Postfix 20 years ago

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Postfix 20 years ago

Wietse Venema
Last month it was 20 years ago that I started writing Postfix code.
After coming to IBM research in November 1996, I spent most of
December and January making notes on paper. I knew that writing a
mail system was more work than any of my prior projects.

The oldest tarball, dated 19970220, contains library functions plus
two early versions of the master daemon. There are 8086 lines of
code, 4204 lines after stripping the comments, and the only
documentation was my pile of hand-written notes.

For comparison, today's Postfix 3.2.0 RC1 release candidate weighs
in at 236533 lines of code, 137257 after stripping comments. The
documentation amounts to 32589 lines of hand-written HTML source,
plus 41878 lines of auto-generated HTML.

Much of today's effort is not visible as new features (thought there
still are enough to make an upgrade worthwhile), but happens behind
the scenes as improvements to internal code, and updated tests to
ensure that future changes won't inadvertantly break something.

        Wietse
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Re: Postfix 20 years ago

Dominic Raferd
On 12 February 2017 at 18:06, Wietse Venema <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Last month it was 20 years ago that I started writing Postfix code...

Amazing what a mighty oak has grown from such an acorn. Thanks to you
for the original planting and to all those, including you, who have
nurtured its growth, and continue to do so.
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Re: Postfix 20 years ago

D'Arcy Cain
In reply to this post by Wietse Venema
On 2017-02-12 01:06 PM, Wietse Venema wrote:
> Last month it was 20 years ago that I started writing Postfix code.

Congratulations and thanks!

--
D'Arcy J.M. Cain
System Administrator, Vex.Net
http://www.Vex.Net/ IM:[hidden email]
VoIP: sip:[hidden email]
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Re: Postfix 20 years ago

Ron Wheeler
In reply to this post by Dominic Raferd
A great contribution to the Internet.
Your 20 years of fantastic support and sustained commitment has made
Postix successful.

Thanks
Ron

On 12/02/2017 1:12 PM, Dominic Raferd wrote:
> On 12 February 2017 at 18:06, Wietse Venema <[hidden email]> wrote:
>> Last month it was 20 years ago that I started writing Postfix code...
> Amazing what a mighty oak has grown from such an acorn. Thanks to you
> for the original planting and to all those, including you, who have
> nurtured its growth, and continue to do so.
>


--
Ron Wheeler
President
Artifact Software Inc
email: [hidden email]
skype: ronaldmwheeler
phone: 866-970-2435, ext 102

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Re: Postfix 20 years ago

Ralph Seichter-10
In reply to this post by Wietse Venema
On 12.02.17 19:06, Wietse Venema wrote:

> Last month it was 20 years ago that I started writing Postfix code.

Kudos, and thank you for freeing me (and consequently my customers) of
Exim and Sendmail. ;-) Postfix is one of the most useful software systems
I have the pleasure of working with, and the quality and reliability are
outstanding.

-Ralph
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Re: Postfix 20 years ago

Matthias Andree
In reply to this post by Wietse Venema
Am 12.02.2017 um 19:06 schrieb Wietse Venema:
> Last month it was 20 years ago that I started writing Postfix code.
> After coming to IBM research in November 1996, I spent most of
> December and January making notes on paper. I knew that writing a
> mail system was more work than any of my prior projects.
>
> The oldest tarball, dated 19970220, contains library functions plus
> two early versions of the master daemon. There are 8086 lines of
> code, 4204 lines after stripping the comments, and the only
> documentation was my pile of hand-written notes.

Dear Wietse 'Dr. Postfix' Venema,

I am pleased to see that you are still in charge of the MTA that has
already come of age.

When I began switching my - mostly qmail - setups to Postfix in the late
1990's, setting it loose into production long before 1.0 was on the
horizon, with good success, it required far less of my attention than
any other MTA afoot at the time.

