Webmail.. to have or not to have, thats is the question !!

Forum for things that doesn't really have anything to do with hMailServer. Such as php.ini, beer, etc etc.
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Should Hmail have its very own webmail ?

Yes
16
35%
No
24
52%
Dont care
6
13%
 
Total votes: 46

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Webmail.. to have or not to have, thats is the question !!

Post by Slug » 2006-01-18 05:09

I have dropped a few suttle hints on Martin over the last 3 or 4 weeks about will at some stage in the future will Hmail have it's very own webmail built in. ( not the add-on's we have now)

Now I dont know if Martin ignored them :) or he missed those posts so I will be a little most forward this time in my asking.

I do realise Martin is one man, and so I am not asking for this to be completed anytime soon, but I would really like to know what is on the plate for this software in the future.

I have read every single post on this forum about webmail and it is with out a doubt the one thing that a) most people would like to have, and b) gives the most trouble to get it running. (spam bayesian spam thingo's close second)

I would also like to know what other people think on this. As I said this is not something that needs to be completed now as there are more pressing issues that need to be sorted, but I do think this would be one thing that should not be over looked.

If this subject has been brought up before please piont me in the right dirrection.

(puts flame suit on)

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Post by ric melia » 2006-01-18 10:39

I think that rather than spending time on developing a new webmail client, it would make more sense to compile a very detailed (but idiot proof) step-by-step guide to setting up Squirrelmail (and php?) on Apache or IIS. I've personally set up hMailServer with Squirrelmail on Apache on two separate servers and haven't had any problems at all.

From reading the posts on the forum, it tends to be people having trouble configuring PHP to work with IIS or having unusual error settings in php.ini...

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Post by Blue Ninja » 2006-01-18 15:39

Perhaps there is a good open-source IMAP webmail app out there, that could either be used, or bundled? No sense re-creating the wheel here if a suitable app exists... I'll check around.

Also, if this were to be an added feature, I'd suggest that it be an optional component.

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Post by Slug » 2006-01-18 15:40

ric melia wrote: From reading the posts on the forum, it tends to be people having trouble configuring PHP to work with IIS or having unusual error settings in php.ini...
I agree here, I too use IIS (about to go to IIS6) I am no programmer (far from it) But IIS and php just dont seem to want to be friends :-)

But I do still think Hmail with its own version of webmail would be good. As I said it dont have to be tommorrow.

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Post by Slug » 2006-01-18 15:45

Blue Ninja wrote:Perhaps there is a good open-source IMAP webmail app out there, that could either be used, or bundled? No sense re-creating the wheel here if a suitable app exists...
Martin has mentioned once or twice before that bundling someone elses product into Hmail would mean he would be responable for updates to the package. This is a fair call, as I mentioned there is more pressing things for now. But it would make life easier if it was the case.
Also, if this were to be an added feature, I'd suggest that it be an optional component.
Sure naturally :)

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Post by nlstart » 2006-01-18 19:14

Since there are several options to apply webmail, I do not see any reason why to focus on a non core object... Personally SquirrelMail is my favourite... but that's just a matter of taste, of course. Anyway, talking about unstable parts. I experience an unstable/non working PHPAdmin... so some detailed troubleshooting documents or new improved module would be far more welcomed by me than another webmail possibility.

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Post by srand » 2006-01-18 22:49

To expect a "built-in" webmail system so to speak is a big call.. though it does have its benefits.. as well as its drawbacks..

To have a clean built in solution hMail would require its own webserver daemon, this would more than likely mean webmail runs on a different port (8383 on iMail for example) it also means a webmail solution has to be built to work closely with the mail server..

Hence the big dilemma - How complex do you make the built in server? The less complex the server the more tailored the webmail client needs to be, the more complex server - the less "intelligent" the webmail client (i.e. you could just use a basic webserver with PHP and use squirrelmail or some other premade script)

Tradeoffs for a lighter featured custom server = more complex webmail system, tradeoff for simple webmail = more time programming server system.

