October 20, 2004
"sendmail 8.13 Companion": Keeping Current with the Latest sendmail Point Release
Sebastopol, CA--If you had a list of the words used to describe sendmail,
they'd probably include reliable, flexible, configurable, complex,
monolithic, and daunting. But you're not likely to find the word "easy."
Even seasoned sendmail pros are sometimes frustrated by the intricacies of
sendmail's configuration files. With a little determination and the help
of a good reference book, like sendmail, Third Edition, you can master
this demanding program. But when there's a significant point release, like
sendmail V8.13, where do you turn?
The sendmail 8.13 Companion (O'Reilly, US $24.95) by Bryan Costales with
Gregory Neil Shapiro and Claus Assmann provides a timely way to document
the improvements in V8.13 in parallel with its release. The book
highlights the important changes in the latest update to sendmail,
pointing out not just what is handy or nice to have, but what's critical
in getting the best behavior from sendmail. This is especially important
now that spam is on the rise, and because mobile technology requires
roving laptops to use encrypted connections.
Not surprisingly, many of the changes and additions to V8.13 have been
driven by the ongoing fight against spam. Anyone concerned about spam--and
who isn't?--will benefit greatly by upgrading to V8.13 sendmail. Among its
many enhancements, V8.13 includes new routines that support the SPF
sending site authentication standard (in the Milter library), simultaneous
connection control, high connection rate control, and finer tuning of SASL
parameters. The additions to the Milter library alone make upgrading
worthwhile, but sendmail's connection control makes it a no-brainer. The
key to understanding them is the sendmail 8.13 Companion.
The book is divided into twenty-five chapters that parallel the chapters
in the third edition of O'Reilly's sendmail book. For instance, if
you're interested in Options Configuration (Chapter 24 in sendmail),
you'll turn to Chapter 24 in your companion volume to find out what's new
For a simple dot release (8.12 to 8.13), V8.13 sendmail has added more
features, options, and fundamental changes than any other single dot
release has included. If you need to set up or manage sendmail, you'll
want this companion volume close at hand. Even if you aren't ready to
upgrade to V8.13, you'll find the key to understanding them is the
sendmail 8.13 Companion.
sendmail 8.13 Companion
Bryan Coastales with Gregory Neil Shapiro and Claus Assmann
Edited by George Jansen
ISBN 0-596-00845-7, 179 pages, $24.95 US, $36.95 CA
O'Reilly Media spreads the knowledge of innovators through its books, online services, magazines, and conferences. Since 1978, O'Reilly Media has been a chronicler and catalyst of cutting-edge development, homing in on the technology trends that really matter and spurring their adoption by amplifying "faint signals" from the alpha geeks who are creating the future. An active participant in the technology community, the company has a long history of advocacy, meme-making, and evangelism.
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