February 2016

Dear Client,

January was quiet again as far as issues here.  Nothing major going on or planned for the near future.

One of the things our clients often overlook are the features our mail server offers.  These are included with mail accounts at no charge and are robust enough to compare to services you sometimes pay for other companies to provide.  It just takes a little exploring (or asking) to learn how to use them.  This is especially true if you have your own domain name email hosted here.

One feature it supports are mailing lists.  Rather than send out a broadcast to dozens or hundreds of clients, you can define a mailing list, upload the list of email addresses to it, and send out a single email to the mailing list.  Mailing lists can either be one way (where you are the only one who can send to the group) or they can be participatory where list members can reply and all the members will see those replies.  While lists historically have been topic-based (How to brew beer at home!), they could just as easily be created along department lines (sales force, engineering, etc).  We can walk you through setting one up or help you with it.  Just ask.

Another feature the mail server supports is storing files.  This becomes important when you want to send a large attachment to a lot of people.  The traditional way results in a copy of the attachment being spun off for each email.  This often creates a bottleneck on the sending side and can cause problems at the receiving end if a recipient has limits on the size of their mailbox.

An alternative is to upload the file you want to send out, make it a ‘public’ file, and then email a link to it to your list.  The recipients then get a short email with a link to the file they can then click on and download directly.  The emails go out very quickly and the folks receiving them can grab their copy at their leisure.  And the file is still on the server if you want to send it to others.  You have full management control over it.

Finally, you get your new smart phone and one of the first questions it asks when you set up email is whether the account is a POP or IMAP account?  The difference is that POP stores your mail on your phone; IMAP stores it on our server.  IMAP traditionally is used in businesses that run their own mail servers for a few dozen or few hundred employees.  Since we typically have a lot more mail accounts than that, we suggest you use POP account setups, and tell it to leave a copy of the messages on the server.  That way when you get back to your workstation/laptop/etc. and retrieve mail, incoming mail will still be there for it to retrieve.


Ben Conner