While sendmail was going through rough times, being overrun by the bad
guys on Internet, to recover quite a bit later, and qmail was slowing
down magnetic spinning disks with ridiculous amounts of synchronous
writes and bouncing spam with counterfeit senders it had previously
accepted responsibility for, and many other MTAs and MDAs of that time
have fallen into disrepair, neglect, oblivion, or some other abyss,
Postfix has prevailed, along with a few other grown-up MTAs that I care
less about.

At the time, around 1999, I haven't thought much about the longevity of
Postfix, which was the best mailer for my needs at the time, and whether
it would be for two or five years was long enough, be that home or
production use, and I had always feared you'd move on to other
projects.  I see - with delight - that you are still around and busy
with Postfix, and I feel that your hand has guided Postfix well through
many many years, and if there is one project where a sound design of
compatibility shows and shines brightly, and makes it a really
pleasurable experience as user or admin to not be surprised in nasty
ways, then it is Postfix.

Thank you - and IBM, and the other major contributors - so much for the
continued contribution of an important piece of backbone software that
"just works". It's been a ride I've always enjoyed and continue to
enjoy, and I hope that when the day comes that you move on to other
projects, that there will be a maintainer with a similar sense of
continuity. I would never have bet on even a decade, and even though I
haven't put anything at stake other than my time, well done, keep going.

Thanks again!

Cheers,
Matthias


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Re: Postfix 20 years ago

Josh Good
In reply to this post by Wietse Venema
On 2017 Feb 12, 13:06, Wietse Venema wrote:
> Last month it was 20 years ago that I started writing Postfix code.
> After coming to IBM research in November 1996, I spent most of
> December and January making notes on paper. I knew that writing a
> mail system was more work than any of my prior projects.

Thank you very much for your work, and for making it free.

I probably wouldn't be doing email today if I had to endure anything
other than Postfix.

Postfix is a pleasure to work with. Whenever I am approached to help with
any other MTA, I demand double my usual rate to make up for the headaches
those other programs give me. Other MTAs are much harder to support.

Regards,

--
Josh Good

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Re: Postfix 20 years ago

Michael Ströder
In reply to this post by Wietse Venema
Wietse Venema wrote:
> Last month it was 20 years ago that I started writing Postfix code.

Wietse,

don't remember the exact date but probably a couple of months after your first release
I've migrated a company's mail servers to postfix. postfix was chosen after reading some
of your comments somwhere in news:comp.mail.*. I very well remember the good feeling of
relief when getting rid of the other MTA (which was pretty dominant at that time). :-)

So big thanks for your work and continous support!

Ciao, Michael.



smime.p7s (5K) Download Attachment
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Re: Postfix 20 years ago

Phil Stracchino
In reply to this post by Ralph Seichter-10
On 02/12/17 13:48, Ralph Seichter wrote:
> On 12.02.17 19:06, Wietse Venema wrote:
>
>> Last month it was 20 years ago that I started writing Postfix code.
>
> Kudos, and thank you for freeing me (and consequently my customers) of
> Exim and Sendmail. ;-) Postfix is one of the most useful software systems
> I have the pleasure of working with, and the quality and reliability are
> outstanding.


SO MUCH seconded.  Mike Meredith once said, "The problem with Sendmail
is that it isn't an MTA, it's a *language for writing* MTAs.  Very good
at what it does, but not everyone wants to write their own MTA."

I figured out ways to do things in Sendmail that some of the Sendmail
experts swore couldn't be done, but eventually I got tired of doing it.
Postfix was a very welcome breath of fresh air.


--
  Phil Stracchino
  Babylon Communications
  [hidden email]
  [hidden email]
  Landline: 603.293.8485
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Re: Postfix 20 years ago

Viktor Dukhovni
In reply to this post by Wietse Venema
On Sun, Feb 12, 2017 at 01:06:42PM -0500, Wietse Venema wrote:

> Last month it was 20 years ago that I started writing Postfix code.

It is good to see thanks from users who've been with you all for
almost the entire time.  By that standard, I came on board late,
when Bennett Todd introduced me to Postfix 1.0 in the spring of
2001.  Since that time, Postfix has for me been not only a pleasure
to use and contribute to, but also a standard of excellence.

