Press Room

Press Release: January 24, 2003

The "Bat Book" Returns, Bringing New Help for sendmail Administrators: O'Reilly Releases "sendmail, Third Edition"

Sebastopol, CA--Reliable, flexible, and configurable enough to solve the mail routing needs of any web site, sendmail has withstood the test of time. In the process, however, it has achieved what many sendmail administrators would argue was impossible: it has grown even more complex. Even the most experienced system administrators have found it challenging to configure and difficult to understand; its configuration file has been called positively frightening. For help in unraveling its intricacies, sendmail administrators have turned unanimously to one reliable source--the bat book, or sendmail by Bryan Costales and the creator of sendmail, Eric Allman (O'Reilly, US $59.95). Now in its third edition, this best-selling reference will help readers master the most demanding version of sendmail yet.

The new edition of "sendmail" has been completely revised to cover sendmail 8.12. "Version 8.12 has more features, options, and fundamental changes than any other release has," explains Costales. "To understand all that is new, and how valuable these new things are, the sendmail administrator will need a reference like this." The third edition represents a massive rewrite of this respected reference.

"This edition omits the tutorial that the prior two editions had," notes Costales. "This was done because sendmail has moved away from a human-editable configuration file and towards a macro-based configuration. The old tutorial parts have been folded into the relevant reference chapters so that a gentle startup is still possible."

"sendmail, Third Edition" begins by guiding the reader through the building and installation of sendmail and its companion programs, such as vacation and makemap. These additional programs are pivotal to sendmail's daily operation. Next, the book covers the day-to-day administration of sendmail. This section includes two entirely new chapters, "Performance Tuning" to make mail delivery as efficient as possible, and "Handling Spam" to deal with sendmail's rich anti-spam features.

The next section of "sendmail" tackles the sendmail configuration file and debugging. And finally, the book wraps up with five appendices that provide more detail about sendmail than readers may ever need. Altogether, versions 8.10 through 8.12 include dozens of new features, options, and macros, and this greatly expanded edition thoroughly addresses each, and provides an advance look at sendmail version 8.13 (expected to be released in 2003).

With "sendmail, Third Edition" in hand, the sendmail nightmare is over. Readers can confidently configure this challenging but necessary utility for whatever their systems require. This much anticipated revision is essential reading for anyone facing the task of administering sendmail.

Praise for the previous edition:

"This is the sendmail 'Bible.'"
--Peter Collinson, Server/Workstation Expert, July 2001

"I recommend studying or acquiring the excellent O'Reilly & Associates book, 'sendmail' (also known as the 'bat book')."
--Adam Thornton, Technical Support, March 2001

"Its the 'Bible' for sendmail, written by the man himself, Eric Allman. If you are configuring sendmail, and you don't have this book, you are a far braver human than I."
--Michael Schwager, Sys Admin, March 1999

"'s Bestselling Title of 1998 in the Category of Email Applications"

"The definitive tome about sendmail."
--Ben Rothke, "Enterprise Systems Journal," June 1998

Additional Resources:

sendmail, Third Edition
Bryan Costales with Eric Allman
ISBN 1-56592-839-3, 1205 pages, $59.95 (US), $92.95 (CAN), 42.50 (UK)
1-800-998-9938; 1-707-827-7000

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