[Mailman-Users] Can one use EC2 for bandwidth spikes?

John W. Baxter jwblist3 at olympus.net
Thu Nov 8 02:50:54 CET 2007

On 11/4/07 12:29 PM, "Chuck Peters" <cp at ccil.org> wrote:

> We have a newsletter with 1500+ subscribers which is currently hosted on my
> friends house.  He has DSL and the connection goes to crap for 5-15 minutes
> every time we send one out, other than that it works fine.  When I looked at
> some of the low cost hosting options none of them seem to be good because of
> various limitations like 500 messages per hour.  We send out 1 or 2
> newsletters a week at most so it has been hard to justify spending the
> $40-$100 or more a month for better hosting.
> I have been wanting to try out Amazon's Elastic Compute Cloud,
> http://aws.amazon.com/ec2, and I think it would be really cool to fire up
> the EC2 instance (basically a linux server) for an hour and fire off the
> newsletter.
> Has anyone done this sort of thing?
> I doubt it could it be as simple as making a temporary exim smarthost with
> some configuration tweaks.
> What is required to make this work properly?

Brad points out disk performance issues and others.

In addition, each time you fire up your EC2 server, it gets a dynamically
assigned IP which is virtually certain to differ from the last time.  And
that includes restarts after crashes (but of course they don't crash).

So you have to deal with the usual problems of running mail servers on
dynamic IPs.  Both incoming and outgoing servers in this case...the incoming
problem can be solved by routing through the home server--that leaves the
list members who won't get their copies because the mail comes from a
dynamic pool space--but the list may already have that problem.

So nice as the idea sounds, it likely isn't practical.

Unfortunately, I can't help with specific configurations.


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