PostCast SMTP Server
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Compare Free and Professional Edition

The professional edition of PostCast Server has several new features that are not available in the free edition. The trial version of PostCast Server Professional has all the features available in the full version, but it expires after 14 days and inserts a small two-line advertisement at the bottom of each message.

These features are not available in the free edition:

 

SMTP gateways

This option allows you to specify one or more backup SMTP servers. If PostCast Server is unable to deliver a message, it can forward it to a backup SMTP server. This enables the program to successfully send higher percentage of messages.

If only certain domains are unable to receive messages from PostCast Server, you can use this option to forward those messages to your ISP's SMTP server.

Some ISPs (AOL, for example) block access to their servers if the incoming connections originate from dynamic (dial-up) IP addresses. This option enables you to forward all messages for those servers to your ISP's SMTP server. Their server's (non-dynamic) IP address will be the source of your outgoing messages. See SMTP Gateways topic for more information.

Multiple mail folders

The program has six folders for storing different types of e-mail messages. The default folder is "Outbox" where all outgoing messages are stored. Sent messages are automatically moved to the "Sent Items" folder. Manually deleted messages are moved to the "Deleted Items" folder.

Undelivered messages are saved in the "Bad" folder. The "Bounced" folder contains messages that could not be sent within the specified timeframe. The program automatically stores unfinished items you are working on to the "Drafts" folder.

It is also possible to transfer messages from one folder into another by selecting the "Move to Folder" or "Copy to Folder" options from the Edit menu.

DNS caching

Every time your web browser wants to load a web page, it needs to contact a DNS server first, which will translate the http://www.domain.com/ address into a machine readable format - the IP address. The same thing happens when PostCast Server tries to send a message to a recipient. The domain name in the e-mail address is translated into the address of the server that receives messages for that domain.

Even though the communication only takes up a few hundred milliseconds each time a message is sent, these can add up over time, as the number of requests can easily reach hundreds or thousands of DNS queries. DNS servers can sometimes be unavailable and the responses to queries can be very slow.

An easy way to speed up this process is to cache the information locally thereby eliminating the need for repetitive queries to the remote DNS server. This is done by telling PostCast Server to contact a local database on your computer, rather than the remote DNS server. This local connection can be performed much faster and does not depend on the response time of the remote DNS server across the Internet.

PostCast Server contacts the remote DNS server once, and then caches (memorizes) the addresses returned from the query. So the next time you are requesting the same domain.com address, it instantly returns the answer, without having to contact your ISP's DNS server to ask it for the translation. The process is much faster, since it does not have to connect to any remote servers every time. See DNS Caching topic for more information.

Firewall and proxy support

This feature enables you to send e-mail through other proxy servers on your Local Area Network (LAN) or on the Internet. If the only way to connect to the Internet on you LAN is through the firewall, you can use this feature to run the program even if the direct connection to the Internet is not available.

When the message is sent through the proxy server, your dynamic IP address is not embedded in the message headers and detected by the remote mail server. The default port for socks proxy is 1080. The program will be able to send messages directly from your computer, even if the port 25 is blocked by your ISP. This feature also enables the program to send messages to those servers that block connections from dynamic IP addresses.

Automatic detection of DNS addresses

The "Detect when default DNS addresses change" option in the Settings screen enables the program to automatically configure correct DNS server addresses when you switch to a different Internet connection. This is especially useful if you are using connections with several ISPs.

50 parallel threads for sending

The number of threads the program can use to send messages has increased from 20 to 50. This will enable users with fast Internet connections to send messages faster. It is still recommended to use maximum 20 threads on dial-up connections.

More control in system tray mode

When running minimized in the system tray, the program shows more options in the pop-up menu when you right-click its icon. This simplifies the basic operations and allows you to have more control over the program without opening the main window.

Balloon tooltips

The program now displays the tooltip window after receiving or sending messages. Tooltips are also displayed in some other situations, like when the program detects the new DNS server or automatically configures itself to run on a new IP address. The option can be disabled in the Settings/Advanced window.

Client-server communication logs

It is now possible to log all communication between the e-mail client and PostCast Server. This log is useful for troubleshooting problems with the client connection to the server. The file is placed in the Logs folder and it is accessible from the drop-down list on the main menu. You can enable this option in the Settings/Administration window under the "Log files" section.

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