Sendmail arrives, and tools up

With more than 25 years of e-mail delivery history, the commercial support and solutions company for the open source Sendmail Mail Transfer Agent (MTA), Sendmail Inc, has opened an office in Sydney.

The opening comes as the company moves to revamp its image as a provider of messaging security, architecture, and compliance solutions and away from just a vendor or e-mail infrastructure software.

Sendmail's Asia Pacific director of business development Olavs Ritenis will head the local operations in a market with an unknown number of existing users of the open source product by the same name.

While Ritenis concedes locating the existing open source Sendmail users will be a big challenge for the company, he said large IT shops with complex environments will be targeted first.

"We have thousands of open source customers and having local visibility will flush them out," Ritenis said, adding local users tend to be subsidiaries of large, multinational organizations.

Sendmail users include Credit Suisse, Morgan Stanley, Johnson & Johnson, AT&T, Virgin, British Telecom, Vodafone, EMC, Lucent, Oracle, and Sony.

Because the base product is open source, the number of Sendmail users is difficult to determine exactly, but the company estimates 65 to 70 percent of the world's e-mail passes through the venerable MTA at some point.

Ritenis said the Australian operations will also target large ISPs to help with spam prevention, message management, and forensics.

"Our commercial solutions work with the open source and commercial versions of Sendmail so we are not trying to move people off open source," he said. "We will support and add to what they have. Our subject matter experts can go to customers and do audit and risk assessment workshops."

Sendmail, in conjunction with services partners, will also do initial auditing and consulting for free, according to Ritenis.

Sendmail's senior vice president of worldwide field operations, Glen Vondrick, said the company has retained expertise on messaging architecture design for large sites.

Vondrick said Sendmail's technology and services complements existing Microsoft Exchange or Lotus Notes installations.

Sendmail's next-generation management solution will be the first in the industry able to manage both server- and appliance-based MTAs, he said.

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