What kind of servers do I need to run SpamAssassin for my large site?
Obviously, every site is different. Here are some details on one large scale deployment that you may find useful as a benchmark.
MWEB is the largest ISP in South Africa, with approximately 350,000 mailboxes, all of which get filtered through SpamAssassin.
Their setup entails 8 servers running Postfix, 12 servers running amavisd-new, and an additional 5 servers running Trend Micro and Vexira anti-virus. Their 25 servers are Dell Power Edge 2650's with dual 3.0 GHz Xeons, 4 gigs of ram, and 5 SCSI drives in a RAID 10 configuration (1 hotspare). They're running a custom built Fedora Core 2, 2.6.7 kernel .
Here are their statistics for April:
Year Month Messages Blocked Messages Passed Total Messages Percentage Blocked 2004 Apr 106,710,305 25,065,604 131,775,909 80.98 %
Thus, their long term average is 131,775,909 / 30 / 24 / 60 / 60 = 50 messages per second. Their peak rate is up to about 300 messages a second, or 6x their average.
Note that while amavisd calls Mail::SpamAssassin directly, it runs Perl as a daemon and should offer performance quite close to spamd. This suggests that a single brawny server running spamd can comfortably handle 5 messages a second and may peak up to 30 messages per second.
Please contribute details on your large installation. It's fine to do so anonymously if necessary.
- DanKohn interviewing camis at mweb.co.za