Thanks, much appreciated.

--
        Viktor.
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Re: Postfix 20 years ago

markjt
In reply to this post by Wietse Venema
Dear Wietse,

In all the years I cannot think of any other software I have used that has maintained such an
extraordinarily high standard of functionality, stability, security and usability.
(I started hosting in 1994).

Your work has been, and is, a key part of my humble Internet career.

Many thanks to you, and all Postfix contributors.

Regards,

Mark

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Re: Postfix 20 years ago

Voytek


On 13 February 2017 9:16:18 AM AEDT, [hidden email] wrote:
>Dear Wietse,
>
>In all the years I cannot think of any other software I have used that
>has maintained such an
>extraordinarily high standard of functionality, stability, security and
>usability.
>(I started hosting in 1994).
>
>Your work has been, and is, a key part of my humble Internet career.


Many thanks to Wietse and other contributors, this ML, and, to Rodney, who told me Postfix was the way to go when I was switching from OS/2 to Linux all these years ago.

Voytek
--
Sent from my Android device with K-9 Mail. Please excuse my brevity.
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Re: Postfix 20 years ago

Glenn English-2
In reply to this post by D'Arcy Cain
On Sun, 12 Feb 2017 13:28:17 -0500
D'Arcy Cain <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On 2017-02-12 01:06 PM, Wietse Venema wrote:
> > Last month it was 20 years ago that I started writing Postfix code.
>
> Congratulations and thanks!

Me too, as they say :-)

A reasonably straightforward, secure, and reliable piece of software.
Nice job.

--
Glenn English


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Re: Postfix 20 years ago

Robert Schetterer-2
In reply to this post by Wietse Venema
Am 12.02.2017 um 19:06 schrieb Wietse Venema:

> Last month it was 20 years ago that I started writing Postfix code.
> After coming to IBM research in November 1996, I spent most of
> December and January making notes on paper. I knew that writing a
> mail system was more work than any of my prior projects.
>
> The oldest tarball, dated 19970220, contains library functions plus
> two early versions of the master daemon. There are 8086 lines of
> code, 4204 lines after stripping the comments, and the only
> documentation was my pile of hand-written notes.
>
> For comparison, today's Postfix 3.2.0 RC1 release candidate weighs
> in at 236533 lines of code, 137257 after stripping comments. The
> documentation amounts to 32589 lines of hand-written HTML source,
> plus 41878 lines of auto-generated HTML.
>
> Much of today's effort is not visible as new features (thought there
> still are enough to make an upgrade worthwhile), but happens behind
> the scenes as improvements to internal code, and updated tests to
> ensure that future changes won't inadvertantly break something.
>
> Wietse
>

Happy Birthday Postfix , and thx to Wietse


Best Regards
MfG Robert Schetterer

--
[*] sys4 AG

http://sys4.de, +49 (89) 30 90 46 64
Schleißheimer Straße 26/MG, 80333 München

Sitz der Gesellschaft: München, Amtsgericht München: HRB 199263
Vorstand: Patrick Ben Koetter, Marc Schiffbauer
Aufsichtsratsvorsitzender: Florian Kirstein
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Re: Postfix 20 years ago

Jose-Marcio Martins da Cruz
In reply to this post by Wietse Venema
On 02/12/2017 07:06 PM, Wietse Venema wrote:
> Last month it was 20 years ago that I started writing Postfix code.
> After coming to IBM research in November 1996, I spent most of
> December and January making notes on paper. I knew that writing a
> mail system was more work than any of my prior projects.

There are few "big" software which remains with the original open source spirit of those days. Postfix is one of them.

I hope it will stay alive still for a long time.

Thanks

--


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Re: Postfix 20 years ago

Patrick Ben Koetter-2
In reply to this post by Wietse Venema
* Wietse Venema <[hidden email]>:
> Last month it was 20 years ago that I started writing Postfix code.
> After coming to IBM research in November 1996, I spent most of
> December and January making notes on paper. I knew that writing a
> mail system was more work than any of my prior projects.

