Using Whitebox for Maia Mailguard

A couple of months ago I posted my initial impressions of Maia Mailguard.

Maia Mailguard is a web-based interface and management system for the popular amavisd-new e-mail scanner and SpamAssassin. Written in Perl and PHP, Maia Mailguard gives end-users control over how their mail is processed by virus scanners and spam filters, while giving mail administrators the power to configure site-wide defaults and limits.

Since that time I have put Maia into limited production at work, and it is working well. In deploying Maia I faced a number of challenges. Our preferred Linux platform is WhiteBox Linux. WhiteBox is an OpenSource redistribution of Red Hat Enterprise Linux. What WhiteBox provides is a stable platform for running our enterprise applications, but Maia (and amavis) needs some the more cutting edge releases in order function.

Here is a partial list of things that I needed to do to get Maia working on WhiteBox:

Install php-devel, you may need install manaully by downloading the rpm.

A lot of php/pear updates need to happen, I used the following commands (but your mileage may vary)

pear config-set preferred_state alpha
pear upgrade PEAR
pear config-set preferred_state stable

pear install Mail_Mime Auth_SASL DB_Pager pecl/SQLite Log Numbers_Roman-1.0.1 Image_Color "channel://" "channel://" Image_Graph

pear upgrade-all

Install jpgraph

I also had to install a TrueType font, I used the Vera TrueType Font from the Gnome package.

Updated the chart functions in the Maia php code to point to the location of the new font.

Install all of the Amavis requirements (note there are extra config steps needed if you are going to use DSPAM). Most can be installed on WB by using the excellent DAG: Apt/Yum RPM Repository of packages.

DAG is a repository of add-on RPM packages for Red Hat/Fedora. I currently have 38,747 packages available for Red Hat Enterprise Linux (2.1, 3 and 4), Fedora Core (1, 2, and 3) and Red Hat Linux (6.2, 7.3, 8.0 and 9), for i386 and x86_64. They comprise 2160 different projects.

I’m sure there are a number of additional things that I did, but forgot to document. In any case this should at least get you started if you decided to try Maia on a RHEL redistribution.

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  1. Glad to see you got it deployed and it’s working well for you. My initial impression of it just turned me off. I’m sure it’s a good product and maybe I just didn’t have the patience (sp?) to pull it off. But keep us posted of the outcome of the full production roll out, I think it’ll be very interesting.


  2. We’ve deployed it as the backend for everyone, but only a handful of people know about the front-end. By default we enabled some the scanning and tagging features which allowed us to mirror our prior implementation. Over time I’m slowly showing those users who are either technically savvy or get a lot of spam the new features that Maia offers. I doubt that I ever publish it for everyone (at least with the current interface).

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