give them everything "mail client program" can. One of my client in fact switched from Outlooks to Kerio Webmail, and are happy with it (and their bussiness is still growing altough it is not corelated with email solution Smile.

7 - If you have Exchange and are satisfied with it, then you don't need to switch to Kerio. But if you are considering new mail server deployment, then Kerio is worth to think about. With low price, minimal server requirements (you don't need windows server at all), many features (close to Exchange)and good webmail. And of course, with KOFF, great support for Outlook.


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I see that previous posts answered most concerns. Only thing thsat I can say is that:

- Kerio's price is abouy a fourth of similar exchange installations provided you get rid of Microsoft Platform.
- Kerio runs great in Linux
- Webmail is ok for a great number of people, and if you want you still can install KOC and work witrh outlook. Nobody will notice taht you are not using Exchange. Webmail has a lot of collaboration features.
- If you use webmail, you don't need to pay for outlook licences.
- Configuration time is far from that you need with Exchange. And also for maintenance, restores and many other usual operations.

there are some ocncernes:
- Kerio needs a better or more general "searching" tool.
- Mails are "visible" in folders (this can be solved with additional software.
- Probable, Kerio should go to a "database" structure to storage mails (like using mysql or something like that) because storage retrieval is a key issue (no problem if you have a real good performance in your Hard disk / raid infrastructure).

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hbianchi wrote on Wed, 03 March 2010 17:34

- Probable, Kerio should go to a "database" structure to storage mails (like using mysql or something like that) because storage retrieval is a key issue (no problem if you have a real good performance in your Hard disk / raid infrastructure).

I don't entirely agree. The disadvantage of a database is that if and when it crashes, you can lose a lot of important stuff. Do a Google for PST repair or Exchange repair and you'll find plenty of sad stories. The most you ever have to do with Kerio is rename index.fld files.

Speed isn't an issue if you keep active folder size reasonable - though admittedly that is often ignored and can cause performance issues.

I'd like to see folder archiving with user controlled setting similar to that used for log files but no compression; just move the records to another folder and name it appropriately. That could solve the 40,000 message mailbox problem without a database. You'd end up with Sent, Sent201001 and so on...

Tony Lawrence
Kerio Preferred Partner and Reseller
Certified for Connect, Control

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Perhaps the most important point for me: Kerio stores the mails without major modification simply on it's harddisk. With exchange, it's impossible to get the original E-Mail back again - everything get's M$ized.

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Well it's an option. For many people Exchange is required and what they need.

For another big group of people a system that is LIKE exchange is all thats required. I have been deploying and using Kerio for many years with version 6 which I found better than communigate which was a previous server I used a fair bit.

Kerio is cheaper and easier to install setup and look after for many smaller businesses and works pretty well for large businesses also.
If your a 10 man company with no internal IT then Kerio is perfect and much less hassle than getting exchange looked after.

Comes with a built in anti virus, a good enough anti spam, nice webmail and public folders with a 20 min install for a few users.

On top of that it works very well for mac environments with apple mail and Entourage and the global contacts are great for these clients and of course the mobile phones / iphones,.

Nice caldav gives all the users access to their own calendar and shared calendars.

I think the key is it is a system that does things very easily and simply and generally just works. For high levels of customability and configuration you need to go elsewhere.

I tend to use Kerio in Mac and PC studios (mostly mac) with 5 - 90 users on the whole.
The final beauty is that users can run large amounts of email with no problem. I ahve users with 20 - 40 GB mail accounts and yes I tell them they need to reduce it and archive but on the whole they still work pretty well.

I don't know how exchange works these days but a few years back giving users Gigs of mail space was a bad idea and dont get me started on the PST BS.

A few of your ideas are indeed wrong but you need to ask yourself why are you looking at kerio and what do you want from a mailserver
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