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I want to create a mail server for personal use. It will be used mainly by me and possibly some family members. The system load will be in the order of 5-10 IMAP mailboxes, all for "human" use: no heavy traffic, "corporate" massive usage or spamming.

I'd like to use this stack:

  • Ubuntu 12.04 x64
  • Exim (would anyone suggest Postfix? I'm after lightness and simplicity)
  • Dovecot
  • ClamAV
  • something to filter spam (suggestions?)
  • mailman (maybe)

I would rather not install other things on this machine. For example, I'm not planning to install Apache or MySQL (or any other DBdaemon) if I can avoid it.
(System health stuff like Unattended_Upgrades will be present, though.)

I also know about sudo tasksel install mail-server, but I prefer doing things myself :-)

My question is:
What kind os system usage should I expect? What kind of machine would I need?
I was considering Amazon EC2, either:

  • t1.micro: 613 MiB of memory, up to 2 ECUs (for short periodic bursts), EBS storage only
  • M1.small: 1.7 GiB of memory, 1 EC2 Compute Unit (1 virtual core with 1 EC2 Compute Unit), 160 GB of local instance storage

About DBs. I'm not experienced with mail server software (I'm still studying the documentation), and I'd appreciate some quick advice on whether a DB integration is really needed. I read of people using MySQL for Exim configuration.
I do have a remote MySQL dedicated machine, but I'd rather use a local flat file like SQLite. Would that be possible or even needed?

A final point: I'm planning to setup Roundcube as a webmail client on another Apache-PHP server. Any suggestions on that?


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