VOPmail -- ISP/enterprise-level mail program

By ServerWatch Staff (Send Email)
Posted Jun 5, 2002


With a slew of features geared toward ISPs and enterprises, VOPmail is a great tool for situations calling for a feature-rich mail server, especially where Windows NT is the server platform of choice.

Supporting SMTP, ESMTP, IMAP, and POP3 protocols, and capable of serving under both multiple and virtual domains, VOPmail just about has it all -- including built-in mailing list support. We installed the demo version of VOPmail and had no problems getting it up and running under an existing Windows NT server. With a slew of features geared toward ISPs and enterprises, VOPmail is a great tool for situations calling for a feature-rich mail server, especially where Windows NT is the server platform of choice.

VOPmail comes in three editions. While the Small Business Edition of VOPmail might be a little costly for most mom & pop shop at $350, the ISP and Enterprise editions are quite affordable for their markets ($750 and $1,000, respectively). For the most part, professional shops will appreciate most of the advanced functionality of VOPmail: the ability to implement mailbox-size quotas, maximum mailbox sizes, and settings for the automatic expiry of messages, all of which can be administered via a Web-based interface. Web access also extends to users, who can access the contents of their mailboxes and personal settings via a browser. (You'll need Microsoft Internet Information Server up and running to implement this feature.) System logs can be saved to ODBC files.

It there's any complaint with VOPmail, it's that authentication and username importing is at best mixed bag. You can import names from a Windows NT user database, the registry, Emerald Internet Management Suite, or an ODBC database, and VOPmail features authentication against a RADIUS server -- not surprising, as parent company Vircom also develops and sells a RADIUS server -- but there's no support for LDAP directory interaction. If Vircom is going to successfully go into the enterprise market spaces, where mixed-OS setups in the rule and LDAP directories are becoming prevalent, then LDAP support is essential. (To Vircom's credit, implementing LDAP support is promised for a future version of VOPmail.)

The anti-spamming features include a filter for preventing mass mailings and anti-relay protection. These feature match most of the anti-spamming features found in other leading mail servers.

As we mentioned, VOPmail is marketed heavily toward ISPs. Toward that end, VOPmail integrates directly with other third-party ISP billing systems, including RODOPI, Platypus, Emerald, ISPPower, and Worldgroup

The downloadable demo package includes all of the regular VOPmail features, but it's limited to 10 mailboxes and one mailing list.

Out of the three target markets -- ISPs, small businesses, and enterprises -- small businesses will probably want to pass on VOPmail because of the price tag. However, ISPs will get the most out of VOPmail, thanks to its advanced controls for user mailbox sizes, anti-spam tools, and connections to third-party ISP packages. Enterprises, too, will benefit from VOPmail's controls for user mailbox sizes and anti-spam tools - and they'll be eager to see the LDAP support promised in a future edition.

Pros: RADIUS authentication support, 7 Remote access for both users and administrators, 7 Links directly to third-party ISP billing packages, 7 Flexible pricing plan
Cons: No LDAP support, 7 Small Business Edition costs too much for most small businesses

New in V4.0: Anti-spam capabilities, better support for third-party software; Release Notes.
Upgrade Meter: 3

Version Reviewed: 4.0
Reviewed by: Kevin Reichard
Last Updated: 1/16/02
Date of Original Review: 9/22/99

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