E-mail in Eritrea

by the Eritrea Technical Exchange

Description Contacts 1996 Article 1998 Article 1999 Article on the Internet Unicode Ge`ez

Basic Description of Email services

Currently email is available in Eritrea, but full Internet access is not. Basic Internet access will probably be available in Eritrea at the end of 1999.

The Eritrean Technical Exchange (ETE) is the major wholesale service provider in Eritrea at the moment. ETE is running a modified UUCP transport over dial-up connections between the U.S. and Eritrea. The transport includes compression and batching of email in order to increase the efficiency of the transfers.

Linux PC servers are installed at the Department of Energy, Asmara University, and two commercial providers: EWAN Technical Solutions and Tfanus Enterprises. The servers provide dial-up email services in Eritrea and batching and transport of email to the Internet. The Linux servers connect to ETE in San Francisco from 3-7 times a day, except for the University of Asmara server which receives its email through EWAN.

The user interface is usually a variant of UUPC. But users can also use commercial software such as Eudora, Netscape, or Microsoft Explorer if they subscribe to a dial-up PPP account with one of the commercial providers. The Department of Energy server connects to about 35 institutions, while commercial providers service several hundred institutions and individuals.

The email user base has almost expanded to the point where it could financially sustain full TCP/IP connectivity, if and when a continuous international connection is permitted. ETE is also the technical administrator for the .ER domain and provides domain name services to this end. ETE is a non-profit project of the International Collaborative for Science, Education and the Environment, and accepts donations to support its network development activities in Eritrea.


Eritrea Technical Exchange
110 Clayton Street
San Francisco, CA 94117

Energy Training and Research Center
Department of Energy
P.O. Box 5285
Asmara, Eritrea

EWAN Technical Solutions
Saba Bldg., Ground Floor, Andnet Street
Asmara, Eritrea
Tel: 291-1-183040/183022
FAX: 291-1-183042

Tfanus Enterprises
Daniel Camboni St. #46
P.O. Box 724
Asmara, Eritrea
Tel: 291-1-202511/10
FAX: 291-1-126457

CTS Online
Bahti Meskerem Area
P.O.Box 1375
Tel :(291)-1-126424/124137
Fax :(291)-1-124154

Computer Center
University of Asmara
P.O. Box 1220
Asmara, Eritrea

1996 Eritrea E-mail paper

This paper provides a more detailed description of email development in Eritrea. It describes how an efficient dail-up store and forward system was developed for Eritrea and also discusses issues of sustainability and equitability.

"Wiring Eritrea" (Sept 1998)

This article is a personal, historical account of how the current email system was developed. It is written in a casual style for a general audience.

"An Optimal Eritrean Internet" (August 1999)

This is a discussion of the technical challenges of bringing Internet services to Eritrea. It discusses the history of Internet development, the economics of Internet services in Eritrea, and some of the technical solutions and challenges presented by the particular needs and requirements of an Eritrean Internet.

Last updated September 2000 by rvb