Archive for December, 2009

Rackspace Email Hosting vs. Google Apps

I’d been using Google Apps for receiving emails sent to my domain up until an hour ago. As I’ve mentioned before, I’m running my app on Slicehost, and as usual they had some great instructions for using Google Apps for your email needs.

That was working kinda ok but there were a couple of things that annoy me about that solution. First is that I just don’t want Google involved in every single thing I do online. I generally trust them, but there are some things I don’t want to use them for, namely anything to do with my business (I don’t use Google Analytics either). The second is that I think it’s highway robbery to pay $50 per user per year for the premier account. I only need 2 right now, but down the line I might need more. I didn’t relish the thought of giving them $300 or $400 a year to provide a beefed up version of their free tools.

So today I discovered that Rackspace has an email hosting solution as well. And if you’re a Slicehost customer and need 3 or fewer inboxes (that me!) it’s only $3/month. The normal starter package’s price is $10/month for up to 10 inboxes, which is still totally reasonable. So in less than an hour I converted from Google Apps to Rackspace Email Hosting. And of course they have the usual helpful configuration instructions to get you started.

I have a couple of concerns that I’ll follow up on in future posts. The first is that according to the representative I chatted with there’s a limit of about 200 outgoing emails per hour. I think that’s going to be ok for my app, but I guess I’ll see. The other is that I’m pretty useless with mail configuration things and I’m a little nervous about how much effort will be involved in connecting my local postfix to their smtp server for outgoing email. I’m sure I’ll figure that out eventually though.

In any case, for $3/month, moving back to Google won’t be a huge issue if it should come to that. Hopefully it won’t. I’ve already gotten a few small tastes of the fanatical support from Rackspace and I have to say it’s pretty nice so far.