Comparing efficiency in sending mail

Robin Thomas robin.thomas at starmedia.net
Sun Mar 25 19:58:53 CEST 2001


At 05:08 PM 3/25/01 +0000, Sheila King wrote:

>Anyhow, that last part is really off-topic here, as it is an issue with how to
>use sendmail/qmail. I just wanted to point out, that using the smtplib module
>is easier and gives me more control over the messages I send, and therefore
>I'm curious as to why I would want to use popen to send to sendmail instead.

If you use smtplib, your program is the MTA. Your program must do the 
actual message transfer by itself: checking/munging the message to be sent, 
blocking on connect to destination MTA, handling errors, retrying if 
desired, bouncing message to a mailbox, etc.

If you use sendmail, sendmail is the MTA. Your program, if it gives 
sendmail a minimally complete message, will complete the popen() function 
quickly, and sendmail will then worry about the actual sending of the 
message. Your program can do other things. As a "full-service" MTA, 
sendmail can retry sending, bounce the message to a mailbox, queue the 
message for sending later in a big batch, etc. Of course, "full-service" 
also means that sendmail does things to the message or with the message 
that you didn't ask it to do.

The choice you make is informed by your application's needs.



--
Robin Thomas
Engineering
StarMedia Network, Inc.
robin.thomas at starmedia.net





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