Dummy/Fake SMTP/Mail Trap for Development Purposes

This post started out as a question on StackOverflow.com (found here). I have moved over to Linux Mint 10 for all of my Ruby and Ruby on Rails application development. I have found this flavour of Linux to be the most pleasant for my purposes. But I ran into a bit of a problem when I first moved over form Windows.

Issue: On windows I had more than one option when it came to a dummy/fake SMTP/Mail trap which I could use to catch and examine the emails generated and sent out by the applications on which I was working. Extremely useful when testing account registration and email activation 🙂 But on Linux all I found were posts about setting up a full blown SMTP server and then connecting a mail client to it and pulling the emails locally. PUKE, GAG,VOMIT way too much work for me and I am really not interested in becoming a professional mail server administrator.

Solution: After millions of hours searching for a decent solution I ram across a Ruby Gem called MailTrap, oh my saviour, I can’t even begin to tell you how much I love this GEM, it makes my life so much easier.

[sudo] gem install mailtrap

Then don’t forget to setup your development environment file with the following entries

config.action_mailer.raise_delivery_errors = true
config.action_mailer.perform_deliveries = true
config.action_mailer.delivery_method = :smtp
config.action_mailer.smtp_settings = {
:domain => “mydomain.net”,
:address => “localhost”,
:port => 2525,
config.action_mailer.default_url_options = { :host => ‘localhost:2525’ }

Then simply run the gem application in a terminal window and you will see each of the mail messages as they come in or you can view them in the log file that is created.

mailtrap run

Vista: Missing SMTP Server

Microsoft decided to remove the SMTP server feature from the Vista operating system (all versions).
This of course is a real problem for those of us who are developers as we can no longer use the local SMTP server to send emails from our applications as we are developing and testing them.
Luckily there are a few applications out there which we can use instead. Here are just a few alternatives for use as your local SMTP server for development.
Free SMTP Server from SoftStack.com: This is a good alternative as it is extremely easy to setup and use. But on the downside it is limited to 10 emails a day unless you purchase the full version.
If you need to be able to send more than just 10 emails during a day Pegasus Mail provides a free SMTP server titled Murcury SMTP Server.

Development Tools I Use

Applications I find extremely useful.

SlickRun: Command line utility which utilizes magic words you define to open your applications.

7-Zip: Free Open-source file compression software. Handles every compression format you need. (zip, 7-zip, rar, iso, etc.)

Agent Ransack: Free File content search utility. Searches all files of a type you specify, within a directory you specify, for a string you specify

Axialis IconWorshop Lite: Free Visual Studio 2008 plug-in allowing you to created application icons right in visual studio.

CamStudio: Free Open-Source screen capture utility. Allows you to capture video of everything happening on your screen or a selected section or window.

CCleaner: Free Computer cleaner / Registry Cleaner. Helps keep your computer clean of temp files and removes the clutter in the registry that builds up over time.

Royal TS: Free Windows Terminal Services manager. Allows you to categorize and save all of your remote desktop connection accounts in an encrypted format. Allows you to open different terminal sessions in different windows within the same application.

FileZilla: Free FTP Server/Client

FreeMind: Free Mind mapping software, helps you get our the structure of your thoughts in an organized thought tree.

KDiff3: Free File Compare Utility

Notepadd++: Free Universal note pad handling tons of languages, tons of plug-ins, very customizable

TortoiseSVN: Free Windows Explorer integrated SVN client.

TrueCrypt: Free Open-source Disk Encryption Utility.

Unlocker: Free Allows you to free files and folders which have been locked by another application without restarting your system.

IETester: Free Allows you to test web pages in multiple versions of IE (5.5, 6, 7, 8 beta) just by opening a new tab for that specific rendering engine.

Digsby: Free Messenger client which also handles email, and various social network messaging systems as well.

SimpLite: Free MSN Messenger protocol encryption software, works with many of the mainstream messaging clients as well as options for configuring non-standard ones as well.

Audacity: Free audio capture and editor for windows.

.Net Reflector: Free .Net assembly decompiler, allows you to see all the members within a given .Net compiled assembly (dll)

Expresso: Free regular expression tester.

Smart Defrag: Free real-time disk defragmentor, pretty much all the features of expensive defrag software like