I still have high hopes for roundcube (http://www.roundcube.net), however its all gone a little quiet there..
ric melia wrote:I think that rather than spending time on developing a new webmail client, it would make more sense to compile a very detailed (but idiot proof) step-by-step guide to setting up Squirrelmail (and php?) on Apache or IIS
Much and all as this would be great, the reality is these are complex software products, and people will invariably run into problems, regardless of the tutorials/help offered to guide them..


Theres no doubt some other easier to install (and use) system is required, I personally loath SquirrelMail, but I'm not entirely happy with Horde (what I use).. But alas until I have time to look at this myself I think Martin should continue to work on developing the hMail server itself..

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Post by JustinF » 2006-01-19 15:46

srand wrote:I still have high hopes for roundcube (http://www.roundcube.net), however its all gone a little quiet there..
The developer mailing list is active...there's still activity there...just nothing on their website. In fact, there were a couple postings the last couple of days saying that it's better to get the current code out of cvs because it's more stable and feature-filled than what you can download off their website. I'm still running whatever that latest version is from their website (from October, I think)...I was planning on updating to the latest cvs this weekend.

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Post by srand » 2006-01-19 15:57

I haven't had a chance to keep up to date with roundcube was planning on investigating soon enough - thats good to hear things are still moving on it.. Let me know what the new code is like if you get it set up..

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Post by JustinF » 2006-01-21 03:31

srand wrote:I haven't had a chance to keep up to date with roundcube was planning on investigating soon enough - thats good to hear things are still moving on it.. Let me know what the new code is like if you get it set up..
Well, I just got the latest code out of cvs and installed it. I haven't really put it through the paces, just sent/received a couple messages, but it seems to work. It'll be nice once they get rich text message composing implemented. It pretty much looks/works like the "official" release; according to the mailing list, though, there have been a lot of bug fixes and improvements done under the hood.

One word of advice to anyone installing from cvs...I was getting a bunch of session cache errors at first. The solution is to remove the last carriage return from the end of program\lib\utf8.class.php.

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Post by jpeoples » 2006-04-28 07:16

squirrelmail was developed for *ix platforms...and while it does run on windows...it's slow as heck...and the plugins while numerous...don't always work on windows so well (personally i have never been able to get squirrelspell to work on xp)

Martin has created a truely wonderous thing in HMS...and i think that there should be an equally wonderous webmail interface...designed specifically for HMS...but i think that we the users and supporters of HMS should create the HMS web companion...and let Martin do what he does remarkably well...develop HMS...


here let me start... <?

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Post by jpeoples » 2006-04-28 07:26

polar union some time ago made a detailed howto for configuring squirrelmail,php,apache,perl...you used to have it posted on here Martin...where did it go?

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Post by ajw » 2006-05-02 21:42

I haven't installed any webmail yet; I will at some point.

Rather than including an existing webmail, or (worse!) spending time creating his own, I'd rather have Martin concentrate on hMailServer itself.

I think some "excellent" installation instructions for the various common webmail packages (Squirrelmail, Roundcube, etc) would be useful.

Even more useful would be an comparison of the different packages; such as a list of features, ease-of-use, stability, screenshots, etc.

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Post by deagled » 2006-08-12 02:42

Sorry to bring up a dead topic but just a thought would be to take an existing open-sourced client and script a custom install for hmailserver specifically.

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Post by koncept » 2006-08-12 05:05

I'll chime in now since i dont think i was here when this began. I consider myself to be a pretty good web programmer and atleast halfway decent in vb. some of you know that I am building an imap client, this one happens to be tailored to hms and i would be glad to try and maintain it.

it can be found here
http://hmailserver.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=31241

if martin is ok with the idea, I will attempt to maintain this web client once its completed and continue to build it up based on requests from you guys provided a final release can be saved on this site for easier distro...
But IIS and php just dont seem to want to be friends
you are quite correct, it can be done and I have done it several times each time it seems i hit a different error depending upon iis version and php versions

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Post by Bram » 2006-08-12 07:07

Just keep it to hmailserver, there are a numerous good webmailclients out there. If you include it you have to support it.

