"Shouldn't highlighted text be DateTime.UtcNow?"
Yes. My application is only for US markets and I am in the bad habit of not keeping UtcNow consistent.
I started using mandrill about a week ago. You beat me to the punch on posting.
It is by far the best thing out there. I can now skip MailChimp entirely and do everything from nop.
SMTP. Unless I start seeing reputation issues(which shouldn't matter between the two methods) I just don't see why anyone would use anything else.
It's so nice to have your email templates in nop and then just send them out tokenized through mandrill. Nothing else to do. Really cool!
NOTE: I did change quite a few things in the messaging classes and services which I documented in my previous posts.
As I understand from the previous post, you are sending emails from nop using Mandrill through to Mailchimp. Could you share what needs to be done to get this set up through SMTP?
I've got an email list that is only 997 members but is being held up by the hosting provider's limit. I've shopped around and most cheaper hosting plans have per hour email limits (anywhere from 20-150 per hour) Since nop is dumping all emails into the queue and sending them all at once this hits the limits and the emails fail at about 230 newsletters.
Would be nice if nop could add a send per hour loop to the programming. I'd try but nop's architecture isn't that simple to adjust for a newbie.
Look at page 2 of this post. I documented some of things I did.
With respect to Mandrill, there is nothing to do but configure nop's SMTP settings to point at Mandrill. That's it.
Mandrill does impose some sending limits initially, to test your reputation. As long as your reputation doesn't go bad they let go of the reins.
Thank you so much for posting the Mandrill solution. It works great and for the first time those 900+ emails were sent with no problem. I've spent hours trying to come up with a solution to this problem and this one was so easy to implement. Wish I could shake your hand for posting it.
I think adding nop instructions to mandrill is a great idea. I spoke with one of their evangelists at mandrill about a different matter and they are really open to promoting their service, so I doubt it would be too difficult to get those instructions up.
However, before doing something like this I think adding some safeguards to nop email should be looked at first. Safeguards that protect a store owner from him/herself. Mandrill uses reputation to determine how much email you can send and whether you can continue to send. How much does the average store owner understand about email sending etiquette, response codes, blacklisting, reputation, etc?
I don't know what the current number of resend tries nop has by default but if a email server responds with a 450(mailbox full) and the send task is set to go off every 60 seconds with 5 retries then the destination server may view this as spam and the store owner(via Mandrill) will probably record a reputation downgrade. I believe reading somewhere in these forums that even Andrei had trouble with getting blacklisted with a few mail servers.
Some of the code I posted further up in this thread addresses this aspect somewhat. I haven't had any trouble so far but I plan on going back and making a bit more robust. I just think this is a worthwhile discussion for nopCommerce.