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Hmail Server

When it comes to email servers for Windows, there are a number of options, mostly commercially based products for small to medium business, or the really big groupware products for larger entities. When it comes to quality free mail servers, there doesn’t seem to be a really big range of choices.

Enter Hmail Server. I had previously heard of this software a few years back, but apart from looking at the website, I never got around to using the software. At the time, the versions available were licensed under the GNU GPL.

A few months back when I was busy with my Joomla based project, I came to the conclusion that I needed to test certain email based parts of the package, but without a live domain it was proving to be tricky. I remembered Hmail, and I decided to set it up on my pc to act as a mail server for Joomla.

The latest edition of the server is no longer under the GPL, but it is still free software. The install file was just under 3mb in size, which surprised me. For all the functionality it offered, 3mb seemed too small. Nonetheless, installing it was pretty simple. Hmail needs a database to store mail and it’s configuration, and it lets you use 1 of 3 different types. Since I had a MySQL server going, I simply used that option, and after a few more mouse clicks, the server was up and running.

hmail main window Main Hmail console window

Hmail supports the 3 standard internet mail protocols, SMTP POP3 and IMAP4. It has a lot of other features as well that make it pretty modern. About the only downside is that you have to set up accounts by hand I think, though I may be wrong.

I’ve also used it at my job to help create an e-mail server for an adult education course that showed people how to use e-mail. Previously they couldn’t send and receive, but after setting up Hmail, the course suddenly became a lot more realistic.

In short, this is a quality free product that is being given away for free. Evaluate it, it may just be what you are looking for and can save you a lot of effort when setting up a mail server.

For more information, visit the website here

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