Outsourcing vs In House?

Discussion in 'Mail Server Support' started by Blake, Oct 2, 2008.

  1. Blake

    Blake Valued Member

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    So I have been thinking of expanding one of my sites. We have a rather large newsletter. And it has about 3000 members of the newsletter. We send one out each month. These are beautiful html done with nice pictures and great information. It has always been a big hit with those who subscribe. Now our mail server we have on the server is the basic that the plan provides. But at times it seems to be somewhat slow when people are using the newsletter system. I was thinking of getting a seperate server just for the newsletter. It would not be much, and maybe a domain just for the newsletter. I was wondering what is the pros and cons? I mean I can always add more to my plan I have to keep the same server, or go with the new server just for the mail. What is your recommendations?
     


  2. popowich

    popowich EQ Forum Admin Staff Member

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    It sounds like right now you have your own mail server, that you maintain it, and that you are considering the purchase of a second mail server? I'm a little confused since it sounds like you have your own mail server but also mention that you have a basic plan that seems to be provided by a 3rd party.

    What operating system (windows, linux, etc), MTA (exchange, sendmail, qmail, etc), and what mailing list software if any (ezmlm, majordomo, etc) are you using?

    How and where is the newsletter created? Is it directly tied to the sending or do you create the newsletter on your PC and mail it out based on the smtp server setting in your mail client to the mail server and/or mailing list? Is this a list of recipients in a large address book contact list or an actual mailing list managed on a mail server?

    3000 members is a relatively small list that should be able to complete first delivery attempts within a few minutes on most modern mail servers. You certainly should not need a dedicated mail server to handle the load of sending those mailings and processing the bounce messages. Why is the mail server slow? Are you sharing resources with any other domains or mailing lists? Are you reaching the max of a configuration setting for the maximum number of outbound deliveries that are allowed to be attempted in parallel by the mail server? Are the return bounces, out of office messages, and other return traffic generated by the mailing list maxing out the number of incoming connections into the server?

    Do you have access to the mail logs? What do they say when the mail server is being slow?

    I can't think of a good reason why you should not be able to keep a 3000 member mailing list in house, so I hope this conversation will help us figure out why you are running into slowness problems while sending out your newsletters.

    -Raymond
     

  3. Blake

    Blake Valued Member

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    The mail server is on a shared hosting plan along with the site. Now I have 2 options after talking to host, I can upgrade my hosting package or I can get a separate mail server. I have been thinking getting dedicated mail server since it would be cheaper. The mailing list is sent out using a payed for script. It is mostly php. So it is not a big deal really. I am just wondering which is better, better package or new server?
     
  4. Big Dan

    Big Dan EQ Forum Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm not sure that your big enough to warrant the expense of a fully dedicated server while it looks like you've already out grown shared hosting. VPS (Virtual Private Server) may be the way to go. I use a VPS to run one medium sized forum and two smaller ones in addition to a slew of static sites. They send mail constantly in addition to forum wide newsletters I send regularly.

    I'd go managed VPS this way you don't have to worry about the administration side of things. I've been real happy with ServInt for 2 years now, their a little pricey but it's well worth the piece of mind in my humble opinion.

    Not sure what you have going on besides the newsletter. What's powering the site factors into what size VPS you'd need.
     

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