Or just do like koncept, create you own webmail based on hmailserver, share it with us, and update it as Martin comes up with a new version :-)

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Post by dzekas » 2006-08-12 07:26

jpeoples wrote:squirrelmail was developed for *ix platforms...and while it does run on windows
SquirrelMail is developed for PHP. Linux and Unix are main development platforms, but interface can work on Windows too. If you have working PHP installation on Windows Apache or IIS, SquirrelMail will work just fine.
...it's slow as heck...
Default SquirrelMail 1.4.x configuration does not use some IMAP extensions that allow to optimize IMAP operations. hMailServer supports IMAP SORT since 4.2 and you might try turning on server side sorting in SquirrelMail configuration.

In some setups SquirrelMail translations can slow things down too.

See also http://www.squirrelmail.org/docs/admin/admin-6.html
and the plugins while numerous...don't always work on windows so well (personally i have never been able to get squirrelspell to work on xp)
Have you tried SquirrelMail 1.4.6 or later?

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Post by TheLostKid » 2006-08-17 20:44

I don't want to install PHP on my webserver. I'm using ASP.NET and like to use a webmail solution based on ASP.NET 2.0.

So, if it is not there (suggestion welcome) that I like so see one from the hmailserver team :) ... I like the hmailserver very well!

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Post by deagled » 2006-08-19 17:00

As far as language choice goes, php works great if your on a *n*x server and works fine with a wamp setup with iis it's troublesome but can be done.

ASP.NET works great if you are using IIS but good luck if your running anything else

JSP works fine under apache but with IIS can be problematic

ASP while Microsoft considers it dead runs fine on IIS and Apache2

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Post by TheLostKid » 2006-08-19 18:04

deagled wrote:As far as language choice goes, php works great if your on a *n*x server and works fine with a wamp setup with iis it's troublesome but can be done.

ASP.NET works great if you are using IIS but good luck if your running anything else

JSP works fine under apache but with IIS can be problematic

ASP while Microsoft considers it dead runs fine on IIS and Apache2
I'm running asp.net 2.0 under windows 2003 webserver edition.

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Post by koncept » 2006-08-21 01:17

thelostkid, i posted a message in one of your other threads.
(here you go from this thread)
( http://www.hmailserver.com/forum/viewto ... 1630#31630 )
iis and asp/.net are considered native together. I have successfuly set up php and iis with out any major problems, every time it has been a manual setup and worked very nicely.

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A note on SquirrelMail

Post by Slamlander » 2006-10-14 11:15

nlstart wrote:Since there are several options to apply webmail, I do not see any reason why to focus on a non core object... Personally SquirrelMail is my favourite... but that's just a matter of taste, of course. Anyway, talking about unstable parts. I experience an unstable/non working PHPAdmin... so some detailed troubleshooting documents or new improved module would be far more welcomed by me than another webmail possibility.

Although I like it [SquirrelMail]. It's been well over a year and they are still not certified under PHP5.

I run MediaWiki on the same IIS Application Server and MySQL is on an internal RDBMS-only server. While hMailServer and the Wiki access the same DBMS server they are not allowed to co-exist on the same box due to security policies. The Wiki and whatever Webmail application I get has to be able to live together and neither of them can be allowed on the same mail server system.

Webmail is a separate application that should run on an Application Server separate from the mail server. The security rules are different, not to mention the system load factors. I think it would be unwise to bundle hmailserver with a webmail application.

