Setting up a Mail Server on a GNU/Linux system

February 08, 2006
Have you ever wondered how you can convert your Linux machine into a mail server ? A person who wants to set up a mail server is faced with choosing from a variety of mail server software like sendmail, postfix and qmail. But setting up a Linux mail server is not about just installing this software - the real job is the configuration part where you need to know which options to enable and which to leave disabled. And of course, there are the collection of software which aid the mail server to do its job in a secure,safe and efficient way by providing additional features like on-the-fly virus checking, database integration, spam filtering, providing a user friendly web based client for checking mail as well as cryptographic support.

Faced with all this work, you wish how nice it would be to have a step by step documentation to implement a mail server in Linux from start to finish, right ?

Then look no further because Ivar Abrahamsen has written a lucid step-by-step tutorial on implementing a mail server on GNU/Linux which even a newbie can understand. He has used Postfix as the mail server, Courier IMAP, MySQL, Spam assassin for spam filtering, virus checking using ClamAV and provided Squirrel mail as the web based mail client. A very good reference for people faced with the task of implementing a mail server in Linux.


  • My favourate HowTo for setting up a Linux mail server is QMailRocks. It's also good for newcomers, as everything is explained in clear english. As well as setting up a mail server you also learn useful bits about using the Linux CLI.


  • I don't understand the hype around qmail and postfix. Sendmail comes default with 99% of your distro's and it's been tested and tried many times over. I use sendmail with every mailserver I setup, and personally the amount of documentation thats available for sendmail is great!