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post-w3c email hosting

From: Dan Brickley <danbri@danbri.org>
Date: Mon, 14 Jun 2010 10:20:58 +0200
Message-ID: <AANLkTilkU66iZdyt8QSjplkRmgpyaZPwG5ycM-94BreH@mail.gmail.com>
To: Dan Connolly <connolly@w3.org>
Cc: www-archive@w3.org, Libby Miller <libby@nicecupoftea.org>
Hi Dan,

via Libby,
[17:53] DanC: danbri, got a minute to help me think out loud about
where to forward connolly@w3.org?
[17:54] DanC: danbri :No such nick/channel

So until I faded out of W3C Team in late 2005, I did everything by
IMAP. The client varied; Pine then Mutt then Thunderbird, but I used
W3C's IMAP server and it was  perfect. It ran very solidly, and gave
me every confidence I wasn't losing stuff. From 2006 through maybe
2008 I used Dreamhost's cheapass Web hosting and email.  For spam
filtering, I think they offered a half-hearted spamassassin which I
tried to improve upon locally, though I never got it to a happy state
(also dropped my whitelist-based filtering).

The only smart thing i did, was made sure this was through a domain
name I owned; danbri@danbri.org (changing email addresses - very much
no fun; never again!)

Dreamhost's service was pretty painful, always this nagging sense that
you'd lost messages but hard to pin down, often sluggish and
unresponsive. I really came to appreciate what a fine IMAP service the
W3C systeam hosted...

At some point, Dreamhost bailed on the email-hosting market and
started pushing heavily for their customers to go to Google. And in
fact I'd found myself increasingly using my backup account
danbrickley@gmail.com; although I was uncomfortable leaning on an
address that embedded the service provider's name, I ended up using
the gmail one whenever something was important. Partly this was
because gmail's spam filtering is solid, and I never had the sense
messages were lost; partly also because the search is very good, so I
could find the 'lost' messages more easily.

So - I found 'Google Apps for domains', and went through the dance to
prove to google that I control the domain danbri.org, and set up
danbri@danbri.org as a google apps for domains thing. This is a free
service, and gives several of the google apps under your own domain -
http://www.google.com/apps/intl/en/group/index.html

It's the best thing I've found so far. I'd be willing to pay for a
solid mail service (filtering, search, ... ) but for now this free
service is excellent. They also have an interesting supply of addons
via Google Labs. Messages are tagged rather than foldered, which suits
my personality quirks: I always ended up filing things in a giant
perodically-archived inboxes rather than some folder because
everything naturally falls in multiple categories ("If I can't file it
in several places, I'll file it nowhere!"). Gmail allows multiple
tags, and creation of tag-assigning filters, so I'm happy there. The
mapping of all this into IMAP is somewhat quirky (naturally enough)
but in practice that's no problem for me, as I've drifted out of using
a desktop mail app anyway, despite recent Thunderbird's looking quite
promising.

So that'd be my recommendation. Sure I wish Google didn't own my life
quite so thoroughly, but well they do such a good job of it... ;)

Hope this helps, and keen to hear of any interesting alternatives...

cheers,

Dan
Received on Monday, 14 June 2010 08:21:32 UTC

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