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    Axigen and Email Archiving

    Email archiving is one of the business requirements that needs a little drill down before recommending the correct solution.

    Email archiving might be detailed (from a business requirement perspective) in more than one way:
    • achieve compliancy
      • depending on the specification that you need to be compliant with, the requirements might go as far as making sure the archive is on a WORM storage)
    • have an archive of all inbound and outbound (or just one way) for all email traffic (or just for a certain domain or just for certain users)
    • have an archive that must be used for discovery procedures (which implies extremely flexible searching mechanisms on the archive).
    • etc (please let me know in comments if you can think of other business requirement perspectives)
    Axigen, supports the MILTER protocol and hence it is extremely easy to integrate it with dedicated on-prem archiving solutions like MailArchiva or Piler. For the MILTER-based MailArchiva integration we have a KnowledgeBase article, here. The same type of integration can be achieved with Piler as well.

    MailArchiva can also be integrated with Axigen via SMTP (here is the relevant KB Article). The same SMTP based integration can be configured with virtually any other Email Archving solution that has a SMTP listener.

    But the scope of this article is to discuss some mechanisms in which you can implement email archiving only with an Axigen Server (or two ). So here it goes.

    There are several possibilities:
    1. Configure a dedicated account where we will re-route all (or some) email traffic.
    2. Configure a Public Folder where we will re-route all (or some) email traffic.
    3. Configure a separate domain on the same Axigen server and a dedicated account in it where we will re-route all (or some) email traffic.
    4. Configure a second Axigen server on which we will configure archiving domains / accounts in which we will re-route all (or some) email traffic.
    All of the above methods rely on the following skeleton rules:
    • Go to WebAdmin
    • Go to Security & Filtering
    • Go to Acceptance & Routing
    • Go to Advanced Settings
    • Here, press the "Add Acceptance / Routing Rule" button.
      • type a suggestive Rule name (e.g. "archive_any_recv")
      • leave the "Conditions" section without any condition, so that is matches any email message.
      • in the "Actions" section, select the "Add recipient" option from the Recipients category and press "Add Action".
      • Type an email address that will be used to send all email messages to MailArchiva (for example "archive@mailarchiva.domain.tld")
      • press the "Save Configuration" button.
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    As you can see this rule essentially add an 'invisible' recipient to all emails that match the rule. The recipient can be an email address object. You might remember that in Axigen, email address objects can be associated with several Object Types (accounts, groups, maillists, public folder recipients, etc). You may also want to see how to efficiently use these email address objects.

    Now, for the four scenarios above, the recipient email address is still an email address but it is backed by a different object type:
    1. in the 1st case, the email address is of an account
      1. Like the solution above the advantage of this solution is the leveraging of the Axigen UltraStorage engine which keeps a single copy to a message which is then referenced from the account's mailboxes as well as from the archive folder.
      2. The disadvantage of this is that this single copy of the email message does not ensure true continuation of in case of an fault in the underlying storage.
    2. in the 2nd case, the email address if of an public folder recipient or it can be a postmaster@domain email address in which the Folder can be specified as "~Public Folders/Archive" where the 'Archive' public folder does not have a public folder recipient email address associated with it but it can be accessed via the postmaster@domain account or via any other account that has write permissions to this public folder
      1. Like the solution above the advantage of this solution is the leveraging of the Axigen UltraStorage engine which keeps a single copy to a message which is then referenced from the account's mailboxes as well as from the archive folder.
      2. The disadvantage of this is that this single copy of the email message does not ensure true continuation of in case of an fault in the underlying storage.
    3. in the 3rd case, you would have created in advance a separate domain (let's call it archive.yourdomain.com) and create an account in it (or a public folder) that has an email address associated to it, let's say archive@archive.yourdomain.com.
      1. The advantage of this solution is that the storage of the dedicated domain is separate from the store of the original domain, thus allowing you to configure a separate mount point on your system and dedicate a separate storage to it.
      2. The disadvantage of this solution is the obvious impact on the storage volume.
    4. In the 4th case, you would require a separate physical or virtual server where you would deploy another Axigen instace (make sure your license allows you to deploy Axigen on multiple servers, otherwise contact our sales team via this form or by email-ing your dedicated account manager).
      1. The advantage of this solution is the physical separation of the two nodes (you have your main mail server and your archiving server on two separate nodes)
      2. The disadvantage of this solution is the obvious impact on the storage volume.
    All of the above become more and more complex as you are providing email hosting services to your customers. If you want to archive for all your hosted domains, or you if want to provide archiving to only a subset, or if you want to create individual archives to each of your customers, Axigen's extreme flexibility can be used to satisfy pretty much all scenarios.

    The following building blocks are be leveraged: the SMTP Filtering Language inside Axigen, allows the usage of SMTP variables, this increasing the flexibility of the rules. For example: when setting the recipient email address you can use something like: postmaster@%currentRcptDomain% and in the Folder Name you can use something like: "~Public Folders/Archive/%currentRcptLocalPart%". This dynamic configuration would enable you to create a single rule that covers all your provisioned domains but would require you to change your automatic or manual provisioning checklist to create the Archive Public Folder when you provision a domain and to create the Archive/user.name subfolder for each of your users (that is if you plan on creating individual user archiving subfolders).

    When you host multiple domains on a single server, you would need to also create an Acceptance rule to cover the authenticated submission scenarios when a users sends an email outbound or to another user in another domain that would look similar to the following:
    • Go to WebAdmin
    • Go to Security & Filtering
    • Go to Acceptance & Routing
    • Go to Advanced Settings
    • Here, press the "Add Acceptance / Routing Rule" button.
      • type a suggestive Rule name (e.g. "archive_from_sender")
      • In the "Conditions" section add the "Connection / is Authenticated" and enable this condition, so that is matches any submitted email message that comes via an SMTP auth conenction.
      • in the "Actions" section, select the "Add recipient" option from the Recipients category and press "Add Action".
      • Type an email address that will be used to send all email messages to the Public Folder of the Sender domain (for example "postmaster@%mailFromDomain%" and "~Public Folders/Archive" as Folder Name)
      • press the "Save Configuration" button.
    As you can see, this rule uses the %mailFromDomain% variable, thus placing the 'invisible' archving recipient also for the outbound archiving destination point.

    All of the above building blocks may be intimidating at the first read but after playing with them all things will become clear and straightforward.

    Please write down in the comments below your specific scenarios which may or may not be covered by this article. We truly love a challenge .

    Also, remember you can contact the support team in case you have a valid support subscription 24x7 and they will assist you recommendations for various configurations. Remember that when requirements are clear, solutions are easier to be identified if are available.
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