2. Access to webmail
2.1 Access control
2.2 Logging in
2.3 Getting started with Squirrelmail
2.4 Loggin out
3. More documentation
This chapter provides a very brief description of Squirrelmail, the
webmail application that is used in ServerAtSchool. This chapter is
illustrated using the mailbox of Helen Parkhurst, teacher at the
Exemplum Primary School. See section 2. The Exemplum Primary School in chapter
II. ServerAtSchool User Manual Overview
for more information.
Helen has received the following 'password letter' from Freddie
Frinton, the local systems administrator. For clarity the lines of
interest in this password letter are emphasised in the illustration
This letter contains the secret passwords you need to use the
facilities of our server at school. Please keep these passwords to yourself.
Do not show this letter to anyone else.
- You need the information under 'Network Logon' when you want to logon to
the school network.
- You need the information under 'E-Mail' when you want to access your
mailbox via webmail.
- The information under 'Teleworking' is required when you want to work at
home with documents and files on the server at school. Note that it is
important that the key fingerprint matches when you logon from home for
the first time. If there is a difference, you should cancel the
logon attempt and tell Freddie Frinton about it.
Name: Helen Parkhurst
RSA key fingerprint: 24:8f:3a:85:0a:d1:25:d6:81:14:b0:22:b6:62:55:39
Helen needs this information to authenticate herself when she wants to
access her mailbox with Squirrelmail.
Access to webmail on the ServerAtSchool server can be limited. The
local systems administrator or the ICT coordinator is able to limit
webmail access for every individual user. The possible choices are
- No access
Webmail is not accessible at all. This option is often used for
individual pupils at school.
- Access from within the school
Webmail can only be used from a workstation that is connected to
the LAN (Local Area Network) at school. This option is sometimes
used to grant nests (grades, classes) access to webmail in a
controlled environment. This prevents abuse of the school e-mail
facility by pupils from locations outside the school.
- Access from pre-defined IP addresses
Webmail access is limited to one or more IP-addresses. This feature
can be very useful to grant access to webmail to an individual user
from a specific location outside the school. For instance
that one pupil in grade 8 who is ill and has to stay at home for 3
months. By granting access to webmail for this pupil's home
computer, she can keep in touch with school. If she also is
allowed to work with school files and documents at home (see XII. Teleworking with WinSCP) sha can
almost fully participate.
- Full access
Webmail access allowed from anywhere, even from an Internet cafe
in Amsterdam. This type of access is often granted to staff
Please ask your local systems administrator or ICT coordinator for
full details of your own access privileges.
Depending on the way the school's website is configured, a special
webmail login page may have been added to the website, as illustrated
It is possible that another webmail login page is available, at another URL,
your local systems administrator or ICT coordinator for details.
Note that Helen has entered her userid (here: 'hparkh') and her
password (here: 'wWITa4ye') into the dialogue. The password is shown as
a series of asterisks. This is a security measure.
After pressing the [Logon] button, the following is displayed.
This is Helen's mailbox. At the moment her mailbox contains two e-mail
messages, one sent by Freddie Frinton (the local systems
administrator) and one by Amelia Cackle (the school's head
Now that Helen is logged in, she can use all the facilities that
Squirrelmail offers. The most important facilities are:
If you click on the link 'Sign Out' in the top right corner, the
webmail application program will close and you will be taken back to
the school's website, e.g. back to the login page that was displayed
in section 2.2 Logging in above.
- Reading e-mail messages
By clicking on the Subject-line of a message (e.g. 'Re:
Instructions 'Seasons Greetings'' or 'Test message'), the message
is displayed. Once it is displayed, it can be read, replied to,
deleted, forwarded, etc.
- Composing new messages
By clicking on the link 'Compose', a new messages can be
written. Once a message is written in the compose window, it can
be sent, saved or discarded.
- Configuring options
By clicking on the link 'Options' you can configure Squirrelmail
settings such as the sender name and address
(e.g. 'Helen Parkhurst',
- Return to the INBOX
You can return to the list of received messages by clicking on the
linke 'INBOX' in the left hand pane. This always brings you back
to the list of received messages.
Squirrelmail has an excellent online help function. It can be
accessed by clicking on the 'Help' link available on nearly
every Squirrelmail dialogue screen.
Another good source of documentation is the project's website at
more specifically the online Squirrelmail manual in the form of a wiki at www.squirrelmail.org/wiki/UserManual.
Furthermore many, many introductions to Squirrelmail have already been
written. You can use your favourite Internet search engine to find a
plethora of information, e.g. using the keywords 'squirrelmail',
'introduction' and 'school'.
Authors: Peter Fokker <peter (at) berestijn.nl> and Dirk Schouten <schoutdi (at) knoware.nl>
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