Eversince I discovered Postfix it has become the best software I have had the
joy to work with. The code quality is outstanding as is the documentation. One
of the main reasons to stick with Postfix from the very first moment was its
community - friendly, knowledgable and helpful.

Unfortunately I don't like Postfix for its reliabilty and stability. It is so
reliable and stable that I am forced to turn away from it. It forces me to
deal with software of lesser quality, badly written configuration syntax,
absent documentation, horrible security architecture etc. pp.

I hate it when Postfix does that to me. ;)

Postfix is Postfix because you made it that way. It breathes your spirit,
Wietse - your standards, your strictness and your mindset. I've learned a lot
from you over all the years.

Postfix is my role model for good software. When we build tools, services,
platforms I often catch myself thinking "How would Postfix do that?". I owe
you a lot!

Thank you

p@rick

--
[*] sys4 AG
 
https://sys4.de, +49 (89) 30 90 46 64
Schleißheimer Straße 26/MG,80333 München
 
Sitz der Gesellschaft: München, Amtsgericht München: HRB 199263
Vorstand: Patrick Ben Koetter, Marc Schiffbauer
Aufsichtsratsvorsitzender: Florian Kirstein
 
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Re: Postfix 20 years ago

Tamer Higazi
In reply to this post by Wietse Venema
Dear Wietse,

Thank you very much for this wonderful MTA system you have developed and
maintained over the years.
You did a wonderful and great job, and your software made the internet
really come to live.

With support of the latest technologies like DANE and DNSSEC, PFS you
made secure communications for business 2 business possible.
This MTA you have developed made it for many startup companies possible,
to scale up their infrastructure without the need of changing this peace
of software or to learn to handle complex MTA systems like sendmail.

You, and many others like Dennis Richy (Unix) and Ken Thompson (Unicode
Dataset) made the internet come alive and gave the foundation for many
other developers to write software of making proper communication for
private and business usage possible.

You are a great man!


best, Tamer Higazi
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Re: Postfix 20 years ago

Markus Schönhaber-16
In reply to this post by Patrick Ben Koetter-2
Patrick Ben Koetter, 13.02.2017 09:57 +0100:

> I owe you a lot!

Seconded, thank you Wietse!

--
Regards
  mks
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Re: Postfix 20 years ago

Márcio Merlone
In reply to this post by Wietse Venema
Em 12/02/2017 16:06, Wietse Venema escreveu:
Last month it was 20 years ago that I started writing Postfix code.
After coming to IBM research in November 1996, I spent most of
December and January making notes on paper. I knew that writing a
mail system was more work than any of my prior projects.

The oldest tarball, dated 19970220, contains library functions plus
two early versions of the master daemon. There are 8086 lines of
code, 4204 lines after stripping the comments, and the only
documentation was my pile of hand-written notes.

For comparison, today's Postfix 3.2.0 RC1 release candidate weighs
in at 236533 lines of code, 137257 after stripping comments. The
documentation amounts to 32589 lines of hand-written HTML source,
plus 41878 lines of auto-generated HTML.

Much of today's effort is not visible as new features (thought there
still are enough to make an upgrade worthwhile), but happens behind
the scenes as improvements to internal code, and updated tests to
ensure that future changes won't inadvertantly break something.

	Wietse
Mr. Wietse,

All kudos for you. When you began, have you guessed postfix would have that big importance for the internet? I guess postfix is the most deployed smtp server on the globe, isn't it?

Best regards, thanks in the name of internet, keep that great job going!


--
Marcio Merlone
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Re: Postfix 20 years ago

Márcio Merlone
In reply to this post by markjt
Em 12/02/2017 20:16, [hidden email] escreveu:
In all the years I cannot think of any other software I have used that has maintained such an 
extraordinarily high standard of functionality, stability, security and usability.
(I started hosting in 1994).

Your work has been, and is, a key part of my humble Internet career.
+1, for over a decade now. :)

Many thanks to you, and all Postfix contributors.
+1

--
Marcio Merlone
123