zNET Mail System Upgrade Overview

zNET recently upgraded the mail system for better performance, reliability, and improved features. This upgrade resulted in numerous positive benefits to our customers. We thank you for your patience while we deployed and tested the new mail system. The major benefits of the mail upgrade are greater mail system stability and security, a user accessible Control Panel, increased mailbox size with superior quota management, and increased anti-spam protection with user controlled features.

The changes are listed below:

Quota Changes and Free WebSpace

Email quota and webspace quota are no longer shared. For many years the 10mb quota for email and webspace were shared. Now quotas for email and webspace are separate and receiving large emails will not reduce the amount of webspace available to you and vice versa. Additionally the email quotas will be "soft" quotas which means that you will be able to delete messages when your mailbox is full. In the past if your mailbox was full you wouldn't be able to delete messages, this has now been fixed. We have also doubled the mailbox quota to 20mb so you will have more space available for mail. Your old personal webspace will still retain the same address server la.znet.com/~username or uf.znet.com/~username.

Webmail Changes

For some time zNET has been running two different Webmail interfaces for our customers: Squirrelmail (znet.com/webmail) and IMP (webmail.znet.net). Squirrelmail has been phased out in favor of the newer IMP webmail because of feature, compatibility, and performance factors.

Here are the details that are important for the webmail transition:

  • All mail visible in Squirrelmail before the upgrade will be visible in IMP afterwards. You will not loose any mail as a result of the upgrade.
  • We understand that your webmail addressbook is an important part of using the webmail system and as a result your Squirrelmail addressbook will be imported to IMP on the date of the mail transition. This means IMP will have the same address book information that Squirrelmail had.
  • Similarly, your existing folder structure and messages in eachfolder will be unaffected and will transition to IMP.
  • In addition, the transition will provide users a greater amount of control over the anti-spam settings for their e-mail account. Upon the completion of the upgrade your account's anti-spam settings will be handled via the Control Panel, see the "Protection Settings" section below for a review of the increased feature set that will be available. A consequence of this move to a master control panel is that any old blacklist/whitelist information contained in Squirrelmail will no longer be effective. The impact of this change will be minimal since the new anti-spam filtering system uses a more advanced and dynamic anti-spam control paradigm. Again the benefits of this new system are outlined in detail in the "Protection Settings" section.

Control Panel

A major benefit of this upgrade for our users is the introduction of a master control panel to control numerous configuration options  for their individual mail account. These configuration options include anti-spam settings, autoresponders, forwards, aliases (for webhosting accounts only), and addition or deletion of email accounts. Any customer with an email account can use the control panel. The control panel will not be available until after the Mail Upgrade is completed on March 22, 2005. After the Mail Upgrade is complete on March 22, 2005 the Control Panel will be active and available to all customers who have an email account with us.

You can log on to the control panel by going to the website: http://cp.znet.com

Managing An Individual Email Account

You can login to the control panel with the user/pass for the particular email account you want to manage. Logging in with user/pass  for a email account will allow you to manage only that particular email accounts settings, not all of the emails associated with the entire account. You can setup autoresponders, forwards, aliases (for webhosting accounts only), and modify spam settings with the control panel.

Protection Settings

The new Email Protection Settings help to protect your email account from viruses, spam and other unwanted email. By adjusting these settings, you can fine-tune how the system handles email for yourindividual email account. There are 3 main stages in our new spam filtration system:

  • Stage 1: RBLs
  • Stage 2: Virus Scanning
  • Stage 3: Spam Scanning

Stage 1: Realtime Blacklists (RBLs)
A Realtime Blacklist is a list of mail servers that are known to send spam or other malicious messages. If this setting is enabled, any message, regardless of the sender, that originates from  one of these mail servers will be blocked and will not reach the mail account. The Whitelists and Blacklists under Spam Scanning DO NOT apply to RBLS only to the 3rd stage Spam Scanning. User's can choose whether to enable RBLs or disable RBLs via the control panel. In the past users had to be on separate servers depending on whether they wanted RBLs or not; users that did not want RBLs in the past were placed on uf.znet.com and everyone else that did want filtering were placed on la.znet.com, sj.znet.com, etc. The consolidation of these options into a user controlled environment represents a great improvement for the end-user.

Stage 2: Virus Scanning
Messages containing viruses do not get delivered, and are automatically deleted from your email account. We do not notify you or the sender when a viral message is deleted. This setting cannot be edited.

Stage 3: Spam Scanning
After messages pass stage 1 and 2 your Spam Scanning settings determine whether messages coming to your email account are scanned by our anti-spam filter. You may choose to disable all Spam scanning, but we do not recommend this. If Spam scanning is enabled you can customize this filter using the Spam Sensitivity, Spam Action settings, and Sender Lists.

Spam Sensitivity

Increasing the sensitivity should result in less spam delivered to your mailbox. Users should be aware that increasing this setting could result in an increase in "False-Positives" or legitimate mail being considered spam. Conversely, lowering the sensitivity will decrease the chance of false positives, but may allow more spam to get through. This option is user controlled so you can experiment with the best sensitivity setting.

Spam Action

This determines what happens to messages identified as spam by our spam filter. There are two options: "Tag and Deliver" or "Delete".

Tag and Deliver

Recommended setting. This marks the message with the phrase [SPAM] in the subject line and  delivers the message to your email account. You can setup rules in your mail client or webmail to  sort all [SPAM] labeled messages to a SPAM folder or the Trash folder.

Delete

This deletes the identified spam message. You will not be notified of the deletion, and the message cannot be recovered or restored.

Sender Lists

Sender Lists enable you to make specific rules to allow or disallow delivery of email from certain email addresses or domains. Two types of sender lists can be configured: a Whitelist and a Blacklist. Awhitelist allows  messages from the listed senders regardless if they are spam, while a blacklist blocks messages from  the listed senders regardless if it is spam. Sender lists will not override ealtimeBlacklists or Virus Scanning. A message will still be blocked if it is from a blacklisted server and Realtime Blacklists are enabled or if it contains a  virus.

You may designate a domain as being blacklisted and then designate an email from that domain as being on your whitelist. Any email specifically from the whitelisted address will be allowed through even though the originating domain may be blacklisted.

For example, if you designate aol.com as being blacklisted but you set myemail@aol.com on your white list, the only email from the aol.com domain that will be allowed through will be myemail@aol.com.

Managing An Entire Accounts Emails

In order to manage multiple email accounts, add, or delete email accounts you will need Customer  Care to set one email account as the "Admin" account. Email accounts that are set to "Admin" status have access to ALL emails that are associated under the entire account. In order to set a particular email account to "Admin" status you will need to contact our Customer Care Center at 800-676-9392.

 


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