I’ve had it with Sherweb. If you didn’t know, I had my 3GB hosted Exchange account hosted at http://www.sherweb.com for about 5 to 6 months now and overall the overall experience was great. However … there was one thing that was bothing me… I didn’t get all my email.
Let me explain.. I set up my account (…@martijnbrant.net) and made sure the DNS settings for my domain were properly set. They were and in no time the account was up and running using Microsoft Outlook 2007 and Windows Mobile 6.0 (Push email). All was great and all my email was being delivered to my inbox.
Half a day later .. I got a (what the server thought to be) spam message and I didn’t recieve it. At the end of the day, the server had send me a anti-spam reporting showing I had one message waiting for me at the webinterface for anti-spam. Turns out .. Sherweb was using a product called Barracuda Spam Firewall. It sat between my email and my inbox.. filtering emails and quarantining them in the webinterface. I found this annoying and I quickly turned it off (making it tag spam instead..).
All was fine again .. untill I was planning my trip to Florida. I had the hotel I was going to be staying in (which was great, Choicehotels are awesome value) on the phone and manager who booked my stay said he sended the confirmation of my hotel reservation to my mb.net email account. One hour later, I still hadn’t recieved it. I rang them up and had them send it to my Hotmail Windows Live Mail account. Sure .. 2 secs later I had recieved the email. “That’s strange huh?”
I dismissed the problem and went on my trip to Florida. After I got back .. I was curious as to how this could have happened. I tried to forward the stored email from my WLM account to my Sherweb account. Never recieved it. Surprised by this, I rang Sherweb. After going trough the usual Level-1-support stuff, I got through to Level 2. The guy was friendly enough and tracked down the email. “Ah I see .. blocked”. Ok sure, I replied .. why is it blocked and why can’t I see that?
“Well sir the Barracuda filtering system uses 3rd party blacklists in order to tag spam. Messages containing keywords from that list will be deleted”. Wait what? You deleted my email?!?! “Yes sir, for your protection”. Erhmm Ok .. On what word was it blocked? “Lemme just see here … ah .. choicehotels.com sir”. Wait what? As for as I understand it, Choicehotels is a pretty large organisation with 1000s of hotels all over the USA. “Yeah the word is blocked sir”.
It turned out I couldn’t see what emails were being blocked or for what reason. I had no idea on how much emails (read: business) I had lost over this. I asked Sherweb “What should I do with my important email? Just use my Windows Live Mail for all the important bits?”. He replied “Err yeah you could do that…”. “- Why am I paying you then?” … “Well sir, you could still use your Sherweb account for all personal stuff”. What?!?! Sure buddy .. I’ll just use my 100$ email account for personal stuff… I have WLM for that..
So .. as of today I’m migrating over to http://www.exchangemailhosting.com. I rang them up and told them/asked them about my Sherweb problems and if they had similar systems. They chuckled and replied “No sir, we believe in NOT trowing email away”. Hehe.
I hope exchangemailhosting.com will be better. We’ll see. Just about done with the DNS. Wait a couple of more days and then cancel my Sherweb service. They told me they’ll refund my pre-paid 3 month period. So have to hand it to them .. that’s great. Overall Sherweb is great if it wasn’t for their email-eating practice.