[lvs-users] High Traffic IMAP deployment

David Lang david.lang at digitalinsight.com
Thu Aug 12 19:24:35 BST 2010

On Thu, 12 Aug 2010, Timo Schoeler wrote:

> thus David Lang spake:
>> I missed the beginning of this thread
>> On Thu, 12 Aug 2010, Timo Schoeler wrote:
>>> Hash: SHA1
>>> thus Jose Ildefonso Camargo Tolosa spake:
>>>> Hi!
>>>> On Wed, Aug 11, 2010 at 3:56 AM, Faisal Ghulam <f.ghulam at nacspl.com> wrote:
>>>>> I want to deploy LVS for highly traffic IMAP,POP3 .
>>>>> Can any one guide me how to get it with Centos 5.3.
>>>>> My backend Email server is Postfix.
>>>> Postfix handles SMTP, not IMAP/POP3.  I use dovecot for IMAP/POP3, but
>>>> I'm more interested on security than performance, so..... maybe
>>>> someone else can suggest a faster IMAP server (although dovecot is not
>>>> slow, I think, just for the record).
>>> Dovecot is one of the best performing (if not *the* best performing)
>>> pop/imap servers out there. Just use the search egine you like for
>>> benchmark comparisons, and you'll get a bunch of results that will show
>>> this, on different OSes (may it be GNU/Linux, xBSD, or whatever).
>> take a look at Cyrus, it is _very_ scalable, and includes replication and
>> clustering capabilities. It's routinely used by universities and other larger
>> organizations.
> Cyrus is a nice player in the field (still run it myself on some hosts),
> but it has some major drawbacks:
> - - proprietary mail storage mechanism (compared to MailDir/mbox et al.)

three things here

1. Cyrus is open source and everything is documented, this is not normally what 
'proprietary' is used to mean. it does have a different on-disk format than 
MailDir or mbox

2. if you are accessing it via IMAP/POP, why should you care what mechanism it 

3. the storage mechanism is very similar to MailDir (one file per message, 
folders are directories on the filesystem, etc) and mostly differs in how the 
metadata is handled. I frequently write scripts to analyse/parse e-mail in an 
archive folder so while it's 'proprietary', it's fully documented

> - - slower than Dovecot, e.g.

I can't speak to this, but does Dovecot implement the clustering and replication 
features that Cyrus does that lets it scale across many machines?

> - - compared to other pop/imap servers, it does not implement RFCs as good
> as others (Dovecot is very good here, too)

I would be interested in hearing where Cyrus is behind, this is the first time 
I've heard this and I've been considering Cyrus as one of the best IMAP 
implementations available.

I'll also point out that fastmail.fm, which is a major 'cloud' mail provider 
(even though they've been in business longer than the term has existed) uses 
Cyrus and is active in it's development.

David Lang

>> David Lang
> HTH,
> Timo
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