Just my two bits.
Last edited by Slamlander on 2006-10-14 15:27, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Slamlander » 2006-10-14 11:22

koncept wrote:
But IIS and php just dont seem to want to be friends
you are quite correct, it can be done and I have done it several times each time it seems i hit a different error depending upon iis version and php versions
I'll disagree. I have PHP5 running under IIS just fine and it's running latest MediaWiki software. I'm running Win2KAS, CygWin, Perl, PHP5, etc.
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Post by koncept » 2006-10-14 14:39

i was not saying it cannot be done, only it is not always the easiest thing to do. do not forget we need to keep hms a viable solution for the little guys, if another person such as your self has the necessary hardware to split it up there is no reason that you cannot take the bundled webmail client and load it else where.

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Post by Slamlander » 2006-10-14 15:03

Actually, there is. Most bundled packages are so tightly integrated to the point where you cannot operate them on separate machines. That is indeed the majority of my concern here. I have just been looking one webmail package after another and most of them include the smtp server and some of them even have an in-built http server :x

Now, if it were proposed to do a separate project to create a stand-alone webmail application that could "also" be hosted on the same box as HMS then I might agree. However, that's not what I've been hearing here or seeing on the web.

At this point I might also agree with those others, that Martin may be excessively loaded and that he should focus on HMS. I've seen too many projects fail due to programmer overload. :cry:

What really needs to happen is a calendaring server, serving iCalendar protocol and using the same user database. :D
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Post by martin » 2006-10-14 15:33

I find it unlikely that I will start creating a new web mail application in the nearest time. There's already several great open free web mail systems which can be used with almost any web server.
Most of them requires very little installation time (as long as you read the documentation). I don't really see the need of bundling a webmail system with hMailServer. Sure, it would make it easier for beginners to set up the system, but I don't feel that it's worth all that work considering that it would take a huge amount of time to create a web mail system which can compete with other.

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Post by ^DooM^ » 2006-10-15 10:12

Wait till after V5 is out martin then the new plugin system can be used for webmail ;)

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Post by kxta » 2006-10-15 20:59

Hi all, visit here for squirrel instructions

http://www.netdummy.net/squirrelmail.html

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Post by martin » 2006-10-15 21:13

I didn't like those instructions. For example, it tells users to run PHP as a CGI, to copy the PHP dlls to the System32 directory, to copy the php.ini to the Windows directory. Sounds like an ugly install to me.

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Post by kxta » 2006-10-15 21:19

instructions are a bit old. in squirrell 'install' file they say u no longer have to copy dll's to windir.

btw this site helped me a lot in my first install experience. maybe it ugly ... :)

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Post by dzekas » 2006-10-16 07:30

Instructions are misleading.

'modify header("Location: $redirect_url");' suggestion is wrong. If you have session delay errors, talk to php devels. SquirrelMail closes session before redirecting to webmail.php

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Post by Slamlander » 2006-10-16 08:57

It still doesn't change the FACT that SqurrelMail(SM) doesn't like PHP5. If all you are running is SM, on your Application Server, then all is fine and good but the latest MediaWiki and others all require PHP5. You are therefore forced to build yet another App Server just so you can run PHP4, yuck.

Actually, regarding the PHP5 Install, I found them to be quite good and reasonable, using the Install dox that came with PHP5.

There is really not much good excuse for SquirrelMail not meeting the new PHP5 spec, more than a year downstream. Especially since they have been adding features in the meanwhile.

Message to the SquirrelMail team: stop with the new features already and get the main program up to snuff!

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Post by Slamlander » 2006-10-16 09:02

martin wrote:I didn't like those instructions. For example, it tells users to run PHP as a CGI, to copy the PHP dlls to the System32 directory, to copy the php.ini to the Windows directory. Sounds like an ugly install to me.
It's beyond being an ugly install. The PHP5 stuff is much better.
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Post by martin » 2006-10-16 11:55

Or you can be brave and run the SquirrelMail 1.5.1 development version. Have run it for months and haven't had a single issue with it.

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Post by Slamlander » 2006-10-16 12:37

On your recommendation, martin, I'll give it a try.

