Mirapoint RazorGate 100

Mirapoint RazorGate 100

Summary: Unique MailHurdle technology makes the RazorGate 100 stand out, but it's a little on the expensive side.

TOPICS: Security, Reviews
  • Editors' rating:
  • User rating:
  • RRP:


  • MailHurdle anti-spam technology
  • inbound and/or outbound filtering
  • flexible content-filtering


  • Expensive

Mirapoint is a long-established vendor of both secure mail servers and, more recently, the RazorGate family of security appliances. The RazorGate 100 is smallest of that range, but runs the same Unix-derived OS together with Sophos antivirus and a SpamAssassin derived anti-spam filter (due to be replaced by a CommTouch product by the end of 2004). The Mirapoint RazorGate 100 costs £4,500 for up to 100 users.

A 1U rack-mount appliance, the RazorGate 100 features an Intel Xeon processor and attaches to the local network via a 10/100Mbps Ethernet interface with a separate port for management if required. The appliance acts as mail router and can be configured to process incoming or outgoing messages specifically, or both. As with many other mail server appliances, it will work with any SMTP mail server and can handle multiple domains.

The browser-based management interface is neat and very logical, if not the most intuitive ever invented. Still, it’s easy enough to master, and using the default settings the RazorGate 100 can start filtering mail in around about an hour. The anti-spam and virus tools are enabled by default and can be fine tuned in various ways, including custom black/white lists and links to external blacklist services. A spam threshold can also be set, and a unique option called MailHurdle enabled.

MailHurdle looks for received messages with a mix of unknown IP address, email to and email from addresses. Such messages are initially rejected causing real mail servers to re-send, but most spamming software won’t bother. Where a resend isn’t received before the pre-set timeout expires, the address combination is marked down as a source of spam -- an approach which by itself can reduce spam traffic by 50 to 80 per cent.

RazorGate filtering is a two-stage process with messages first marked up and then processed. Preset filters are included, but custom filters can also be configured. Customisation facilities are extensive: for example, you can monitor or block messages to/from specific addresses and filter on key words in the subject or body of a message. The two-stage filtering process also allows marked-up messages to be processed by the target mail server rather than the appliance itself. For example, you can deliver suspected bulk mail to specific folders within in a user mailbox rather than block or quarantine it centrally.

The current RazorGate family doesn't allow users to manage quarantined messages or white/black lists themselves, although there is an add-on to do this which will be incorporated into the next OS release (due by the end of 2004). There’s also a separate quarantine manager account to manage quarantined messages via a built-in Web mail interface.


There are currently no specifications for this product.


There are currently no prices available for this product.

Topics: Security, Reviews

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.


Log in or register to join the discussion
  • 9.0

    We tested a RazorGate 100 in front of our 400-user Exchange server 2 months ago, following an unpleasant Barracuda experience (still trying to get a refund) and refused to give it back at the end of the trial. We're seeing Mailhurdle discard ~75% of spam before the scanning processes weed out all but a small quantity of the remainder. The reduction in mail traffic also has a big knock-on effect for my admin duties. I now spend 20 minutes over a coffee in the morning reviewing the contents of the quarantine instead of a painful 2-hour slog.

    The RazorGate 100 has the same few quirks I've encountered in Mirapoint's mail servers before. Some work needs to be done to expose low-level CLI features in the browser interface, and LDAP integration to Active Directory works well but could be made much easier.
  • 2.5

  • 9.5

    Mirapoint appliances are the best solution for today's email envoirment and needs! RG100's Anti-Spam engine includes MailHurdle technology, a unique way of preventing spam, at the edge of your network...yes, before using your private bandwith and storage resources to process junk and bulk mail. Also includes Anti-Virus engine from Sophos and Content filter...yes, in the same box!
  • 2.5

    I wouldnt touch this with a barge pole!! if you want a comprehensive security product may i suggest the Ciphertrust IronMail
  • 1.0

    I made the mistake of buying an M450 and an RG100 a year ago. It's been a year of Hell. I'm still paying my $950/month lease on these pieces of garbage. At the end of the month, the last (and only) customer we put on the Mirapoint will be moved to a postfix server, and the Mirapoint is getting put into storage.

    From day one, we were lied to by sales, given the cold shoulder by support, and given the runaround by professional services.

    And you thought telco support was bad? We will throw a party the day Mirapoint goes bankrupt.
  • 1.0

    We've been struggling through the nightmare that is Mirapoint Support for over a year now. To give a very brief list of the problems:

    - Every function on the mirapoint requires a new license. Mirapoint never gives you all of the licenses you paid for. They issue them when you realize they haven't given them to you, one at a time. They are completely unable to manage their licenses, so they constantly give you 90 day temporary trial licenses instead of the licenses you paid for.

    - Mirapoint tech support is very incompetent. We always get answered by the same tech, and he hardly speaks english. No matter what the problem, they give it to JL. If it's a simple problem, it's his job. If it's something that Professional Services is supposed to be doing, they give it to JL.

    - Mirapoint Sales lied to us. We were quoted $17k initially, and got financing for that. Then they gave us another quote for $27k saying "whoops, I screwed up". To "make up for it" they gave us a "free" RazorGate RG100.. Worthless piece of garbage.

    - Mirapoint Sales lied to us more. They promised to take it back if we were still having the initial setup problems 90 days later. It's been a year now, and I'm still paying $950/month on my lease.

    - Mirapoint Professional Services is a JOKE. As a concession to their horrible support, they signed an agreement to review our configuration, bring it up to their (non-existant) best practices, and do our IMAP server migration. That was 10 months ago, and they're still trying to pass the buck to their junior tech support "engineer".

    We have only successfully deployed one customer on this, and after 6 months of hell with this customer on the Mirapoint, we're phasing them off to Zimbra. Next month we suck it up, unplug the mirapoint, and tell them No to their $5k/year support contract renewal.
  • 1.0

    The Razorgate holds a lot of promise, but it's a mirage. After spending $15k, we spent a year unsuccessfully trying to get it configured to deliver on the promise. as a small ISP, we are processing several domains and were excited about Junk Mail Manager, but could never get it working properly. Mirapoint tech support appeared clueless, wanting to test different configurations on our production box. The Razorgate does about 1/2 of what is claimed and the company will not stand behind their product.

    Please don't repeat our mistake. We've lost $50k in revenues because of this decision, with no hope for compensation - still paying $500/month on our lease for nothing. It's corporations such as this that give us the motivation to do the job right every time and stand behind our services. Too bad they get away with it.