February 2007

This month's meeting was at SPARTA's office in Columbia. There were 16 attendees this time so Columbia may be a more popular meeting place for us. For this meeting, we had Jason Dixon giving the main presentation on Secure Mail Servers with BSD. Afterwards, Patrick Thomasson gave a short talk about Pure-FTPd.

Jason opened the meeting by announcing the creation of MetaBUG: a Global BSD User Groups organization founded to promote local BSD user groups by helping to share ideas and experiences with other BUG organizations, in addition to possible collaboration and "virtual attendance" from anywhere in the world.

His presentation, Secure Mail Servers with BSD, covered mail delivery using Postfix, a drop-in sendmail replacement, configured for virtual mailboxes and domains, greylisting using OpenBSD's spamd, and content filtering with amavisd-new (ClamAV, SpamAssassin and Vipul's Razor). Mail retrieval duties focused on the Courier-IMAP service and RoundCube webmail. Presentation slides: HTML, PDF and zipped Keynote.

After the presentation, Jason started to show how easy it was to set up these services on OpenBSD, but that demonstration led to a short demo about building ports. Flavors were briefly explained, like running "FLAVOR='mysql sasl' make package" in the /usr/ports/mail/postfix directory. I also gave a few tips on building ports like adding "BIN_PACKAGES=Yes" and "FETCH_PACKAGES=Yes" to /etc/mk.conf so that the ports system will try to use pre-build packages for dependencies before building them from the ports tree. You can also add "SUDO=/usr/bin/sudo" to /etc/mk.conf so the ports tree will use ${SUDO} wherever necessary which allows you to do many ports building functions as non-root. More details in the OpenBSD manual.

We thought it would be smart to include one or two short talks about an interesting program, script, technology or topic to add variety to the meetings. For this month's meeting, Patrick spoke briefly about Pure-FTPd and how he's using it for a customer. He discussed the benefits of Pure-FTPd, including chroot, SSL/TLS support, virtual users, per-user bandwidth throttling & quotas, and flexability in authentication mechanisms. Todd Carson was also going to briefly talk his window manager of choice, but we ran out of time, so he'll demo it next month (I'm intentionally not giving details so I don't steal his thunder). We wrapped up the meeting at the Greene Turtle on McGaw Road in Columbia. I'm sure Jason would insert some comment about it being much cheaper this month, but I'm not going to let him.

Thanks to everyone for their participation and I'm looking forward to next month's meeting. We'll start planning topics, times and other specifics on the mailing list. Thanks again to Todd and Chris for allowing us to use their office for the meeting.