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Post by dzekas » 2006-10-16 14:00

SquirrelMail 1.5.1 is not compatible with latest PHP versions. PHP 5.1.2 and 4.4.2 modified header functions and custom cookie code broke. Newmail plugin is quirky. It does not work as expected if you have message notifications turned on all folders.

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Post by martin » 2006-10-16 14:05

I see. Didn't notice that..

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Post by Slaine » 2006-10-27 02:28

This may be a bit mustard after the meal...

I'm one of those people that don't gamble, I might as well go to the counter and give them my money and go home. I feel the same way about running software that was developed for plaform A on platform B. I have nothing against PHP, but I hate it running on a Windows platform, or should I say, it hates me...

That's why I took off two days and wrote what I believe could be a cure for the problem. A Webmail client using the hMailserver COM objects to emulate an IMAP client. Its written in ASP, so it runs on IIS.

It's 95% completed, just waiting on some issues posted in the scripts section of the forum. (http://www.hmailserver.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=6235)
The only part thats 'missing' is spell checking, but it does HMTL e-mail, and allows for limited user self-configuration, like auto-responders and password changing. Its based on the COM objects as published for 4.3.

I'll make it available to anybody that's interested, even if only to look at the scripting to point and laugh. :wink:
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Post by dzekas » 2006-10-30 18:44

Slamlander wrote:It still doesn't change the FACT that SqurrelMail(SM) doesn't like PHP5.
Last known PHP 5.x fixes are added in SquirrelMail 1.4.6. This SquirrelMail version was released on 2006-02-23. If you have issues with PHP5, then report them on SquirrelMail devel list or bug tracker.

Only development version (1.5.1) has issues in latest PHP versions. Problem was caused by security modifications made by PHP devels. Issue is fixed in 1.5.2cvs and global.php.diff was posted on SquirrelMail mailing lists. 1.5.2 version can't be released right now, because codebase is unstable and latest templating and init updates break things.

If you claim that SquirrelMail is not compatible with PHP5, please prove it.

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Post by Slamlander » 2006-10-31 10:00

dzekas wrote:
Slamlander wrote:It still doesn't change the FACT that SqurrelMail(SM) doesn't like PHP5.
Last known PHP 5.x fixes are added in SquirrelMail 1.4.6. This SquirrelMail version was released on 2006-02-23. If you have issues with PHP5, then report them on SquirrelMail devel list or bug tracker.

Only development version (1.5.1) has issues in latest PHP versions. Problem was caused by security modifications made by PHP devels. Issue is fixed in 1.5.2cvs and global.php.diff was posted on SquirrelMail mailing lists. 1.5.2 version can't be released right now, because codebase is unstable and latest templating and init updates break things.

If you claim that SquirrelMail is not compatible with PHP5, please prove it.
I don't have to, you just did it for me. :wink:
dzekas wrote:SquirrelMail 1.5.1 is not compatible with latest PHP versions. PHP 5.1.2 and 4.4.2 modified header functions and custom cookie code broke. Newmail plugin is quirky. It does not work as expected if you have message notifications turned on all folders.
I might also state that I now have both RoundCube and SM running on IIS servers here. There is the minor detail of finding out what the initial login is, so that I can continue work on them.

BTW, what's the secret handshake to get into these things once you have them up? The dox mention everything except the default ID and passwd.
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Post by dzekas » 2006-10-31 10:22

Slamlander wrote:
dzekas wrote:
Slamlander wrote:It still doesn't change the FACT that SqurrelMail(SM) doesn't like PHP5.
Last known PHP 5.x fixes are added in SquirrelMail 1.4.6. This SquirrelMail version was released on 2006-02-23. If you have issues with PHP5, then report them on SquirrelMail devel list or bug tracker.

Only development version (1.5.1) has issues in latest PHP versions. Problem was caused by security modifications made by PHP devels. Issue is fixed in 1.5.2cvs and global.php.diff was posted on SquirrelMail mailing lists. 1.5.2 version can't be released right now, because codebase is unstable and latest templating and init updates break things.

