Design

From Halon, SMTP software for hosting providers
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So, how and why did Halon platform come to life? Our background as consultants for hosting and ISP companies revealed to us that most organisations with complex topologies, and thus high demands for flexibility, rolled their own email infrastructure and security systems based on available open source components.

Even then, many of those organisations was unsatisfied with having to make sacrifices on design and functionality, because they lacked the tools to design the optimal setup, without compromise. While investigating the e-mail security market, we found most commercial products to not only lacking that flexibility, but also important features such as

  • Transaction safety
    • Ability to reject (block with an SMTP error message) spam, so that senders can follow up on false positives
    • In-line delivery whenever possible, so that the sender is informed if the destination server rejects the message
  • Support for modern technologies such as IPv6, DMARC, DKIM with DNSSEC, etc
  • Documented security design with open APIs between mail processors/backend and for example end-user interfaces
  • Flexibility and scriptability
  • Revision-managed configuration with atomic commits and rollbacks without having to reboot

We allowed ourselves several years to develop what we, and our customers, think is the best in-transit email product. This was possible not only thanks to an extraordinary team of dedicated developers, but also the fact that we got to work with the major hosting companies in Scandinavia as early adopters.