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Installation Guide: SNF Custom Win* Installation

This product is for use in a Win* environment where SNF will be integrated as a command line scanner (such as with Declude, ORF, etc). This product is also useful if you will be running SNFServer as a service (via a utility) and issuing XCI scan requests from other software such as MINIMI, eWall, MXScan, or your proprietary software.

The Installer handles many common installations, but if you are using a mail system that does not have a pre-scripted install then you will need to review this page to ensure that you have all your settings properly configured. You can download the Installer executable from our Downloads page.

How Do I Get Started?

  1. Sign up for a 30-day FREE Trial. This will give you an authentication and license ID to download a production ready rulebase and updates FREE for 30 days. You will need the license and authentication in order to setup your SNF software. Our system will send you rulebase download instructions when your rulebase is ready, but the Installer will handle setting that up for you.
  2. Download the SNF Client/Server Win* SNF Client/Server Win* Installer (from Downloads index page).
    • Review the installer tutorial, and have your trial SNF license ready.
    • Run the Installer. Where it asks you to select your Platform, Select: - Other (Custom Installation) - at the bottom of the platforms list. (See Figure 1 of the tutorial.)**
    • When prompted in Figure 9 of the Installer, use the free trial licenseID, and authentication. The Installer will download fresh rulebase and help set you up.
  3. When you have completed the Installer, you will have installed Message Sniffer in a folder of your choice, pulled down a rulebase, and setup SNFServer as a service using XYNTService.exe.
  4. Review the documentation on configuring the snf_engine.xml file for your specific needs (Header Injection, Rulebase Downloads, GBUdb).

**Send a note to support to let us know that you are installing on a new platform that is not scripted by the SNFClient/Server Win Installer. We will be very interested in your efforts, and may duplicate them in future Installer upgrades.


Confirm Sniffer is Working

1. Confirm SNFService is Running.

Open a cmd window and type :

Net Start

This will give you a list of services. If you see SNFService in that list, then XYNT has wrapped the service.

2. Confirm SNFServer has started.

To confirm that SNFServer was started properly. Navigate to the install directory and type:

SNFClient.exe -status.second

If you get an XML dump, then the SNFServer is answering and all is well. If not, check proper paths and quotations in your XYNTService.ini file.


Custom Settings

The system is now ready to tie into your custom mail system with whatever command line mechanism is provided. The SNFServer is hanging out waiting to receive commands from SNFClient.exe. Your command line calls should call the client executable and pass it a file.


The following paragraphs describe the tools included in the Installer:

SNFServer.exe provides a high performance, multi-threaded implementation of the SNFMulti anti-spam engine coupled to a TCP (locahlost) server that accepts XCI requests. SNFServer.exe can be run at the command line for testing; it can be launched as a child process as part of a larger filtering system; or it can be run as a service using srvany, XYNTservice, or any similar utility.

SNFClient.exe provides a command line interface to SNFServer.exe by translating command line scan requests to XCI requests and interpreting the result. SNF scan result codes can be retrieved as the %errorlevel% in scripts or directly by the calling program. Declude is an example of message filtering systems that typically call SNFClient.exe to scan messages.

snf2check.exe is a command line utility that tests SNF rulebase files for authenticity and integrity.

getRulebase.cmd provides a rulebase update mechanism using the open source utilities wget (for retreiving the rulebase) and gzip (for decompressing the rulebase file). The script is designed for use with SNF's update-script feature to provide up-to-the-minute filtering rules automatically.

curl.exe provides the download transport for the getRulebase.cmd utility. This platform recently replaced wget.exe as the preferred choice due to its simpler command line, it's ability to preserve a server's timestamp on rulebase downloads, and the fact that handles on-the-fly decompression without the need for an external gzip utility.

XYNTService.exe provides the mechanism for setting up the service to auto start SNFServer, and to respond to NET START/STOP -i /-u/-r commands.

The following summary will indentify all of the Message Sniffer specific files that you might need to edit.


Technical Summary

Basic Sniffer Install:

  • Enables the client to install the SNF directory in any location. Registry will indicate
    the location in HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\MessageSniffer\Install_Dir

  • Installer uses the following registry keys to support the install and uninstall:
    • Install_Dir (Location of the SNF Installation)
    • SNFMailServer_DIR (Location of the Mail Server)
    • SRS_COMPLETE (Did the Install Complete Nicely)
    • SRS_INSTDIR (Location of the Current Install's Rollback File)
    • SRS_LogName (Rollback File Name)
    • SRS_RollbackPath (Target Path for Rollback)
    • SRS_SERVDIR (Mail Server Path for Rollback)

  • The Installer places the following files in the main SNF folder:
  • The Installer alters the following files:
  • The Installer performs the following command line actions:
    • Executes a download of the rulebase and creates first .snf file.
    • Performs authentication test with snf2check against the rulebase.
    • Starts a service wrapper with XYNTService named SNFService.
    • Tests SNFService with "SNFClient.exe -status.second" to verify xml reply.

  • Refer to SNF Documentation for info on setting custom header injection