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blat.exe as a production utility?

Posted on 2007-04-04
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Last Modified: 2008-02-01
Hello all,

   We've got a few scattered servers that use ntbackup.exe for off-site backup tasks.  Like most, I would appreciate an email once the job is finished, etc. etc.  I am looking at blat because I do not wish to deal with a MAPI client requirement, however I am not certain that blat.exe is what one calls "a real infrastructure solution".  

   This is only about selling the use to management but I am also concerned that this program is considered "unfit" for production usage, barring full-blown backup solutions with built-in email notifications.

   I also understand the implications of using and security the program, as it is dangerous in the wrong hands.

Thanks,
Jennifer
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Question by:jennifer_borman
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Expert Comment

by:Sembee
ID: 18854474
I have blat on a couple of sites and it works fine - as long as you script it carefully. It does exactly what it says - it sends the email message. If you don't script it correctly, wrong email server, format etc then things can go wrong quite quickly, but then you would write the script and make sure it works correctly in a test environment first... ;-)

Simon
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Author Comment

by:jennifer_borman
ID: 18855934
Sounds good - my main concern is that it is accepted in IT as a "real" solution.  I see that some consider it to be a security risk because of it's capabilities, which would make MAPISend more palatable from a security standpoint.  Yes, with the correct scripting and rights assignments, the tool will do fine.  But is that enough for professional acceptance?
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Sembee earned 1600 total points
ID: 18856370
Not every site has an Exchange server. If you are using Linux or a simple POP3/SMTP server then you cannot use a MAPI tool. In those respects blat is ideal. I have seen it mentioned on professional sysadmin type lists for years, even before I worked with Exchange like I do now.

You could compare blat to a very big sharp knife.

Used in the kitchen by a chef, a powerful tool.
Taken out of the kitchen by a thug, it becomes a weapon.

Simon.
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Assisted Solution

by:Pber
Pber earned 400 total points
ID: 18857310
Sembee, I like you analogy. (:

I use blat for sending notification of completed scripts and various other automated processes.  Works great.  Proper lock down of the SMTP gateway to allow only certain hosts to send mail is important.  We usually limit this to certain servers, thus desktop users can't use the SMTP gateway.

Here's a good site for doing stuff like this in VBS: http://www.paulsadowski.com/WSH/cdo.htm

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Author Comment

by:jennifer_borman
ID: 19287329
Thanks people!  Sembee, excellent comparison and I appreciate the aspects.  Pber, thank you for the advice and link.
We'll see what happens!

-Jennifer
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