MailCleaner and Open Source [was: Is mailcleaner OS dead?]

Want some informations on MailCleaner internals ?

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egrueda
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:36 pm
How did you hear about Mailcleaner: google

MailCleaner and Open Source [was: Is mailcleaner OS dead?]

Postby egrueda » Wed May 04, 2011 11:10 pm

It's been more than one year since last beta version of the open source edition and nothing has changed, neither can find a roadmap.
Project seems abandoned, and it's a pitty
I know commercial version is the one bringing money, and respect it, but seems like there's no other application but commercial one.
Will this open source project die later this year? Will it be forever in this staus?
There's no much we can do if the main development team don't want to feed their child.
I'm really sorry about this :-(
uncltom
Posts: 499
Joined: Tue Aug 26, 2008 3:01 am
How did you hear about Mailcleaner: I dont remember probably google?
Location: Spokane, WA

Re: Is mailcleaner OS dead?

Postby uncltom » Thu May 05, 2011 4:19 am

There have been three major updates in the last 6 months. Read the forums. (Exim update is the most recent that comes to mind.)
The open source side does not generate a dime, it is from the shear goodness of the mailcleaner staff it even exists. The fact that one of the developers responds personally to problems usually within a day or so makes this post really offensive, and I am not the developer (Olivier) that I speak of.

We are alive and very well thank you very much. There is a whole new version in the works but again if you want it faster, pay for it.
egrueda
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:36 pm
How did you hear about Mailcleaner: google

Re: Is mailcleaner OS dead?

Postby egrueda » Thu May 05, 2011 6:57 am

Please, uncltom, don't get me wrong.
I didn't want to sound rude, but worried. I thank you for every code line and every minute spent in the forums. I do read forums quite often, and see the updates, most of them are security ones but new features are not coming for a long time.

Of course, in this moment MC is kept alive (maybe) by one or two people, but it lacks of a real community which helps to improve it, forums are not oving too much, just a few questions.
In the other side it seems that this open source project has a quite closed development. In some other OS projects community is encouraged to participate, but this is not MC case as it looks more like a maintenance rather than a development.

Those recent updates could be already in the latest ISO available to download, maybe a beta 4 or even a RC, but it's not there and it's impossible for people like me to know if there's a new version coming or a new update in mind, even when I read all two topics posted on Announcements forum.

I think/hope you perfectly get the idea of my message. Please, don't use those typical words like "if you want it, pay for it" as that goes against the open source philosophy (not because of the payment, but of choosing license-limitted commercial version)

I really hope things could get better for this great open source application, and I think first step should be opening it to the community, but not only the code but the development ideas and goals.
I hope you can understand my point of view.
olivier
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Joined: Thu Jan 01, 1970 1:00 am
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Re: Is mailcleaner OS dead?

Postby olivier » Thu May 05, 2011 9:10 am

well, this is the old "what open source means" question :)
So, to be clear, what we believe Open Source means is:

- someone has a need and decide to implement it
- the source code is made public so that anybody can use and modify it
- if someone else need new features, he's free to implement it and simply has to publish it back (don't even need to be in the same project, it can be a fork).

... and that's it ! There is absolutely no need to have a growing community, a roadmap and even any update to completely match the "open source philosophy".
When expecting constant updates, maintenances, roadmap (which means new features), and even bug fixes, then you imply some responsibility and due from the original developer of the project. And THIS is NOT the open source philosophy. Keep in mind that the "free", in the Free Software is not only for the users, but also (and mainly) for the developers.

Now that this is defined, I agree that having an active and nice community, and a good maintenance is always better. For MailCleaner, there are some people here that are very active and responsive (and big thanks to them !). I also personally look at the forum as much as I can (usually many times a day) and try to answer as fast as possible. So even though it could still be better, I believe it's not that bad and at least you can have answers.
Concerning the releases cycle and the updates, well.. all depends on the stability and required features of the project.
MailCleaner is quite stable, and each time we got report of a bug, we try to fix it as soon as possible (last example is two days ago). But nothing is critical enough to require a new release (a cvs update is enough).
For the new features, feel free to ask for them. If we're already working on it, I will let you know. if we don't, and don't have plans on it, then you are more than welcome to implement it. If we find it is good and useful, we'll be happy to integrate it.
We don't have a roadmap simply because MailCleaner already does what it is intended to, and new stuff is simply added when a need appears.
Generally, requests comes from the Enterprise customers, so it gets implemented there first, and then backported to the Community Edition. If a feature or bugfix is implemented in the Community Edition, it will then be backported to the Enterprise Edition. Simply.

Finally, here is the current status of the project:
There are many features that have been added in the Enterprise Edition. These are, amongst other: new digest report mode, DKIM signature, full BATV support (signature and verification), improved outgoing relaying options, ...
I started working on the backport 2 weeks ago but am now waiting for some translation work which takes more time than expected (we have to modify the User Manual, which has to go through many validation steps).
Once these translations are over, I'll be able to build a new release, probably named 2011.
I believe that a one year (or even 15 months) cycle is quite fine for major releases, for a stable product. If we introduced more bug than for the 2010 edition, you may expect more minor releases.. otherwise, I guess (hope) there won't be more :wink:
olivier
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Joined: Thu Jan 01, 1970 1:00 am
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Re: MailCleaner and Open Source [was: Is mailcleaner OS dead

Postby olivier » Thu May 05, 2011 12:53 pm

ok, I'm moving the thread here as this is more of a general aspect of MailCleaner's development than a real issue.
MailCleaner is not dead, that's for sure !
uncltom
Posts: 499
Joined: Tue Aug 26, 2008 3:01 am
How did you hear about Mailcleaner: I dont remember probably google?
Location: Spokane, WA

Re: MailCleaner and Open Source [was: Is mailcleaner OS dead

Postby uncltom » Fri May 06, 2011 6:04 am

To answer after reading your reply... You may be confusing open source with an open development project where tens or maybe hundreds of developers volunteer time towards a project and have a roadmap etc... ala Linux. This is not like that at all. This is a commercial project that was back ported to an open source project to get this out to those who need it but can't necessarily afford the commercial version. This was apparently done because of a philosophical desire to get this great work out to as many people as possible and fingers crossed keep their jobs afloat too.

With this in mind if you want a roadmap, feature set and a response time to submitted feature requests take a look at the paid version. It's probably exactly what you're looking for.

To echo Olivier's response we have mailcleaner installations that deal with thousands of e-mails a day, we log into twice a year for updates and maintenance and it runs all by itself with no user intervention the other 6 months in between. While I highly await the new user interface and upgraded statistics (and would love to see it released as an optional update without the manual *hint hint*) there is no real reason we need to upgrade. Our systems are rock solid and work exactly as expected day in and day out with no intervention from us at all. That, in my opinion, is the very essence and definition of stability. It is no suprise that several of the big users I have worked with over the last several years don't post much in the forums. Their products are not broken and simply don't need fixed.

Thomas Nelson
Uncltom

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