If you claim that SquirrelMail is not compatible with PHP5, please prove it.
I don't have to, you just did it for me. :wink:
Yes, you do have to prove your claims. I've also stated that 1.5.1 is development version, issue is fixed in 1.5.2cvs and patch is available. Issue is not specific to PHP5, PHP 4.4.2+ is broken too. "Release often" does not work with SquirrelMail. Developers have limited resources and current 1.5.2cvs is very unstable. 1.5.1 codename warns about unstable code. If 1.5.2 is released right now just to fix sq_setcookie function, codename would use something more dangerous than "fire in the hole". Stable SquirrelMail versions are compatible with current PHP5 versions. If you want to get SquirrelMail 1.6.0 - help SquirrelMail developers instead of bragging about outdated development version on some third party forum.

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Post by Slamlander » 2006-10-31 10:34

Slaine wrote:This may be a bit mustard after the meal...

I'm one of those people that don't gamble, I might as well go to the counter and give them my money and go home. I feel the same way about running software that was developed for plaform A on platform B. I have nothing against PHP, but I hate it running on a Windows platform, or should I say, it hates me...
PHP5 is much better under Win2KAS than under Linux. :? 8) Whilst IIS can be a bit of a PITA, it's reliable and you don't need to chase down 50 bazillion text config files. I'm running the works under php5isapi.
Slaine wrote:That's why I took off two days and wrote what I believe could be a cure for the problem. A Webmail client using the hMailserver COM objects to emulate an IMAP client. Its written in ASP, so it runs on IIS.

It's 95% completed, just waiting on some issues posted in the scripts section of the forum. (http://www.hmailserver.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=6235)
The only part thats 'missing' is spell checking, but it does HMTL e-mail, and allows for limited user self-configuration, like auto-responders and password changing. Its based on the COM objects as published for 4.3.

I'll make it available to anybody that's interested, even if only to look at the scripting to point and laugh. :wink:
Actually, this is a good-thing :wink: However, of the stated goal (eliminating the need for PHP), it's too late for me. As I said earlier, I also run MediaWiki on the same Applications Server. MediaWiki requires PHP5 anyway. Then again, it should yield better performance from the same hardware, hmmmm.

One of the minor gnits I am running across with all of this stuff is that interpretive code is CPU intensive. At the moment I have Java, Perl, and PHP interpreters clogging up my server. Whatever happened to the days of compiling to native code?
S L A M L A N D E R
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Post by martin » 2006-10-31 11:24

PHP5 is much better under Win2KAS than under Linux.
At the moment I have /../ PHP interpreters clogging up my server.
That sounds like a contradiction. :)

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Post by Slaine » 2006-10-31 21:54

At this stage it seems that the whole idea of a COM-based WebMail client is a bit flawed due to the available functionality in the COM interface. I'm also not sure what kind of a load it will add to the server.

But that doesn't make SquirrelMail any more attractive due to the PHP requirement. I always feel that if you have to wing it to make it work, guess a couple of settings and thumb-suck a couple more, that you never know what security holes you leave open.

Any server is only as good and secure as the person that configured it.
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Post by phk » 2006-12-21 15:38

No, please not another webmail.
There are so many more or less good webmail-systems, that it is not necessary to create another one.
I realy don't understand, why everybody always want to reinvent the wheel.
I think it would be better, to concentrate on the main funcionality of hMailServer and just make adjustments to existing webmails.
Or maybe a cooperation.

Idea:
Maybe some developers could spend some weeks in evaluating good mail or even better groupware-systems.
Then try to cooperate with the owners of this system for a better cooperation with hmailserver.
This system could then be recommended for use with hmailserver.
My personal recommendation would be [url=http:/www.egroupware.org]eGroupware[/url]
Because then even the administration part of hmailserver could be implemented as a part of the whole system.

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Post by Slug » 2007-01-27 06:38

I have locked this topic, as I think we all get the idea. :wink:

Thanks all
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Missing Hmailserver ... Now running Debian servers

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